One might think that playing poker online is different from the real game. Why do people think that? Is it because they sit in front of a computer and not in front of a real table? The answer is short and easy: no, they think that online poker differs so much from real poker because they have never played online. Nowadays a good online casino has poker software and its design comes very close to the real thing. Although there is not a big difference between online and real poker, some of the rules might change a little. In this article I will make a short recap on the basic rules of poker, and then I will present an online poker room.
Before you start to play, you should know at least the basic rules of the game. So here they are, starting with the hand rankings and continuing with the description of a round. The highest possible hand in poker is the Royal Flush, composed by an ace, a king, a queen, a jack and a ten, all of the same color. The next best hand is the Straight Flush, composed by any cards in sequential order and the same suit. The next hand is four of a kind, composed by four cards with the same number on them; then a Full House, which means three of a kind and a pair. The lower hands are in order: a Flush or any five cards with the same suit; Straight, or five cards in sequential order, in any suit; Three of a kind, two pair, Pair and High Card. This last one means that you do not have any of the above listed hands, in this case the highest card in your hand counts. Since there are many variations of poker, I will describe one of the easiest types, the 5 card draw poker. In this game the number of players has to be between three and seven. Every player gets five cards with the initial deal. After the deal there is a betting round, then every player can exchange up to three cards from his hand. Another betting round comes after each player exchanged his cards; the final moment of the game is the showdown. The highest hand wins; the ranking is the same as described above. During the game a player might check, call, raise or fold. Check means that the player can make a bet of zero, but still stays in the pot, call means that match the amount bet by the player before him, raise means that the player increases the bet to a specified amount and fold means that the player returns his cards to the dealer and will not play anymore in this round. Although there are several variations of poker, the basic rules are still the same and the hand ranking is the same too. So in most cases the highest hand wins, but in some variations there might be wild cards or other new elements.
Now that you know the basic rules of poker and you saw a round of the game, let us see how it works in an online casino. In order to play in an online casino you should have an account, or if you do not have it yet, you should create one. After signing in, you can play. All you have to do is choose a table from the lobby and click on it. A table window should open and you should be able to choose a seat by clicking on it. Then you will see a character sitting on the chosen chair. Now you have to enter the amount of money (it does not matter if you play for fun or for real money, you still have to enter an amount). If you selected a newly started table, the dealer has to be chosen. This is usually decided by giving each player a card, and the one with the highest card becomes the dealer. In some online casinos you can find private tables. This means that a player started the table and the owner has to accept you in order to join the game. After all this a round of the chosen type of poker begins. If it is 5 cards draw poker, then the game goes on just like it is described above. If you have chosen another variation of poker, then the rules might be slightly different. The procedure described above might slightly differ from one online casino to the other, but the goal is the same: you have to choose a table and a game and then start playing. The procedure described above is taken from Poker room online casino. In some other cases you might need to download the software after you have signed in or you might just play the flash version of the game. Do not worry, there are no big differences between the downloadable or the flash version, the software provider is the same and the random number generator works alike in both cases.
After all, playing online poker does not differ so much from real poker. You have to enter a lounge, to choose a table and start playing. Since the main idea is to play and win, we can say that there are no big differences between real and online poker. Online poker became so popular because there are no big differences between real and online poker and because it is much more comfortable to play from your own home than to go and find a nearby casino. I did not mention it earlier, but if you like to play poker and socialize in the meantime, that too is possible online. Most of the online casinos have a chat room, so you can talk to the people you play with. So you can even talk to the player sitting next to you, just like in a land based casino.
The basic rules of poker are the same, wherever you play the game. You just have to bet, have a high hand and take the money. In very short terms this would be the main goal of poker. Do not forget, all you need to do is to sit down in front of your computer and you can play poker against people from all around the world. Although the basic rules might seem easy, you should re-read them from time to time, this will help you develop your poker skills. Of course, you have to practice in order to become a good poker player.
So get started and good luck playing!