The Nevada Gaming Commission approved last week Royal Hold’em poker for play in Nevada casinos. The new game, already described as the „world’s fastest poker game,“ is a variation of Texas Hold’em that was created and is being marketed by New Poker, LLC of Las Vegas. The game is available to Nevada casinos immediately.
„This is a very big decision for our company,“ said Vincent Zaldivar, president of New Poker, „because our business plan is for Royal Hold’em to be our entrée onto casino floors and into poker rooms. It will pave the way for the introduction of our other revolutionary poker games. We are very grateful to the Nevada Gaming Commission for its approval.“
Royal Hold’em abides by the basic rules of Texas Hold’em but plays with just 20 cards, 10s through Aces. A Royal Hold’em game seats two to six players and has the same rules and betting rounds as Texas Hold’em. Players play against each other, not the house.
„But with only face cards in the game, hands are obviously higher and just about every player always bets to the flop,“ said poker pro Scott Fischman. „A lot of hands are won on the last card dealt and a Royal Flush or a bad beat hand can happen with the turn of a card. It’s a hot game.“
The major appeal to casinos is more betting and less folding, which creates larger pots and a lot of excitement for players on every hand. All betting is conducted in clockwise order. The small blind bet is posted by the first player to the left of the player with the player button. The big blind bet (double the amount of the small blind) is made by the first player to the left of the small blind seat. The dealer button rotates clockwise around the table after the completion of each hand.
There are four rounds of betting in the same manner as Texas Hold’em (pre flop, flop, turn and river). There is one bet and a three-raise maximum per betting round. After the completion of a hand, all players who are still in place their cards face up in front of them and the dealer determines the winner. A player may concede the pot by sliding his or her cards face down to the dealer.
The appeal is fueled by the fact the casino industry is on the verge of a table-game revolution as younger players, weaned on video games, demand more action and veteran players seek more variety.
Although new to the landscape, New Poker is taking the lead in creating, testing and marketing new games that already have great appeal with the video-game set and have traditional players jumping on the action. In addition to Royal Hold’em, New Poker already has a patent approved for „No River Hold’em,“ another live table game derived from Texas Hold’em.
No River is played by up to 10 players playing against each other with a standard 52-card deck under the basic rules of Texas Hold’em. But the big difference is that each player is dealt three cards, rather than two, and as the name implies there is no river card dealt. There is a flop and a turn only. With the addition of the third card on the deal, the potential starting hands expand from 1,326 to 22,100.
All betting is conducted in a clockwise order starting with the first player after the button. The small blind is posted by the first player to the left of the dealer button. The big blind (double the amount of the small blind) is placed by the player to the left of the small blind (i.e. 4/8 with blinds of 2 and 4).
There are three rounds of betting in the same manner as Texas Hold’em with one exception. Since there is no river card, there is no betting on the river. One bet and four raises are allowed per betting round in „limit“ No River Hold’em. Unlimited raises are allowed in „no limit“ No River Hold’em.
At the completion of a hand, all players still in turn their cards face up in front of them and the dealer determines the winner. A player may concede the pot by sliding his or her cards face down to the dealer.
„Just like Royal Hold’em, there is a lot of strategy involved in playing No River because more players stay in the game, it is fast-paced and there is much more betting,“ Fischman said. „We are developing exciting new options for casino owners. We believe our games offer the potential for comparable, if not higher, profitability to house-edge games without the associated house risk,“ Zaldivar said
New Poker has distribution rights to a full spectrum of proprietary table games and subject to applicable laws, will market its games with additional distribution channels, including licensing of products to both electronic gaming machines and online gaming services.
In addition to proprietary table games, the company also plans to offer proprietary card and chip sets targeted for home use that will be available at casino gift shops and online. Other merchandising opportunities include branded clothing items and related accessories, including replicas of the „crown“ button used on all Royal Hold’em and No River tables.