Have you become addicted to video poker yet? If so, you’re probably interested in learning as much about the game, as possible. That might even include a history of the game. Believe it or not, the history of this addictive and sometimes profitable game pre-dates the internet by more than 20 years. And of course, poker itself traces back much earlier than even that. Let’s take a short look at the history of poker and follow its transitioning into the modern variations of video poker.
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History of Poker: Nobody is exactly sure of where and how poker originated. There are a few possibilities. One of those is an ancient game called “Nas”, which traces back in Persia (Iran) to many thousands of years ago. If this is the game’s origin, then it was introduced in the United States by Persian sailors as they made port in Louisiana in the 19th century.
However, the first references we have to poker in America come from the memoirs of a 19th century English actor. From that point onward, the game spread to the north via Mississippi’s famous riverboats. It also began to spread westward and eastward along the Missouri, Cumberland and Ohio Rivers.
Because poker has been so popular, it’s no surprise to know that it’s available in video game format. What might be a surprise is the fact that it was one of the very first of such games, created for personal computers in the 1970s. Today’s video poker is a direct descendant of those 40 year old electronic games.
When the Internet Age took off in the early ’90s, video poker began springing up here and there, and eventually became quite popular and widespread. In those early days, it was played over IRC (Internet Relay Chat) networks between real players. Today’s online poker, though, is much more sophisticated. It’s almost impossible to tell it apart from the video poker machines you’ll see in casinos. Since about 2003, the number of people who play video poker in online rooms has grown phenomenally.
Now for the big question: How does online video poker compare to the real deal? Quite favorably, actually. For starters, you can play by yourself using your own in-home internet connection. The game-play itself is no different from that in an actual card room or casino. As with real poker, you have a dealer (the computer) who gives you your original hand. And as with the real game, you discard and get new cards, bid, raise and call.
One question that often arises is whether or not video poker on the internet is rigged. However, it’s been proven many times that video poker is an honest casino game. It has to be, since most of the major video poker sites are subject to much legal scrutiny because they are publicly traded companies. So you can play with confidence, as long as you remember the golden rule of gaming for money: Never bet more than you can afford to lose. Because most people will lose more times than they will win.