Many types of poker exist today. The four most common types of poker games are Texas Holdem, 5 Card Draw, 7 Card Stud, and Omaha where Hi/Lo is a variation primarily with 7 Card Stud and Omaha Poker.
The five things that are important to a poker novice are:
- Find Your Favorite Game. Learn about the different variations of poker (e.g. Hold’em, or even foreign types like situs poker online) to find which game is your favorite. Although the most popular 4 poker games are listed with a variation, many other poker games exist with numerous variations. So, in order to find which game is for you, practice playing online the different game(s) to see which game you like best. Versions of online games are free and help the novice learn quickly.
- Learn the Rules. Once you have found your favorite game, learn the rules and terminology. For example, know what, when, and how an ante works, which is your first bet stating you want to play. Know when to bet, when you want to raise, check, or call (bluffing comes in here and is fun). Practice, practice, practice will help you learn when to raise, check, call, or fold.
- Know Winning Hands. The winning hands for all poker games are as follows: royal flush (the royal family: A,K,Q,J,10 in the same suit), straight flush (five cards in a row, same suit), four of a kind (EX: 4 queens), full house (EX: 3 kings, 2 fives), flush (any cards, same suit), straight (5 cards in a row), three of a kind (EX: 3 twos), two pair (EX: 2 aces, 2 threes), one pair (EX: 2 sevens), and high card (Ace high) and in that order. In order to play and to win, knowing thee hands are crucial.
- Analyze Your Opponents. Analyzing varies if you are playing online or in a brick-and mortar setting like at a poker party or at a casino. Online analysis is a different strategy than in person. When playing online, you watch the players’ patterns and watch the cards to determine your playing and bluffing strategy. When playing in a room with people, physical cues from body language, especially eye contact and movement are critical to watch and strategize accordingly. In televised Texas Holdem Tournaments, you often see the players wearing sunglasses, which is very common. If you feel more comfortable in sunglasses, by all means.
- Have Fun. Competition in itself is fun. Of course, winning is great, especially winning money, but, games were invented to have fun. So, make sure as a poker novice to enjoy the experience and have a great time while learning, playing, and strategizing.
Poker games involve statistics and playing by the book to increase your odds of winning. However, introducing psychology into the mix as well makes the game ever so challenging and always interesting whether you are playing with the same group every time or different people. So, as a poker novice knowing these five things will help you become a better player and enjoy the experience.
Also check out the youtube series on how to play poker as a beginner: