There are hardly any people in the world who have never heard about poker. And there are dozens of variations of this game as well. In this guide on how to learn poker, we want to focus on how to play 3 card poker more specifically. As a bonus, we want to show how to build a poker table for this variant because it is quite different from others.
- Game Set-Up: Explaining the Table and What Poker Chips Are Worth
- How to Win Poker Tournaments in the Three-Card Game
- How to Make a Poker Table to Play the Three-Card Game
Game Set-Up: Explaining the Table and What Poker Chips Are Worth
While regular poker is played at an oval table, the 3-card game is played at the table shaped like “U” (similar to baccarat). A dealer stands at the straight side of the table, with chips and cards in front of them. In the middle, there is a section for the cards that are drawn. At the curved edge, there are sections for 7 players, which have the following markings: Play, Ante, and Pair Plus. Important note: in 3-card poker, the players don’t compete against each other – they play against the house (the dealer).
Here is a general scenario:
- Players place their obligatory Ante bets and can choose whether to bet on Pair Plus (meaning that their hand will have at least a pair or better).
- Cards are dealt face-down to each player and the dealer. This is where the players decide what to do: fold if they feel their hand is weak or bet Play, which means they will match the amount of the Ante wager. The Play bet can also be made “blind”, i.e. without the player looking at the cards.
- The cards are revealed and the winner is determined. If the player’s hand is better, the dealer pays out; if the dealer’s hand is better, the dealer collects the chips for the Ante and Play wagers. The Pair Plus wins or loses separately.
If you don’t know what poker chips are worth (not all the variants of the chips say their value), and don’t want to look unprofessional at the table, then check the table below. These are the standard colors and values of the basic 5-chip set used to bet in all poker games.
How to Win Poker Tournaments in the Three-Card Game
Before giving advice on how to win poker tournaments in 3-card poker, let us explain how they are organized and how the hands rank (since there are just 3 cards instead of the usual 5, the scoring has a few differences).
A tournament for this type of game has at least 2 rounds. In the first round or rounds, all participants play and collect their pay-outs. There can be up to 200 hundred people. As soon as the rounds are over, the best 6 players are determined by counting their winnings. These players will compete in the final round for a grand prize. To be able to take part in these tournaments, players need to pay an entrance fee.
The hands rank the following way:
- Straight flush – three cards in a row, the same suit;
- Three-of-a-kind – three of the same value;
- Straight – three in a row, different suits;
- Flush – three of the same suit;
- High card
How to Make a Poker Table to Play the Three-Card Game
To get a full casino experience while playing at home with your family or your friends, you need to make sure you have a few essentials at hand. Obviously, these are a set of chips and a deck of cards. However, you can also invest some time into making a table for 3-card poker, and here is our tip on how to make a poker table.
First, buy a table cloth that has all the markings for 3-card poker printed on it. Then, you need a piece of plywood cut into the needed shape and some padding, which you will trim to the size of the plywood. Glue the padding to the plywood, glue and trim the felt to the padding, attach foldable legs to the bottom, and that’s it.