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How to Play Texas Hold’em Poker for Dummies
Texas Hold’em is often described as a game that takes minutes to learn but a lifetime to master. The game itself is quite simple to learn. It is based on the old school poker game of Seven Card Stud. Players must make the best five-card hand possible using two hole cards and five community cards.
Each hand of Texas Hold’em starts with two players posting forced bets called blinds. These bets are to the direct left of the dealer. The dealer is determined by a white dealer button disc that moves clockwise around the table. The first players to the left of the button post a small blind amount while the second person to the left posts the big blind amount. For example, in a $1-$2 NL Hold’em game, the small blind is $1, and the big blind is $2.
After blinds are posted, each player receives two cards face down. These are a player’s hole cards. A round of betting occurs, starting with the first player to the left of the big blind. Players can fold call or raise. If the action returns to the big blind without a raise, the big blind can check his action.
When the first round of betting is completed, the first of three community cards known as the flop is dealt. Another round of betting commences with the first active player left of the dealer having the option to bet. Players must bet at least the size of the big blind. Other players have the option to bet or raise or fold.
Once action is complete on the flop, another community card known as the turn is dealt. Another round of betting ensues. Afterward, the final community card is dealt. This is called the river. One final betting round ensues, followed by a showdown.
At showdown, players make their best five-card hand using their hole cards and the five community cards. If the five community cards make the best hand, the player will “play the board.” The player with the best hand wins the pot. Should more than one player have the same winning hand, the pot is divided or chopped between the players.
Note that there are two primary forms of betting in Texas Hold’em poker. The first is Limit betting, which means you have a fixed amount you can bet each hand. The more popular form of Hold’em poker is No-Limit Hold’em. In NL Hold’em, you can bet anything from the size of the big blind up to the size of your entire stack.
Texas Hold’em Strategies
Texas Hold’em strategy has evolved over the decades, and the way you play the game now is very different than before the Poker Boom. Most beginners are best served to employ what’s known as a tight-aggressive strategy. This means that you wait for solid starting hands but play them aggressively.
Pre-flop, you will want to play strong holdings depending on your position at the table. Position is relative to the dealer button. Basically, the first few players to the left of the button need to play tighter than players to the right of the button or those holding the button.
For example, in early position, you want to stick with premium holdings such as big pairs (Aces, Kings, Queens, or Jacks) or hands like A-K, A-Q, or A-J suited. Players in middle position can add middle pairs (eights through tens) along with A-8 suited and up along with K-Q and K-J suited.
Those playing from late position can really open up their starting hand ranges to include all suited aces, all combinations of face cards, all pairs, and most reasonable suited connectors such as 8-9 of hearts. When playing pre-flop, you want to come into a hand raising. You seldom want to be limping (calling) pre-flop, especially as a beginner. Try and thin out the field as much as possible to give yourself the best odds.
On the flop and beyond requires that you pay careful attention to the board and your opponents. When you think that you’re in the lead, you need to make your opponent pay to chase after a hand. If you believe that you are behind, you should consider abandoning your hand.
This page is an introduction to Bitcoin Texas Hold’em and not meant to be a complete strategy guide for playing poker. Do your research or invest in some poker books to perfect your strategy.
Playing Texas Holdem with Bitcoin
Most online poker rooms now accept Bitcoin for deposits. Once you deposit your Bitcoin, your crypto is converted into fiat, and you can play on the site as usual. If you do not own any Bitcoin or are uncertain how to acquire Bitcoin, check out our guide on buying Bitcoin.
If you plan to play Bitcoin Texas Hold’em at online poker sites, check out the site’s promotions. Most poker rooms offer deposit bonuses exclusive to Bitcoin depositors. Sometimes these deals will give you double what you’d get for a fiat deposit. Also, you may receive free entries into poker tournaments or even buy-ins to cash games.
We recommend checking out Americas Cardroom and Betonline Poker for those ready to make your first deposit. Both sites accept Bitcoin and have tons of traffic along with soft competition. Now that you know the basics of Texas Hold’em and how to play Bitcoin Texas Hold’em, it is time to paly Texas Hold’em.
Texas Hold’em poker is a great alternative to Bitcoin casinos. You’re playing against other players rather than the house, meaning that your earning potential is based on your skill at the game. With time and practice, you can improve your skills, increasing the chances of walking away from the tables a winner.