Learn More about 3 Card Poker Games

Most online video poker variations are built on the traditional 5-card draw model. Occasionally, a new type of game is introduced to give players a chance to try their luck at something a bit different. In recent years, quite a few casinos have added 3 card poker games to their lineup, offering both beginning and advanced poker players an exciting new challenge.

Using a standard 52-card deck, 3 card poker games are played against the dealer rather than the other individuals at the table. Bets are also handled differently in 3 card poker. There are three bets available, the Play, the Ante, and the Pair Plus. The Ante bet is placed first, along with the optional Pair Plus. The game begins when all players have placed Ante and/or Pair Plus bets that are equal to or greater than the table minimum. This varies depending on the casino, so review the rules before getting started.

Three cards are dealt to each player, as well as the dealer, but the dealer's cards aren't revealed until after everyone has a chance to place their final wagers. Once you've had the chance to look at your hand, you may decide to continue the game or to fold. Players who fold forfeit their Ante, but still have the chance to win on their Pair Plus wager if it was taken. If you want to continue, you must make a Play bet that is equal to the amount of your Ante. The dealer hand is uncovered when all the final bets are made. At least one of the three cards must be a Queen or higher for the dealer's hand to qualify.

The Ante bet pays out 1:1, regardless of the dealer's hand, and carries a bonus for certain winning combinations. You'll earn a 1:1 payout on the Play bet as well, but only when the dealer's hand qualifies. Your wager is returned if it doesn't qualify. The Pair Plus bet is a game in itself and pays out anytime your hand includes a pair or higher. If you want to learn to play 3 card poker games, visit a free-play casino and practice.