How to Play Texas Hold ‘em Poker
The Basic Rules to Play Texas Hold ‘em Poker
Texas hold ‘em is one of the most popular and easiest variations of the famous card game of poker. It is mainly popular in the United States, as the name indicates. The Robstown in Texas is known as the birthplace of this game. If you are looking forward to making your Texas Hold ‘em debut in an online casino, you can find everything there is to know about this game, here.
It is a very logical game but also very easy to understand. If you are just starting with this variation of Poker, it is recommended to play Texas Hold ‘em Poker online so that you can properly focus on the game and avoid common distractions of a brick and mortar casino.
It is a type of Poker game which is mainly focused on betting while playing cards. The game involves playing with a rotating dealer. To begin with, each player is given two cards, face down. Then, five shared cards (or community cards) are given in three stages - a series of three cards in the first stage (“the flop”), a single card (“fourth street” or “the turn”), and a final card in the third stage (“the river” or “fifth street”).
Basically, each player has access to seven cards (two of his own and five community cards), which he/she uses to make the best hand of five cards. The best hand can also have all five community cards, which is called “playing the board”.
There are four betting options in a Texas hold ‘em Poker game - check, raise, call, or fold. The first betting round takes place before the flop (first stage of three cards) is dealt and then after each deal.
The objective of a Texas hold ‘em Poker game is to win as many chips as you can from the pot, which is the amount of money or chips wagered by the players. The cards in a hand are not in the control of players as they are dealt randomly. So, each player tries to control the money in the pot by making a specific hand of cards by guessing the cards of their opponents.
There are usually one to four betting rounds in each hand of the Texas hold ‘em Poker game, and each game consists of a series of hands. A hand ends in the following two conditions.
- When the final betting round is done but there are still more than one players in the hand - the pot is awarded to the only player with the highest hand or two in case of a tie.
- All players have folded except for one - the pot is won by that player.
Texas hold ‘em further has some varieties, including Spread-Limit and No-Limit.
For many players, the objective of playing Texas hold ‘em Poker is not to win each hand in a game, but to win the best money by making calculated decisions, like when and how much to bet, call, raise, or fold. Let’s find out more about the rules and terms associated with this game.
Let’s find out the step-by-step procedure of playing this game along with the terminologies associated with it.
Blinds: These are a special type of bets played in some variants of Texas hold ‘em Poker. In this, the bets are placed before the cards are dealt. There are two blinds in a Texas hold ‘em Poker game - a big blind and a small bling.
- Big Blind: this is mandatory bet which is placed by the player sitting two seats left of the dealer. The bet amount is generally the same as the minimum bet. The blinds made by the players are treated as their total investments to the betting pot. If no other player raises the bet, the small blind can call by putting in another half. The big blind does not have to invest any more in the pot but he/she can raise his/her blind.
- Small Blind: Same as the big blind, it is a mandatory bet which is placed by the player sitting left to the dealer. The bet amount is usually half of the big blind bet amount.
The two face-down cards given to each player at the beginning of a hand are called hole cards or pocket cards. These are not supposed to be shown to other players.
The first round of betting is called Pre-Flop in which each player takes a look at his/her pocket cards and decides to take one of the following actions.
- Call: When a player wants to put in the same amount as (match the amount) of the big blind, he decides to call.
- Raise: The first player may choose to raise a bet by the same amount as the big blind bet. Other players can raise the amount of one bet and/or the amount of the previous bet.
- Fold: It means to quit. Any player with a bad hand may decide to fold by throwing away his/her hand. He has to pay nothing and can play again on the next hand.
Only one player can call or raise or fold at a time, in a game of Texas hold ‘em Poker.
The betting round ends when all players in a game have either placed a bet of the same amount or folded.
A burn card is the top card of the deck that is discarded after the first betting round ends. After discarding the burn card, the dealer reveals three cards face-up from the deck. This is called the “flop”. These are community cards or shared cards which can be used by any player in combination with their own pocket cards to form a specific poker hand. The second round of betting begins after the flop.
When the post-flop betting round ends, the dealer again discards a burn card from the deck. Then, one card is revealed face-up. It is known as the “turn card” and marks the beginning of the next betting round. The size of the bet is double in this round and the final round. It is known as the “big bet” in Limit Poker.
When the betting round ends, the dealer again burns another card and reveals another card face-up. This is known as the “river card” and indicates the beginning of the final round. In this round, players can use any of the five community cards and their own two pocket cards to make a five-card poker hand.
Slowdown: A slowdown occurs when even after the final round there are more than one players who have not folded. Then, all players have to show their hands, and the player with the best hand will win the round.