The game of poker stems from a revolution spanning over ten centuries and comes from a combination of various games. All the games which led to the formation of poker involve the use of essential playing principles of ranked cards or domino as well as the use of tricks such as bluffing to have the edge over opponents. Poker is a game that will get played for generations to come because its popularity is nowhere near dying down. In fact, the more the years go by, the more popular it gets thanks to the numerous information sources online on ways to play it as well as the introduction of poker games on various websites. More variations of poker will come about due to its high demand.
One of the most common beliefs about this game is that the Chinese were the first to play it before 969A.D. Some reports claim that the then Emperor Mustung played domino cards with his wife on the eve of the New Year.
In the 12th and the 13th centuries, Egyptians came up with a card game, a type of poker, but ancient one, which they played in their free time. Over the next few centuries, the card game evolved. Persians had a system of cards which were known as ‘Ganjifa' or ‘Treasure Cards.' These cards were used to play various betting games. A deck of treasure cards consisted of ninety-six elaborate cards which got made by using ivory or precious wood that got cut into skinny slices. They developed a game known as ‘As Nas' which got played using twenty-five cards. The set consisted of playing numerous rounds as well as hierarchical hand rankings.
In the sixteenth and the seventeenth centuries, the French and the Germans came up with card games known as ‘Poque' and ‘Pochen' respectively. These popular games got crafted from the Spanish game of ‘Primero,' game that involved each player getting a hand of three cards. When dealing with three cards, the players had to be creative in their plays and methods such as bluffing as well as making huge wagers on poor cards in a bid to deceive opponents were widely accepted. ‘Primero' got developed in the year 1526 and often, people refer to it as the ‘mother of poker.' This reference is because this is the first confirmed version of a game which directly relates to modern-day poker. It is a belief that modern poker borrows heavily from this game. This game became so popular in France that it became their national card game. The French enabled the spread of this game to other parts of the world when they introduced it to Canadians. During the beginning of the 18th century, a group of French-Canadians founded New Orleans, and soon the game of ‘Poque' got spread to Louisiana then to Mississippi, up the river, and to the whole country.
Many people believe that poker came to be in the 19th century given that there are several mentions of the game in various books. In the year 1834, Jonathan H. Green, a famous author but also renowned poker player, made a mention of this play in one of his writings. Jonathan went into details of how one could win this game by giving examples of tricks which were common in the ‘cheating game.' By this time, poker was a favorite game in the Mississippi riverboats where Jonathan had encountered its players. ‘The Cheating Game,' as it was known then, rapidly took over and replaced the three card Monte game that was popular in gambling circuits. Most gamers were quick to embrace poker as they felt that it was much more challenging and more honest than its predecessor which got often rigged. Jonathan, intrigued by this new found game, took it upon himself to delve into making a report about it. His book contributed to the further spread of this game.
This game got so popular that during the Wild West Period, you could find a poker table in most saloons across the country and during the civil war; both armies participated in this game. With the introduction of the joker as a wild card in the year 1875, the European influence on poker came to an end. Since the introduction of this game on the Mississippi banks, poker has come to evolve over the last two centuries, and many variations now exist in it. Three games have dominated the poker scene since then.
This game was made famous in during the American Civil War and maintained its status for over a century. Nevada came up with a law that restricted betting games. The then attorney general of California ruled that given that the draw poker relied on the possession of skills, laws on gambling could not affect the game. However, stud poker got banned as it relied heavily on chances and in essence, it fell under 'gambling.' Thanks to this decision, people capitalized on draw poker which led to the development of more variations in the game. This growth in poker led to the reversal of the gambling laws in Nevada in the year 1931 which made casino gambling legal.
Draw poker came about shortly before the Second World War started and it was able to maintain its demand for about four decades. Its increase in popularity got aided by the legalization of gambling in Las Vegas.
Also known as the Cadillac of poker, this game got its prominence in the 1970s when it featured the title match during the World Series of Poker. It is the most popular card game in the world today, and it gets played all over the world in casinos as well as in home games. There are some variations to poker such as Manila and Razz, but none of them can keep up with Texas Hold'em. This game is so popular that when played at the World Series of Poker, the game has to be streamed on live TV for the eager audiences back at home.