Pai Gow Poker as we know it today came about in the 1980’s and serves as an Americanized version of the Chinese domino game
. Pai Gow has become more and more popular throughout the years, and has quickly become a hit among players who are seeking long-term player value in terms of playability. The game offers a lot of ties (or pushes), which sees bets returned to players. That means that you can play this game a long time on a relatively small bankroll and have a solid chance of walking away ahead or roughly even.
With that being said, here is a basic breakdown on the rules of Pai Gow Poker:
Pai Gow is played with the Dealer dealing out seven cards to you as well as themselves. The goal of the game is to form a 5 card poker hand as well as a 2 card hand that is better than the dealer’s. Standard poker hands are used for ranking hands.
Pai Gow is unique in that it uses the 5 card and 2 card hands, and that the game is dealt out with Joker cards in the deck. The Joker serves as a connecting card in the 5 card hand, otherwise its an Ace. If the player opts to put the Joker in the 2 card hand, it serves as an Ace. This card is called a bug in Pai Gow.
Hand rankings in Pai Gow Poker are as follows, High to Low:
Four of a Kind
Three of a Kind
It should be noted that because of the low house edge and length of play, there is a 5% commission paid out on winnings. While this may seem like a high amount, players still have a good chance of coming out ahead if they play with proper strategy.