Pai Gow vs Texas Hold’ em poker

Poker is a popular card game that can be played at land-based casinos, online casinos and in (casual or professional) poker tournaments. While many people might think of poker as a specific card game, it is in fact an umbrella term covering a lot of different card games. The games have a lot of similarities but in the end, they are unique games. Two examples are Pai Gow and Texas Hold’ em. Here, we’ll explain more about those two games and how they differ from each other.

What is Pai Gow poker?

Pai Gow is a Chinese gambling game played using a set of Chinese domino tiles. The game is played at land-based casinos worldwide but is mainly popular in China and the United States. From the traditional domino game, Pai Gow poker has emerged. This is a version of the game played with playing cards instead of domino tiles. 

Pai Gow poker is played using a standard 52-card deck and one joker. The game can have 2–7 players (including the dealer) and the goal is to beat the dealer by having the best two-card hand from seven cards. 

What is Texas Hold’ em poker?

Texas Hold’ em is a popular and traditional poker game. It is played using a standard 52-card deck only – no jokers. The game needs a minimum of two players and is normally played in groups of up to 10 people. The game starts with each player getting two (face down) cards and then five community cards are dealt: first three (flop), then one more (turn), and a final one (river). The goal is to have the best five-card hand based on any combination from the seven cards.

Main differences between the two poker versions

There are many differences between Texas Hold’ em and Pai Gow. If we first look at the traditional version of Pai Gow, the obvious difference is that this is played with domino tiles while Texas Hold’ em is played with cards. But if we focus on the poker version of Pai Gow, this is of course not relevant anymore.

What is relevant though, is the main goal and set-up of the games. While Pai Gow poker players aim to beat the dealer, players of Texas Hold’ em play against each other. This also means that while Pai Gow can be played with you and the dealer only, Texas Hold’ em requires at least one more player. In Texas Hold’ em, the dealer position rotates clockwise after each hand which changes the position of the dealer. In Pai Gow, the dealer remains the same (the banker/house) while all players try to beat him/her. 

Play poker online

No matter if you prefer Pai Gow, Texas Hold’ em, or any other poker game, it can all be played online. Most online casinos today will offer a good selection of machine-generated and live poker games. By looking at a comparison site such as All Casinos Games, you can browse different online casinos and find the best match for you.