Of the many popular varieties of Poker, Draw Poker is the purest. Usually, it is the first Poker game a novice learns.
Players: From 2 to 8, but fewer than 5 is sometimes considered inadequate.
Description: Draw Poker is played with a standard deck of 52 cards, although sometimes a 53rd card, the Joker, is added. Before any cards are dealt, each player puts a predetermined wager on the table in front of him called the ante. This becomes part of a common pot, to be won by a single player and is usually smaller than the bets that follow.
After shuffling, the dealer distributes the cards face down one at a time in a clockwise manner until each player has five cards (dealer included in a private game). These five cards constitute a player’s hand. They are secret to the player, and cannot be revealed to any other player.
Beginning at the dealer’s left (and continuing clockwise) each player acts on his hand. If there has been no previous bet, you may either make a bet (by adding chips or money to the pot) or check. You can either say “check” aloud or tap a hand on the table. Check means you are not betting at this time, but reserving the right to call or raise later if another player bets. Call means you are putting into the pot an amount equal to what an opponent has bet. Once an opponent(s) has made a bet you must do one of three things when it is your turn:
- Call, keeping your hand eligible to win;
- Raise—increasing the stakes by putting in more money than it would cost to merely call;
- Pass—throwing your hand away and abandoning all chance of winning the pot. When you pass, you forfeit all money you