Poker is a legendary table game that is much loved around the world. So much so that there are multiple variations for you to enjoy when you play poker online.
At Stake, poker is one of the most popular
table games, as players enjoy Texas Hold’em, Triple Card Poker, Caribbean Stud, and other titles.
Stake is also home to several immersive live dealer poker games, allowing you to take a seat at a virtual table while being dealt cards by a real-life dealer.
With so many poker variations to choose from, fans of table games will relish the opportunity to play poker at Stake, and we introduce how to play and what you need to know in the following sections.
Rules of Poker
To understand the rules of poker, you first need to know the basic hand rankings, as the person wins the game with the best poker hand. In ascending order, here are the ten possible hand combinations in poker:
High card - When no combinations are formed, the player with the highest card wins
One pair - Two cards of the same value
Two pair - Two different pairs of cards
Three of a kind - Three cards of the same value
Straight - Five cards in sequential order
Flush - Five cards of the same suit
Full house - A combination of three of a kind and one pair
Four of a kind - Four cards of the same value
Straight flush - A flush in sequential order
Royal flush - The same as a straight flush, but it goes from 10-A. The chances of having a royal flush are 649,739 to one
While there are many poker variations to consider, Texas Hold’em is the most popular form of the game, so we have decided to explain its rules to help you get started.
In Texas Hold’em, each player is dealt two cards facing down. Crucially, you are the only one to look at your cards, and it’s important that you keep them a secret from the other players. Once every player has two cards, the betting begins.
The two players sitting clockwise from the dealer must place a small and a big blind, also known as the ante bet. These bets ensure that there are always chips in play. The big blind is double the amount of the small blind.
To play your two cards, you must match the big blind, a “call.” If you don’t want to play, you can “fold”, while you can also “raise” if you wish to place a higher bet than the big blind. If a player raises, all other players wanting to play on must match the bet.
When the initial betting round is complete, the dealer lays out three cards face up on the table, known as the flop. These cards are for all players to combine with the two cards in their respective hands. After the flop, another round of betting ensues, and if you wish to remain in the game, you need to match the highest bet at the table.
It’s also possible for players to “check” at this stage, which means that you don’t place a bet; you opt to stay in the game without adding chips to the table. This is only possible if nobody makes a bet, as you must match any bet placed to proceed.
Following the flop is the turn, where the dealer burns the top card of the deck and puts it to one side. The dealer then adds another card face-up alongside the three from the previous deal. Again, there is another round of betting following the same process.
The fifth and final card is the river, which the dealer places face-up on the table after another burn. Now that all cards are in play, there is one last round of betting before each player still in the game reveals their cards. The highest card combination - as introduced above - gets all the chips and wins the round.
History of Poker
Poker has ancient roots, and it is thought that the game can be traced back to 1,000 years ago. Some historians suggest that a tenth-century Chinese Emperor played the earliest type of poker, while others claim that it dates back to sixteenth-century Persia, with a game known as “As Nas.”
The earliest related card game in Europe was Poque, popular in France during the seventeenth century. In Germany, the game was known as Pochen, and both were adaptations of the Spanish game Primero, which dealt three cards to each player, with bluffing a key aspect of the game from the very start.
Due to Poque’s popularity in France, colonists took the game to their various settlements. It was first introduced in North America to New Orleans, where the game was soon anglicised to Poker - its modern name. By 1834, Poker was played in America with five cards for each player, dealt from a deck of 52 cards.
From its origins in New Orleans, the popularity of Poker quickly spread throughout North America, and it was a favourite game of Civil War soldiers and the Wild West frontiersmen that came after them. By 1871, the game - with its new name - was reintroduced to Europe after Queen Victoria overheard a conversation about the game in her court, and it has been a mainstay of European gaming culture ever since.
Triple-card poker - sometimes known as three-card poker - is, as the name suggests, a game played with only three cards. The objective is to make the best possible combination with only three cards in play.
There are some slight variations to be aware of in three-card poker. For instance, you only need three consecutive cards to land a straight and three of a suit to make a flush. What’s more, a straight beats a flush in three-card poker.
In many instances online, three-card poker is a game you can play directly against the dealer, and your job is simple - end the game with a better hand combination than the dealer, and you win the chips!
This game uses one 52-card deck which is shuffled after each round. The dealer's minimum qualifying hand is a Queen high, and the goal of the game is to beat the dealer with a better 3-card poker hand.
One notable difference in this game is that a Straight has a higher ranking than a Flush. This is due to the number of ways that a player can create these specific 3-card combinations. The highest paying hand is the Mini Royal, which consists of a Queen, King, and Ace, and pays out at 5:1.
In addition to the main game, Triple Card Poker Live also offers two side bets: Pair Plus and 6 Card Bonus. Pair Plus pays out as much as 100:1, while 6 Card Bonus offers a jackpot of 1,000:1.
Extreme Texas Hold’em.
Extreme Texas Hold’em is a live dealer game from Evolution. It provides the same gameplay as standard Texas Hold’em poker, with the added advantage of dealer interaction. One key distinction, however, is that you place against the dealer and not other players.
You can place side bets in Extreme Texas Hold’em, including trip bets, to crank things up a notch and increase your chances of winning.
Side Bet City
Side Bet City is a unique
live dealer game that offers you multiple betting options from the very start. To begin, you can bet on whether you will win the upcoming hand with 3, 5, or 7 cards. You can also place a bet on "all lose".
Once bets have been placed, the dealer will deal seven cards. Initially, three will be revealed to show a 3-card poker hand, and if it makes one pair or higher, wins will be paid out accordingly.
Then, the dealer will reveal another two cards to make a 5-card poker hand, which should make a pair of jacks or better. Finally, two more cards will be dealt to reveal a 7-card poker hand, and three-of-a-kind or better will result in a winning payout.
Caribbean Stud Poker
Caribbean Stud Poker is very similar to the classic poker game five-card stud. One of the main distinctions of this poker variant is that bluffing doesn’t come into play, as you’re playing against the dealer.
To begin, each player is dealt five cards face down, and the dealer places five cards in front of themselves, four face down and one face up. Once initial bets are placed, the dealer will discern if their hand is “open”, meaning they must have Ace-King or higher.
If the dealer’s hand qualifies, bets are placed, and the remaining cards are revealed. As with all poker games, whoever has the best hand wins the pot.
Casino Hold’em is one of the most popular poker games on Stake and has the same rules as much-loved Texas Hold’em with one key distinction - you play against the house, not other players.
Bgaming, Casino Hold'em allows for an entirely virtual poker experience with the comfort of your device.
Casino Hold’em Live
Live dealer games provide the most immersive online casino experiences, so why not join a live dealer lobby and play
Casino Hold’em Live? Your cards are dealt by a real-life dealer, offering you a much more enjoyable experience than playing against the computer.