Classic Pai Gow poker

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Description of "Pai Gow Poker" game – Pai Gow poker combines skill and luck. While playing the novice and the player who is an expert in cards feel certainty because to play Pai Gow Poker is very simple! Just put a bet! This a game where the player must manage two hands of cards instead of only one, the five-card hand or "High Hand" and the two-card hand or "Low Hand." To qualify, your "High Hand" must be higher than your "Low Hand". The goal of Pai Gow Poker is that both of your hands are better than both of the dealer's hands.

Pai Gow Poker rules – Pai gow poker is a variation of the Chinese domino game gai gow. Pai gow poker is played with a 53 card deck, including a joker. Pai Gow poker is played one on one, the player against the dealer, each competing to make the best possible hands. After placing an initial bet, both player and dealer receive seven cards. The object of the game is for the player to split (or set) the seven dealt cards into two hands - a five-card High hand, and a two-card Low hand. The cards must be set in such a way that the five-card hand has a higher poker rank than the two-card hand.

For example, the player's hand is: 6,7,8,9,10,A,A. The player sets the pair of Aces as the Low hand, and 6,7,8,9,10 (straight) as the High hand. The dealer's hand is: 2,2,2,A,K,4,5. The dealer sets the Ace and King as the Low hand, and 2,2,2,4,5 (three of a kind) as the High hand. The player beats both the dealer's High and Low hands, thus winning the round.

The hands are ranked according to standard poker rules, with the exception that an A-2-3-4-5 straight is the second highest straight after A-K-Q-J-10. The only real difference between Pai Gow poker hand ranks and standard poker hand ranks is that a five-Aces hand (four Aces and a Joker) beats a royal flush, and it is the highest hand in the game. By the way, the best Low hand is a pair of Aces.

After the player finished arranging his/her hands, the dealer arranges his/her hands according to a set of fixed rules (the House Way). The player's two hands (High and Low) are then compared with the dealer's two hands (High and Low) to determine the winner. In order to win, both the player's High and Low hands must have a higher poker rank than both the dealer's High and Low hands (according to the Pai Gow Poker Hand Ranks table).

    Pai Gow Poker Hand Ranks (from highest to lowest)
  • 1 "Five of a Kind" Four Aces and a Joker
  • 2 "Royal Flush" Five consecutive denomination cards of the same suit, starting from 10 and ending with an Ace - 10,J,Q,K,A
  • 3 "Straight Flush" Five consecutive denomination cards of the same suit
  • 4 "Four of a Kind" Four cards of the same denomination
  • 5 "Full House" A set of three cards of the same denomination plus a set of two cards of the same denomination
  • 6 "Flush" Five non-consecutive denomination cards of the same suit
  • 7 "Straight" Five consecutive denomination cards of different suit
  • 8 "Three of a Kind" Three cards of the same denomination
  • 9 "Two Pairs" Two sets of pairs of the same card denomination
  • 10 "One Pair" Two cards of the same denomination.

Pai Gow Poker strategy – The most important factor in improving your odds in pai gow is the ratio of how much is bet when you are the banker to as a player. The greater the ratio the better your odds are. The second most important factor is how well you arrange your cards. The house way (explained below) is a very safe strategy that is difficult to improve upon.

Pai Gow Poker House Way

The "front" refers to the two card hand and the "back" refers to the five card hand.

No pair: Place the highest card in the back and the next two highest cards in the front.
One pair: Place the pair in back and the next two highest cards in the front.
Two pair: Use the following groups to determine how to play a two pair:

2 through 6: Low pair
7 through 10: Medium pairs
Jack through king: High pairs

Low pair and low pair: Split unless holding a king or better, then play two pair in the back.
Low pair and medium pair: Split unless holding a king or better, then play two pair in the back.
Low pair and high pair: Split unless holding an ace, then play two pair in the back.
Medium pair and medium pair: Split unless holding an ace, then play two pair in the back.
Medium pair and high pair: Always split.
High pair and high pair: Always split.
Pair of aces and any other pair: Always split.
Three pair: Always play highest pair in front.
Three of a kind: Always play three of a kind in back unless they are aces, then play a pair of aces in back and one ace in front.
Three of a kind twice: Always play highest pair in front.

Straights, flushes, straight flushes, and royal flush:
With no pair: When choosing whether to play a straight, flush, or straight flush play the category which will allow the highest two cards in front.
With 6th or 7th card: Play the lower straight or flush in the back to place the highest cards in front.
With one pair: Play pair in the front only if a straight, flush, or straight can be played in the back.
With two pair: Use two pair rule.
With three pair: Use three pair rule.
With three of a kind: Play pair in front.
With full house: Use full house rule.
Full house: Always split unless the pair is twos and you have an ace and a king to play in the front.
Full house with three of a kind and two pairs: Play the highest pair in front.
Full house with three of a kind twice: Always play the highest pair in front.

Play according to the rank of the four of a kind:
2 through 6: Always keep together.
7 through 10: Split unless a king or better can be played in front.
Jack through king: Split unless an ace can be played in front.
Aces: Always split.
Four of a kind and a pair: Play pair in front.
Four of a kind and three of a kind: Play pair in front from the three of a kind.
Five aces: Split aces and play three aces in back and two aces in front unless you have a pair of kings, then play five aces in back and kings in front.

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