If you don’t have much gambling experience, but you want to enjoy a getaway in Black Hawk, CO, now’s the time to brush up on the rules of poker. That way, you can join the ranks of experienced players without looking like a newb. All you need to win big is a little luck and this beginner’s guide on how to play poker.
Poker Hand Rankings
To be a successful poker player, you must understand the strength of different card combinations. The value of your hand is determined by how rare it is to be dealt certain cards. Note that in Texas Hold ‘Em, suits carry no weight. Instead, ties are broken by the “kicker,” or the highest-value unpaired card in the hand.
Here are the 10 basic poker hand combinations in order from highest to lowest rank:
- A royal flush consists of a straight from 10 through ace, with all five cards sharing the same suit. This is the rarest and most coveted hand in poker.
- A straight flush is a straight with all five cards sharing the same suit. Keep in mind that an Ace can be the high or low card in a straight, but it cannot connect a King and a Two. If two players have a straight, the one with the highest card wins.
- A four of a kind, also known as quads, is a hand containing four cards of the same number. Card ranks apply when determining the winning hand.
- A full house consists of three of a kind and a pair. If two players have this hand, the one with the highest three of a kind wins.
- A flush consists of five cards of the same suit. If two players have this hand, the flush with the highest-value card wins. If the highest card is the same rank, the next highest card is considered, and so on. If the hands have identical values, the pot is split.
- A straight is any five cards in a row, regardless of suit. Card ranks apply when determining the winning hand.
- A three of a kind, or trips, is a hand with three cards of the same value. Card ranks apply. If two players share the same three of a kind, the player with the highest kicker wins.
- Two pairs consist of two cards of the same rank. Again, card ranks apply, and if two players share the same two pairs, the player with the highest kicker wins.
- One pair is a hand with two cards of the same rank and three unpaired cards. Card ranks and kickers are used as tie-breakers if needed.
- The high card determines the winner of the round if no one has any card combinations.
How to Play Poker—Setting Up
A Texas Hold ‘Em poker game begins with the dealer giving each player two cards face down. Before the round begins, each player puts out a small and big blind, also called an ante. This ensures there are always chips in the pot at the start of each round. The big blind is usually twice the amount of the small blind, and all players much “call” (match the amount) or “raise” (increase the amount of) the big blind to continue playing. The alternative is to fold and sit that round out.
The dealer places three new cards face up on the table, known as the flop. This is followed by another round of betting. All players who wish to stay in the round must match the highest bet. Unlike the initial blind, players now have the option to “check,” which means they neither bet nor fold. They stay in the round, but only if every other play also checks. If anyone bets, all other players must call or raise to stay in the round. Otherwise, they must fold.
The dealer places a fourth card face up on the table, and another round of betting ensues. The betting follows the same format as the previous round.
The Final Card
The dealer places a fifth card face up on the table, and the last round of betting takes place. Then, all players show their cards. The person with the highest card combination wins, collecting all the chips in the pot.
Play the Best Poker Games in Black Hawk, CO
Poker is one of the most widely played casino games in the world. When you visit Black Hawk, you can test your bluffs in live-action poker or enjoy a more solitary experience on a video poker machine. However you choose to play poker in Colorado, you’ll find your preferred atmosphere at one of Black Hawk’s many casinos. Plan your next visit today!