Basic Rules for Texas Hold'em Poker
The Objective

The objective of the game is to achieve the highest value playing hand, or win by default if all other players fold, and collect the contents of the pot. Whether playing for money, or for fun, Poker tests individual skills and strategic abilities.

Players contribute, or ante, into a central pot containing play chips or chips representing actual money.

The Dealer Button designates the dealer position. This position rotates clockwise with each new hand dealt. The Small Blind ante position is immediately left of the Dealer Button and is one-half of the Big Blind ante value. The Big Blind ante position is the first position left of the Small Blind position.

Following the Small and Big Blind antes, all other players ante a minimum amount designated before the start of play and before the deal. Anted players in the game are dealt single cards face down until each player in the game has two cards know as hold cards, or pocket cards. These cards are under the direct control of each player and remain concealed during play.

Seven cards are dealt in the game. Five cards are community cards, which are dealt to the center of the table and shown face-up. Each player uses these five cards along with their two hole cards to build a five-card poker hand.

Betting, passing, or folding actions are made by individual players based on the strength of the cards they hold combined with the communal cards revealed during play.

After the betting rounds are over, the player with the strongest hand, or the last player left after all others have folded, wins the hand.

Betting: Limit, No-Limit & Pot Limit

Limit. Bets and raises during the first two rounds of betting (pre-flop and flop) must be equal to the big blind and this is referred to as the "small bet." The next two rounds of betting (turn and river), bets and raises must be equal to twice the big blind and this is referred to as the "big bet."

No Limit. Players may bet or raise any amount over the minimum raise up to all the chips the player has which is referred to as the "all in" bet. The minimum raise is equal to the size of the previous bet or raise. If someone re-raises, the value of the re-raise must be equal to the value of the last raise plus the value of the big blind. If a raise or re-raise is "all-in" and does not equal the size of the previous raise, the initial raiser cannot re-raise again.

Pot Limit. The maximum raise if the current size of the pot including the amount needed to call.

Disconnect and Timeout Policy

The user acknowledges That if there connection drops or becomes disconnected the game will continue, and the user will be notified in the game and given the option to reconnect. If the user reconnects in time before player action timeout, the game state will be restored and allowed to continue. The user acknowledges that PokerTribe.com is not responsible if there connection is lost due to third party software or hardware. If a players does not respond and the player has the option to check, the server will automatically check the user, if there is a current bet the user will be kicked from the table.

Malfunction & Server Crash Policy

In the unlikely event of a server crash which prevents completion of a hand, the hands in progress at every table (tournaments and cash games) will be restored by rolling back these hands as if they had not happened. Each player's chip count will be reset to the amount at the beginning of the hand.

Basic Poker Play: Table Stakes and All-In

All games on Pokertribe are played "table stakes", meaning only the chips in play at the beginning of each hand can be used to bet and raise during the hand. The table stakes rule has an application called the "All-In" rule, which states that a player cannot be forced to forfeit a poker hand because the player does not have enough chips to call a bet. A player who does not have enough chips to call a bet is declared All-In. The player is eligible for the portion of the pot up to the point of his final wager. All further action involving other players takes place in a "side pot", which the All-In player is not eligible to win. If more than one player goes All-In during a hand, there could be more than one side pot.

In any basic poker game, players strategically wager using a number of actions available to them. The actions are as follows:

  1. CHECK - If there is no wager on the current betting round, a player may check. The act of checking passes the action to the next person, immediately clockwise from the player. A check does not forfeit interest in the pot, only the current right to bet. If all active players check during a round of betting, the round is considered complete.
  2. BET - If there is not yet a wager on the current betting round, a player may bet. If a player bets, the player immediately clockwise from him or her (and any subsequent players) may fold, raise, or call.
  3. FOLD - The act of folding forfeits all interest in the pot. A player who folds is not required or allowed to wager any further money during the current poker hand, but cannot win that hand either.
  4. CALL - If there has been a bet on the current round of poker play, a player may call. The act of calling requires the player to match the current bet made by his or her opponent(s).
  5. RAISE - If there has been a bet on the current betting round, a player may raise. The act of raising requires the poker player to match the current bet, and then make a greater one. All subsequent players are required to call the raise or raise again ("re-raise") to maintain interest in the pot.
Play Begins

The game is played with a 52-card deck containing no jokers. Play begins with the cards being dealt after all antes are paid, starting with the player in the small blind position and ending with the player in the dealer position. Each player receives two cards.

The "pre-flop" betting begins when all players have received two cards starting the player to the left of the big blind position and continuing clockwise. A round of betting continues until every player has folded, put in all their chips, or matched the amount put in by all other active players. Blind players are considered active in pre-flop betting and may check, or raise during the pre-flop.

Assuming two or more players are active in the hand following pre-flop betting, the dealer deals three face-up community cards, the "Flop," to the center of the table. Each active player considers the impact of the communal cards combined with their unrevealed hole cards.

After the Flop, a second round of betting occurs, after which, a single community card, referred to as the "Turn," is dealt to the center of the table, then a third round of betting occurs.

Following the third round of betting, the final community card, the "River" card, is dealt to the table followed by a fourth round of betting also knows as the showdown.

If a player bets during the showdown and all other fold, the betting player is awarded the pot and is not required to show their hole cards.

If two or more players remain in the game, a showdown occurs with each active player making the best five-card poker hand possible based on their hole cards and the five communal cards. Players with winning poker hands of equal value, share the pot equally, but any extra chip (uneven split) goes to first player(s) after the left of the dealer button.

When all calls are made by all active players, the last player calling shows their cards first, followed by the next player to the left until all active hands are revealed.

Basic Play Information
Texas Hold’em - Hand Ranking

Before you hit the online poker tables, you’ll need to familiarise yourself with the basic hand rankings and rules that govern Texas Hold’em. Here are the 10 hands every player should know before joining the action.

1) Royal Flush

Poker’s most famous hand, a royal flush, cannot be beaten. It consists of the ace, king, queen, jack and ten of a single suit.

2) Straight Flush

Five cards in sequence, of the same suit. In the event of a tie, the highest rank at the top of the sequence wins.

3) Four of a Kind

Four cards of the same rank, and one side card or ‘kicker’. In the event of a tie, the player with the highest side card (‘kicker’) wins.

4) Full House

Three cards of the same rank, and two cards of a different, matching rank. In the event of a tie, the highest three matching cards wins.

5) Flush

Five cards of the same suit, not in sequence. In the event of a tie, the player holding the highest ranked card wins.

6) Straight

Five non-suited cards in sequence. In the event of a tie, the highest ranking card at the top of the sequence wins.

7) Three of a Kind

Three cards of the same rank, and two unrelated side cards. In the event of a tie, the player with the highest, and if necessary, second-highest side card (‘kicker’) wins.

8) Two Pair

Two cards of matching rank, two cards of different matching rank, and one kicker. If both players have an identical Two Pair, the highest kicker wins.

9) Pair

Two cards of matching rank, and three unrelated side cards. In the event of a tie, the player with the highest, and if necessary, second or third-highest side card wins.

10) High Card

Any hand that does not qualify under the categories listed. In the event of a tie, the highest card wins, such as ‘ace-high’.

Straight Flush: Five cards in numerical order, all of identical suits.

In the event of a tie: Highest rank at the top of the sequence wins.

The best possible straight flush is known as a royal flush, which consists of the ace, king, queen, jack and ten of a suit. A royal flush is an unbeatable hand.


Four of a Kind: Four cards of the same rank, and one side card or ‘kicker’.

In the event of a tie: Highest four of a kind wins. In community card games where players have the same four of a kind, the highest fifth side card ('kicker') wins.


Full House: Three cards of the same rank, and two cards of a different, matching rank.

In the event of a tie: Highest three matching cards wins the pot. In community card games where players have the same three matching cards, the highest value of the two matching cards wins.


Flush: Five cards of the same suit.

In the event of a tie: The player holding the highest ranked card wins. If necessary, the second-highest, third-highest, fourth-highest, and fifth-highest cards can be used to break the tie. If all five cards are the same ranks, the pot is split. The suit itself is never used to break a tie in poker.


Straight: Five cards in sequence.

In the event of a tie: Highest ranking card at the top of the sequence wins.

Note: The Ace may be used at the top or bottom of the sequence, and is the only card which can act in this manner. A,K,Q,J,T is the highest (Ace high) straight; 5,4,3,2,A is the lowest (Five high) straight.


Three of a kind: Three cards of the same rank, and two unrelated side cards.

In the event of a tie: Highest ranking three of a kind wins. In community card games where players have the same three of a kind, the highest side card, and if necessary, the second-highest side card wins.


Two pair: Two cards of a matching rank, another two cards of a different matching rank, and one side card.

In the event of a tie: Highest pair wins. If players have the same highest pair, highest second pair wins. If both players have two identical pairs, highest side card wins.


One pair: Two cards of a matching rank, and three unrelated side cards.

In the event of a tie: Highest pair wins. If players have the same pair, the highest side card wins, and if necessary, the second-highest and third-highest side card can be used to break the tie.


High card: Any hand that does not qualify under a category listed above.

In the event of a tie: Highest card wins, and if necessary, the second-highest, third-highest, fourth-highest and smallest card can be used to break the tie.

Hand Odds
Hand Frequency Probability Cumulative Odds
Royal flush 4,324 0.0032% 0.0032% 30,939 : 1
Straight flush (excl. royal flush) 37,260 0.0279% 0.0311% 3,589.6 : 1
Four of a kind 224,848 0.168% 0.199% 594 : 1
Full house 3,473,184 2.60% 2.80% 37.5 : 1
Flush 4,047,644 3.03% 5.82% 32.1 : 1
Straight 6,180,020 4.62% 10.4% 20.6 : 1
Three of a kind 6,461,620 4.83% 15.3% 19.7 : 1
Two pair 31,433,400 23.5% 38.8% 3.26 : 1
One pair 58,627,800 43.8% 82.6% 1.28 : 1
No pair 23,294,460 17.4% 100% 4.74 : 1
Total 133,784,560 100% 100% 0 : 1
Which Hole Cards are Playable

There is no absolute formula suggesting which cards to play, and many factors determine the outcome of a game. As a guideline, the chart below may give a player an idea of a starting point until the player learns through experience the potential of the their hole cards relative to their position at the table.

Early Position:The first three seats to the left of the Big Blind
Middle Position:The next three seats after the Early Position
Late Position:All seats thereafter, including the dealer position

Playability of Hole Cards.
Early Position:Middle Position:Late Position:
AAJJQT77A498
KKTTAJ66A3K9
QQ99AT55A2Q9
AK88A944KTJT
AQAJKQ33K9
AKATKJ22Q9
AQA9KTA8Q8
KQQJA7JT
KJQTA6J9
QJA5T9




Hold'em Tournament Rules
The Objective

In a tournament format game, each participant commits a specific value of free play chips used for tournament play competition. Player accounts cannot be replenished after the initial tournament buy-in is committed. An eliminated participant cannot reenter the tournament. The tournament ends when one player has won all the chips committed from all participating players.

Game play proceeds normally with blinds increasing at predetermined intervals.

Entry Value

The entry value of free play chips will be posted prior to the start of any tournament with an indication of the closing time/date for tournament entry. Once the entry value of free chips is committed for a tournament from a users account, the free play chips are considered consumed and shall not be returned to the users account.

Seat Assignment

Seating will be randomly assigned.

Starting Stack

Each tournament participant will begin with the full free chip value of their tournament buy-in.

Game Dealing

This is the same as standard Texas Holdíem dealing.

Absent Players

All players must be dealt a hand with blinds and antes forced. An untended hand is considered dead.

Breaking Tables

As players are eliminated, new tables for remaining players will be determined on a random basis.

All-In Bets

Any player may declare and All-In bet. An opposing player declaring All-In is only committed to an equal value bet, or the full value of that players remaining free play chips, as is normally the case in non-tournament Texas Holdíem.

Clock Timing

The amount of time allotted to each player for taking a player action such as Check, Raise, Fold, etc., is consistent for all players and will not be changed or altered after tournament play commences.

Multiple Busts

If two players go broke on the same hand the player with the greater amount of free play chips at the start of the hand finishes in the higher position.