Poi Gow is a form of poker using a deck of fifty three cards with the joker having semi wild features. Poi Gow is played against the banker and not against other players. Usually, there may be up to 6 players in addition to the banker.
In a live casino, the banker button circulates around the table; the players can take or pass the banker position. The banker plays against all the single players, and the player-banker’s job is to cover all the bets so he must have a large bankroll.
After the game is completed, a 5% commission is collected by the casino on all the bets. For instance, a player betting $10 when wins, gets a return of $19.50 on his bet. The casino gets a small edge which is not unfair.
The game begins with the placing of bets in accordance with the table limit. The players are next dealt seven face down cards. Two hands are then selected, a 5 card hand and a 2 card hand. There is a blackjack style table and the hands are placed in set places, the 2 card one in front and the 5 card one at the back.
Both the hands have to beat the dealer’s 2 hands to win. If one hand wins and the other hand loses, it is known as a “push” in which no one wins. If one of the player’s hands has a tie with the dealer hand, but the other hand loses, it is known as a “copy” in which case the banker is the winner. In case the banker beats both the hands of the player, the player obviously loses.
When the hands are being set up, it is important to remember that the 5 card hand should be higher compared to the 2 card hand. If the 2 card hand is higher but is still played, it is a foul, and the player loses automatically. This is the rule followed in the land casinos, and not allowed in most online casinos either.
Poi gow is a slow paced, casual game which is fun and relaxing. The many ties allow an extended, interesting session and there is no need to invest a lot of cash. There are no complicated rules and it is not difficult to learn, which adds to its appeal. All the strategy that is needed is common sense, and the different methods of playing it are mastered in time with experience.