Enjoying Caribbean Stud Poker

This amazing and enjoyable game was born on the Caribbean islands. Just how it got to the rest of the world is an easy tale. The primary vehicle was cruise ships. Soon, passengers were learning this game and before too long, it appeared in many casino pits. What’s amazing is that the game survived, so you know it’s good. Many games have been tried in casino pits and almost all fail.

Caribbean Stud Poker is popular because it’s so darn easy to learn and it’s fun. The game is played with a regular 52-card deck on a blackjack-style table. Each table holds up to 7 players. And of course, you can play at online casinos. Some online casinos have multi-player Caribbean Stud Poker. Even if you’re playing by yourself, it’s still a fun game.

When you look at a Caribbean Stud Poker table you’ll notice five main areas of interest to the game. The closest to your seat is the card area where you’ll receive your cards each hand. The dealer also has a card area. These are the two main focal points during a hand.

Following that up are the three betting areas in Caribbean Stud Poker. First, there’s the Ante spot. This is where you place your first bet for each hand. It’s required to play. The second betting spot is the progressive slot. If you slip $1 into the progressive slot before each hand, you’ll be qualified to win one of the progressive jackpots should you receive the proper hand. More on this later. And the last betting spot is the Raise wager spot. This is a required bet to stay in the hand after you’ve received your cards. We’ll discuss all of this in more detail shortly.

Seeing the betting options should put your mind at ease about this game. It’s not complicated. You bet, get your cards, bet a fixed amount to stay in, and win or lose. It’s very simple. Heck, even a child could pick up Caribbean Stud Poker to a degree and play. Perhaps the “biggest” item to learn is the hand ranking. But, if you already play poker or video poker, you know this. And if not, it’s fairly easy-especially online where they have help menus.

Next part of our Caribbean Stud Poker series we’ll talk about the action of a hand from start to finish. Later in the series, we’ll talk about payouts, hand ranking, and progressives, which vary from casino to casino. Some call Caribbean Stud Poker a “carnival” game, because the house advantage is high. Still, it’s a great game to break up the monotony and there’s nothing wrong with enjoying yourself every now and then.

How to play a hand of Caribbean Stud Poker

I told you that Caribbean Stud Poker was a fun and exciting game and we have went over some of the layout basics and the game setup. Now, we will continue the discussion by going over game play from start to finish. You know the setup of the game, so now it’s time to play a hand of Caribbean Stud Poker.

First, placing a wager on the Ante spot is mandatory. Don’t place it and you can’t play. Most tables have a $5 or $10 minimum wager, so this would be the lowest you could go on your ante. You basically have up to three decisions to make each hand and deciding to play by placing the ante is the first one.

Once you’ve anted up, it’s time to make your second playing decision of the hand. Do you want to play the progressive? If so, you need to place $1 into the progressive slot. By doing so, you’re qualified for all the progressive payouts should your hand qualify.

After that’s settled, the cards are dealt. Once you’ve analyzed your hand, the last decision that you’ll make on each hand is whether to fold and call it a day or to stay in and play. If you want to fold, you lose your ante and progressive and the hand is over. Should you stay, you must place a Raise wager. This wager is always double your ante. For instance, let’s say you anted with $10, your raise would be $20. It’s never more or less.

Let’s back up for a minute. After you ante and decide on the progressive, the dealer will deal you five cards. And these are your only cards of the hand (unlike draw poker). The dealer also gets five cards. Your goal is to beat the dealer’s hand. If you think you can beat the dealer’s hand, that’s when you raise and stay in. The dealer’s hand will reveal one card to you.

So let’s imagine that you’ve stayed in the hand. It’s time to evaluate all hands to see who wins. The dealer must have an Ace-King hand or better to qualify. If not, all bettors win their Ante bet only and all raises are simply returned. However, all progressives are paid. We’ll talk about hand rankings and payouts in the next segment of this series.

The downside about qualifying is felt when you have a good hand, like a four of a kind. If the dealer doesn’t qualify and you have a four of a kind, you’d be paid even money on your ante wager, say $10, and that’s it. By the way, antes are always paid even money. The raises are paid based on the hand ranking only if the dealer qualifies.

And that leads us into our next segment, hand payouts and progressive payouts.

Payouts in Caribbean Stud Poker

Up to this point we’ve talked about Caribbean Stud Poker’s layout basics, typical hand play and some other entry-level information. Now, we’ll continue the discussion by venturing into payouts. After all, that’s the best part, right? We’ll start with Caribbean Stud Poker hand payouts and finish with a segment about progressive payouts. Let’s get started.

As you know from our previous segment, the dealer must qualify for you to be paid on your raise wagers. Antes are always paid even money. Here’s a handy listing of what raise wagers are paid when the dealer’s hand rank is an Ace-King or better.

  • One Pair: paid even money. Ex: $10 is paid $10.
  • Two Pair: paid 2x your raise. Ex: $10 is paid $20.
  • Three of a Kind: paid 3x your raise. Ex: $10 is paid $30.
  • Straight: paid 4x your raise. Ex: $10 is paid $40.
  • Flush: paid 5x your raise. Ex: $10 is paid $50.
  • Full House: paid 7x your raise. Ex: $10 is paid $70.
  • Four of a Kind: paid 20x your raise. Ex: $10 is paid $200.
  • Straight Flush: paid 50x your raise. Ex: $10 is paid $500.
  • Royal Flush: paid 100x your raise. Ex: $10 is paid $1,000.

Here’s an important note. These payouts are not globally applied. Each casino may have different payouts. For instance, I once saw an online casino that paid 200x on the Royal Flush and 6x on a Full House. Shop around. That’s vital for the progressives.

The real money in Caribbean Stud Poker is won via the progressives. These payouts vary from casino to casino, so shop around to find the best deal. Some will pay less on a Royal Flush, but a lot more on a Four of a Kind. Also keep in mind that these payouts are always made regardless of the dealer’s hand. It’s $1 per hand to get locked into the progressives.

Here’s an example setup for a Caribbean Stud Poker progressive:

  • Flush: Payout of $50 – $100.
  • Full House: Payout of $75 – $250.
  • Four of a Kind: Payout of $100 – $500 (see, shop around).
  • Straight Flush: 10% of the current progressive jackpot amount. Ex: progressive is $50,000 so the payout would be $5,000.
  • Royal Flush: The big boy. It pays the whole progressive.

If you read any decent book on casino gambling, it will probably tell you that the progressive is a bad wager. But, they obviously haven’t been sitting at a Caribbean Stud Table and received a Four of a Kind only to see the dealer not qualify. To me, it’s a small price to pay for insurance.

Next, we’ll talk about hand rankings and perhaps look at some strategy for winning.

Rankings and strategy

We’ve looked at layout issues, hand play, the basics of the game and payouts. In this final installment, I’ll go over hand rankings and briefly touch on strategy.

It’s not wise to play the game without knowing how it works, so let’s go over hand rankings. If you’ve played poker of any kind, you probably know this already. It’s fairly simple. Here is the Caribbean Stud Poker hand-ranking list. I’m starting with the lowest hands first.

  • High Card: This is the hand you have when you can’t make any hand. Your highest card is your hand.
  • One Pair: Having two cards of the same rank, such as two Kings.
  • Two Pair: When you have two cards of one rank and two more cards of an additional ranks, such as two Kings and two Queens.
  • Three of a Kind: When you have three cards of the same rank, such as three Jacks.
  • Straight: When you have five cards all in sequential orders, such as 6, 7, 8 ,9 and 10. As a note, the Ace can be used before the 2 or after the King.
  • Flush: All five of your cards are the same suit, such as five clubs.
  • Full House: You have three cards of one rank and two cards of another rank, such as three Jacks and two Aces.
  • Four of a Kind: Four of your cards are the same rank, such as four 7s.
  • Straight Flush: This is the same as the straight except all five cards are the same suit, such as hearts.
  • Royal Flush: This is the granddaddy of the them all. It’s a straight flush that has the cards 10, Jack, Queen, King and Ace. Think the progressive is a waste of $1? Imagine you have this hand and the dealer doesn’t qualify. You’d be paid even money on your ante bet only.

Let’s close with a little strategy talk. Strategy is all over the place in this game. Since the dealer doesn’t qualify a good amount of time, I have two strategy ideas to present with you.

First, if you’re playing $10 or higher hands, bet the progressive. At $10 antes, the progressive is a 10% add-on, so it’s not too much. And you’ll be glad when you have a decent hand and the dealer doesn’t qualify.

Second, stay in hands when you have a hand. If all you have is a high card, you have to pray the dealer doesn’t qualify. I don’t think it’s worth risking 2x your ante for a shot in the dark.

Either way, Caribbean Stud Poker is a great game to play. I hope you’ll give it a try.

Pai Gow Poker basics

Introduction To Chinese Poker

This game is probably close to universally accepted as being the best game for a beginner to cut their teeth on, the advanced player will eventually want to branch out and learn other card games. Some obvious choices for branching out include Omaha, Seven Card Stud and their Hi/Lo and lowball counterparts, but a game that people do not talk about that much is Chinese Poker.

It is rather unfortunate that not that many people know how to play Chinese Poker because as a game it is one of the most challenging card games on the face of the planet.

The Basic Premise

The basic premise of Chinese Poker is that you are dealt 13 cards and play against the person sitting across from you. You can play the game with two or four players, but the best Chinese Poker games are played with four so that the adversarial relationships can be switched around as the game goes on.

With the 13 cards that you are dealt, you need to make one hand of three cards and two hands of five cards. These are known as the front, middle and back hands respectively.

There are not that many restrictions in making these hands, but you do need to make sure in the hand construction that the front hand is smaller than the middle hand and the middle hand is smaller than the back hand. If you are not familiar with Pai Gow Poker you will recognize this stipulation as a running theme through all versions of Oriental poker games.

Once you have set your hands, you compare them to your opponents and score a point for each hand of yours that is higher than your opponents. A clean sweep would score 3 points, a win on two of the hands and a loss on the other would score 1 point and of course you can also lose 1 and lose 3 points to your opponent if the opposite scenarios take place.

Over the course of the game the point differential will switch based on each new hand and at the end of the game the loser is required to pay the winner an amount of money equivalent to the point differential multiplied by whatever monetary value had been attached to each point at the start of the game.

Advantages of Chinese Poker

The main advantage of the game is that there are not a lot of people that know how to play chinese poker. For this reason if you are able to get really good at the game you can easily beat other players and win money from them.

For the people that enjoy the challenge, chinese poker also allows for exercising your critical thinking skills on a large level that dwarfs Texas HoldEm or any of the other currently popular poker variants and that in turn means that you get a lot more out of the challenge if you are the type of person that enjoys it.

Some Poker Cheats

It does not really take a rocket scientist to understand the rules of play when it comes to poker. You just have to understand the basic rules of play, and know which hands to actually set down during the game. This poker cheat sheet is designed to help you understand some of the most basic principles of the poker in general, and to help you develop your strategies.

After all, a card player is not defined by the amount he or she plunks at the table, but rather by the strategies he or she uses to win round after round.

Poker Cheat Sheet # 1: Learn The Game First And You Will Know The Lingo

It’s not enough these days to say that you are going to play poker. There are so many variations now to this card game that it is quite simple to get lost in “poker speech.” So, for clarification purposes, poker is poker is poker … except when people say video poker (which is really a computer game / slot machine); and Red Dog Poker (which is more similar to the game of Blackjack than anything else.)

All other variations like Five Card Draw, Omaha, Primero, Seven Card Stud, Texas Hold’em and Three-Card Brag have the same winning principle: you need 5 cards to lay out a (hopefully!) winning hand.

Poker Cheat Sheet # 2: Know When To Fold And When To Go With Gut Instinct

Some of the most “notorious” card players believe in 2 things: luck and their gut instincts. Although these seem innocuous enough, you as a beginner should remember that poker is a betting game; and luck may turn sour oh-so-quickly; and your gut instinct may just be a gas build-up over the taco you had for dinner.

Conservative playing is one way of learning from other players’ triumphs and mistakes. After all, you cannot expect to win all the time, and you certainly do not want to lose all the time. Bet conservatively at the start of the game. If you find your cards less than desirable, fold immediately.

Poker Cheat Sheet # 3: Stop Trying To Figure Out If Your Opponent Is Bluffing!

If you think that your hand has a fighting chance, then you can slowly build up your bets. The other card players on the table are heaping too much money on the table, and you keep wondering whether or not he or she is bluffing.

Instead of wasting your energy figuring out the truth behind those hideous poker faces, concentrate on this one fact: your opponent may not be bluffing at all! And stop bluffing yourself. This risky move (according to stats) has only 1% chance of ever winning.

Poker is all or nothing. If you think your hand will win, then keep it. If not, it would be better to fold while you are ahead.

Poker Cheat Sheet # 4: Know Which Hands To Keep

Indubitably, face cards are the greatest things to get, since there is all likelihood of putting out a winning hand when you have a set. However, one or two or three cards mean absolutely nothing in a game of poker. You need five… always five. So instead of focusing you attention to just the face cards, (which many beginners are prone to do,) think of the 5 cards – the hand, and how it will fare in the game. A straight flush can win over a full house.

A straight can win over a three-of-a-kind. And never discount the power of a high-card hand; that may also be the only thing your opponent has against you.

The Author:
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Different kinds of Blackjack games

Blackjack has a French heritage: its precursor was a game called “ving-et-un” (French for “21”), which was popular in French casinos in the 1700s. It was then brought to America by French colonists, where it quickly spread and gained enormous popularity.

Developments in the areas of transport and technology contributed to the worldwide popularity of Blackjack. Since the first online casino was established in 1996, Blackjack has been one of online gamblers’ favourite games.

Players of Blackjack are quite lucky compared to those in many other countries, including the USA. Britain is very open to online gambling. Instead of searching for a brick-and-mortar casino and spending time and money to simply go to play the game, Blackjack can now be accessed through a large number of UK-based online casinos.

Black Jack games

To name one example, casinos , which is powered by Cantor Gaming, is one of the most popular online casinos in the UK. It was recently ranked #1for “best payouts” by both Yahoo and Google, and offers generous promotions (such as a £50 welcome bonus, 15% weekly rebate and generous weekly promotions). The casino also has an efficient London-based customer service team, which is easily accessible through live chat, e-mail and phone.

There are numerous versions of Blackjack. Subtle rule variations greatly affect players’ chances of winning. Online Casino Blackjack offers some of most favourable rules anywhere, both online and offline.

Multi-Hand Blackjack

The Multi-Hand Blackjack at casinos play with only four decks of cards, which significantly increases players’ chances of winning, as well as a Surrender option, which gives the opportunity to ‘surrender’ bad hands and thereby minimize their losses.

Single Deck Blackjack

The Single Deck Blackjack available at Red Lounge Casino is one the most sought-after variations of Blackjack. By dealing from a single deck of 52 cards, the player’s chances of winning are significantly increased. Red Lounge VIP Single Deck Blackjack is a favourite of sophisticated Blackjack players around the world. The rules are similar to Blackjack except that a single deck is used, the player may split a hand once (for a total of 2 hands) and the dealer hits on soft 17.

Double Exposure 21

At casinos, customers may also play a rarely offered version, Double Exposure 21, which offers players the incredible opportunity to see both of the dealer’s cards before playing their hand. Double Exposure 21 has an amazing 99.74% payout. Fantastic Fun 21 (also known as Super Fun 21) is another popular and fun Blackjack variation that features many liberal rules.

Asian Blackjack

While the other versions of Blackjack are more or less traditional and widely sought-after, the casino also caters for the seekers of unconventional Blackjack. Asian Blackjack is available only at a few casinos and has been designed especially for the Asian clientele. Asian Blackjack features the rules that are extremely popular in many Asian casinos, particularly in the Philippines.

Ties Win Blackjack

Another unique game is the Ties Win Blackjack – a fun and simple new single-deck Blackjack game where the player wins all ties.

Spanish 21

Spanish Blackjack, also known as Spanish 21, is one the best bets at the casino. Casino’s version of Spanish Blackjack offers some of the most generous odds to players compared to Spanish Blackjack games found elsewhere.

Altogether, the variety of Blackjack games, their high player returns, and the convenience of online play make online casinos a smart choice for playing Blackjack.

How To Choose An Online Casino Game

If you are new to online casino games, it can often be confusing which games to try out first. Whilst most people who play at online casinos for the first time already have a preference for a couple of games, some are still unsure where to start.

Opening up an online casino for the first time can be daunting. You are immediately bombarded by lists of games, special promotions and flashing jackpot lights. The temptation will be there to heads straight into playing a progressive slot, which is a good place to start. Let’s face it, the potential of winning a life changing jackpot is appealing to everyone.

The casino game you choose to play will depend largely on your personality, and ultimately, the type of game that you enjoy the most, given that gambling is something you’re doing for fun as well as money at the end of the day. First you’ll want to look at the options. If you prefer card games, then there’s blackjack and baccarat. If you tend towards machine-generated games of chance, you’ll obviously head for the slot machines, and those with a poker bent will choose the video poker machines. Dice players will head to the craps tables, and that leaves the roulette fans, arguably the most glamorous casino game.

Having decided which form of game you want to try first, you’ll now need to choose a table or machine. The way to decide on this is to look at the bet limits. In other words, be realistic about what you can afford to bet each time. Once again this is a trade-off. You may prefer to make small bets and play for a long time, without much short-term deviation in your bankroll, or you may be the type of person who wants more of a thrill from gambling, and will make bigger bets to make it more exciting, at the risk of losing more. The same principle applies to slots.

There are many multi line slots available at online casino that can be played for as little as a penny per line. these are a great way to stretch your bankroll to the limit, but you will have to accept that your potential wins are much smaller as a result. Nevertheless, you will probably be able to spend a lot more time with a relatively small bank roll.

Another factor that you should keep in mind when choosing a casino game is what is know as the “hold”. This is the house edge, the percentage that you can expect to lose over the long run, assuming you don’t have a big win. Different games have different hold percentages, ranging from 94 to 98 percent, or thereabouts. This means that you have a 2 to six percent chance of beating the house, depending on the game you choose.

The game with the most favourable hold for the player is blackjack, and games like Keno and Casino War have by far the worst hold for you. Slots fit in somewhere in the middle.

Whatever you decide to do, gamble within your limits and decide how much you are prepared to lose, and stick to it.

Playing The Sic Bo Game

Sic Bo (pronounced see bo), is a Chinese game that is played with three dice. It is a simple game of betting on the result on the roll of the three dice. Various combinations are used like two or three dice.

Sic Bo is played on a table with 50 admissible bets and their pictorial representations. Sic Bo has payout ranging from 180 is to 1 to 1 is to 1. Payouts include guessing single numbers, specific triples or specific doubles or the sum of three dice.

The dealer rolls the dice. When the rolling stops, the dealer declares the results. The winning combination is punched and lit before being displayed on the table.

Players can use many kinds of bets according to their convenience. One can bet on any number between 1 and 6. If that single number appears once, the payout so 1 to 1. If the number appears twice, the payout is 2 to 1. If the number appears thrice, the payout is 3 to 1.

The bets

Bets can be placed on 4 or 5 or 6 with payouts of 60 to 1, 30 to 1 and 17 to 1 respectively. If the bet is placed on 7, the payout is 17 to 1. One can also place bets on all individual numbers till 17 with different pays.

Sic Bo bets can also be classified as Small bets and Big Bets. Small bets can be won if the sum of the dice ranges between 4 and 10. However, this excludes a triple of 4 and 5. The pay rate is 1 to 1. Big Bets are won if the sum of the dice ranges between 11 and 17. These bets too exclude triples of 4 and 5. The payout is again 1 to 1.

Two of a kind bets can be used. Players have to choose from the 15 probable two dice combinations. The payout is 5 to 1.

For double bets, players have to choose a particular pair of number that can come as results. The payout is 10 to 1.

One can also place bets on specific triple and get paid at 180 to 1. In this case, players win only if all three numbers match. Bets with payout of 1 to 1 are considered to be the best.

Sic Bo is a game where players can bag a lot of money with a wide range of payouts.