In the last decade or so, poker has exploded in popularity. Much of this was down to Chris Moneymaker, who entered the World Series of Poker Main Event via a $39 satellite tournament and went onto win the entire thing, pocketing the millions of dollars that went along with it. The irony of that is that Chris Moneymaker never really won many other big events on the circuit, and many of the players beating him and topping events such as the WPT and the EPT, were actually influenced by him.
Online poker grew alongside offline poker and all gambling sites seem to offer a variation of this game. On Realtime Gaming, our favorite casino software, there are a few of these, which we will look at in this article. These games have enough going on to please even the most experienced poker players, even though they are played against the house.
Texas Hold’em Bonus Poker
Texas Hold’em is the game that everybody wants to play. 5-Card Draw was historically the biggest poker game, but this is the variation that rules in the modern age and this is the variation that RTG focuses on for their main poker game.
The game is played with a 52-card deck and the player is required to make an ante bet alongside their standard wager. Both the dealer and the player receive two hole cards, as per the rules of Texas Hold’em, after which some community cards are drawn, with rounds of betting in between.
In this instance, the player leads the betting, deciding whether to do nothing and check, or to bet. The player is playing against the deal much like they would in standard Hold’em, but because the dealer does not bet, it is hard to judge how good their hand is. If the player wins, they take all of the money and if they lose then it goes to the dealer. The bonus bet, however, has nothing to do with the main game and is settled separately.
The bonus bet is settled on the first two cards, based on the pay table that you can see before you. This is a great way to earn a little extra money and is reminiscent of the card game Newmarket, where wagers are split between main game and bonus game.
Tri Card Poker
This is simply three card poker, with RTG’s own little twist added. There are not any major differences and if you have played three card poker in a casino (despite Hold’em leading the way for poker in general, three card poker is the most popular poker game when played as house vs player) then you will be able to jump straight in. The rules are simple and as well as the three cards forming the main hand and the main game, the player can also decide if they want to place a Pair Plus side bet.
This side bet is reminiscent of the Perfect Pairs side bet often used in online and offline blackjack. It has big payouts, but over time, on average, you’ll lose more money than you make. If you’re only playing a few hands and are happy to take your chances, then go for it. If you’re good at three card poker and lose your side bet, then at least you can earn you money back in the main game.
Three card poker is easy to learn and it’s a great choice for amateurs who have not played poker in any form and are looking for a simple introduction to the game.