You are probably aware that the card game of poker is widely popular, and players stand the chance of winning millions. Whatever reason you have for wanting to learn how to play online poker in Australia, you will find the game to be highly interactive and well worth the time spent trying to perfect your poker strategy.
Understanding the way poker rules are formed and what poker odds are only takes a little bit of time before you fully comprehend how the game works and how to beat your opponents – at least in theory.
Poker in Australia is one of the most popular games to play online and being one of the most prestigious card games, it’s only natural there would be a number of platforms allowing you access to the best online poker tournaments and satellite events.
Here, you’ll learn everything you need to know to join in on all the fun and games with the confidence of a seasoned poker player.
While there are a number of different variants, the general poker rules remain more or less the same all round. This is what makes the game so interesting and easy to comprehend as you needn’t learn different rules for different games. Below are the variants you’ll likely come across.
- Straight Poker: Where a hand is dealt to each player and bets are placed in single rounds.
- Stud Poker: The hand is dealt with cards both face down and facing upwards, betting commences after the prearranged hands have been dealt.
- Draw Poker: Each hand is dealt face down and after the first round of bets has been placed, the unwanted cards can be discarded and replaced with new ones to form a better combination.
- Community Draw Poker: Similar to that of Stud Poker, this variant also entails being dealt with cards facing both up and down. The incomplete hand is focused on the community cards which are dealt in the center of the table. These community cards need to be played into their hand to form winning cards. Texas Hold’em is one of the popular community draw poker games.
Land Based Poker vs. Online Poker
There are a number of differences between the two, however, the rules and gameplay are entirely the same. The differences you might note is that it is easier to learn how to play poker online than it is playing at a land-based establishment. This is mainly thanks to free poker games which are exclusive to online gambling and highly unlikely to be available at land-based casinos.
Another difference you may note is that while land-based poker players interact with one another, live poker is also just as interactive, however not entirely the same. But if you feel you need some convincing, here are only some of the benefits of playing the game online.
- Control adjustment of betting limits
- Bigger variety of poker variants, all of which are instantly accessible
- Free games to practice different poker strategies
- No need to hide behind sunglasses to protect your poker face, players won’t know when you are bluffing.
Getting Started with Online Poker
So you have chosen to give this a go and now you want to get started so that you can quickly succeed and play one of the most popular card games to date. Before we help you get started, you should know the most popular variant of poker is Texas Hold’em.
The game is played internationally, as well as at the WSOP – the most prestigious poker event in the industry. For this reason, we will base all of poker strategies and rules on Texas Hold’em.
Getting into a Game
With a land-based establishment, you would walk in and sit at an open table, placing your bets as you do. Online casino gaming however, this requires you to sign up with a trusted site and place your bets accordingly. The first step to a great gaming experience is to find an online casino well-equipped with a number of poker variants, one which is fully licensed and regulated, and preferably with a great sign up bonus.
One of the features to look for when choosing a poker game is the wager type:
- No Limit: This means of betting allows you to place a bet as high as you like and is also currently the most preferred method of turning the poker odds into your favor.
- Limit: As you can imagine, this method is limited to the coin or wager amount instructed by the game.
- Pot Limit: This is where you have a choice of how much you would like to bet by all players which determines the pot amount.
Once you have decided which you would prefer to play, you will need to determine how much you are willing to wager on the game and decide if your bankroll can afford the wagering stakes.
Preparing for Your First Online Poker Game
Now you are ready to sign up to an online casino and deposit funds into your online casino account to begin your online poker journey. Once you have completed this by following the easy steps dictated by the online casino, you’ll then navigate to your preferred poker game. Now, this is where the fun starts and you’ll need to bring your A-game in order to have the best chance of winning some money.
A good poker strategy means you need to make sets of cards coupled according to their suit, value and/or rank. A ‘good’ hand consists of a pair (two of the same) and cards running in sequence like from four through five to six.
When you join in on a no limit Texas Hold’em game; the first two players are required to place bets to fill the pot. These two bets are known as the ‘blinds’ and are placed by the first two players on the left-hand side of the dealer – online poker refers to this as ‘the button’.
The player next to the dealer would be the small blind while the one next to him would be the big blind.
Playing Texas Hold’em
You are now dealt with two cards face down and you aren’t sure if they are good enough. Online casino gaming allows you the option of finding a guide to good starting hands, but if you cannot find one look at your hand and try to make pairs, the higher the value the better the hand.
Now is when the betting starts and this is based on the position you are sat in at the table. The further down the line you are, the more opportunity you have to gauge what your opponents have based on how they bet. Once it is your turn, poker rules dictate you either fold, call or raise, all of which mean:
- Fold – Giving up and skipping the round due to a bad hand or no longer wanting to place cash wagers.
- Call – Whatever the bet amount is on, you or the other players will need to match the bets placed.
- Raise – Up the bet placed by raising the bet total.
When it comes to your turn, you will need to decide how good your hand is based on other players folding and raising and whether or not you are prepared to match the increased bet based on the two cards you have been dealt with.
Identifying a Winning Hand
When the time comes, and it will, you will want to know the right poker strategies for a winning hand. Below they are listed according to their ranks, the first mentioned being the strongest while the last is the weakest, but a winning hand nevertheless:
This hand is 5 cards from one suit. The best of this hand is a Royal Flush, the highest cards in the pack from Ace, King, Queen, Jack and ten.
Four of a Kind
This is a hand with 4 of the same numbers or royal numbers. The higher the ranking, the better the hand.
This is 3 cards of the same and one pair.
The hand is 5 cards, any kind, of the same suit.
This is 5 cards of different suits but all running in sequence.
Three of a Kind
Of the same rank but different suits.
Two cards of the same rank and another two cards of another rank.
Only one set of two cards of the same rank.
When you haven’t made any of the above, the hand with the highest card will win the hand.
When to Bet and Fold: Playing the Pre-Flop
So you may be wondering what the pre-flop is and we will get to that, but what you need to know is that this is important and will determine how you choose to proceed with making your first bet.
A pre-flop is what is referred to before the flop, after all players have been dealt with their cards and the blinds have been wagered. Just before the flop is dealt, the first three cards to be dealt in the center of the table, facing upward, the first bets are placed.
When and if you decide to play on, you will need to take into consideration the poker odds of winning, how much the pot is worth based on your hand and how aggressively you should wager based on your position at the table. This will allow you to determine how and if you would like to proceed with the flop.
After the Flop and Later Rounds
Next up is addressing the later stages, the rounds after the flop has taken place and you are in the game. Once the flop has been played and the three cards have been dealt face upwards the next round begins. Paying from the left of the button you will be required to fold, raise or call the bet.
If you look at your hand and you have a strong hand such as three of a kind you should either call or raise the bet. After you and the other players have gotten all bets in, the round is concluded and the fourth community card is placed on the table.
Texas Hold’em is a five card draw. The community cards are dealt in 5, after the fourth card has been played the final card, referred to as the ‘river’ is then played. Although there are 7 cards, 2 in your hand and 5 facing upward on the table, the best 5 cards win.
After the last card has been dealt, the last round of betting begins. When you first begin to learn how to play poker, you may fear all the terms are too much to initially grasp, however, the more you play, the more you will begin to see these patterns and become better acquainted with winning sequences.
After the final round has commenced and betting has been concluded, players will then need to show their hands to determine the winner. The last player to have bet on the river or raised the stakes is the first to reveal their cards.
Online Poker Strategy Tips
If you are playing poker online there are a few advantages you are entitled to. Before going into a game, play some free poker games focusing on Texas Hold’em, no limit. As this is the most popular form of poker, you won’t encounter any issues with regards to locating a reputable online casino to offer this game.
Another thing about this poker variant is that because it is widely popular you will be able to pick up many strategic gameplay tips from professional poker players in forums or even on the television.
Other tips include:
- Don’t play every hand, some hands are better than other and if you are dealt with bad cards and the community cards aren’t any better, aim to fold.
- Never play beyond your means. By setting limits and sticking to them, your chances of having a good first time experience are significantly increased.
- Don’t bank on winning every game as the game is based on a measure of luck, something we cannot predict or plan for.
- Don’t play under the influence of alcohol as this may affect your judgment.
- Don’t play when you aren’t in the mood. The game is about enjoying it and not just about winning money.
- Pay attention to the other players and how they bet so you know for the next round.
- Practice often as new players often lose most of their knowledge of the game if they wait too long after their first game to play again.
- Look for online casino tournaments and add them to your calendar to experience the full satisfaction of playing competitive poker.
- Play at reputable online casinos which have been licensed.
Putting it all Together
Now that you have equipped yourself with the fundamental basics of online poker, you will begin to form strategies of your own. You can always pick up wining tips to help smooth out the way you play. Just keep in mind that the first few rounds appear more daunting than what they really are. Poker is a game about strategy and luck, but most of which you can comprehend form the beginning of the game.
Choose the right game with smaller blinds from the beginning so that should you lose a round, you are still within your means to play another and another until you are completely familiar with the poker rules and strategies and how the cards are dealt.
We hope you feel confident enough to try your luck at the tables and get to experience first-hand, the true nature of one of the most famed casino games to date!