Chinese Poker Strategy For Beginners
Chinese Poker is a poker variant played with between 2-4 players, each of whom is dealt 13 cards. Out of the 13 cards received, each player puts together three poker hands, which have five, five, and three cards respectively. The three-card hand is called the “front” hand, and in this hand, straights and flushes do not count. The front hand must be a lower poker hand than the five-card “middle” hand, which must be lower than the five-card “back” hand, with rankings done by the standard rules of poker.
The object of the game is to have as many of your hands as possible be better than the corresponding hands of your opponents, and you receive points each time one of your hands beats an opponent. A running total of points is kept for each player, and payoffs are made based on the total number of points each player accumulates. It is a favorite game for professional players to compete in with one another in between more formal games and tournaments.
How to Play Chinese Poker
It is essential to learn how to play Chinese Poker before you sit down to play the game or try it online version at PokerKing Asia room. Although, on the face of it, it is not that complicated a game to play, there are many details in both how to assemble/set your hands and understanding whatever scoring system might be in play, and so a lack of understanding on your part of how to play the game will lead to unnecessary losses.
When going into competition, it’s best to go armed with as much information as possible; everything you read in the Poker Variant/Chinese Poker Section will help you deal with exactly how to play Chinese Poker. Studying the details provided will allow you to become a much more profitable player, and also will enable you to introduce interesting variations into your own personal Chinese Poker games with more knowledge about how to profit from them than your opponents.
Chinese Poker Tips
Although Chinese Poker is much more luck-dependent than most other variants of poker, there are still strategic concepts that will help beginning players have the best chance of being profitable. What follows in this article are ideas on how to employ the best possible Chinese Poker strategy for beginners, to enable you to successfully compete in this game.
Arrange Hand in Chinese Poker
The first thing that you want to do is to properly arrange your hand. Until you have a complete understanding of the many cards you have been dealt, you will be fumbling around without a plan in mind. Organizing your cards properly prevents that from happening. The best way to arrange your cards is by rank, which will make it simple for you to see what high hands are present that involve four-of-a-kind, full houses and straights. You should be especially attentive to ranks in which you have three-of-a-kind, as these will combine with other pairs to make full houses. After you’ve done this, check and see whether you have any flush possibilities by simply counting the cards you have in each suit. If you have five cards or more in a suit, next see whether it is a good idea to break up pairs, trips (three-of-a-kind) and quads (four-of-a-kind) in order to make a flush in one of your hands.
Once you’ve done this, you are ready to begin to assemble your three hands. The first order of business in creating the hands is to make sure that you do not get scooped, meaning that you win at least one of the hands.
Avoid The Scoop
Since many versions of the Chinese Poker scoring system give bonus points for winning all three hands, you need to make certain that you are not on the losing end of all the hands. There are a number of ways to try and avoid the scoop, even if you are dealt some bad cards. Probably the most common way players try to achieve this is by making as strong a three-card hand (the front hand) as possible, while sacrificing wins on the middle hand (the lesser of the two five-card hands). So, for example, if you have two high pair left over after making a solid back hand, your best move is to split the pairs into the middle hand and the front hand. Unless your opponent has three-of-a-kind as his back hand (very unusual) or one of the few higher pairs, you will take this hand, regardless of how the others turn out.
If you are playing Chinese Poker with “special” hands, ones which create bonus points either for a single hand or for particular combinations of hands (6 pairs, 3 flushes or straights, or a 13-card flush or straight), you need to make certain whether you can score a bonus before committing to making three hands without a bonus. When you have one of the 13-card special hands, you want to arrange your hand to reflect that, as those hands are almost always winners (unless your opponent has an even better 13-card hand, which is very rare). If you don’t have one of these combinations, but DO have a straight flush or four-of-a-kind, remember that the bonus points that you will get for that hand alone will create a positive outcome on the deal for you, so don’t split up one of these hands to help the other two hands. If the other two wind up losing, you will still be an overall winner.
Know Your Opponents Play
As in any game of poker, knowing how your opponents play in Chinese Poker is an essential part of your understanding of optimal strategy. Try and discover your opponents’ tendencies as early as possible in a game (much easier in Chinese Poker, since all hands will be exposed), and take advantage of it. For example, some players will continually sacrifice one of their three hands for the sake of the others. Knowing this will allow you to play a weaker hand than usual in that position, knowing it may well win anyway. Since the essence of the game is grinding out the two-to-one wins, especially if bonus hands are not being used, the more you can do this, the more profitable you will be.
As you begin to work with these basic strategies, you will find that most of the hands you are dealt in Chinese Poker almost arrange themselves – look at Pineapple poker for example. The best actions will become clearer and clearer to you over time and you will find yourself in a rhythm and flow that will have you consistently out pointing the other players and taking their money.