So you decided to discover the online poker world, but you are a bit afraid as you do not actually know the game. Well, don’t be! Poker rules can be complicated if you are new to the game but with a few practice sessions, you will be able to roll your way into winning. No matter if you play poker at one of the numerous variations, the rule of the game is to simply win the pot by having the best hand or by having all the other players at the table fold before the showdown.
As there are many variations of poker available online, this article will focus on the Texas Hold’em poker rules to explain how poker generally works. This poker game is played between 2 to 10 players where one player will act as the dealer. When you are in this position, you are also known to be in the button and the position of the dealer always rotates clockwise after every hand. The two consecutive players to the left of the dealer are known as the small blind and the big blind respectively. These two positions in a poker game entail the compulsory bets of a pre-determined amount. These bets will then make up the base amount in the pot before any cards are dealt.
Each poker player will then receive two cards face down. These cards are known as the “hole” cards. From here, the first round of betting begins from the player sitting left of the big blind. The options open to this player will be to fold, call or raise. To call simply means to match the amount of the big blind posted. By going clockwise, each player will be entitled to these options. When the first round of betting ends, three community cards are revealed face up on the table. This move is called the flop. Once this happens, the second round of betting commences with the first remaining player seated left to the dealer making his options on whether to check, bet, call or fold. At the end of this betting round, the turn, which is the fourth community card, will be revealed face up. The next round of betting begins in the similar manner of the second round. After the third round of betting is over, a fifth card is slipped face up on the table. This card is also known as the river. The last round of betting will start until the players reach the showdown that is to reveal their “hole” cards to assess who has the biggest winning combination with the community cards.
A poker player should also know that one of the poker rules is that usually during one hand, only one bet and three raises are allowed. Once the third raise is made, the betting reaches its limit for that round and remaining players may only fold or call to continue. When a poker player intends to raise a bet, he or she must either voice out verbally this intent or make the movement of bringing the extra chips (the amount they want to raise) into play. Another poker rule is that the minimum amount of chips a poker player is determined by the house rules surrounding the game. Usually, this amount is about 50 to 100 times the big blind.
Another important note for new poker players to keep in mind is that the poker rules differ for a normal cash game compared to poker tournaments. You have to always check out the poker rules stipulated and make sure you have read and understood them in order not to commit any infraction of the rules, whether knowingly or unknowingly. Especially so for tournaments, a breach of the poker rules will get you penalised or even disqualified.