This is one of the most popular versions of poker which features a Dealer vs. Player format. As the name suggests, there are only three cards dealt to each, but there are still many betting opportunities thanks to a special bonus game known as “Pairs Plus.”
As in most poker versions of this kind, the Dealer must have a qualifying hand in order for all of the bets to be alive. But the Dealer's hand doesn't matter in the Pairs Plus bet.
3 Card Poker is played with a standard deck of 52 cards that are reshuffled after the completion of every game. The basic hand-strength rules of a regular game are still used in this version of poker, but with the participants only getting three cards, some hands-Four-of-a-kind, a Full House and a Royal Flush-have been eliminated. The best hand you can get in 3 Card Poker is a Straight Flush.
To begin with, the player must decide what bets he wants to make. He can make just an Ante bet, or he can also make a Pairs Plus bet. If he does not want to make an Ante bet, he can make just a Pairs Plus bet. The player can make either bet for an amount of his choosing.
When the game begins, the player receives his three cards face-up while the dealer gets his three face- down. After looking at his cards, if the player wants to continue, he must double his Ante bet by making what is called a “Play” bet. At this point, the Dealer's cards will be revealed. The dealer must have at least a Queen-high to qualify. If he doesn't, the Player's Ante bet pays even money and his Play bet is returned. If the dealer does qualify, his hand will be compared to the Player, who will receive even money on both his Ante and Play bets if he wins.
Special Bonus Features
There are special bonus payoffs offered for the Ante bet. A Straight Flush pays a 5-1 bonus, Three-of-a-kind pays 4-1 and a Straight has an extra even money payoff. Those bonuses will be paid even if the Dealer has a better hand.
The Pairs Plus payoffs are even money for a pair, 3-1 for a Flush and 6-1 for a Straight. The top two hands both pay very well in a Pairs Plus bet. Three-of-a-kind pays 30-1 and a Straight Flush pays 40-1.
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