The history of gambling goes back a very long way but there is no doubt that we now have far more gambling options than our predecessors have ever had. The introduction of online gambling is the most recent reason for that increase in gambling options and has provided probably the biggest expansion of gambling opportunities we have ever seen. When the big bookmakers decided to offer their customers the opportunity to do their sports gambling on the internet rather than having to visit their nearest betting shop, they were also able to massively increase the range of sports and sporting events their customers could follow. The internet allows site operators almost unlimited space to display what it is they wish us to see, which is why the huge online retailers are so successful and of course why the online gambling sites are able to offer so many gambling options. Online sports gambling fans can now enjoy gambling on a huge range of different sports and sporting events, but the increase in gambling options is even more pronounced when it comes to the casino gambling sites. Very few online casino gambling sites offer less than two hundred different gambling games for us to enjoy and most offer considerably more. The majority of these online gambling games are of course slots games in a variety of different forms, but most sites also cover the full range of traditional casino gambling games only previously available in real casinos. The online casino gambling sites offer us the opportunity to play a whole range of traditional casino gambling games which have never been readily available in our real casinos here in Ireland, including one of the most famous gambling games of all, the game of poker. Of all the traditional gambling games we can now access online the game of poker has undoubtedly been the one which has seen the greatest surge in interest. Here in Ireland and in fact many other European countries the game of poker had become of limited interest to games enthusiasts because it was rarely if ever available to play in our real casinos, so the only regular poker players were either professionals playing in the big tournaments or groups of friends getting together over a few beers once a week. The speed with which the introduction of online gambling has changed the popularity of poker is quite remarkable and poker is now probably the most popular traditional online casino game, with any number of specialist online poker sites enabling poker fans to compete with other players from all over the world.
The game of poker has of course got a long history and is probably best known as the gambling game of choice among the gold prospectors of America and on the river boats, but 5-card draw poker was also featured in almost every saloon scene filmed in our favourite westerns and that was where most of us of a certain age first became aware of the game. Nowadays the game of choice for most serious poker players is the Texas Hold’em format of the poker, which is a far cry from the relatively simple 5-card draw version of the game. The only real similarities between these two versions of poker are the ranking of the hands and how the betting rounds are completed. We have listed the rankings of poker hands on our individual games pages here at gambling.ie, and how betting rounds are completed in every version of poker, but all the other versions of poker now available on the online casino gambling sites differ in most other respects. The Texas Hold’em version of poker has become the most popular for a variety of reasons, the most obvious of which is the possibility of much bigger pots than most other versions of the game. This is because Texas Hold’em poker uses five community cards which are dealt one at a time with a betting round after each card is dealt. There are therefore many more betting rounds than most other poker formats leading inevitably to bigger pots. Each player is dealt two hole cards face down in front of them and this is followed by the first betting round. The first of the community cards is then dealt face up into the middle of the table followed by another betting round. The same procedure is used for each of the remaining four community cards after which each remaining player forms their best 5 card poker hand from their two hole cards and the five community cards face up in the middle of the table. Because they have a choice of five from seven cards the showdown hands may also be higher ranking than is commonly the case in other simpler versions of the game. It is easy to see why almost every major poker tournament in the world now uses the Texas Hold’em format of poker, which is also why it has become so popular amongst new poker enthusiasts aspiring to join the professionals. For those of our readers who may be considering starting to play Texas Hold’em poker at an online poker platform, we must offer a couple of words of caution. Firstly the fact that the winning pots are usually considerably bigger than in other versions of the game also means that the stakes tend to be higher. The multiple betting rounds mean that the agreed table stake tends to become irrelevant when it comes to how much a player needs to commit even to reach the showdown stage in each hand. Texas Hold’em poker clearly relies on luck in the same way as most other gambling games, but it is also true that the more experienced players are more likely to win in the long run. Try to ensure wherever possible that you know something about your opponents when playing poker at one of the specialist online poker sites. Almost every online casino gambling site features several versions of poker which can be played for fixed odds against the house, and this is the best way to learn.