Poker is one of the most popular casino games around the world, with millions of people playing it on a yearly basis. However, there are still some people that do not fully understand the game before placing a bet. In this article, we explain the basic concepts of the game, including some tips for new players!
When attempting to get good, or at least reasonably good at anything, learning the ins and outs is key. Unlike other types of online casino games, poker has a variety of different elements to learn. In addition to this, poker doesn't just rely on one set strategy, with players having to adapt on the fly during key moments. Here are a few things that beginner players should become familiar with:
It might go without saying, but knowing which hands are better than others is crucial when playing poker. This is relatively simple to learn, with the cards running in the following order, from best to worst:
Poker has a variety of terms that are specific to the game. A few to learn is the 'Ante', which represents the mandatory bet to participate in the hand. 'Bluff' is relatively self-explanatory, but it's when a player attempts to make the other player(s) fold without a very strong hand. There is also a 'Fold', which means to give up the hand and forfeit the hand.
Strategies in poker can be more of an advanced thing to learn, as the most favoured ones tend to require lots of complex mathematics, as well as being able to identify the tendencies of other players. Perhaps the best starting point for many is to be unpredictable with play. Throwing in bluffs while also playing out strong hands can keep other players at the table guessing.
After learning the basics as much as possible, practising is the next logical step. Some players also learn better through practice, so playing free online games of poker along the way could also prove to be beneficial. After this, the next logical step is smaller stake games, should the player feel comfortable with the basics.
With technology becoming such a prominent part of everyday life, there are more ways than ever to watch and learn poker. Online streaming platforms such as Twitch and YouTube allow people to access an almost endless amount of poker-related content. If players really want to go the extra mile, there are a handful of online courses and training practices that could prove to be useful moving forward.
Of course, the tips in this post are focused on beginners. As each player gets better at poker, there are other ways to refine the skills used at a top level. Keep in mind that while skill is involved heavily in poker, luck is also a crucial factor. Regardless of the strategy being used, if the cards aren't running in the favour of a player, they can get beat on a majority of hands.
David Winter is our in-house casino aficionado with over 10-years experience in the industry. Having written for several major casino groups in the UK and Europe, we are proud to have snagged him for ourselves. He’s been with us for six years now and writes about all our upcoming slots and our casino strategy guides.