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  Three Card Poker:

Three Card Poker may utilize fewer cards than the five or seven found in the hands of its cousins, but it is no less complex, interesting and demanding. Like many popular card games, it can be found both in casinos as a table game, and on the Internet in online casinos, where you may or may not have to download software in order to play.

A typical game of Three Card Poker is divided into two parts. They are called the Ante and the Pair Plus portions. Depending on the terminology used by the particular casino, they may even be referred to as two separate games.

The Ante portion begins, of course, with a bet. Most casinos have a minimum amount, but of course, you are free to wager a higher amount. The dealer then gives all players three cards. The dealer gets three cards, as well. After evaluating these three cards and making their best guess about their future odds, players choose to either fold and leave the game (forfeiting the first bet), or make a second bet that should be equally as high or low as the initial wager. After this, the dealer reveals his or her cards to all the players. The issue here is whether or not one of the dealer’s cards is at least a Queen. If not, the game ends. All the players who have not folded get even money on their initial bets, and their second bets are given back to them without returns.

Three Card Poker


Assuming that the dealer’s hand satisfies the requirements for further card-play, the dealer’s hand is then compared to that of each of the players. If, according to traditional hand rankings, the dealer’s hand is better, the player loses both the first and second bets. If the player has a better hand, he or she is given a one-to-one payout on both bets. Ties do not happen very often, but Three Card Poker Rules state that when the dealer and the player tie, the player gets the money.

For players who are not familiar with poker rankings, here is a rundown. The highest hand is a straight flush. The higher the values of the cards in your flush, the better (in case the dealer also has a straight flush). The second-highest hand is three of a kind (same value, different suit), followed by a straight (consecutive values, different suits), and a pair (two of the same value, plus any other card).

At this point, the Ante portion of the game is still finished. Besides potentially winning money for beating the dealer, you may also get a bonus for a high hand, such as a straight flush. You will win money for such a hand, even if the dealer’s hand might be better than yours. In this way, good cards will not go to waste.

Now on to the second stage. (Whew!) In the Pair Plus stage, you will be making wagers on whether your hand is a pair or better, hence the name. Different hands each have a different payout scheme, which may vary from casino to casino. Now, it must be admitted that the odds for this section of the game are not too great. The luck of the draw, or the laws of statistics, will function in such a way that you will have favorable outcomes about a quarter of the time.

Three Card Poker Online


This game may sound overly complex due to its two-part structure. However, a complex game also means that you have many opportunities to win money. Three Card Poker improves this deal by including rules that improve the odds of players. For example, there is the rule that a tie of hand values equals a financial victory for the player, instead of a push, like in other games. Furthermore, the bonus for a good set of cards (whether or not the dealer defeats you) can sweeten your victories, or may add a comforting gray area between total victory and total loss.

The only real flaw in this game is that the first stage is a bit long in comparison to the Pair Plus portion of the game. However, unless you absolutely insist that your casino experience has the same meticulous, balanced structure as Greek tragedy or light Victorian drama, this will not be a huge problem. You will soon be drawn deeply into the game and forget all about it not being structured into two perfectly equal halves.

Now, a note about playing venues. As we have previously stated, one can play Three Card Poker in either casinos or online gambling establishments. How is one experience different from the other? In games where a large number of cards are used simultaneously (as in Seven Card Stud Poker), playing the game on a computer screen is a boon because you do not have to keep all your cards organized and hidden from your opponents. However, such a feature is not much help with Three Card Poker, in which the small number of cards are already quite easy to handle. Therefore, the main benefit offered by online versions of Three Card Poker is that players can participate in their favorite game without having to leave their homes and drive all the way to the nearest casino, which may be quite far away. In general, it is much more fun playing this game live than online. Play at a real casino table, if you can. The ups and downs that the other players go through will actually feed your excitement, even though all of you are playing parallel games that have little real impact on one another. However, the online versions are a lot of fun, as well, if you have no other alternative.

In wrapping up this review, we can confidently state that Three Card Poker will be a memorable part of any casino experience. Though some players may be initially turned off by the complications of Three Card Poker, it must be understood that these intricacies are actually fun and interesting, not tedious. In many cases, these many stages and rules can actually work in your favor.

  List of casinos with Three Card Poker:

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Sun Poker

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Golden Palace

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Grand Vegas

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Poker Kings

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Poker 770

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Titan Poker

Titan Poker

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