Poker Rooms Should Start Spreading Wild Card Games


It’s an oft-quoted statistic that there are upwards of 50 million recreational poker players in the United States. In poker rooms littered throughout over two dozen states, there are thousands of poker tables at which professional grinders and poker playing tourists win and lose fortunes on a daily basis. Nonetheless, for every seat filled at the felt in those poker rooms, there are likely at least 100 times as many players mixing it up in home games each night (and that’s our conservative estimate!). In a recent article I extolled the virtues of wild card poker games because I believe that, as popular as Texas Hold’em is, there’s a whole slew of other enjoyable, action-packed poker disciplines out there worth trying. Anyone who’s ever played in a home game (i.e., pretty much anyone who’s ever played poker) knows that plenty of money changes hands in these wild card poker games. This all got me wondering why live poker rooms haven’t ever tried cashing in on the trend.

Home gamesWild Card Poker Games Represent the Next Logical Step

A number of contributing factors make this the perfect time to introduce wild card poker games to live poker rooms. Plenty of “baby steps” have already been taken in this direction, which makes the idea of live poker rooms spreading wild card poker games quite logical:

  • Many live poker rooms already have “bring your home game here” types of promotions.
  • Mixed games continue to become more popular at all levels of the game, with more recreational and professional poker players becoming proficient in poker disciplines like Omaha, Stud, Razz, and the like.
  • Many online poker rooms, including PokerStars, have offered non-standard poker games like Badugi for years.
  • Poker players are always hungry for the most action-packed games. With wild card poker games ALWAYS offering increased opportunities for action, it’s practically a sure thing that patrons would at least try them out.

Wild PokerEach and every time I take a poker vacation, as exciting as it is for me as a recreational player to be mixing it up at the “real” felt, there’s always a small part of me that wishes I could play the poker games I play back home. Out of the millions of poker players in this country, I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels that way either! Yet, in the popular poker rooms of Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Atlantic City or anywhere else in the United States, it’s excruciatingly difficult to find ANY table that doesn’t just spread Texas Hold’em!

The Casinos Win Too!

Live poker rooms are always looking to one-up their competitors by offering better promotions and claiming to have “the best action games in town”. Introducing wild card poker games definitely ups the ante, as the first establishments to do so would possess an advantage over their counterparts. And most importantly for any poker room that decides to spread wild card poker games, they’re likely to benefit from increased rake opportunities. Action games mean bigger pots, i.e., more rake money for the host poker room/casino! So c’mon live poker rooms! What are you waiting for?

Which games should be spread? Stay tuned for our next installment in this series on wild card poker games.

Do you also think poker rooms should introduce wild card games? Do you think it’s a bad idea? Sound off on our Facebook page or in the comments section below.



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Written By.

Robbie Strazynski

Robbie founded in 2009. A veteran member of the poker media corps, in addition to writing and video presenting, Robbie has hosted multiple poker podcasts over the years, including Top Pair, the Red Chip Poker Podcast, The Orbit, and the CardsChat Podcast. In 2019, Robbie translated the autobiography of Poker Hall of Famer Eli […]


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