Add Ultimate Hold'Em!


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I've had a lot of fun playing a particular table game at the casino I live near and think a LOT of players would have just as much fun if it were implemented into the game. As the title shows, it's the highly popular Ultimate Texas Hold'Em.

What makes it so fun is that players aren't playing against each other at the table, but going head to head against the dealer (like in Blackjack). For those who have never played it, I'll describe Ultimate Texas Hold'Em briefly.

It plays a lot like Poker, using a single deck which is shuffled before every hand, but with a few slight differences. One of those being that since your playing against the dealer instead of each other, there is no need to attempt any bluffs. Another difference is that there is no calling or raising. Players place an initial wager, and that's basically it - except for having a chance to make ONE additional bet, which I'll explain in a moment.

The game consists of several possible bets. The first is the Ante and Blind. Though they look like separate bets, they're actually one bet. On the table, you'll see it as ANTE = BLIND, because both must be bet equally. Betting the Ante, you automatically wager an equal amount on the Blind. The Play bet is, like the name says, where your wager is placed if you decide to play your hand. The amount wagered depends on when you choose to play your hand and by how much your Ante is. It's automatic, so there's no need to try and decide how much you should bet.

Before the Flop: 4x Ante.
After the Flop: 2x Ante.
After the River/Turn: 1x Ante.

The other wager that can be made at the beginning before any cards are given out is an optional 'bonus' bet called Trips. This one has an interesting twist to it: The dealer's hand DOES NOT MATTER with this bet, only what YOU have.

Here's how it works. Once every player at the table has made their initial bet, they each receive their two hole cards. The dealer then receives his/her hole cards (face down), and then the 5 community cards are laid out, also face down. At this point, each player chooses to either check or play their hand. Again, note that only ONE play bet can be made. Playing at this point, before even seeing the flop, you automatically bet 4x whatever your Ante wager was.

Once all players have made their decision, the Flop is done in typical poker fashion as three of the community cards are revealed. At this point, if you didn't play before the Flop was done, you have another chance to either check or play. Playing here, you bet 2x your Ante. Once all players have made their decision, the other two community cards are revealed. One last time, any player who has not yet played has a decision to make. This time, you either have to play for 1x your Ante or fold.

The dealer's cards are then revealed and the individual showdowns take place. Whoever has the better hand between player and dealer wins, with a few slight additional rules: The Ante wins if the player beats the dealer's hand, pushes when there is a tie or the dealer does not qualify (dealer needs at least a pair to qualify), and loses when the dealer beats the player's hand. The Blind is paid on player's winning hands which are a Straight or better. Anything lower and on tied hands will push, and loses when dealer beats the player's hand. The Play wins if the player beats the dealer, pushes on tied hands, and loses when dealer has a better hand. As for the optional Trips bet, that's a win or lose situation. As I mentioned before, the dealer's hand DOES NOT MATTER in regards to Trips. This one is paid out if the player has 3 of a Kind or better. Anything lower than that, the bet loses.

That's basically it. Fairly simple, right? There's no need to bluff, multiple players at the table can win a hand, and the only decisions you really have to make are how much to wager on the Ante/Blind and (if you choose to) Trips, and when to play your hand. Everything else is automatic, since the amount of the Play bet is determined by when you make it. Seriously, this game is FUN!!!

Here are the payouts for the various bets:
Ante and Play (remember, the Play bet is determined by when you do so: 4x, 2x, or 1x) pays 1:1. The Blind payout (again, you must beat the dealer and have at least a Straight) is as follows: Straight, 1:1; Flush, 3:2; Full House, 3:1; Four of a Kind, 10:1; Straight Flush, 50:1; Royal Flush, 500 to 1. The payout on Trips is as follows: 3 of a Kind, 3:1; Straight, 4:1; Flush, 7:1; Full House, 8:1; Four of a Kind, 30:1; Straight Flush, 40:1; Royal Flush, 50:1.

Here's an example of how the game works: A player sits down at the table. The minimum Ante bet is 100 chips (we're in the low limit room, after all!) with the max being 2000. Playing for the first time, he/she makes a minimum Ante bet of 100, so 200 chips total are wagered (ANTE = BLIND).

The cards are then dealt out. The player gets a Jack of Spades and an 8 of Hearts as his/her hole cards, so decides to check the first round. The Flop is turned over, revealing a 5 of Diamonds, a 7 of Clubs, and an 8 of Clubs. Seeing that he/she has a pair, the player decides to play. 200 more of his/her chips go to the Play circle, (remember, after the Flop, the Play wager is 2x the Ante). The last two community cards are then revealed: a 2 of Hearts and a King of Clubs. Since the player has already gone in with his/her hand, there is no further decision to be made. The dealer's cards are flipped over, showing a 2 of Diamonds and a 5 of Spades. The player has a pair and the dealer has two pair. The dealer wins the hand, so the player loses his/her Ante, Blind, and Play bets. If another player were at the table and had also played, he/she would have their own showdown against the dealer's two pair hand.

How about one more? Let's get creative! This time, two players sit down at the table. The first puts down 100 on the Ante (again, 200 total, since ANTE = BLIND) and 100 on Trips, while the second player puts down 500 on the Ante/Blind and also decides to wager 1000 chips on Trips. Now, the first player gets his/her hole cards and gets a Jack of Spades and a King of Clubs. The second player gets a 4 of Clubs and 4 of Diamonds. The first player checks, while the second player, having a pair of 4's, immediately plays his/her hand. Since it's before the Flop, the Play bet is 200 chips (Pre-Flop = 4x Ante). The Flop is then turned over, revealing a Queen of Hearts, Ace of Hearts, and 10 of Clubs. Seeing that he/she has a Straight, the first player Plays (2x Ante). The last two community cards are turned over, revealing a 10 of Hearts and a 4 of Spades. The dealer's cards are then flipped, showing a Jack of Hearts and a 7 of Hearts. The dealer has a Flush!

In that scenario, the first player lost the Ante, Blind, and Play, since the dealer's Flush beat his/her Straight. But even though those wagers were lost (400 chips total), he/she still came out slightly ahead because he/she won the Trips bet, since a Straight pays out at 4:1 (400 chips) and he/she retained that 100 chip Trips bet as well. The second player not only won his/her Ante and Play bets, he/she also won the Blind for not only beating the dealer's hand but also having a Straight or better. And having bet on the optional Trips as well, won THAT too!

How much did the second player win in total? Well, the Ante and Play bets pay 1:1, so 500 for the Ante and 2000 for the Play. A Full House pays 3:1 on the Blind, so that's another 1500. And the Trips pays 8:1 on a Full House, so he/she wins 8000 chips. From the 4000 chips total that were wagered, the second player wins 12,000 chips, in addition to keeping all of his/her initial bets!

To any of the game devs who read this, I really hope you'll take a look at Ultimate Texas Hold'Em and think of implementing this SERIOUSLY fun and exciting table game. I know it would take some time to code, but I honestly believe it would be worth it. I'm CERTAIN it would garner far more attention than Ring Poker, which in all fairness isn't really very popular. Probably because it's the same poker game, we're just using our own chips instead of 'buying in'. When I go into the low limit Poker room, often the Ring Poker tables are empty. The same is true in the VIP and High Rollers rooms. I wouldn't get rid of them completely, but turning half of those Ring Poker tables into Ultimate Texas Hold'Em tables would certainly draw a crowd. Or perhaps put a few tables in the two side rooms (low limit Poker room), and for the VIP and High Rollers sections, turn one of the two Ring Poker tables into an Ultimate TH table. Just my two chips suggestion. *tosses a few chips into the suggestion hat*


EDIT: I would like to add that there IS a second optional bet called Bad Beat at the casino near me. It's available in other casinos as well, though not all. The Bad Beat typically has a MUCH lower min/max bet that can be placed. The reason being, while it's much rarer to win the Bad Beat, when a player does win, the payout is higher. The reason why it's a rarer win is because BOTH player and dealer have to have at least a 3 of a Kind for the player to win the Bad Beat. If this is not the case, the bet loses. If it does win, the LOWEST hand is counted. An example would be if a player had a Flush and the dealer had 3 of a Kind. The player would win the Bad Beat, but is paid out at the 3 of a Kind payout, since between his/her hand and the dealer's, the dealer's 3 of a Kind is the lowest. Payouts for the Bad Beat are as follows:

3 of a Kind, 9:1; Straight, 20:1; Flush, 25:1; Full House, 40:1;Quads, 500:1; Straight Flush, 10,000:1

Please note that the list of payouts are NOT made up. They are all the ACTUAL payouts from the casino near me.

EDIT2: I forgot to add that the Ante/Blind bet doesn't HAVE to be played. A player CAN choose to bet on just Trips and/or (if it's available) Bad Beat. In such a case, once the bet(s) are made in such a manner, the player takes no further action. He/she is dealt his/her hole cards and hopes Lady Luck smiles upon him/her. As mentioned before, when the showdown takes place, a player doesn't have to beat the dealer's hand to win these 'bonus' bets - just meet the requirements. Again, with Trips, a player needs at least a 3 of a Kind to win. For the Bad Beat, both the player AND the dealer need at least a 3 of a Kind for the player to win.

Players, with the Bad Beat (if it were implemented), the lowest hand between you and the dealer determines the Bad Beat payout. So if you get a Full House, you actually WANT the dealer to get the same or better! Sound interesting? Fun? IT IS! So leave a comment if this sounds like fun to you! If enough interest is shown, it's a good bet (pun intended) Ultimate Texas Hold'Em will come to Four Kings as something new for us to play!

EDIT3: Cleaned the post up a bit. In my defense, I'm a writer... editing multiple times comes with the job. It should be good now. smile And to show just how fun this game is, let me say this. My better half is NOT a poker player. She doesn't like the whole raising, calling, bluffing... that kind of thing. When I explained how fun this game is, she was skeptical but willing to give it a try. After explaining how the game works to her, I dealt out her hole cards, then mine, a third pair of hole cards for the 'dealer', and finally the community cards. I didn't get anything decent and ended up folding that first hand. The dealer had a pair. My wife got a Full House. On her FIRST HAND!

We played for about an hour and by the end of it, she had come to enjoy the game - to the point that she was chanting things like 'come on, 10! Come on, 10! I need a 10 for a Straight!" She did that twice the last time we played. And when she got it (both times, no less! She's obviously a Lucky Charm... we need to hit the casino near us!), she threw her hands up and cheered, just like she does when our hockey team scores a goal. Now when we're just sitting around and there's nothing on TV, she SUGGESTS playing cards. She's still not a fan of regular poker, but absolutely LOVES playing Ultimate Texas Hold'Em!

Last edited by MdnghtBlu75 (13 Apr 2018 19:34)