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Pai-Gow Poker Rules @ Online-Poker.com
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The game begins with the dealer dealing 7 7-card hands in front of the chip tray. A random number generator, or set of dice, is used to determine which hand goes to which player. The players proceed to arrange their hands into a high hand and a low hand (which you know from the pai-gow poker page means a 5 card hand and a 2 card hand in which the 5 card hand must outrank the 2 card hand according to traditional poker hand ranks). After the players have completed their hands the dealer arranges their own according to specific rules generally referred to as the house way. In turn, the players five card hand is compared with the dealers, and the two card hand is compared to the dealers. If both the players 5 card hand and 2 card hand outrank the dealers respectively, then the player wins. If one or both of the players hands falls short of the corresponding dealer hand, the dealer wins. In the case of a dead tie, or a copy, the house wins.

You need to be sure when you are setting your hands to remember that the 5-card hand must outrank the 2 card hand. If you fail to play this part properly, the house simply deems your hands as 'foul' and you lose. If you are dealt the joker, remember that it isn't completely wild. It can only be used to complete a straight, a flush, or a straight flush. If you don't have the other four fifths, the joker is played as an ace. If there is an empty seat at the table the dealer may play a hand to it (often referred to as a dragon hand), and a player may assume control of the hand. Depending on the table the dragon hand may have to be split according to the house way.

If the player beats the dealer they win even money, but usually pay a 5% commission on the win. In the casino anyone can be the banker, and as the banker changes the house still takes 5% from whatever the banker manages to bank, although it is after losses are set against winnings, so it is favorable to be the banker. The dealer at the table will still play as the banker changes, betting whatever the last bet was when the dealer was banking.

To be the banker you must have enough chips to pay off all winning bets on the table. You also have to have already played a hand against the house as banker.

Pai-Gow Poker Strategy