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Online poker was introduced to millions in the late 1990s but exploded in popularity following Chris Moneymaker’s WSOP main event win in 2003. He won this on the back of an satelite entry online. His main event won sparked a poker boom that spanned several years. Many new online poker sites joined the market and poker was at it’s peak. In 2006, however, legislation in USA was passed that made most types of online gambling illegal. After years of immense popularity, online poker took a blow as America made up a significant portion of the market. A further blow was issued on the 15th April 2011 when the U.S Department of Justice issued an indictment against some of the largest online poker websites claiming that any profits made after the law in 2006 was passed was to be illegally gained. Otherwise known as Black Friday, commentators expected this to be the end of poker as we came to know it. This, however, as been proven to be false. With several states in America now legalising online poker and the rest of the world still able to play freely, online poker has continued, albeit not at the same level as pre 2006.
|Played with real money||Fixed buy in|
|Deeper stacked||Shorter stacked play|
|Play as long as you want||You can no longer play once you are eliminated|
|Blinds stay the same||Blinds increase at timed levels|
|The house charges rake on each pot, usually capped at a small %||The house charges a rake on the buy on of the tournament, usually 10%|
|More post flop poker skills required||Decision making is more focused on pre flop|
|Very rarely all in before the flop as stacks are much deeper||Often all in before the flop due to shallower stacks|
|You win money by the pots you win||You win and lose money based on where you finish. Usually the top 10-15% of the pool play|
|You can select the table you play on||You have no control on the table you play on|
If you are new to poker and not interested in spending money to learn the game, you can play poker for free. Most online poker sites offer players the chance to play in freerolls. These are tournaments that require no money to enter and often pay out in small amounts or play money. This is a great way to learn the basics of poker and get a grasp of how to play.
Texas Hold’em is the most popular game of poker available. Check our our Texas Hold’em rules page to see how to play.
In order to win at poker, you need a ruthless mentality. You aren’t at the table to play softly and nicely. Your opponents won’t be extending the same courtesy. Poker is a battle against the other players at the table. You need to defeat them to win money.
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