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Poker Online, Probably the Best Game of all Time in its Modern Version

Let’s Start with the Basics – What is Poker?
As everyone knows, poker is a classic card game, in which we use a deck consisting of 52 cards. The aim of the game is to defeat all opponents and win money or chips in the competitive version. The number of players who can participate in a game is not fixed, but it is assumed that not more than 10 people should sit at one poker table.

The History of Poker

From a search of the historical sources, we find that the first official records of poker appeared at the turn of the 1920s and 30s. There are many assumptions about the origins of the game. Most people assume that the poker game is derived from “Pochen”, which was known in Germany from about the 15th century. The game later spread to France, but under the name “Poque”.
In 1872, the US ambassador to Great Britain announced the rules of the game of draw poker. In 1880, Texas Hold ‘em – the most popular version of the game – emerged. Sixteen years later, publication of “Poker Chips” – the first magazine devoted to poker – began. Then, in 1904, came the first official handbook focusing on the rules of poker, written by R.F. Foster and entitled “Practical Poker”.

General Rules of the Poker Game
People very often avoid this pastime, because they do not know to play poker. The game itself is not complicated, and poker rules can be learned in just a few minutes – or a short while at most. All versions of the game are governed by common rules. Players receive a certain number of poker cards at the start, and during the game they try to find the highest poker hands. During bidding in the game, they may fold, check, raise, call and place bets, with bluffing – misleading opponents in error – as a constant element of the game. Poker is a game in which the psyche plays a key role.

“Key words”
In poker, as in many other games, there are key words. Understanding them is a very important, if not essential, part of the game of poker. Here are some of them:

• Fold – the player discards their cards and withdraws from the round. They lose any placed chips or money, and do not participate further in the round.
• Check – a player waits for other people at the table to play, and does not raise or fold.
• Call – a player equals the stake, which was played by another in that round.
• Bet – establishing the stake by the first person.
• Raise – a player increases the bet, forcing others to check, raise or fold (once one player raises, the others cannot check).

• All-in – where a player puts up all their money or chips and, in the event of defeat, is out of the whole game.
• Starting hand – the cards that a player receives at the beginning of each hand.
• Fixed limit – fixed stake determined before the start of the game.
• Pot limit – allowing any stake no exceeding the value of the pot.
• No limit – allowing any stake, limited only by the amount of money or chips a player holds.

Card Combinations in Poker Hands
The following are the poker hands in order from strongest to weakest, including the number of possible combinations and the probability of making the poker hand.

1. Royal Flush – cards of the same suit, from ten to ace.
Number of combinations: 4
Probability: approx. 0.000154%
2. Straight Flush – cards of the same suit in order. When several players have this hand, the one with the highest high card wins.
Number of possible combinations: 36
Probability: approx. 0.001385%
3. Four of a Kind – four cards of the same value. When several players have this hand, the player with the stronger cards wins. If a winner cannot be determined in this manner, the high card wins.
Number of possible combinations: 624
Probability: approx. 0.024%
4. Full House – hand consisting of a pair and a three of a kind. If several players have this hand, the one with the stronger three of a kind wins. When several players have the same three of a kind, the stronger pair wins.
Number of possible combinations: 3744
Probability: approx. 0.144%
5. Flush – Five cards of the same suit. When several players have this hand, the high card wins.
Number of possible combinations: 5108
Probability: approx. 0.197%

6. Straight – five cards in consecutive order. The ace can be either a high or low card. The winning hand is the one with the stronger high card.
Number of possible combinations: 10200
Probability: approx. 0.392%
7. Three of a Kind – three cards of the same value. When several players have this hand, the player with the higher value cards wins. If a winner cannot be determined in this manner, the high card wins.
Number of possible combinations: 54912
Probability: approx. 2.113%
8. Two pairs – hand consisting of two different pairs. When several players have this hand, the one with the stronger pair wins. If the high pairs are the same, the second pair decides the winner. When the winner still cannot be determined, the high card wins.
Number of possible combinations: 123552
Probability: approx. 4.754%
9. Pair – two cards of the same value. When several players have this hand, the one with the stronger pair wins. In the event that the pairs are the same, the high card will decide the winner.
Number of possible combinations: 1098240
Probability: approx. 42.257%
10. High Card – any hand that does not qualify for any of the above. When several players have this hand, the one with the second highest card wins.
Number of possible combinations: 1302540
Probability: approx. 50.118%

Varieties of the Game of Poker

  • Texas Hold ’em (competition poker)
  • Omaha Poker (competition poker)
  • Omaha High-Low (Poker Sportowy)
  • Five Card Draw
  • Seven Card Stud
  • 2-7 Draw (Triple or Single)
  • Razz
  • Badugi

The Most Popular Variety of Poker – Texas Hold ‘em: Rules of the Game

1. The agreed number of players gathers, and each takes their position at the table.

2. The game begins when the two players after the dealer place in turn the small blind and big blind, compulsory stakes placed immediately at the start. The dealer and the people placing the small and big blinds change, in a clockwise direction.

3. Each player receives two cards. The player to the left of the person playing the big blind plays first.

4. This person can check, raise or fold. The person who placed the small blind will already have bet half the amount needed to see the flop (see below). The player who placed the big blind will also have put into the pot the right amount of money to see the flop, unless another player raises before their turn arrives. In that case, the player who placed the big blind may raise, check or fold.

5. The flop – three community cards are dealt onto the table by the dealer. Any player who did not fold before the flop can use it to create their best poker hand. Next is another round of betting. This begins with the person who played the small blind, unless they have already folded – in which case the person next in clockwise order will start. If no one adds money to the pot, players can simply wait to see the next card without increasing the stake. If, however, a player does add to the pot, others may raise, check, or possibly fold.

6. The turn – a fourth community card is dealt onto the table by the dealer. Betting starts again, in which players who did not fold in previous rounds can take part.

7. The river – the dealer places the fifth and final community card on the table. Now comes the decisive round of betting. Of the players who do not fold during this round, the one with the best hand will win the whole pot.

8. If during any of the betting rounds a player raises the stake but no one checks, that player wins the whole pot. This person can then show their cards to their opponents, or simply return them to the dealer.

9. When someone wins one hand, another begins. This time, the dealer is the person on the left of the dealer from the previous hand, located on the left of the dealer from the previous hand. During poker tournaments, the blinds increase as play progresses, according to the decision of the organizer or as each player drops out. This usually involves multiplying the stake by a pre-determined amount.

10. When only one player remains in the game and the others have been eliminated, the prize pool is distributed according to pre-determined rules and the game ends. The prize is frequently divided between the final three, or on a winner takes all basis.

Strategic Play in Poker – Tips and Tactics

The foundations of good poker strategy include several concepts, which it is necessary to combine if you are to become a good player. The most important include several aspects, such as:

  • The economical game.
  • The random game.
  • The aggressive game.
  • The game based on taking advantage of opponents’ errors.

Play Poker for Fun

The first decision you need to make when starting to play poker, is the choice between playing for fun and playing to win money. At a high level, making money at the game requires a great deal of time and work, but after the right preparation it can yield extremely satisfactory results. Apart from that, it must be remembered that poker is a game, and games are also for pleasure.
There is nothing wrong playing without the right preparation – there is always the opportunity to play for low stakes, or even for nothing. In addition, the game of poker incudes elements of fate that allow even less skilled players to win with those better than themselves.

Good Choices Bring Good Results

Poker includes elements of fate, so even the best players, who are able to estimate the probability of an event at the table, can lose a game. Sometimes, a small percentage of uncertainty can tip the balance of the game. That’s why you cannot count on victory every time. Even when holding a strong hand home, you might have to let go and fold. The game is very fluid and requires flexible decision-making, which will in the final analysis bring victory in the end.

The Mathematics of Poker

Poker is a game in which, alongside the psyche, math skills play a key role. At the very start of the game, when you see the hand you hold, you need to be able to estimate your chances of winning and adjust them with each consecutive card on the table. Knowledge of the hands in poker and the likelihood of their appearance on the table certainly helps.

After the First Cards

The choice made after receiving the first card is the key, but it is only one element of the poker puzzle. In this respect, you can see the difference between professional and amateur players. After making their decision relating to their initial hand, the professionals are trying their best to outplay their opponents. This is of particular importance at the end of each round.

Of use in this case is the application of clearly defined skills, such as:

  • Calculation of the relationship between the amount in the pot and the stake for the hand.
  • Pattern recognition betting.
  • Bluffing
  • Taking advantage of one’s position.

Years of practice are necessary to achieve mastery of the game. Both during and at the end of a game they are of great value, because even a small increase in a player’s skill can bring visible results throughout their career.

Control of the Game

One of the most important skills for every poker aficionado is being able to take control of the game. Every player will try to catch out weak opponents, who easily give their emotions away. Such players make hasty decisions and mistakes, and this all too often results in failure in the game and losing money.

In professional poker, the best players are those with the most self-control. These are people who are able to calculate with a cool head, and not get angry or elated after defeats or wins. Everyone is irritated when they lose, but in the game of poker, those who are patient enough and make effective use of assumptions are the ones who after time emerge from the game unscathed.

Online Poker – How Does it Differ from the Traditional Version of the Game?

Online poker is a very popular type of entertainment and competition on the internet. You can experience the thrill that accompanies this fantastic game without leaving home. For experienced players, this is also a way to make money; the rules of the game are the same as in normal poker, so the best can win regularly enough to make this worthwhile.

The Advantages of Online Poker:

  • The opportunity to play without leaving home.
  • Elimination of psychological elements (facial expressions, sweating, tics, etc.).
  • Opportunity for continuous play (no need to organise meetings).
  • Poker is often associated with smoking cigarettes and cigars. Playing online lowers the extent to which players are exposed to smoke and its hazardous substances.
  • Comfort and security – when you play poker online with an authorized service, it is competely secure (services that offer the best poker online have a numer of safeguards and pay attention to users’ privacy).
  • Anonymity,
  • The opportunity to play for a range of stakes, from very low pots up to big money games.
  • Possibility of free entertainment (poker games online are the ideal option for people who simply like to spend time in this way, but don’t want to risk their money).

 

The Best-known figures in the World of Poker (Data for 2014)

  • Annie Duke – Net Worth: $8 mln
  • Andrew Feldman – Net Worth: $10 mln
  • Daniel Negreanu – Net Worth: $15 mln
  • Dan Bilzerian – Net Worth: $100 mln
  • Sam Farha – Net Worth: $100 mln
  • Phil Ivey – Net Worth: $100 mln

Points of Interest – What’s Worth Knowing about Poker?

Poker is so exciting that it has inspired films, books and stories associated it. The cult game appears in several parts of the James Bond film series. The theme of gambling, closely linked to poker, also runs through productions as “Casino” with Al Pacino, and “Rounders”, starring Matt Damon and Edward Norton.

Many people are very interested in poker, but not enough so to actively participate in the game. Live pro poker games attract thousands if not millions of viewers to television and computer screens. Recently, it has been possible to follow an even broader range of games featuring the best players and celebrities who try their hand at this fantastic game.

The biggest live tournament in history was the 2006 WSOP Main Event, in which as many as 8,773 players participated – a record number – with a prize pool amounting to $82,512,162, with $12 million for the winner. The biggest tournament based on a poker variant other than Texas Hold ‘em was the $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. World Championship at WSOP 2008. The prize pool was $7,104,000, with $1,989,120 for the winner.

Among online games, poker tournaments distinguished by the largest pot have for several years been organized by Pokerstars WCOOP. The record was broken in 2008 (the prize money in the Main Event was $10,925,000, with $1,265,432 for the winner). The biggest tournament outside of this was the Sunday Million tournament, also organized by Pokerstars, with a prize pool of $7,233,800 and $1,141,510.31 for first place.

Why These Cards and No Others for Poker?

Where did these suits of cards come from? The answer is simple – the origin of the spades, diamonds, hearts and clubs is… French. Yes, it is precisely these people who gave us these well-known suits. The suits themselves are divided according to French society of the turn of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The spade symbolizes the kingdom, the diamond is for merchants, the clergy is represented by the heart, and the people by clubs.

Famous Players

You’ve heard of Nixon? Yes, the former president of the United States. Well, he played poker and won! The win for President Nixon was about $6,000, which is the equivalent of about $42,500 in today’s money. It is worth noting that Nixon had good fortune not only with the cards, because he invested his winnings skillfully. The money supported his election bid – and the sum allocated in those days had a massive effect on his campaign. His moves were a great success, bringing his spectacular victory and the Oval Office.

Poker Bankrupts

It’s easy to guess that poker has led many to bankruptcy. The losers have been numerous, and the amounts lost on the game have reached hundreds of thousands, even millions of dollars. Here are some famous examples of people who lost everything living the poker life.

  • Ted Forrest

Some time ago, poker portals began spreading information about the dire situation of Ted Forrest. There is much evidence that the six-times World Poker Series bracelet winner signed two documents that has brought him a lot of trouble and landed him in court. In 2013, Forrest made a written submission acknowledging that he is liable to the Wynn Casino for a debt of a trifling $270,000, and agreed to repay it. Two years later, the case was closed, but court records indicate that Forrest has not paid off all the debt. As if that were not enough, in September 2016 he was sued by the Mirage Casino, which claimed that Forrest owes them $40,500 of a loan taken out in 2013 for $100,000. The casino won in court, and unfortunately things are not looking too optimistic for the player. It is true that, during the WSOP in 2016, Forrest finished fourth in the Seven Card Stud Championship and won $73,000, but that amount is not enough to cover all his obligations.

  • Erik Lindgren

The extremely likeable and capable player Erik Lindgren turned into a degenerate gambler who lost all confidence of the community after Black Friday. Lindgren was a member of the team Full Tilt Professionals, and received a lot of money from the operator just before the closure of Full Tilt Poker. Lindgren, addicted to sports betting, started to borrow from many people. By 2012, his debts had reached such a level that he was no longer able to repay them. He decided to join a special program for people addicted to gambling, and filed for bankruptcy.
Howard Lederer, another famous poker player, claimed that before Black Friday Lindgren had borrowed from the operator several million dollars. As a result of the situation, PokerStars, which took on the Full Tilt brand, sued Lindgren and requested him to repay the debt to the amount of $2.5 million. In 2015, Lindgren reiterated its request for bankruptcy with a total debt of $8 million. When Lindgren filed his request, his assets were worth less than $50,000.

  • Jamie Gold

In 2006, Jamie Gold became a world ranking poker star. He won the WSOP Main Event – worth a trifling $12 million! Why, then, does his name appear on the list of the biggest bankrupts? A few months after Gold’s win, television producer Crispin Leyser claimed that he should receive half of the prize because he had a contract with the winner. Under its provisions, Gold was required to give him part of the winnings. Finally, Leyser sued the WSOP champion, the case was concluded in his favor, and Gold has probably lost a significant part of his winnings.

That was only the beginning of the collapse of an able poker player. The former WSOP champion has since invested in a failed TV format, did not get paid for representing Bodog, and the poker room at the Tropicana Casino, in his name does not bring sufficient profit. On top of this, the IRS has pressed him to pay back taxes. One should also mention many losses at the tables, and the championship bracelet he put up for sale in 2013. Everything points to the fact that Gold is already a fallen poker star.