Online Poker Rooms
You will find a growing number of online poker rooms available to play at these days, as well as a large number of willing players. Just be sure that you register at a poker room that is open to players from your jurisdiction, since some poker rooms are closed to players residing in jurisdictions that are lacking in regulation. The United States is a perfect example.
Legitimate online poker rooms, i.e., rooms that are licensed/regulated, and which host thousands of active players at any given moment, use software that facilitates poker games between multiple players at a single table. In fact, online poker rooms of today use technology that allows players to actually watch the action at tables in real time without having to join the table itself. Talk about learning through observation.
Before signing up to just any online poker room, you will want to know how many players are on the site and if it’s easy to find the game you like to play with the stakes you can afford on your bankroll. Take advantage of the opportunity to check out the action in the room before making a sizable deposit. If and when that time comes, be sure to take advantage of free bonus money. Like online casinos, the best online poker rooms will offer a welcome bonus package to depositing players, as well as free bonus money to players who make reload deposits.
If you are new to playing poker entirely, most online poker rooms offer free play, in which newbies can play poker against one another for practice. Free play also gives real money players a chance to check out the casino software and the table controls before playing for real money. Even if you’re an expert player, it doesn’t hurt to test the software in a free play mode just to be sure you know how the controls work. In other words, you don’t want to accidentally fold when you meant to raise.
OnlineGamblingOrg is currently tracking the following tournaments at vetted online poker rooms.
In addition to online satellite tournaments for WSOP finals, the WSOP online poker room hosts many ongoing poker tournaments, including daily free rolls and guaranteed jackpots up to $25K. Highlighted tournaments as follows:
2014 WSOP Main Event Satellite Tournaments
- Daily @ 6:30 pm and 8:30 pm (NJ and Nevada)
- $11 Super Satellite to $215 Satellite to 2014 WSOP Main Event
- $11 Buy-in
$25 K Sunday Guarantee
- Next tournament November 16, 2014 @ 3 pm EST with late registration till 4
- $200 + $15 buy-in
- 5,000 chip starting stack
Poker Stars is one of the most recognized and trusted names in the world of online poker. Recently acquired by B2B software provider, Amaya Gaming (which powers Caesar’s New Jersey online casino), Poker Stars has enormous player pools that guarantee the largest and most varied online poker tournaments available, especially on Sundays. Highlighted tournaments as follows:
- Next tournament Sunday, November 16 @ 2:30 EST.
- $1,000,000 Guaranteed
- $215 Buy-in
- Next tournament Sunday, November 16 @ 1:30 EST
- $250,000 Guaranteed
- $11 Buy-in
Some of the best action at an online poker room is found in the tournaments. These events start all players out with the same chip stack and pit player against player until there is only one winner standing. Poker rooms offer sizable prizes for big tournaments, often in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. But this doesn’t mean you should overlook the free rolls, which give players the opportunity to enter a tournament at the ground level for free and play their way up to the top level.
Online poker room tournaments also offer entries to real world poker events, such as the World Series of Poker. Online poker isn’t necessarily seen as a replacement for these high stakes poker events, but more so as a way for less loaded players to win their way to the gold bracelet. These days, professional poker players are discovering they can’t afford to ignore online players. In fact, most professionals now either play online to supplement their land-based exploits or serve as Ambassador’s to the most popular online poker rooms today.
As evidenced by an increasing number of younger World Series of Poker champions, online practice has become a way of staying competitive and sizing up the competition before one ever needs to meet at a high stakes brick and mortar poker event. Even if you play for small stakes, you’ll find that online poker rooms are waiting to welcome you and make you comfortable. If you’ve never played poker and want to learn, the top online poker sites – Poker Stars in particular – even offer lessons. All you need is a computer and an internet connection to take part in online poker games.
Online Poker Games and Hands
While Texas Hold’em and Omaha High are certainly the most popular poker games available online (generally both available in No-Limit and Pot-Limit format), there are many other forms of poker available at the leading poker rooms, including Omaha Hi/Lo, Seven Card Stud, Seven Card Stud Hi/Lo, Triple Stud, Five Card Draw, Razz and Horse.
While not every poker game uses the same hand rankings, Texas Hold’em, Omaha, Five Card Draw and Seven Card Stud use the traditional high ranking hands, which are as follows:
Straight Flush – Five cards of the same suit in sequential order.
Four of a Kind – Four cards of the same value, with a fifth card serving as a “kicker” high card to settle ties.
Full House – Three cards of the same value and two cards of the same value.
Flush – Five cards of the same suit, but not in sequential order.
Straight – Five cards in sequential order but not of the same suit.
Three of a Kind – Three cards of the same value.
Two Pair – Two sets of matching cards, each set of different value than one another (Otherwise, a four of a kind).
One Pair – Two cards of matching value.
High Card – For any hand that does not qualify as any of the above, the highest value card is used to settle ties.
Online Casino Poker
There is quite a bit of a difference between playing poker online and playing other casino games online, such as slots, video poker and even casino-style poker table games like 3-Card Poker and Caribbean Stud. Poker, real poker – the kind that is offered at online poker rooms – requires players to play against each other, not against the house. This is an important distinction to make, as casino poker games and what is commonly referred to as “online poker”, are quite different.
If an online casino offers Let ‘Em Ride poker (listed under the Table Games section), you have the liberty of logging onto the casino platform at any time to play. This is because casino poker is a table game played against a virtual dealer. At an online casino, you will need other real players to take part. So, even if an online poker room has the programming in place for, say, a game of Texas Hold’em (the most popular online poker game), you cannot play unless there are enough other players at your stake range to make up a table.