What is PaiGow Poker?
PaiGow poker traces it’s to an ancient Chinese domino game which was played with 32 pieces. This classic domino game later got incorporated in poker, and it has slowly turned to be one of the most loved poker games. The game is easy to play, but you have to learn certain fundamental principles to win.
How to Play PaiGow Poker
PaiGow Poker is played using a regular 52 card deck and a joker card. The players play against the dealer, and they each receive seven cards facing up. Though everyone can see your cards, the dealer's cards are faced down. Your work is to use the card to create two hands, one with 2 cards and the other with five. You have to make sure that the 5-card hand is ranking higher than the other one.
The dealer will then flip his cards after you make your decision and then arrange them before comparing with yours. If you beat the dealer in both hands, you win the money minus the casino's commission, and if he beats you in both, you lose. The game is a push if you beat him by one hand only and your bet is returned.
When playing PaiGow poker, all the hand ranking rules of a standard poker apply. However, there is a little twist to the game, to make it interesting. Here is a lowdown of all the fundamental rules that you learn:
- The wheel (5-4-3-2-A) is the second best straight in this game and the lowest straight in standard poker.
- Your two-card hand must be a high-card or a pair.
- The joker card is considered to be an Ace and can complete a Flush, Straight, Royal Flush or Straight Flush.
Playing PaiGow poker is really easy, but spitting your cards is where you need a viable strategy. Like any other poker game, the casino has the edge over the players, and that's why you need an optimal approach to reduce the risk of losing as much as possible significantly. You can separate the cards in 20 different ways and increase your chances of winning. Here are the top three strategies that are worth a try:
- Four of a kind - Maintain a flush or straight and play your highest card in your low.
- A pair and three of a kind – If possible, maintain a flash or straight and put the pair in your low hand. If not, put three of a kind in the high hand.
- Three pair – Play your highest pair in the 2-card hand and maintain a Flush/Straight.