A card game has always been one of the best go-to activities for entertainment and bonding between friends and family. Be it any family event, friends’ get-together, a deck of cards can be whipped out and people will sit around a table and have a grand time engaged in friendly competition.
History of Card Games
For as long as anyone can remember, card games have been popular as real money games . If you were to trace the history of card games, it would take you to ancient China, sometime around the 9th Century CE when the Tang Dynasty ruled.
Game historians believe that the card game originated alongside China’s famous tile games such as Mah Jong or dominoes. Due to China’s extensive foreign trade, the early card game reached the shores of India, Korea, Persia, Egypt, and the Arab world.
By the 12th century, card games arrived in Europe. This is when the recognizable ancestor of the modern card game using french playing cards was born. During the 1400s, in Switzerland, Spain, and Italy we found the first 52 cards deck- a standard that has continued unchallenged ever since.
Europe’s feudal societal structure was reflected in the ranks and suits of cards. That is why you have cards with symbols of Joker, Queen, or King. Similarly, hearts were meant to represent the clergy; spades or swords were a sign of the knights, diamonds stood for the merchant class, and clubs were the symbol of peasants. There on, card games kept evolving until the game variants that we all know and love today emerged.
With the advent of the internet era, Poker Card Games online have become the norm. When you play cash games online , you enjoy unique perks such as the ability to play whenever you are free without having to meet up with your card partners, playing for huge cash rewards, and also learning the ropes of the online game through free games and not losing any money in the process.
Types of Online Card Games to Play for Free
1. Poker Card Games
A card game associated with glamour, thrill, and aristocratic casinos, poker is a complex and thoroughly enjoyable game. It originated in the 16th century, somewhere in modern Germany. The version of poker that is played today developed in New Orleans, Mississippi during the 19th century. The poker online card game uses the standard 52 card deck. Usually, 1 deck is used along with 1 or 2 joker cards. However, 2 decks of contrasting colours can also be used, this changes the probabilities and makes poker card games more exciting. The poker hand has 5 cards. There can be several combinations of the poker hand. The player who has the best poker hands in terms of value wins.
Poker Card Game: Rankings
The royal flush or 5 of a kind- 5 cards of the
highest rank from the same suit. For example, 10, Ace, Jack,
Queen, and King of Hearts form a
royal flush. This is the highest-ranked
poker-hands - a
Straight flush- 5 cards of the same suit in consecutive order.
Quads or 4 of a kind- 4 cards of equal rank from different suits and another unmatched card.
Full house- 3 cards of the same rank and 2 cards of another rank.
Flush- 5 cards of any rank from the same suit.
Straight- 5 sequential cards from different suits.
3 of a kind or set- 3 cards of the same rank and two differently-ranked cards.
Two pairs- 2 cards of one rank and 2 cards of another rank along with one card of yet another rank.
One pair- 2 cards of the same rank, the other three cards are of different ranks.
No pair or the highest hand- it’s possible that in a poker card game, more than one player has a hand where there can be no pairs, flushes, quads, etc. In such a case, the hand with the highest cards wins.
How Do Online Poker Card Games Start?
The online poker card game starts with a forced bet such as the Small Blind of the Big Blind. This forms the starting pot which the winner will be awarded. The following rounds of betting will increase the pot size. After the first bet, the turns move clockwise around the table. Once the first round ends, the first three cards known as the community cards are laid down on the table (flop) and the second round of betting commences. One community card is revealed (turn) and then the third round of betting begins. One more community card is revealed (river) followed by the final betting round of the online poker card game. Then comes the poker showdown when every poker card game player has to reveal his/her hand.
There are a few types of betting action in playing online poker games. Depending on the strength of his/her poker hand, a player can choose to do any of the following when his/her turn comes- Check- The player declines to open the betting. You can check only if no one has opened the betting before you. Bet- You wager money for the pot. If the betting has already commenced before your turn, then you will ‘call’ to match the betting amount. Raise- You do this to increase the amount wagered on the pot. Fold- You leave or forfeit your hand, you will not be able to act during this round. This is done when a player is unsure of the strength of his/her hand. A game of poker has several variants- Texas Hold’em poker, Crazy Pineapple , Pot Limit Omaha Poker, etc.
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Undoubtedly the most popular among all real money games online in India, rummy appeals to people of all age groups. It is a game of skill, which means a considerable understanding of the game, and a lot of planning and strategizing are required to win this card game. The modern rummy card game is a descendant of Conquain which originated in Mexico in the 19th century. Since then, rummy has traversed the length and breadth of the world and local influences gave rise to multiple variants of rummy.
The core rules of the Rummy card game online are the same across the spectrum of rummy variants. The rummy deck comprises 52 playing cards. The usage of the joker cards depends on the type of rummy free card game being played. Gin rummy does not use jokers whereas 13 cards rummy or 21 cards rummy does.
The 52 cards are ranked from 2-10 along. Jack, Queen, and King are the high cards with 10 points each. The value of Ace depends on the rummy free card game variant. The cards are categorized into 4 suits- Clubs, Hearts, Spades, and Diamonds.
Each rummy player is dealt a specific number of cards (once again that depends on the rummy card game variant). The goal of rummy is to arrange all the cards in your hand into valid sequences (3 or more cards of consecutive rank) and valid sets (3 or more cards of the same rank but from different suits). Some versions of the Rummy card game specify how many pure sequences are required, for example, you need one in 13 cards rummy but three are mandated for 21 cards rummy. Whereas in Gin rummy, there are no compulsory pure sequences. Turns go around the table and with every turn, a player has to pick one card and discard another.
The player who arranges all the cards into valid sequences and sets wins. While this holds true for most rummy Poker games Online, in Gin Rummy , you don’t always have to wait until you’ve arranged all your cards.
If the value of your unmatched cards or deadwood cards is less than 10 then you can ‘knock’. of the many versions of the rummy game, the most popular rummy card games online are - 13 cards rummy (Pool Rummy, Points Rummy, Deals Rummy), 21 free cards rummy and Gin Rummy. If you play cards online, you can enter both cash rummy games and rummy tournaments. And if your rummy skills are wobbly, then you can perfect your game by playing free games.
3. Teen Patti – Card Game Online
Teen Patti is an exclusively Indian card game. It is believed that Teen Patti was inspired by the British card game called 3 Card Brag. The 52 card deck is used for this free card game. No joker card is used. The dealer hands out one card at a time to all the players and this continues until everyone has 3 cards. Unlike rummy, there will be no further drawing or discarding of cards. Before the game starts, the minimum wager is decided and the players put their stake in a pot.
The goal of teen Patti card games online or offline is guessing and putting a wager on which of the players has the best hand. A player can choose to be either a blind player or a seen player. The former is not allowed to take a look at the cards and can place a wager which equals at least the current stake but mustn't exceed twice the stake. The latter can study his/her cards and must bet at least twice the current stake but not more than 4 times the stake.
The betting moves clockwise, starting from the dealer. Each player has to place a bet in the pot. A seen player can decide to glance at his/her cards but from the next turn that player’s wager will be doubled. As with poker card games, you have the option of folding. But you will lose all the money you had wagered so far.
How does the Teen Patti card game end? If only one player is left standing after all others have folded, then he/she is declared the winner. If 2 players are left, then there will be a ‘show’ or reveal. Their hands will be compared. The one with the better hand wins
4. Bluff – Card Game
One of the best-loved card games online by the masses, Bluff requires the ability to read a person’s face as well as a poker face (you need this for poker card games as well) to win. In this mischievous card game, you have to shed your cards. The 52 card deck is used here as well. The cards are meticulously shuffled and evenly distributed among the players. One player is randomly declared to be the leader and this player will announce which rank will be played at the beginning of every round.
The leader will pick a card (or two) from his/her hand and lay it/them face down and let everyone know the rank of the card(s). All the other players are also supposed to discard one or two cards of the same rank if they have such cards in their hand. This is where things get interesting. The leader might lie about the cards he/she discarded. Similarly, each of the players who discard subsequently may not get rid of cards of the rank announced by the leader.
However, since cards are upside down, you have no way of knowing who is lying and who isn’t! When your turn comes, you have the option of passing (you do not relinquish cards) or playing (you discard 1 or more cards of the rank being played). The other important aspect of Bluff card games online is the ‘challenge’. If you think that someone lied and has not set down cards of the rank being played, then you can call their bluff. If you are right, then the other player will have to collect all the cards that have been discarded so far. If it wasn’t a bluff, if you are wrong, then the discarded cards will be added to your hand.
Bluff Card Games Online can be of 2 types- I Doubt It and a two player version. The 2 player bluff card game has an additional feature called ‘force’ by means of which you can make the other player produce one more card of the rank being played. If he/she can’t, then the discard stack will go to that player but if your opponent does produce that other card, then you’ll have to add the stack to your hand.
Some Honourable Mentions
While the ones we talked about rank as top favourites amongs the Indian masses today, there are a few card games online that are close behind.
5. Hearts Card Game
Hearts card games are trick taking games in which you must collect the least number of points. All scores gained as collected as penalty points and when a player reaches a predecided set of points, say, 100, the game’s over.
The player with the least number of points wins the game. Queen of Spades carry 13 points and all cards of the suit of Hearts carry one point each respectively. So, the player must avoid playing higher cards to avoid collecting tricks involving these cards.
6. UNO Card Game
This game seldom needs introduction, just like Rummy and Poker, this one is a festival favourite. It's fast, requires quick thinking and playing the right cards to become the winner. Best played in groups of four, the objective of UNO card games online is to be the first player to shed all your cards in the open pile.
However, there comes a catch here. When you are down to playing the last card in a game, you must yell “UNO” to let other players know that you have only a single card left. Failing to do so will result in you collecting four more cards from the open pile.
7. Solitaire- Card Game Online
If any of you had the opportunity to enjoy games on a 90s PC, you must have played Solitaire at least a couple of times. For those who don’t have a clue as to what the game’s all about, Solitaire game is a one player card game that requires you to arrange all 52 playing cards in the deck in four separate piles in a sequential order.
You must arrange 13 cards each of the same suit to build the foundation and shift them from the game table to the empty foundation pile. Before the game begins, the set up is laid out in cards jumbled and stacked in seven different tableau columns.
The first card of each column is face up, so you must play your moves wisely so as to be able to turn all hidden cards face up and move around to arrange them in sequential piles. Solitaire is definitely the pick for beginners in the realm of playing cards as well as those who like to solve a puzzle or two in their spare time.