Caribbean Stud Poker is a casino table game that’s a special favourite of new visitors in off-line and online casinos such as Bet365 (that also offer attractive bonuses like the signup Bet365 bonus).
Why it’s so popular with these new visitors is because you don’t need to be good at reading faces or bluffing to succeed at this version of poker, as is needed in other conventional poker variants!
While playing Caribbean Stud Poker, you’re required to play against the dealer or the house, rather than the other players seated at the table. What it means is that you’re free to talk to other players and make friendships while playing, rather than closely guarding your cards and keeping a poker face on all the time! As Caribbean Stud Poker is a type of casino table games, unlike other poker variants such as Omaha Poker, Texas Hold ‘em Poker etc., it’s played not in a poker room, but on the regular casino floor. However, this difference may not be all that relevant when it comes to playing in an online casino environment.
The game is played quite like the five card stud poker. Why it is particularly appealing to the new visitors of off-line/online casinos is because almost everyone plays five card stud or five card draw during his/her growing up years. So, the sight of the same kind of format is bound to look appealing to any first-time visitor of an offline or an online casino.
Caribbean Stud Poker provides a main bet as well as a side bet. A progressive accumulated jackpot can be won by placing side bets. Furthermore, the house edge in case of Caribbean Stud Poker’s side bets is higher compared to the house edge in main bets.
Let’s now go into the other important details of Caribbean Stud Poker.
Caribbean Stud Poker was originally created to bank on the growing popularity of poker. As also mentioned above, how it differed from the regular poker was that you played against the house. Despite being a fairly new game, having emerged during the early 80s, its origins haven’t been very well referenced.
David Sklanksy, a popular gambling expert has staked claim on the creation of Caribbean Stud Poker on various forums, saying that he had invented it in the year 1982 and had given it the name ‘Casino Poker’. He couldn’t patent the name ‘Casino Poker’ owing the prevailing patent laws of that time. Sometime later, David was approached by a poker enthusiast who took the game to Aruba and patented it there. That player, along with a casino owner made slight changes to the rule of the game and give it the form of Caribbean Stud Poker that we all know about today.
There is another story that talks about the game being played under a different name (other than Caribbean Stud) on a cruise ship heading to Aruba. After its discovery on that cruise ship, the game was purchased by the owner of the popular ‘The King International’ casino of that time (later changed to ‘Excelsior Casino’). It garnered a great amount of interest from the visiting tourists in a very short span of time. So much so that Caribbean Stud fanatics used to crowd Aruba every year for enjoying Caribbean Stud at its birthplace!
However, the exact story behind emergence of Caribbean Stud Poker of the modern times dates back to the year 1987, when a poker enthusiast by the name James Suttle learnt about the game from another poker player, at Binion’s Horseshoe in Downtown Las Vegas.
James was friends with a popular game developer and casino owner known as Danny Jones who owned the Aruba’s ‘The King International Casino’ at that time. It was situated inside the Holiday Inn at Palm Beach, Aruba and served as the favourite layover for a large number of cruise lines.
Once he purchased the rights to the game, Danny started marketing Caribbean Stud Poker to other cruise ships and every offline and online casino under his company name, D&D Gaming Patents. However, the game actually didn’t take off until the time Michael Titus, a well-known computer software engineer informed Danny that it needed to be linked to a progressive jackpot to become successful.
Both Titus and Jones then figured out the method of introducing the new game and how it would be created and implemented with its first linked live progressive jackpot. Once that happened, there was no looking back for the game.
Right after he discussed about Caribbean Stud Poker with Danny Jones, Michael Titus put in his papers at the Las Vegas Hilton, where he was working at that time, and started working for the newly formed company Progressive Games Inc. This company had to split because of certain licensing issues in Nevada, US. Thereafter, Progressive Games Inc. took its operations to Florida, primarily for international distribution of the game, while the Nevada operations were left to Danny Jones’ son Dane Jones.
Although the Nevada company didn’t do very well, the Progressive Games Inc., operating from Fort Lauderdale in Florida continued distributing Caribbean Stud Poker for the following two years. Both the Nevada distribution company and the Progressive Games Inc were purchased in a major consolidation deal in the year 1998 by Mikhon Gaming. Long after its successful run in brick and mortar casinos, Caribbean Stud Poker was also introduced on the online platform with great success. It is actively played in almost every offline and online casino of the modern times, including the likes of Bet365 (where you can also bag a handsome Bet365 bonus for signups).
Main bets in Caribbean Stud Poker
Every player is dealt 5 cards and the dealer also gets 5. The dealt cards are all face down and the players are free to look at their cards if they want. However, they can’t share their cards details with other players at the poker table. All but one of the dealers cards are dealt face down. The dealer’s 4 facedown cards are referred to as the hole cards.
Once a player has looked that his/her cards, he/she is free to either raise the bet amount or fold his/her cards. If he/she chooses to raise the bet, he/she should do it by doubling the original bet. The original bet and side bet (if placed) are lost if the player chooses to fold his/her cards.
It’s a must for dealer to qualify
It becomes imperative for the dealer to turn over the house cards if any player raises the bet amount. The dealer’s hand must ‘qualify’ in order to win the bet. It means that the dealer should at least have a king and an ace as a part of his/her hand or better. So, a normal minimum qualifying hand may look like: 6, 7, 10, K, A. Any other hand higher than A, K would automatically qualify, for instance three of a kind, flush, a pair, two pairs, full house etc.
In the event that the dealer’s hand doesn’t qualify, the player gets a payout at 1:1 rate on the original bet. Any raises are considered a push.
About winning hands
In the event that the player’s hand turns out to be better than the dealer’s, he/she wins a payout on both the original bet as well as the raised amount. The original bet is paid out on even basis and the raised bet is paid out as per the numbers displayed on the pay chart.
In case you’re playing in one of the legal casinos in Europe, you may get paid at:
- 100:1 rate, if you score a Royal Flush
- 50:1 rate, if you score a straight flush
- 20:1 rate, if you score a four of a kind
- 7:1 rate, if you score a full house
- 5:1 rate, if you score a flush
- 4:1 rate, if you score a straight
- 3:1 rate, if you score a three of a kind
- 2:1 rate, if you score two pairs and
- 1:1 rate for all other winning hands
Although these payouts may not come across as great, please keep in mind that you are allowed to use only the 5 credit cards for building your hand, and no other draws. Considering that the house must compulsorily qualify for winning, it gives a distinct major advantage to the players.
About house edge in Caribbean Stud Poker
The normal house edge in case of a conventional Caribbean Stud Poker game is 5.22%. It’s a significant edge considering that there’s a strategy element in the game, and is slightly higher than keno, American roulette and majority of slot machines.
The unique blend of casual play style, progressive jackpot and regular poker rules makes Caribbean Stud Poker a huge favourite among holidaying casino players and new casino visitors.
About progressive jackpot bets
Progressive jackpot bet is a fairly new feature in Caribbean Stud Poker, introduced only in the 21st century. It wasn’t a part of the original game invented during the 1980s.
What makes progressive jackpot bets so interesting is that they feature two payouts depending on the Progressive gaming system. So, while a royal flush gets you a payout of 100% of the current progressive pot, a straight flush earns you 10% of the same. Three more payouts are provided on the side bets and they are on: flush, full house and four of a kind.
Caribbean Stud Poker’s UK version may normally offer payouts of £ 500 on four of a kind, £ 100 on full house and £ 50 on flush. On the other hand, the Australian version (when played in legally allowed places in Australia) spikes up these payouts to: AUD 1250 for four of a kind, AUD 375 for full house and AUD 250 for flush. If you’re playing Caribbean Stud Poker in Macau, your payouts would normally be USD 5000 for four of a kind, USD 1500 for full house and USD 1000 for flush.
UK’s ‘Casino Five Card Stud Poker’
The UK version of Caribbean Stud Poker is referred to as ‘Casino Five Card Stud Poker.’
Actually, there are two versions of this poker in the United Kingdom. It’s normally referred to as Casino Five Card Stud Poker if there is no jackpot bonus involved in the game. If there is a progressive jackpot bonus available in the game indeed, you see it being referred to as, ‘Casino Jackpot Five Card Stud Poker.’
Although there are no major differences in rules when it comes to the English and American versions of Caribbean Stud Poker, the payouts may be different. When playing in UK, you may not be paid a jackpot higher than £ 10,000. Casino Jackpot Five Card Stud Poker is the most common Caribbean Stud Poker variation that you’ll find in a large majority of European and UK brick-and-mortar casinos as well as online ones such as Bet365 (where you can even bag a handsome Bet365 bonus at the time of signup).