Texas Hold’em is the most popular of all the card games online in the UK; you’ll find the game on most online casino sites nationwide. The game is fast-paced, exciting and, more importantly, easy to learn. Keep reading to find out all about why you should be playing Texas Hold’em.
Where To Play The Best Texas Hold’em Poker Online?
With the sheer volume of online casinos around, all competing for your business, it can be a tough decision to choose which one you’ll play at. We’d recommend sticking to a reputable casino with a local licence and an excellent welcome offer as a bonus.
Here’s a list of the best UK casinos where you can play the Texas Hold’em games:
Master the Rules & Odds of Texas Hold’em
Texas Hold’em is a relatively fast-moving and straightforward poker game that is easy to learn. And as with any poker variant available to players in the UK, you’ll need to have a firm grip on the rules, hand values and betting techniques to reach a certain level of mastery. We’ve assembled everything you need to know, so read on to learn the ins and outs of this fascinating game.
The objective of a Texas Hold ’em game is to assemble the most substantial hand possible to win. If you can’t get a strong hand together, your goal is to bluff your way to a win by fooling your opponents into thinking that your hand is strong and getting them to fold.
Types Of Bets In Texas Hold’em
There are two main types of bets in a game of Texas Hold’em, small blinds and big blinds. These bets form the Ante or the buy-in and determine the size of the bet you’ll need to place to bet, call or raise throughout the game rounds. Blinds are forced; you have to post these bets to participate in a round. They begin the wagering and form the pot. The other players at the table then have the option to place a call bet or a raise.
The Small Blind
The small blind is posted by the player to the left of the dealer or the button. The small blind is half the amount of the minimum bet at the table.
The Big Blind
The big blind is posted by the person to the left of the small blind and is equal to the minimum bet.
A call bet is made in the amount of the big blind and keeps you in the game for the next round of dealing.
A raise is made if you are confident in the hand that you already have. The amount required to raise is usually double the amount of any previous bets made.
Side bets or Trip bets are wagers that you can make based on the strength of your final hand. Side bets are placed before a round begins. They require a minimum hand value of three of a kind to payout.
RTP, Payouts and House Edge in Texas Hold’em
The RTP, payouts and house edge are important figures for a player to know, as they help you determine how frequently you might win and how much you can expect to make in return for your bets.
RTP in Texas Hold’Em
The RTP, or return to player, in Texas Hold’em can vary depending on the game’s variation and format. This is because when you’re playing a virtual version online, the game is programmed to payout at an RTP prescribed by the software developer. Whereas in a game of live Texas Hold’em, the RTP is mainly left to chance.
In a digital game, you can expect to see an RTP of anything between 93.74% up to 99.18%. Live Texas Hold’em boasts an impressive RTP of 99.47%, assuming that you’ve played a perfect game with no side bets in play.
Payouts in Texas Hold’Em
Texas Hold’em doesn’t just offer the standard even or 1:1 payout if you have the strongest hand. Certain hands are worth more and payout at fantastic odds, but these odds can differ depending on what the casino decides.
|Poker Hand||Estimated Payout|
|Four of a Kind||10:1|
|Three of a kind or lower||Push|
Below is a list of expected payouts for Side or Trip bets:
|Side or Trip Bet||Estimated Payout|
|Four of a Kind||30:1|
|Three of a kind or lower||3:1|
House Edge in Texas Hold’Em
The house edge describes the mathematical advantage that the casino has over you. This advantage varies from casino to casino depending on the house rules and excludes any side bets. The average house edge in Texas Hold’em is anywhere from just under 2% to 2.5%.
Texas Hold’em Vs Other Poker Variants
Texas Hold’em is a community card form of poker. Your hand is made using a combination of private cards dealt to you and the community cards on the table. So unlike other poker variants in the UK such has Five-Card Draw and Badugi, a portion of your hand is visible to other players.
The standard variation of Texas Hold’em is played between the players and not against the bank.
|Texas Hold’Em||Omaha||7 Card Stud|
|Bets||Small blind, big blind, side bets||Small blind, big blind||Limit bets|
|House edge||2-2.5%||2.16% to 6.34%||3.28%|
Difference between Texas Hold’em and Omaha poker
Texas Hold’em and Omaha Poker are pretty similar to each other. Both are community card games; both allow the player seven cards to make up their five-card hand, and both make use of small and big blind bets.
However, unlike Omaha Poker, which prescribes how many of each set of cards you must use, you can use any combination of your private and community cards to make up your hand in Texas Hold ‘em.
Difference between Texas Hold’em and 7-Card Stud poker
In a game of 7-Card Stud, the bet amount increments are predetermined, whereas Texas Hold’em has no limit, pot limit and round limit variations.
Texas Hold‘em is a community card game, and 7-Card is a stud card game. In a game of 7-Card Stud, part of your hand is revealed to other players, but the visible cards are not available for them to use for their hand.
Strategies for Advanced Players
Implementing a strategy when playing poker is crucial if you want to play with any kind of consistency. Your poker strategy is your game plan and will give you confidence when playing, as you already know how to respond should you encounter any sticky situations. A good strategy will also prevent you from making any rash decisions.
Essentially, the dealer has the most powerful seat in the house. Being the last to play, he has seen the most and gathered the most information about the players’ hands. Positioning yourself at the right-hand side of the dealer means you play second-to-last, and it puts you in a position of power, because you can place a bet that may knock the dealer out of the game.
The idea of this strategy is to get other players to fold pre-flop. It’s an aggressive form of betting that will intimidate a lot of less seasoned players into folding. If an opponent attempts to steal the blind by open raising from the small blind, the idea is to respond with a 3-bet. For example, if a player opens with a 2.5x bet out of the gate, you counter with a 10x bet, which will induce a fold in most cases.
A squeeze is a pre-flop 3-bet placed when there has been a raise and at least one call before you. As the name suggests, you are trying to squeeze money out of a weakly-positioned player by making their position harder to defend. The idea is to pick up the pre-flop pot uncontested by getting others to fold.
Shove on strong draws
This strategy has you playing a strong draw quickly and aggressively, ideally getting the most money in the pot as soon as possible. In the early rounds, your odds are statistically better, as players are more likely to pay you in the flop.
By betting, raising or re-raising, you put tremendous pressure on your opponent, who needs to have a strong hand to continue on.
Overbet and jam the River
When you draw an especially strong hand, you need to understand that these don’t come along all that often and play to increase the pot as much as possible. This technique is extremely effective in a no-limit game where you can raise your profits drastically.
Overbetting at the river will cause one of four outcomes:
- Your opponent will think you’re bluffing and call with their weaker hand.
- He’ll know that the hand is yours, but simply can’t fold this late in the game and will call.
- He’ll have a busted hand and fold to any bet.
- Highly unlikely as it is, he’ll have a better hand and take you down.
How To Play Texas Hold’em — Breakdown Of A Round
There are six rounds of betting in a game of Texas Hold’em, with different bets placed in each betting round. This betting structure is probably the most complex part of the game that you’ll need to learn. In each round, players have the option to fold but will lose everything they have bet so far.
Let’s take a look at the types of bets in a game of Texas Hold’em.
- The Blinds
Think of the blinds as the buy-in stage of the game. Blinds are mandatory bets which each player places into the pots before any cards will be dealt.
This round takes place after the dealer has dealt everyone two cards. Play proceeds in a clockwise direction, starting with the player to the left of the big blind. This player has a choice to fold, call or raise based on the strength of his two hole cards.
The flop begins with the dealer placing three community cards face up in the centre of the table. Play begins clockwise with the player next to the dealer.
Also known as the fourth street, this round sees the dealer place another card face up with the community cards, and another betting round begins.
The river or fifth street sees the fifth and final community card being added to the table.
The showdown is the final round where the players’ hands are revealed and judged against each other to name the winner and award them the pot.
Easy Beginner Mistakes to Avoid
Texas Hold’em poker is the most popular game of poker worldwide. This popularity is very much due to the ease with which you can learn how to play.
As a beginner player, we’d recommend that you start with the low stakes tables to prevent significant losses. Avoid panic betting when you’re under pressure; if you’re unsure of your hand, it’s best to fold rather than back it until you become familiar with hand strengths. We also recommended finding the best online casinos in the UK that also offer great welcome bonus offers to start your poker experience on the right foot.
Finally, don’t bluff too much. The art of bluffing effectively is a skill that takes years to hone, and when you’re playing against more advanced players, they’ll sniff out a less than confident bluff and call you on it!