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Asian Games : Game Tips & Strategies

Pai Gow is played with a 53-card deck consisting of a standard 52-card deck with 1 wild card. The object of the game is to split your hand into a five-card hand and a two-card hand with both hands beating the dealer's two hands to win. The wild card is not a true wild card and has specific rules. The card only acts as an Ace or the fifth card in either a flush or a straight. It cannot be used to make a pair of 10's or Queens.

After you receive your seven cards you must split them into two hands, a five-card hand and a two-card hand. The five-card hand must always rank higher than the two-card hand. To do this in Online Pai Gow move the mouse pointer over the cards you want to make your two-card hand. Click on the two cards one at a time and they will split out of the deck. Notice that once you have chosen an eligible two-card hand (not better than your five-card hand) the split button becomes available. If you are happy with your choice click on this split button and you will have your two playing hands. If you are not satisfied with your choices click on the card or cards which you want to change and they will go back into your seven-card hand. Now choose the new cards you wish to play with. You may do this until you press the split button at which point your hands are locked-in. The dealer will then split his hand and the game will play itself out.

After all the players have arranged their hands the banker arranges theirs according to a set of fixed rules known as the "house way." Then all the players' five-card hands are compared to the dealer's five-card hand. Likewise all the players' two-card hands are compared to the dealer's two-card hand. The highest hand wins. In the event of an exact match between hands, called a copy, the tie goes to the banker. If the player beats the dealer with both hands the player wins even money, less a 5% commission. If the player wins one and loses one the bet is a push. If the player loses both the player loses the entire wager.

Each five-card hand is ranked according to the standard poker hand hierarchy . Remember that because of the wild card, you have the potential to have five Aces, which beats a royal flush. Your two-card hand can either be a pair or no pair, therefore, your highest possible two-card hand would be a pair of Aces. The wild card can function in several ways. It can act as an Ace in any hand or the fifth card in a straight, a flush, a straight flush, or a royal flush.

The only way for the player to win is to win both hands outright. The house wins if the dealer wins both hands outright or wins one hand and the other hand is a draw. Any other combination results in a push. This will lead to many draws, so there will be a 5% commission on all player wins, which will be automatically deducted from the player's account. Apart from the commission, all winning wagers are paid out at even money (1 to 1).

Remember that the object of the game is to beat the dealer and not the other players. In pai gow poker any player may elect to be the banker in turn. If a player banks the 5% commission is charged on the net win. When a player is the banker the dealer will still play, betting an amount equal to the last bet the player made when the dealer was banking. It is strongly to the advantage of the player to be the banker as much as possible because the dealer wins on copies and the 5% commission is charged after losses are set against winnings.

The opportunity to bank usually rotates from person to person, including the house, but sometimes will zig-zag between the players and the dealer. If the player wants to bank they must have enough money on the table to pay off all winning bets of the other players and dealer. The player must also have played a previous hand against the house banker to bank. Some casinos will allow the player to co-bank with the house. If this option is elected the casino will assume half the financial responsibility of the outcome. The player must set their hand according to the house way if co-banking.

Asian Games School Lessons
Lesson 1: Sic Bo History
Learn about this Chinese dice game
Lesson 1: Pai Gow History
Learn about this ancient Chinese tile game.
Lesson 1: Pai Gow Poker History
Find out how Pai Gow tiles evolved into Pai Gow Poker and got to north America.
Lesson 2: Sic Bo Rules and Betting
The general game and how to bet
Lesson 2: Pai Gow Rules
How to play this intriguing game.
Lesson 2: Pai Gow Poker Rules
Learn the rules of play for this Poker hybrid.
Lesson 3: Pai Gow Poker Tips
Once you have the basic, see how to play like a pro.
Lesson 3: Pai Gow Pairs
The pairs detailed and explained.
Lesson 3: Sic Bo Tips and Probabilities
Rules of thumb to play smart Sic Bo
Lesson 4: Pai Gow Tips and Strategy
Important pointers and advice.
Lesson 4: Pai Gow Poker Probabilities
What are the payouts like and how likely is it to get a winning hand? Find out here.
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