Sunday, February 13, 2011

Playing Spades

Spades is a partnership bidding game similar to bridge. It's played in a clockwise direction, most commonly with two teams of two players sitting opposite to each other. The suit of spades is always the highest value suit or trump, and cards are valued from highest to lowest: A, K, Q, J, 10, 9, 8, 7, a, 5, 4, 3 and 2



1.    Shuffle and deal a standard 52-card deck until all the cards have been dealt out and each player has 13 cards.
2.    Bid (if you are the person to the left of the dealer) on the number of tricks - always between 4 and 13 - you estimate you can win. Bid nil or blind nil if you think you cannot win a single trick in the entire round.
3.    Evaluate the first bid of the opposing team. Note the special bids of nil or blind nil.
4.    Note your partner's bid; he is making the contract bid for which you are both responsible.
5.    Note the bid of the second partner of the opposing team, for which both partners are responsible.
6.    Write down all bids.

Playing the Game

1.    Play your lowest club on the first hand, after the holder of the 2 of clubs has led. Discard a heart or diamond if no club is held.
2.    Lead the next trick if you won the first, with any card but a spade. Follow suit, but if unable, play any card including a spade.
3.    Play one round or 13 tricks, until all players have no cards remaining in their hands.


1.    Score 10 times the bid for the team that took as many tricks as bid, plus one extra point for each additional trick or sandbag.
2.    Score 50 points for the successful nil bidder, plus the score won or lost by the partner for tricks made. Score 100 points for the successful blind nil bidder, plus the score won or lost by the partner for tricks made.
3.    Deduct 10 points for each trick taken by the team that did not make its bid. Deduct 50 points for the failed nil bid, plus the score won or lost by the partner for tricks made. Deduct 100 points for the failed blind nil bid, plus the score won or lost by the partner for tricks made.
4.    End the game when one team reaches 500 points and wins.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Playing Dominoes

The draw game is the most common form played, although there are hundreds of variations. If you want to up your hip quotient, the following slang may help:
0 is referred to as "Blank"
1 is referred to as "Ace"
2 is referred to as "Deuce"
5-6 is referred to as the "Trial"
6-6 is referred to as "The Dog!"

1.    Count that there are 28 dominoes, from double blank to double six.
2.    Place them facedown on the table and shuffle them until they're random.
3.    Allow your opponent to take seven dominoes, and take seven for yourself.
4.    Allow the player with the highest double to go first.
5.    Lay a domino with like value next to the first domino (it doesn't matter which end). Make sure like values are always touching.
6.    Pick from the pile if you don't have a domino that corresponds to the ones on the layout. Keep those dominoes concealed from your opponent(s).
7.    Pass if no more dominoes are left in the pile.
8.    Win the session if you're the first person to run out of dominoes.
9.    End the session if everybody passes, in which case the winner is the person with the lowest score.
10. Count your score by the number of dots on the tiles remaining in your hand.
11. End the game if someone reaches 50 points in a game with two players or 100 points with three or more players. The lowest score wins.

*Credits to eHow

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Texas Hold'em Poker - Part II

...From Texas Hold'em Poker

9.  There is another round of betting. Players are betting on the total of the two cards they have face down in front of them, and the three cards face up in front of the dealer. Example:
10. Three cards in front of the dealer: A - J - 3
     Two cards each player has:
    • Player 1 A - 4
    • Player 2 J - 3
    • Player 3 4 - 10
  • So Player 1 has: A - A - 4 - J - 3
  • Player 2 has: J - J - A - 3 - 3
  • Player 3 has: 4 -10 - A - J - 3
    As you can see, each player is using their own two cards, and the three cards in front of the dealer, to build their hands.
11. After the round of betting, the dealer discards the card on the top of the deck, to prevent cheating, and then lays 1 more card face up next to the three already in front of him. This is called the turn or 4th street
12. Just like before, players are using their own 2 cards, plus the cards in front of the dealer to build their hands. BUT, you can only build hands with 5 cards, and you must use the two in your hand. There are now 6 cards altogether; the two in front of the player, and the 4 in front of the dealer. You can only pick 5 to build your hand.
13. There is a round of betting.
14. Now the dealer discards the top card, and lays 1 more card face up in front of him. This is the last card the dealer will put out. This is known as the river or 5th street. These 5 cards are referred to as The Board.
15. Players build their hands, in their heads, using only 5 of the cards in their hand and on the table, and there is another round of betting.
16. It is now time for all remaining players to show their hands by turning over their two cards. Players take turns turning their cards over counter clockwise, starting with the player that made the last bet. Since there are 7 cards to each player, but each player can only use 5 of them, each player needs to announce what their hand is.
17. The player with the highest hand wins the pot, which is the chips that were bet during each round of the game.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Texas Hold'em Poker - Part I

Texas Hold'em is undoubtedly the most popular type of poker game played anywhere in America.

Here's How You Play Texas Hold'em Poker.
  1. If you are betting for real money (check with local laws), assign the job of bank to someone trusted. The bank then exchanges poker chips for cash to each player. If you are not playing for money, then divvy out an equal number of chips to each player.
  2. Decide amongst yourself who is going to deal first. The dealer shuffles the cards. Also decide the minimum and maximum bets allowed.
  3. From here, before the cards are dealt, you can do one of two things. Have each player put in an ante, which is the minimum bet for the table, or, use the small blind, big blind method. With the latter method, the player to the left of the dealer puts in half as much as the minimum betting amount for the table and the player to the left of that player puts in the minimum betting amount. These players are the small blind and big blind, respectively. When the first round is played and its time for all players to bet, the big blind and small blind players subtract the money they've already put in. So if the big blind put in $5 before the cards were dealt, when the first round of betting comes along he/she can claim that $5 as his bet. If the player wanted to bet $10, then he/she would only have to throw in $5, since he/she already put in $5 before the dealing.
  4. The dealer now deals out two cards to each player, face side down. They are dealt one at a time, that is, the player gets one card, the next player one card, etc.. then a second card for everyone after each player has received their first card. Standard poker dealing.
  5. Players are allowed to look at their own cards, and you should. Once the first two cards are dealt, there is a round of betting.
  6. Each player can bet, check, or fold. Betting begins with the person left of the big blind and continues around the table past the dealer to the big blind who has the "option" to increase (raise) the bet or check. That is, they can bet money on their hand or decide to bet nothing but stay in the game, or quit the round all together.
  7. Now the dealer takes the first card off the top of the deck, and discards it. This serves the same purpose as cutting the deck after shuffling; it prevents cheating.
  8. Now the dealer places the next three cards off the top of the deck in front of him/her, face up. This is called the flop.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Starting Hand Value

As every player gets the chance to form the best hand with the help of the five community cards, the defining factor in the game is what pocket cards a player has in his hand. If a player gets a great combination in the pocket hands like two Aces, then his chances of success are much higher than a player who has a 7-2 combination. The best way to go about is to go ahead with the game if you hit upon great pocket cards or to simple fold if you get two of the worst cards out of the deck. However, cards of lesser value can also come in handy if the community cards are favorable.
Top 10 starting hands:
  • 1. Pocket Aces (AA)
  • 2. Pocket Kings (KK)
  • 3. Pocket Queens (QQ)
  • 4. Ace-King suited (AKs)
  • 5. Pocket Jacks
  • 6. Ace Queen suited (AQs)
  • 7. King-Queen suited (KQs)
  • 8. Ace-King (AK)
  • 9. Ace-Jack suited (AJs)
  • 10. Pocket Tens (1010)

Thursday, February 3, 2011

How to Play Poker

The word poker is often misused to describe a game. Poker itself is not a game, it's a game genre. Most common poker games include Texas Hold'em, Omaha, 7 Card Stud and more, all of which use a distinctive set of poker rules. However, they do have one thing in common: they are based on the standard 5 card poker hand. This page explicates how to play poker games.
This page dashes the basic communal rules applicable to all poker games and does not focus on one specific poker game.

Poker is presently experiencing a gush in popularity, due in part to its popularity on television and prominence with celebrities. Want to start the fun? It's easy to get started. Here's a welcoming overview on how to play 5-card draw, which will help you get the basics down. Once you get the hang of it, you can easily adjust to playing other variations (described on the next post) and improve your poker skills through practice.

Poker Hand: Cheat Sheet
  1. Royal Flush (10, Jack, Queen, King and Ace, all of the same suit) - Most valued because it's most surprising when received. It is a common misconception that this is harder to get than any of the other set of 5 cards.
  2. Straight Flush (five cards in numerical order, all of the same suit) - Can't contain a King and a Two in the same hand (e.g. Q-K-A-2-3).
  3. Four of a Kind (four cards of the same number and any other card)
  4. Full House (three cards with the same number and two cards with the same number) - ties are broken by the highest value card in the three of a kind.
  5. Flush (all five cards from the same suit) - Numbers don't matter
  6. Straight - (all five cards in numerical order) - Suit doesn't matter. Can't contain a King and an Ace in the same hand (e.g. J-Q-K-A-2).
  7. Three of a Kind (three cards with same number, two other random cards) - If the other two cards have the same number, it's a full house (see above).
  8. Two Pair (two sets with the same numbers plus a random card) -
  9. One Pair (two cards with the same number, the rest of the cards are random)
  10. High Card Otherwise unrelated cards ranked by the highest single card.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Intro To Gambling

Cards, Chips, and Dice
Games of chance are past-time interwoven into present-day society. Gambling of any sort was once outlawed in many societies, however in some; it has become more and more an established part of everyday life. So where did gambling start?
The identification of one definite place or moment in which gambling first began is unfeasible. All of recorded history contains occurrences of gambling, and it can only be extrapolated from that reality that gambling predates history extensively. It can most likely be assumed that gambling has existed almost as long as mankind.
The earliest recorded forms of gambling were exceptionally simple in nature but didn't vary extremely from modern-day incarnations. Dice and card games were familiar in ancient cultures, which is remarkable considering the fact that many modern casino games still rely on these two ancient gaming tools.