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No Limit Texas Hold'Em Poker Guide

Updated on September 20, 2014

THE BASICS

No Limit Texas Hold'Em is the most popular variation of Poker in the world, and with all popular games the awards for being a good player can be vast. Here is a guide to the game.


MINIMUM/MAXIMUM PLAYERS:

  • 2-10 players per single table game
  • Tournaments can have unlimited players, however some are capped at a maximum

TYPES OF GAMES

  • Cash Games

Cash Games or Ring Games are normally set between a minimum of 2 and a maximum of 10 players sitting at any one game. For a Heads-Up game both the minimum & maximum players is 2. Chips represent the money used to "Buy-In", and when a player "Cashes Out", however much they have in relation to chips (win or lose) is changed back in to money. There is no minimum or maximum length of time a player can sit at a cash game,

  • Sit & Go Tournaments

Sit & Go Tournaments(SNGs) are capped entry tournaments, where players buy-in & as soon as the required quota of entries is reached, the game begins. Prizes are pre-determined and players are well aware of them prior to entering.

  • Multi-Table Tournaments

Multi-Table Tournaments(MTTs) are where a time is set for the tournament to start. Players can register from a set-time before the start, and sometimes in a "late registration" period after the start of the tournament. Prize money is decided by the nuber of players and amount accrued from registration fees, this is called the Prize Pool.

  • Speed Games

Speed Games are the new breed of games offered to Texas Hold'Em players. Unlike the others, these games are only available, and only possible because of the capabilities of the internet. In speed games, once a hand is folded, you are propelled straight in to another hand, giving the player more hands per minute than could ever be dreamt of previously, and eliminating the boredom of waiting. Using a mixture of Ring Games and SNGs, the player pool is normally a great deal more than the maximum 10 per table, and the players you face are rotated as you play/fold. Multiple buy-ins can be made by single players too. Although the "fun factor" is increased and the amount of hands the player gets to play, any skill is taken away from the game, as the studying of your opponents' games and patterns of play is nigh-on impossible. Most hands played in speed games are High Quality hole cards for all involved, promoting monitary action, leaving the loser more often than not, feeling hard-done-by. Prizes are won in the same way as cash games, buying chips & converting those to cash when the player cashes out.


THE GAME

  • Each game begins by giving one player a "Dealer" chip - even when there is a designated dealer(In a casino/tournament, etc.), this chip is passed around the players.
  • The dealer chip destination is decided at the start of the game by giving each player 1 card - the highest becomes the dealer for the first game. It is then passed left one player every deal, until the end of the game.
  • Each player is given 2 hole cards, dealt one card at a time, starting from the player directly left to the dealer, and all the way round until the dealer is dealt their final card.
  • Betting is forced by a Small Blind & Large Blind - automatically posted by the players immediately to the left of the "dealer". The large blind is always double the small blind, e.g. Small Blind $0.25, Big Blind $0.50m and so on.
  • The player directly to the left of the big blind starts the first round of betting. They can either Call(match the bet set by the big blind), Raise(Increase the minimum bet. A raise has to be a minimum of double the highest bet), or Fold(Release themselves from the play).
  • For the person in the big blind, if the betting is "called" by others , and not raised at all, the player can Check(neither raise nor fold, simply keep highest bet of the current round set, and allow further cards to be dealt).
  • If the first round of betting ends with only one player betting the most chips, and the rest folding, they win the pot(total chips bet), no more cards are dealt, and a new game begins.
  • When the first round of betting is complete with 2 or more players still in action, the dealer Burns(discards) the top card of the deck, this reduces chances of fixed shuffling/cheating. They then deal 3 Community Cards(these cards are used by everyone partaking in the current game to help make the best 5-card hand possible) face up in the centre of the table.
  • Round 2 of betting begins, this time from the person directly to the left of the dealer chip. The minimum bet is again the level of the big blind. However, this time, if the players choose, they can Check the action round, leaving no bet either for the round or until someone bets. The person in the dealer chip position is last to act if all players choose the same action.
  • When betting ends, and 2 or more players are still in action, the dealer burns the top card of his/her deck and deals the Turn card. This is the 4th of 5 Community Cards.
  • Again, Round 3 of betting begins with the person directly to the left of the dealer chip, and with a minimum bet of the big blind, unless players wish to check.
  • Once more, if the betting ends with 2 or more players still in action, the top card of the deck is burnt the 5th and final Community Card, The River, is dealt.
  • The Final Round of betting commences, either until someone bets so much others fold so they win the pot, or until all action is met.
  • Once betting has been completed, if there are 2 or more players who have matched each other's bets, or indeed anyone allin(all chips available to player, bet) with matched bets, hole cards are turned face up & the person with the Best 5 Card Hand wins the pot.
  • The Best 5 Card Hand needs to come from a mix of any of the player's 2 hole cards & the 5 community cards. There are instances where the best 5 card hand is all 5 community cards, in these instances, the pot is shared between any players still in action.

ROYAL FLUSH - A Royal Flush is the Ultimate hand in No Limit Texas Hold'Em. In short, it can't be beaten! It is made up of 10 J Q K A of all the same suit.

STRAIGHT FLUSH - A straight flush, made up of consecutive cards from the same suit. It can only be beaten by a better Straight Flush, or the daddy of them all, the Royal Flush.

FOUR OF A KIND - Quite self-explanatory, four cards of the same value. It's very seldom you lose when you have this hand up your sleeve.

FULL HOUSE - A Full House is made up of 3 cards of one type, and 2 of the other.

FLUSH - You have a Flush when 5 cards are made up of the same suit.

STRAIGHT - A Straight is made when you have 5 running cards in order, of any suit.. For example, 4,5,6,7,8.

THREE OF A KIND - Again, self-explanatory. Three of a Kind is when you have 3 cards of the same value.

TWO PAIR - This hand is when you have 2 Pairs of cards within your 5 cards.

ONE PAIR - Obviously, when you have this hand, you only have One Pair in your arsenal.

HIGH CARD - The worst and possibly most embarrassing hand to win with.You haven't really got a hand, just a collection of 5 cards. Although your opponents will be even more embarrassed if you manage to read that their poker face hasn't worked and you have beaten them with just a High Card.

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