Ultimate Texas Holdem Guide

About Ultimate Texas Hold’em Invented by Roger Snow of Shuffle Master, Ultimate Texas Hold’em is a poker-based casino game wherein the player plays only against the dealer with the freedom to make one raise at any point during the course of the hand. It is important to note that when the raise is made earlier, its value is higher. One of the first struggles that you'll incur when trying to learn how to win at Texas Holdem involves paying attention to the game. Unless you're starting out with a fast-fold variant, which we don't recommend, you'll find that poker is a really slow-moving game. So you might be tempted to multi-task while playing or even try playing more than one online table at once (multi-tabling).

Paigowdan
There was an earlier thread I posted on here, on finding - searching, actually, - for the most 'elegant and easy' strategy for Playing UTH, Ultimate texas Hold 'em. (That thread is here.)
So many players play UTH quite poorly, - so very poorly - (and everyone here agrees..) - but UTH strategy shouldn't be hard to do.
So far, NO one here at this place could come up with a one-sentence, one-line Holy Grail of 4x UTH strategy, in a nutshell. No one, - not even CRM or Mike.
So..I HAD to bounce THIS one off of 'old school casino bastard' Frank Rajek himself. And he gave me a concise, terse, and VERY accurate strategy for the game, something akin to Mike Shackleford's 'Wizard's simple Strategyfor Blackjack.' I had to post this, because Frank showed up old' Danny Boy on this one - I had missed it!!!!Ultimate Texas Holdem Guide
I was telling Frank recently over dinner at Sergio's Italian Restaurant that my wife plays the sh]t out of Three Card Poker every time we go the Orleans - but SHE CANNOT seem to get the BASIC 4x play move in UTH!
Frank said UTH raising is the same thing as three card poker, and that is actually it:
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If you would PLAY a three card Poker hand with Q-6 or better, then you would also Raise it 4x on UTH with the same hand!Hold Just do it, it's perfect.
Takes balls, though, but you gotta do it, as the 4x raise is where it is at. He argued that Q-6 is almost the same as Q-8, - and lowering to Q-6 accounts for dropping the J-10 4x bet anyway, and is essentially the same, statiscally. Different games, but same 'accurately ballpark' strategy.' I disagree with that fine-tuning logic, but as a simple strategy, it seems very accurate.
I love it: my old school friend/pit boss Frank Rajek giving ME the Strategy for Ultimate Texas Hold 'em: Raise 4x with a Q-6, - just as you would in three card poker, else check. Fucking Simple, and SO close to all 4x strategies on this game - just nuts!!! I am pissed at myself - and CRM - for not seeing this nutshell!At the VERY least, it is one hell of an easy strategy point.
Maybe you do learn something in the pit!!
Q-6, chunk 4x, else check - just like Three Card. That is it. How the f*ck didn't I see this??!! This is 90% of the player's side of the game.
Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes - Henry David Thoreau. Like Dealers' uniforms - Dan.
Ibeatyouraces
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Mosca

Maybe easy enough for the people on here but 99.9% of all the other UTH players wont play this way. Most players have no poker sense what so ever. Hell, they won't even raise with a big ace let alone Q,6. For these people aren't trying to beat the dealer. They think they need to make a good hand to win. They simply want to win the trips bet because, 'thats where the money is.'


Most players think like they're playing against the table, not the dealer. Once you get comfortable with the understanding that you only have to beat one guy, it gets easy to follow the correct strategy. From there, the biggest problem is bankroll management: bring enough money to weather the strings of x-x and the bad beats!
NO KILL I
Ibeatyouraces
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Paigowdan

Most players think like they're playing against the table, not the dealer. Once you get comfortable with the understanding that you only have to beat one guy, it gets easy to follow the correct strategy. From there, the biggest problem is bankroll management: bring enough money to weather the strings of x-x and the bad beats!


I think Bad beats are key in making the Average Joe mistrust the strategy. My wife had an A-9, chunked 4x (while giving me this 'you better know what you're doing' eye), paired the ace on the flop, - and then lost to a straight. I checked, and lucked out with the same straight. But Her reaction? 'You see, the strategy is WRONG - I lost! And There's the PROOF! You gotta go with your gut!'
yikes..
Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes - Henry David Thoreau. Like Dealers' uniforms - Dan.
98Clubs
One of the other ideas floating around my neck of the woods is to play like you were playing heads-up against a 'calling-station' type poker Adversary.
By concept, this IS UTH.
4x Raise any two cards 10-10 or better (TJ, TQ, TK, TA, JJ, JQ, .. AA suited or not), Pairs 66 to 99, and Any Suited Ace or King.
Call with A6o to A9o, K2o to K9o, Q2o to Q9o, and all others.
2x Raise 2nd or top pair 66 or better*, open-ended 4-str.-fl., 4-Flush Ace or King, high open-ended straight 89TJ or better.
edited: include an open-ended or inside str. or str-fl if paired. Forgot this one.
*-- Must have A or K visible, otherwise 8's or better.
Call others. In general 2-Pair or better is a decided winner/raise.
1x Raise any hand TT or better OR 2nd high pair or better*.
FOLD any hand ranked 1 pair or less such that: pair 55 or less, 66 or 77 has OPTION raise if Ace visible and 1 pocket card plays.
One pair hands need help from kickers: 2-4 + 10-7-K-10-3 board is a fold.. note board pair with bad kicker as opposed to 10-4 + 10-7-K-9-3 as a pocket 2nd high pair with a King visible. I find this point raised very important in the game. Pocket cards DO influence the decision,
Player's Choice 88 or 99.. generally an Ace or King visible is a 1x Rasie.
This may not be complete enough, and I've been practicing this WoO UTH. +1% BR ($50 betting $2+$2, no side-bet) seems quite doable. Sure there are some -1% BR swings, Poker Happens.
Had to edit this at least once.. playing human-automatic, I saw errors here. And, the 4x is based upon multi-handed TH.
If I were to simplify the 2x rule, 2-pairs or better, High pair 88 or better, or second high pair with A or K being 66 or better.
I seem to have trouble with board pair 77 or less on flop holding a Queen high pocket.
AxiomOfChoice


If you would PLAY a three card Poker hand with Q-6 or better, then you would also Raise it 4x on UTH with the same hand! Just do it, it's perfect.
Takes balls, though, but you gotta do it, as the 4x raise is where it is at. He argued that Q-6 is almost the same as Q-8, - and lowering to Q-6 accounts for dropping the J-10 4x bet anyway, and is essentially the same, statiscally.


I don't know that I'd say that it 'accounts for' it. These errors compound; they don't cancel out (ie, raising hands that you shouldn't costs money, just like not raising hands that you should costs money)
I agree that this is a WAY better strategy than most players follow. You are only misplaying a few hands (raising Q6o, Q7o, K2o, K3o, K4o, 22, and not raising JT, J9s, J8s). Having said that, the correct strategy is pretty simple to learn, too.
It doesn't matter. Anyone who cares to play well will learn the correct strategy and play properly. It's not hard, and you can always just get a strategy card. Most people don't understand math, and just don't want to risk the big bet on a hand that wins barely more than 50% of the time. They think that they are being smart by betting conservatively. They don't understand how much money they are giving away by playing this way, and they never will. They win the hand anyway, so they get positive reinforcement for their terrible play.
FWIW, this is a good thing. UTH is a slow game. The HE is too low for a game that has that few hands per hour. I suspect that most players give up a 10% edge, or more. If everyone started playing properly, and so the house profits dropped by 80%, I suspect that the game would get removed from most casinos. Plus, they would stop comping it so well :)
Paigowdan


If you would PLAY a three card Poker hand with Q-6 or better, then you would also Raise it 4x on UTH with the same hand! Just do it, it's perfect.
I don't know that I'd say that it 'accounts for' it. These errors compound; they don't cancel out (ie, raising hands that you shouldn't costs money, just like not raising hands that you should costs money)


Yes, they [the errors] do compound, but it is still very close, extremely close, to the full strategy - which is ALWAYS worth fully learning. I find that learning the 'easy and close' strategy helps lead a person seek the full, correct strategy, when hooking into a new game - IF they have the courage to bet.
Quote: AxiomofChoice

.Most people don't understand math, and just don't want to risk the big bet on a hand that wins barely more than 50% of the time..
FWIW, this is a good thing. UTH is a slow game. The HE is too low for a game that has that few hands per hour. I suspect that most players give up a 10% edge, or more.


Yes, I think they give up a HUGE percentage, - moreso than 'hitting or not hitting 16 vs. 7' in blackjack by comparison, as giving up the 4x raise is huge. But It does take courage to chunk 4x on K-3 suited, but the real problem with so many UTH players is that they 'trust their gut more than they trust the math.'

Ultimate Texas Hold Em Online


I think it is far more a 'gambler's gut and courage' issue, than an 'understanding the math issue,' - or obeying the best strategy dictates. A gambler's nerves may rule him in the end, and in many situations. The nature of the game can make any lesser gambler hesitate and fail.
NO other game has this problem to this extent. Here, in UTH, having 'the heart,' or having the Gambling Cojones to actually TRUST the strategy is so VERY hard to do; you're betting a quarter on the ANTE and the Blind, and you get K-10 offsuit. 90% of the UTH players will say, 'Aw, sh]t, now I gotta bet $100 by best strategy? I can't DO it!! CHECK!' I've seen CRM whip it out 4x on the PLAY bet without batting an eye at any level, and I do so, too - (and with my wife yelling at me, 'Jesus, Dan, R U F-ing crazy??') The fact of the matter is that I'd be crazy NOT to, but so FEW see it, - that the ballsy play is actually the brainy play in this case; they coincide.
And you are right - with UTH having a 0.53% house edge (when accouting for the element of risk, with RARE proper play!) UTH would be unsupportable. But I can tell you this, - and I believe it now - no WAY will the vast majority of players put their cash and cojones on the line as needed - when real push comes to shove. The mistakes in UTH are NOT like minor cover play mistakes in Blackjack, a fraction of a fraction of a percent. A mistake at the 'Raise Four Times on the hole cards alone' level in costs a LOT in percentage, but costs even more in terms of player courage, and so it will not be done. I don't know HOW many times I've seen a UTH player quietly utter, 'I just can do it..' - and Check.
When you add in strategy complexity after the flop, it now becomes a matter of brains - and after the potential 4x raise was a matter of balls, so to speak. Between the two, UTH operates as a 3%+ House edge game because of these factors.
Got to hand it to Roger (Pacman) on this one. just brilliant. Roger Snow understands more than just the casino math of his games. He also fully understands the casino player.
Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes - Henry David Thoreau. Like Dealers' uniforms - Dan.
Ibeatyouraces
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Paigowdan
Matter over both mind and math.
Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes - Henry David Thoreau. Like Dealers' uniforms - Dan.

Texas Hold’em poker is everywhere these days — on TV, online, and in clubs and casinos. Before you sit down to a game of Texas Hold ’em, make sure you’re in good shape to be successful — take care of non-poker issues and check your physical, mental, and financial status. During the game, you need to understand basic odds and playable hands, as well as how to bluff successfully and follow proper poker etiquette. Texas Hold ‘Em also has its own abbreviations for online play.

Playable Texas Hold’em Hands

Texas Hold’em is a game of strategy, like any poker game, but where you’re sitting in relation to the action becomes part of your strategy when playing Hold’em. If you bet early, you generally need better cards than you do if you’re one of the blinds. The following table offers sound advice on what hands are playable when you’re sitting in different positions.

Questions to Ask Yourself before You Play Texas Hold’em

Whether you’re playing Texas Hold’em for fun or money — make that whether you’re playing for high stakes or low stakes — make sure you’re in a position mentally, physically, and financially to enjoy the game and make the most of your chances. Ask yourself these questions before you sit down to a game:

  • What is the purpose of my playing this session? Whether it’s to learn more, win money, or just hang with friends for a good time, make sure you know why you’re there and that you’re doing everything you can to accomplish that goal.

  • If I were to play an opponent who’s exactly the same as a well-rested, un-stressed version of me, would that person have an advantage? If the answer is “yes,” hold off on playing until you’re in a better psychological and physical state.

  • Can my bankroll handle this level of play? If not, play a lower level.

  • Are there any distractions in my life that I need to get rid of before I play? Pay your rent, walk your dog, call your significant other — whatever it is, get it out of your head so you can focus.

  • Do I know if the house I’m playing in has any bonuses for players such as bad beat jackpots, high hands, free food and/or drinks for players, or freeroll tournaments? If not, ask a floorperson before you start playing and find out about the details of how you can qualify.

  • Is there an aggressive person at the table I’ll be playing at? If so, try to get yourself seated to his left so you see the raises before your action and not after.

  • What do I know about the people sitting at the table? Whatever it is, use it to your advantage.

Rough Odds for Texas Hold’em

Playing poker is about playing the odds. The following list gives the odds for outcomes in Texas Hold’em hands. When you realize how heavily the odds are stacked against you, you may want to rethink going all-in before the flop with two suited cards. Use the odds to your advantage:

  • 1 percent (1-in-100): Percentage of time that no player holds an Ace or a King at a table in a 10-handed game

  • 1 percent (1-in-100): Percentage of time that if you hold two suited cards, you’ll flop a flush

  • 6 percent (about 1-in-20): Percentage of time that five community cards will give pocket suited cards a flush

  • 6 percent (about 1-in-20): Percentage of time that you’ll be dealt a pocket pair

  • 8 percent (about 1-in-12): Percentage of time that you’ll hit at least trips after having a pair on the flop

  • 12 percent (about 1-in-8): Percentage of time that you’ll flop trips if holding a pocket pair Online blackjack free bonus no deposit.

  • 12 percent (about 1-in-8): Percentage of time that two more cards will flop in the same suit as a suited pocket pair

  • 19 percent (about 1-in-5): Percentage of time that the five community cards will at least trip your pocket pair

  • 32 percent (about 1-in-3): Percentage of time that you’ll pair one of your cards on the flop (with no pocket pair)

  • 33 percent (about 1-in-3): Percentage of time that you’ll make a full house or better after having trips on the flop

  • 35 percent (about 1-in-3): Percentage of time that you’ll make a flush on the turn or river if you have four cards to a flush after the flop

Texas Hold’em Bluffing Tips

What makes any poker game exciting, and Texas Hold’em is certainly no exception, is that players can bluff at any point. Sometimes half the fun of a game is seeing whether you can successfully bluff an opponent out of some money. But, even as you’re misleading your opponents, make sure you bluff in the right circumstances. Heed these bluffing tips:

  • Only bluff where it makes a difference to your standing — either in a tournament or to your stack of chips.

  • Be careful bluffing someone considerably worse than you are. He may call just to see what you have, or on some probabilistically low draw when he already has you beaten anyway.

  • Bluff in situations where the board hints at the great hand you do not have: straights and flushes being hinted at by the board, the turn of an Ace, and so on.

  • Don’t try to bluff players who only play the most solid of hands if they’re still in the pot.

  • Don’t bluff people who are extremely likely to call.

  • Do bluff the timid or people who are likely to fold.

  • Remember that it’s easier to bluff in No-Limit than Limit because the bets (both implied and real) are bigger.

Ultimate Texas Hold'em Guide

Poker Etiquette for Texas Hold’em

The etiquette tips in the following list apply to Texas Hold’em and to any other poker game. Sure, you can have fun while you play poker, but you can have all the fun you want without being impolite to the other players or the dealer. Basic poker etiquette includes these tips:

  • Always play in turn.

  • Be aware of when it’s your turn to post the blinds and do so promptly.

  • Any time there is a discrepancy at the table, talk to the dealer — not the other players — about it. If you’re not able to get satisfaction from the dealer, ask for a floorperson. Talking with other players about the problem you perceive may generate ill will among people who have no authority in the situation in the first place.

  • Place your bets in front of you. Do not splash them into the pot.

  • Do not show your hand to other players at the table while a hand is in progress.

  • Tell the dealer when you intend to raise. In No-Limit, gather the amount that you’re going to raise and either announce the total, or move it all forward with one motion. This prevents being called on a “string raise.”

  • Don’t forget to tip your dealer. Dealers work for minimum wage and rely on tips for their livelihood.

Online Poker Abbreviations for Texas Hold’em

Ultimate Texas Holdem Strategy Guide

Playing online poker in general, and Texas Hold’em in particular, is a very popular pastime. When you’re online, you may encounter abbreviations specific to the world of poker. To understand what other players are saying, get familiar with these online abbreviations:

Ultimate Texas Hold'em Casino Game

AbbreviationWhat It MeansAbbreviationWhat It Means
86To remove or banne1Anyone
brbBe right backnhNice hand
gc/ncSlightly sarcastic phrase meaning good catch/nice catchggGood game
lolLaughing out loudglGood luck
nlNo-LimittyThank you
n1Nice one🙂Smiley face (view sideways)