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Pai Gow Poker

HOW TO PLAY PAI GOW POKER

 

Pai Gow Poker is a casino table game and is played with a standard

52-card deck plus one Joker. The rules are fairly simple.

 

After making a bet, each player is dealt seven cards and must make two

poker hands: a standard five-card poker hand and a two-card poker hand.

The five-card hand is often called “behind”, or the “bottom”, “high”, or

“big” hand, while the two-card hand is called “in front”, “on top”, or the

“small”, “minor”, or “low” hand.

When forming your two hands from your seven cards, the five-card hand

must be higher than the two-card hand. In other words, if you are dealt

A-A-3-5-7-10-J and you can't make a flush, you must include the pair of

aces in the five-card poker hand, not the two-card poker hand.

Five-card hands follow the standard what-beats-what rules.

Additionally, having the joker in the deck introduces the possibility of five

of a kind, which beats a straight flush.

The best two-card hands are pairs and then simply high cards. Straights

and flushes don't matter in the two-card hand. The worst possible 2-card

hand is 2-3, while the best is a pair of aces.

The Joker in Pai Gow Poker

Instead of acting as a whatever-card-you-want wild card, the Joker in Pai

Gow is called a “bug”. It acts as an ace unless it can be used to fill out a

straight or a flush. This also means that you can have five aces, which is

the best possible five-card hand in Pai Gow.

 

Showdown

Once players have set their two poker hands, they place their hands in

front of them, the two-card hand in front, and the five-card hand in the

back(hence those nicknames) All the players at the table are playing to win

both hands against the “Banker”. The banker is the Dealer.

Each player compares his hands to the banker's hands. If both the player's

hands beat the banker's, the player wins. If one of the player's hands beats

the banker's hands but not the other, it's considered a push or draw and the

player takes back his money. If the banker's hands beat

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