There aren’t many casino games that allow you to put your poker skills into practice and actually get a slight edge on the house.
Live Ultimate Texas Hold’em at 888 Casino might not be poker as you know it, but it’s pretty close. In fact, if you’re a bit of a shark at the felt, you’ll get a lot out of this game.
For those not versed in the “Cadillac of poker,” each player receives two cards at the start of the round. From there, five community cards are dealt and each participant can use any combination of their cards and the ones in the middle to make the best five-card hand.
The basics of Hold’em hands
To show you what we mean, here’s how a Texas Hold’em hand plays out:
- Player A receives a hand e.g. Ace King
- Player B receives a hand e.g. Queen Ten
First Betting Round Takes Place
- Flop = Jack, Ace, Nine
Second Betting Round Takes Place
- Turn = King
Third Betting Round Takes Place
- River = Deuce
Fourth Betting Round Takes Place
- Final board = Jack, Ace, Nine, King, Deuce
Looking at the above, Player A will use their cards in conjunction with the board to make two-pair: Ace King. Player B will use their Queen to make a straight with Ace, King, Jack, Ten. In this scenario, Player B wins because a straight beats two-pair.
The ultimate take on poker
Using the above format, Live Ultimate Texas Hold’em at 888 Casino flows in a very similar way. The only difference is that you have to place a bet before you receive two starting cards.
So, when you log in to 888 Casino and load up the game, you’ll play in the following way:
- You place an “ante” bet of at least 50 cents.
- Once you’ve placed your ante bet, the software automatically places a “blind” bet of the same size.
- Your two hole cards are dealt, as are the dealer’s (face down).
- At this point, you have the option to make a “play” bet of 4X or 3X your ante bet or check and see the flop for free.
- The flop is dealt.
- If you haven’t made a play bet on the previous street, you now have the option to make a 1X wager here or check.
- The turn and river are dealt.
- The best five-card hand wins.
Pay and get paid
Once you know how to play Ultimate Texas Hold’em, it’s important to understand how and what you can win. In this game, the dealer qualifies with a pair. If they have less than a pair, your ante bet is a push and you win 1X your blind bet.
However, if the dealer qualifies, it comes down to who has the best-ranked hand. If that’s you, you’ll receive a 1X return on your ante bet and one of these payouts on your blind bet:
- Royal Flush: 500X
- Straight Flush: 50X
- Four-of-a-kind: 10X
- Full House: 3X
- Flush: 1.5X
- Straight: 1X
- All other hands: Push
Poker skills can pay the bills
Now, if you’re a bit of a poker player, you’re probably yelling at the screen and saying that bluffing is also part of the game. That’s true, but in this live dealer game you can’t bluff. All you can really do is bet or check.
However, even without the ability to bluff, you can use the fundamentals of poker to guide your play.
Much like blackjack allows you to gain a slight edge when you employ mathematically correct moves, Live Ultimate Texas Hold’em has some wiggle room. For example, if you know what a strong starting hand is, you can add more bets or fold at the correct times. Similarly, if you know how likely you are to make a flush or straight after the flop, you can decide if it’s worth betting or checking.
Bonus bets give you even more value
Basically, if you’ve got even a tacit knowledge of poker, you can squeeze a ton of value out of this live dealer casino game.
Of course, this doesn’t mean you have to be the next Phil Ivey or Doyle Brunson to enjoy Ultimate Hold’em. With a 99.47 percent RTP, even those with a basic knowledge of the rules can have some fun and, potentially, win a fortune.
In fact, when you add some bonus bets into the mix, it’s possible to bank some serious prizes if the cards fall in your favor.
By placing a “trips” bet, you can win up to 50X your bet when you make three-of-a-kind or better:
- Royal Flush: 50X
- Straight Flush: 40X
- Four-of-a-kind: 30X
- Full House: 8X
- Flush: 7X
- Straight: 4X
- Three-of-a-kind: 3X
Overall, Live Ultimate Texas Hold’em is a great NJ online casino game if you love poker but you’re tired of bluffs and bad beats. By taking the game’s main format and adding some casino twists, 888 Casino is giving the pragmatic among you a chance to put your poker skills to the test.