Texas Hold Em Poker is the most popular poker variant. Many poker players prefer this variant of poker over others. In fact, most poker players learned Texas Hold Em Poker before learning other poker variations.
In this guide, you will learn how to play Texas Hold Em poker, the strategies to play, and the rules. Before that, we outline the best Texas Hold Em poker casinos. You can take advantage of the casinos’ welcome bonuses to start playing once you’re comfortable with your gameplay.
How To Play Texas Hold Em Poker – A Step-by-Step Guide
In this guide, we will take you through a step-by-step easy guide on how to play Texas Hold’Em Poker, and in no time, you will be able to play like a pro. Although poker might not be the easiest casino game to play, you can get a grip on the game easily. Let’s dive in!
The objective of Texas Hold’Em Poker
Before we delve into the gameplay, we will examine the game’s objective. Once you know the game’s objective, it will be easier to work your way toward it.
The ultimate aim of poker is to show the best or highest-ranking hand or at least have your opponents think so. You will learn how to get there once we reveal how the game unfolds.
Now that we have dealt with the game’s objective and the cards’ ranking, it is time to get into the game. This is where it gets interesting. This is because in Texas Hold ‘em each player is dealt two cards, also called hole cards, and they are dealt face down.
Community cards are dealt on the table as well, and these are for everyone to see and use. You will get how this works below. Before then, let’s look at what happens once the players are dealt their hole cards.
This is where the fun lies; we have already touched the basics of the game. If you understand everything above, this should be a walk in the park.
Firstly, the game is played clockwise. The first player on the dealer’s right side (known as the small blind) makes the first ‘forced bet’. The second player positioned on the left side of the small blind makes the second bet, which is double the small blind’s bet. This player is called the big blind. The bets go clockwise thereafter.
The First Betting Round
The first player on the left side of the big blind has the option to call, raise or fold. This is the case for each player going clockwise. If the player chooses to call, they must match the last bet; if they raise, they must double the last bet. When a player chooses to raise, other players must match the bet amount. If the player chooses to fold, they must give up their hand and wait for another betting round.
If you play live poker, the dealer will burn a card before dealing the first three community cards face up. These cards are also referred to as community cards. The community cards are collectively referred to as the board. Remember, players can use these cards and their hole cards to make a hand. Players can also use only community cards to complete a hand.
The Second Betting Round
Once the boards are laid out on the table for every player to see and potential use, the second betting round unfolds. The same betting procedure takes place; players bet or check. Each player, still going clockwise, will either call, raise, or double down.
If you are playing a live Texas Hold’Em poker game, the dealer will burn yet another card at this stage after the dealer has burnt one card. One more card is dealt face-up on the table. The fourth community card is referred to as a turn card or a fourth street.
The Third Betting Round
The remaining players on the table will then enter the third betting round. This round follows the same betting format as other betting rounds; only the chips have probably doubled at this stage. Players will still choose to call, fold and raise.
At this stage, there are four community cards on the table. The dealer will burn another card and deals the fifth and last card to the four community cards. The final community card is called a fifth street or river card.
The Fourth Betting Round
This is the final betting round. At this point, all the cards have been dealt. This round will also follow the same betting round as other betting rounds.
The remaining players, at this point, will use the best five cards, the hole cards, and community cards to make the best five-hand combinations. The player with the highest-ranking hand wins the pot. If there is a tie, the pot will be split among players holding the highest-ranking hand.
Texas Hold Em Hands
Now that you know that you need the highest-ranking hand to win, we will look into the Texas Hold’Em poker hand ranking.
This is how the cards are ranked from the highest to the lowest hand in Texas Hold’Em poker:
Texas Hold Em Poker Hand
10, Jack, Queen, King, and Ace of the same suit.
Any five consecutive cards of the same suit
Four of Kind
Any four cards of the same rank
Any three cards of the same rank plus two cards of the same rank
Any five cards bearing the same suit
Any five cards of the same suit
Three of a Kind
Any three cards of the same rank
Any two cards of the same rank plus two more cards of the same rank
A pair of two cards of the same rank
Five unmatching cards
Texas Hold Em Poker Rules
Texas Hold’em poker rules are simple to grasp. Players who have played other poker variants will not have a hard time getting used to them. Here is the basic No Limit Texas Hold’em poker rules:
Players are dealt two-hole cards each, face down
Players can play using either their hole cards and community cards or using only community cards
There are five community cards in total
Players can only raise up to no limit in No Limit Texas Hold’em
The highest-ranking hand is a royal flush, and the lowest hand is a high card
Texas Hold Em Poker Strategies
1. Don’t Limp First
Wait for other players to limp first. If you limp first, you are not growing the pot and sending the wrong message to your opponents. Limping is a weak poker play; raise if you are holding a strong hand. If you are holding a weak hand, either fold or raise. When you raise with a weak hand, other players will think you have a strong hand and might fold. If you raise with a strong hand, you are growing the pot that you could potentially win.
2. Study the Poker Odds
Understanding poker odds will help you know when to raise, call, and when to fold. You can also understand the card odds. If your hole cards are two pairs and you think you need a full house to have a winning hand. You will know you need four outs.
3. Bluff Carefully
The best poker player knows when to bluff. A weak hand can be played to a win, and you can easily fold when you know when to bluff.
Bluffing is also best when you are up against fewer players. To bluff well, you must also raise and call interchangeably. However, you shouldn’t overdo it if you have a weaker hand.
4. Play Free Online Poker
Every good poker player knows that mastering the game requires a great deal of practice. The best way to practice poker is to do so without risk. Hence, we recommend that you sharpen your gameplay by playing free poker games offered by online poker casinos.
5. Stick to your Budget
This cannot be overemphasised. If you love playing poker, you should set a budget aside to play. Once you have exhausted your budget, you need to stop. If you have used your budget, the best thing to do is take a break and perhaps just play for free.