A strategy and chance game: Playing Poker

If you want to play a game that involves both strategy and chance, then Poker might be it for you. You can easily invite a few friends over to play, download apps to play the game, or you can play it online.

What is Poker?

This game belongs to the family of gambling card games, where betting is an intrinsic part. There are many variants to the game itself, but all of them involve showing a high-scoring hand. A poker hand always contains five cards – the player can hold these cards in entirety or they can be drawn from the pool of community cards. As the rounds are played, players bet on their “hand” and draw cards.

How to play

In traditional poker, and in some of the variants, the person who has a dealer button/buck has the right to deal. This right to deal rotates among the players. The cards, one at a time, are given to the players in a clockwise direction around the table.

The players have to make bets. The cards are shuffled by the dealer, and then dealt in either a face-up or face-down position depending on the type of game. Various betting rounds commence after the initial deal.

The hands change through some rounds, with the players being dealt extra cards or putting back previously dealt cards. In the central pot, the bets are collected at the end of each round.

If no opponent chooses to match/call the bet and they fold, the hand ends. The bettor gets the pot and no cards need to be presented. Thus, the next hand can begin.

When the time comes for the last betting hand and there is more than one player, the players have to show their hidden cards in a showdown. The person with the best hand wins the pot.

Deception: A Poker strategy

In order to win, the players employ several strategies in order to garner a winning hand. Let’s look at deception as a poker strategy.

The use of deception in poker games is one of the most common strategies found. If a player makes use of deception – bluffing or slow-playing – they hope to convince the opponent(s) to play differently. It is well known that the winner of a poker game wins precisely because of how much they were able to persuade other players to change his/her strategy.

Bluffing is employed when a player bets strongly on a weak hand in order to convince the opponents to fold their (better scoring) hands. The semi-bluff is the opposite – the player does not have a strong hand and hopes to improve it later on in the game, so they bet strongly on the weak hand, hoping the other players with weak hands will fold.

When playing poker, you have the chance to win a lot of money and also put your thinking cap on – how to best deceive the other players so that they will fold or even raise the stakes if you want a high payout.