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Caribbean Stud Poker

Caribbean Stud Poker is a table game found in land-based and online casinos and is based on the same principal as five-card stud poker, but unlike other poker games, Caribbean Stud players are set against the house and not other players. Therefore, bluffing is useless in Caribbean Stud Poker.

Like many casino games, the history of this game is sordid, and there are many different variations of where it originally spawned. This house game was created in hopes to attract more poker players to the tables, but it is not known for sure who invented the game and wrote the rules, though gambling authority David Sklansky claims he did in 1982 under the name Casino Poker, but was unable to patent the game. It was later patented in Aruba by another player who brought the game there and deemed it Caribbean Stud Poker. Yet another yarn tells that the game was being played on a cruise ship to Aruba under a different name. It was bought by a proprietor after he discovered the game on the ship and later received its present-day name. Whatever its origin, Caribbean Stud Poker has become one of the most popular casino table games in the world, offered at nearly every full casino in the world.

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Caribbean Stud Poker

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How to Play Caribbean Stud Poker

Everyone seated at the table is dealt five cards by the dealer, who then turns over one of the cards and pushes the other four cards towards the player. At this time, players are allowed to view their cards, and just like regular poker, all of the players can either play or fold their hands. If playing the hand, they must place a raise into the marked box “Bet.” The dealer reveals his four cards after everyone has made their decisions and bets. The dealer then compares his hand to the other players individually. For the dealer to qualify (play), he has to hold a King and an Ace, a pair, or any other high-ranking poker hand. Those who do not beat the dealer lose the raise wager and the ante. In the event of a tie, the raise and ante bets push. When the dealer’s hand does not qualify, the raise bets are pushed, or returned to the table, while the ante bets are paid to the players.

The table layout features marked spots that dictate where players must place their antes to be eligible to participate in the hand. The progressive jackpot feature of the game can be opted for before the dealer announces, “No more bets.” To play the progressive jackpot, drop a chip in the slot, which turns on the light for that seat for the duration of the current hand.

Caribbean Stud Poker Standard Rules

In US casinos, the rules of Caribbean Stud Poker vary somewhat depending on where you are playing. The most important rules required players to follow them, however, at all times, and these do not vary by location. The first rule of Caribbean Stud Poker is that there is to be only one hand per player and players are not able to wager or hold on multiple hands at the table. Also, during the game players are not allowed to talk or communicate in any way to the dealer or the other players about the hand. If they do so, they forfeit their wagers or the hand results in a “dead hand.”

Caribbean Stud Poker Strategy

The best strategy to use in Caribbean Stud Poker is to play A-K, which reduces the casino edge in the game significantly. In order to play this strategy one of three situations need to occur. When the dealer is showing an Ace or King as his face up card, it is an optimal time to raise A-K-Q and A-K-J hands. This is because the player has blockers to the dealer’s pairs and is likely to be the best A-K hand. A player can use this strategy when the dealer’s face up card is a 2 and up to a Queen when that player has the same card in his hand. This strategy is referred to as the “Blocker Effect.” If the dealer is showing a 2 through a 5 as the turned card it is another good time to use this strategy. The best tip to remember for basic Caribbean Stud strategy is to play any pair you have and to fold less than AK.

In Conclusion

Caribbean Stud Poker appeals to many players and is a very unique variation of standard five-card draw, so if you’re a fan of five-card or other table games such as blackjack or craps, you will likely take to Caribbean Stud Poker. It does, however, take some extent of patience to wait for the right hand and discipline to stick to strategy, so if you are the type to make rash decisions and get bored easily, you might not find this game too exciting.

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