Complete guide to playing poker
Poker is the name of the game throughout much of the world now. Texas Hold'em has brought back to life an old game that has long been neglected.
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A brief introduction to playing poker:
Poker is a fascinating game that is both simple enough to learn the basics quickly and complex enough to require dedication to master.
Learn how to act at the poker table. Read this poker article here for a little session on poker room etiquette
How to rank poker hands
There are several types of poker games, dozens really, so you'll learn a specific game when you investigate further. For now you need to know the basic principle of poker - the way the hands rank, and what hands win. Read this article to find out what order poker hands rank in
Poker game variations
Selecting a poker game. One of the easiest to learn, and probably the first you should learn is five card draw
. Other poker variations are listed here
. We also have quite a number of poker games available for free on our site, with no registration or download required - click here for our free poker games
on which you are free to practice without risking anything.
Limit or No limit (NL)
You will also need to know whether the poker game you are going to be playing is limit or no-limit (often abbreviated n/l) - Use the following links to understand: Limit Poker
or No Limit (NL) Poker
. If you don't know what limit / no limit poker means, click those links back there for an complete explanation.
Without going into any particular poker game, let's discuss the basic elements of poker play. Visit this page if you wish to look into other poker varieties: poker game rules.
It is assumed that the poker game is being played at a poker table. This should go without saying, but erring on the side of caution I thought it worthy of mentioning. Generally, poker is played in a circle at the very least.
If this is a home game, the deal is usually passed around clockwise between each hand. In a casino or card house this is simulated with a Dealer Button that is passed around the table. The significance of the dealer button is relevant to your position at the table and in the game. This will be discussed at greater length later when we talk about poker strategy. For now it is important to be aware of your position relating to the dealer or the dealer button because rules state that players are to play in turn. The cards are dealt to the left (clockwise) and the order of play continues in such a manner beginning with the first player to be dealt a card.
Our poker room directory has just been opened and has lots of great poker deals. The site also provides extensive articles on the rules of poker and strategy text that will help you to improve your game. (select options from menu on the left)
Practice playing poker for free here to get the idea of the ranking of poker hands:
Poker Note: The importance of playing in turn should be stressed from the beginning. Learn now and it will save you much unpopularity in any game in which you might forget. Because of the nature of poker, it is essential that your hand not be revealed. By exposing your play before your turn you may affect the play of players in front of you. This can affect the mood of the players behind you to say the least. An example: You expose that your intention is to raise the bet and the player in front of you folds his hand that he may not have otherwise. To the player behind you this can be seen as removing potential money from the pot. Had your intentions not been prematurely exposed, the player in front of you may have called the existing bet with a weak hand only to fold later when the raise comes back around.
Potentially, that player may also become trapped in the hand for feeling invested by the money they have already contributed to the pot. This has advantages and the contrary, but these elements will also be discussed at much greater length later when we talk about advanced play and poker strategies.
So, the cards are dealt clockwise and all subsequent action follows this trend. Best poker hand wins. Read this poker article for the correct order in poker hand ranking.