US20070170652A1 - Poker game variants and methods thereof - Google Patents

Poker game variants and methods thereof Download PDF

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Publication number
US20070170652A1
US20070170652A1 US11/341,860 US34186006A US2007170652A1 US 20070170652 A1 US20070170652 A1 US 20070170652A1 US 34186006 A US34186006 A US 34186006A US 2007170652 A1 US2007170652 A1 US 2007170652A1
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Prior art keywords
player
wager
hand
card
dealer
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US11/341,860
Inventor
Kenneth Perrie
Todd Fishon
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SHFL Enterteiment Inc
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Progressive Gaming International Corp
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Priority to US11/341,860 priority Critical patent/US20070170652A1/en
Assigned to MIKOHN GAMING CORPORATION reassignment MIKOHN GAMING CORPORATION ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: FISHON, TODD D., PERRIE, KENNETH A.
Assigned to PROGRESSIVE GAMING INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION reassignment PROGRESSIVE GAMING INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION CHANGE OF NAME (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: MIKOHN GAMING CORPORATION
Assigned to ABLECO FINANCE LLC, AS AGENT reassignment ABLECO FINANCE LLC, AS AGENT PATENT SECURITY AGREEMENT Assignors: GAMES OF NEVADA, INC., MGC, INC., MIKOHN INTERNATIONAL, INC., MIKOHN NEVADA, PRIMELINE GAMING TECHNOLOGIES, INC., PROGRESSIVE GAMES, INC., PROGRESSIVE GAMING INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION, VIKING MERGER SUBSIDIARY, LLC
Publication of US20070170652A1 publication Critical patent/US20070170652A1/en
Assigned to GAMES OF NEVADA, INC., VIKING MERGER SUBSIDIARY, LLC, MIKOHN NEVADA, MIKOHN INTERNATIONAL, INC., PRIMELINE GAMING TECHNOLOGIES, INC., MGC, INC., PROGRESSIVE GAMING INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION, PROGRESSIVE GAMES, INC. reassignment GAMES OF NEVADA, INC. RELEASE BY SECURED PARTY (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: ABLECO FINANCE LLC, AS COLLATERAL AGENT
Assigned to SHUFFLE MASTER, INC. reassignment SHUFFLE MASTER, INC. ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: PROGRESSIVE GAMING INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION
Assigned to DEUTSCHE BANK TRUST COMPANY reassignment DEUTSCHE BANK TRUST COMPANY SECURITY AGREEMENT Assignors: SHUFFLE MASTER, INC.
Assigned to SHUFFLE MASTER, INC. reassignment SHUFFLE MASTER, INC. RELEASE BY SECURED PARTY (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: DEUTSCHE BANK TRUST COMPANY AMERICAS, AS COLLATERAL AGENT
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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F3/00Board games; Raffle games
    • A63F3/00003Types of board games
    • A63F3/00157Casino or betting games
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F1/00Card games
    • A63F2001/005Poker

Abstract

A method of playing a two card poker game is disclosed. The method comprises the steps of providing at least one deck of playing cards including two wild cards, and receiving an ante from a player to play the game. A player is permitted to optionally place additional wagers. The player is dealt two a two card hand and the dealer is dealt a two card hand. The player may fold or place a call bet. If the player places a call bet, the player and dealer hands are evaluated. Under various conditions according to a rules table, the player wins or loses each wager according to a predetermined pay table or loses. Both a gaming table and gaming machine implementations of the card game are disclosed.

Description

    FIELD OF THE INVENTION
  • This invention relates generally to card games and, more specifically, card games utilizing hands formed from two playing cards.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • In the past, gaming establishments have offered a variety of poker games to players having different levels of sophistication. The variety of poker games both maintain and increase interest in poker play and provide diversified profit centers for gaming establishments. Such poker games include both table games and machine-generated games. Some players have a greater preference for playing a poker table game where players feel they are using a level of player skill to determine the outcome of the poker table game, as opposed to playing a machine-generated poker game requiring less player skill.
  • Many poker table games are played with five or more playing cards dealt to each player of the game, and most poker games are variations of stud or draw poker. Examples of well-known poker table games that use five or more cards include Omaha and Texas Hold-em.
  • Other poker games are played with less than five playing cards. An example of a poker game where less than five playing cards are dealt to each player is Three Card Poker. All current poker games have at least three playing cards dealt to each player of the poker game in non-community poker games.
  • In many of the poker table games available in gaming establishments, players of the game play and wager against each other and “win” or “lose” according to well-established rules of the poker game based on playing card hand rankings. In such poker table games, the gaming establishment provides a dealer (or bank) who does not participate in any wagering during the poker game and simply deals playing card hands from a deck of playing cards to each player of the poker table game. The gaming establishment receives a payment from each player for the services offered by the gaming establishment.
  • In other poker table games, players may play against a dealer provided by the gaming establishment. Typically, payout odds are predetermined for various winning playing card hands and each winning player of the poker table game receives an award based on the value of the winning playing card hand. During play of the poker game, players may make additional wagers to further increase excitement and winnings for players based on players' assessment of the rank of their playing card hands. Conversely, casino wins are enhanced when players lose.
  • Prior art poker games suffer from numerous disadvantages. On such disadvantage is simply that many players are tired or bored with prior art poker games, many of which have been available for decades. In addition, prior art poker games are slow, which decreases casino profits and does not attract players. A further disadvantage is a limited number of win opportunities such as only one winner per hand, which is determined at the end of a round of play. As a result, there is a need to further increase the speed of play and the number of hands played and resolved during a poker game in comparison to poker games currently offered by gaming establishments, while keeping the poker game simple to understand by players of the poker game.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • One embodiment of the invention is a method of playing a two card poker game. In one embodiment, the game is played with a set of playing cards comprising at least one deck of playing cards, which deck(s) may include one or more wild cards or “Jokers.”
  • Each player of the game places an ante or first wager in order to be entitled to play the game. Each player may place an optional second wager that their hand will achieve at least a first predetermined rank. Each player is dealt a two card hand from the set of playing cards. A two card hand is also dealt to the dealer or house. Each player is then permitted to evaluate their cards and either (1) fold (and lose their ante and any second wager); or (2) place a third or “call” wager.
  • If a player places the third wager, the outcome of the game is then determined by comparison of the player's hand to the dealer's hand and/or by comparison of the player's hand to a pay table. In one embodiment, the player is paid winnings on their second wager if their hand met the first predetermined rank.
  • The game also includes the step of determining if the dealer's hand “qualified,” such as by having a predetermined minimum rank. If not, then the player is paid winnings based upon their Ante and their third wager is returned. If so, then the player is paid winning based upon their Ante and their third or “call” wager.
  • In another embodiment of the invention, each player is permitted to place a fourth or “bonus” wager before their hand is dealt. If the play places the third or “call” wager and the player's hand has a predetermined minimum rank, the player is paid winnings for their fourth wager.
  • In accordance with another embodiment of this invention, gaming table layout and gaming machine environments for presenting the game of the invention are disclosed.
  • The foregoing and other articles, features, and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the following more detailed description of the preferred embodiments of the invention, as illustrated in the accompanying drawings. The various features may be utilized or claimed alone or in any combination.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • FIG. 1 is a top view of a gaming table layout for a gaming table for use in playing a game of the invention according to an embodiment of the present invention.
  • FIG. 2A illustrates a wagering portion of the gaming table layout illustrated in FIG. 1.
  • FIG. 2B illustrates a player location or region of the gaming table layout illustrated in FIG. 1.
  • FIG. 3 is an exemplary diagram showing hand rankings of playing cards.
  • FIG. 4 is an exemplary diagram showing a comparison of exemplary dealer hands to exemplary player hands and resulting game outcomes.
  • FIG. 5A illustrates an exemplary pay table for Call and Pair Up wagers of a game of the invention.
  • FIG. 5B illustrates an exemplary pay table for a Bonus wager of the invention.
  • FIG. 5C illustrates a rules table portion of the gaming table layout illustrated in FIG. 1.
  • FIG. 6 is a perspective view of an exemplary gaming machine according to another embodiment of the present invention.
  • DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
  • Table Layout
  • FIG. 1 illustrates an example embodiment of a gaming table layout 10 for use in playing a poker wagering game of the invention. The poker wagering game of the invention is hereinafter denoted as the “game.”
  • In accordance with this example, the gaming table layout 10 comprises a dealer location 30 (denoted “Dealer” in FIG. 1), at least one player location 20 (denoted “Player” in FIG. 1) and at least one wagering region 24. A dealer (sometimes referred to as the “bank” or as the “house”) is located in the general area of the dealer location 30 As few as one, and preferably two or more player positions are located in the general area of the player locations 20. Generally, and without any limitation, as few as one and as many as two or more players may play the game. It is contemplated that a player may occupy any player location 20 that is not occupied by another player. If permitted, a single player may also be permitted to occupy more than one player location 20, such as being permitted to place wagers at more than one location.
  • Referring again to FIG. 1, the gaming table layout 10 may further comprise a player display region 22 configured to display other information. In one embodiment, the display region may display any one or more of the following: at least one pay table 60,62 (such as shown in FIGS. 5A and 5B and described in more detail below) and at least one rules table 64 (such as shown in FIG. 5C and described in more detail below) of the game. The payouts of the pay tables 60,62 including the particular game outcomes or hands which are entitled to payment of winnings, may be varied by an operator, such as a casino or house, of the game.
  • Referring to FIG. 2B, during one exemplary method of play of the game (described in more detail below), the dealer deals a hand comprising two playing cards 44 from one or more decks of playing cards 48 to each player who placed a wager (“player two card hand” or “player hand”) and a hand comprising two playing cards 46 to the dealer (“dealer two card hand” or “dealer hand”). In one embodiment, the dealer only deals cards to players who have placed an ante or first wager.
  • In this example embodiment, the dealer deals each player a two card hand 44 to the right hand side of the wagering region 24 of that player's location 20. However, without any limitation, the dealer may deal each player's two card hand 44 to any area proximate to the player's location 20, so long as the dealer is consistent in dealing from the deck of playing cards 48. FIG. 1 specifically shows four sets of two card hands 44 dealt to the right hand side of each one of four wagering regions 24 of four of the player locations 20, and one dealer two card hand 46 dealt to the dealer location 30 (see also FIG. 2B). In this example, the dealer did not deal a player two card hand to three of the player locations, either because no player was present at those locations or no Ante/wager was placed by a player at those locations.
  • Referring to FIG. 2A, in one example embodiment, the wagering region 24 includes at least an Ante portion 26 provided for a first wager or Ante, a Pair Up portion 40 provided for an optional second wager, and a Call portion 28 for a third wager. As illustrated, an ANTE identifier is located on the Ante portion 26, a PAIR UP identifier is located on the Pair Up portion 40 and a CALL identifier is located on the Call portion 28. These identifiers denote the type of wager to be placed on the appropriate portion of the wagering region of the gaming table layout 10.
  • The wagering region 24 may further comprise a Bonus portion 42 of the wagering region of the gaming table layout 10. The Bonus portion 42 is provided for an optional fourth wager. In the embodiment illustrated in FIG. 2A, the Bonus portion 42 has a BONUS identifier.
  • It should be understood that the identifier of each of the Ante portion 26, Pair Up portion 40, Call portion 28 and Bonus portion 42 may be any suitable identifier to distinguish between sequenced wagers of the game. For example, an alternative identifier for the Bonus portion 42 may be a SUPER BONUS identifier or a JACKPOT identifier or the like. In one embodiment a Bonus bet may be placed for a flush hand.
  • Referring to FIG. 2B, the dealer location 30 comprises a bank portion 12 and a dealer playing card portion 14 including at least one deck of playing cards 48. The dealer playing card portion 14 provides for distribution of at least one two card hand from the one or more decks of playing cards 48 to a player location 20 and to the dealer location 30.
  • The bank portion 12 provides for settlement of the various bets of wagers by the players, such as by reference to the rule or pay tables described herein.
  • Furthermore according to FIG. 2B, the dealer playing card portion 14 may comprise the dealer's two card hand 46 and an optional shuffling device 56 having a discard rack 58 for discarding any playing cards of the deck of playing cards 48 that are no longer in play in the game. The shuffling device 56 may be any device that causes a randomization of the playing cards of the deck of playing cards 48. The dealer may shuffle the playing cards of the deck of playing cards 48 by hand.
  • The bank portion 12 may comprise a chip holder 50 including a plurality of tokens of varying denominations and a currency holder 54 for depositing currency or currency equivalent 52 tendered by the player to the dealer in exchange for tokens of the chip holder 50. The currency or currency equivalent 52 may be any form of monetary currency such as bills, notes, checks, vouchers, coins and the like, which currency or equivalents may be deposited in the currency holder 54 by the dealer in exchange for the tokens.
  • In one example embodiment the game is played with one or more decks of playing cards. In one embodiment, the one or more decks of playing cards 48 comprises fifty-two playing cards having a plurality of suits and each playing card of each suit of the plurality of suits having predetermined ranks and at least two additional playing cards with each additional playing card having a wild indicia. The suits may comprise four suits such as Spades, Hearts, Diamonds and Clubs or any other suitable number of suits. The ranks of the deck of playing cards 48 include nine playing cards numbered from 2 to 10 and four playing cards denoted Ace, Jack, Queen and King, with the rank of each playing card of each suit ascending from the lowest numbered playing card denoted 2 to the highest playing card denoted Ace.
  • In one embodiment, the one or more decks of playing cards which are used may further comprising at least two “wild” playing cards, such as two “Jokers.” It is understood that the “wild” cards may be cards displaying a variety of indicia, such as: a joker, a token, an illustration, an advertisement, a casino logo, text such as “WILD CARD” and the like, or any other indicator which the player would understand to denote a wild playing card.
  • As used herein, the term “wild playing card” or “Joker” means a playing card that may take or assume different characteristics, such as different ranks or values. In one embodiment, the wild card or Joker may be used with another playing card to provide a matched pair of playing cards. The term “a matched pair” means two playing cards having the same rank (or “face value”), but not the same suit. In other embodiments, a Joker or wild card could be used with another card to form other hands, such as a “Flush” (i.e. the Joker or wild card takes the suit of the other playing card).
  • For example, the player may receive the following pair of playing cards: a 5 of Clubs and a 5 of Hearts, which would form the hand of a “pair.” Alternatively, the player may receive the following pair of playing cards: a 5 of Clubs and a wild playing card. In an embodiment where the wild playing card can assume the same rank as the other card, the resulting hand is also a “pair.”
  • Without limitation, other indicia may be used in place of the ranking described, so long as the indicia permits players to understand/identify the rank of each playing card. Additionally, the operator of the game may desire to use more than one deck of playing cards and more than two wild playing cards.
  • In order to simplify the remaining description, the term Ace may be abbreviated to A, the term King may be abbreviated to K, the term Queen may be abbreviated to Q and the term Jack may be abbreviated to J.
  • Hand Rankings
  • FIG. 3 is an exemplary diagram showing rankings of hands of playing cards in accordance with an embodiment of the invention. A Pair of Jokers (or wild) playing cards is deemed the highest rank. A Royal Flush, which comprises an A playing card and a K playing card of the same suit or other secondary indicia (i.e., both playing cards are Spades, Hearts, Diamonds or Clubs) as described above, has the second highest rank.
  • As shown in FIG. 3, a Straight Flush of the game comprises the two card hand with a first playing card having a rank of one less or one more than a second playing card of the card hands and also with each playing card of the card hands having the same suit or indicia. By way of example, and not limitation, and referring to the third row of FIG. 3 next to the term “Straight Flush”, the two card hand comprises the J of Diamonds and the 10 of Diamonds). The terms “Straight”, “Pair”, “Flush” and “High Card” are generally understood by one of ordinary skill in the art and hence are not described in detail. In general, a straight comprises two cards of any suit in sequential rank. A pair comprises two cards, of any suit, with the same rank or value. A flush comprises two cards of any value or value which are of the same suit. A high card hand comprises a hand which does not make up any of the hands above, and which is ranked simply by the value of highest card in the hand.
  • It will now be understood that common poker terms such as “Three of a Kind”, “Full House”, “Four of a Kind” have no meaning in the context of the game, and that the relative value of hands as described above differs from poker as known in the art, where generally, a Flush has a greater value than a Pair.
  • The operator of the game may change the relative value or rankings of the two card hands or change which two card hands, but preferably only before the start of a game with notice to all players.
  • Method of Table Game Play
  • One method of playing a game using the table layout illustrated in FIG. 1 will now be described in detail. The game is played with at least one deck of playing cards 48 (including the one or more wild/Joker cards).
  • Each player who wishes to play the game places a first bet or wager (“Ante”). Each Ante is preferably received in the corresponding Ante portion 26 of the layout 10. Each player who places an Ante may also place an optional second bet or wager (“Pair Up wager”). Each Pair Up wager is preferably received in the corresponding Pair Up portion 40 of the layout 10. The Pair Up wager is a wager that the player hand 44 will achieve at least a first predetermined rank.
  • In one embodiment, after each player who desires to play the game has placed an Ante and any optional Pair Up wager, the dealer deals a two card hand from the deck of playing cards 48 to each player. The dealer also deals a dealer two card hand 46.
  • Each player may then inspect their player hand 44. The dealer may also inspect the dealer hand 46.
  • In one embodiment, various outcomes of the game are dependent upon whether the dealer's hand qualifies. In one embodiment, for the dealer's hand to qualify, it must meet or exceed a predetermine rank. In one embodiment, the dealer's hand qualifies if it has a ranking of a high card of a Q or higher.
  • After the player hands 44 have been dealt, and preferably after each player has had an opportunity to inspect their hand, each player has the opportunity to place a third bet or wager (“Call wager”). Each Call wager is preferably received in the corresponding Call portion 40 of the layout 10. If a player does not place a Call wager, the player “folds” and is out of the game and forfeits their Ante and all other wagers (such as any the Pair Up wager or, as described below, Bonus wager).
  • After all players have an opportunity to place a Call wager, the dealer collects any wagers by, and player hands belonging to, players who did not place a Call wager. Each player who did place a Call wager remains in the game (referred to herein as an “active player”), and the outcome of the game is then determined by evaluating each player hand relative to the dealer hand 46 and/or one or more pay tables.
  • In one embodiment, the dealer first determines if the dealer's hand 46 qualifies. As described above, this may comprise determining if the dealer hand 46 has a ranking of at least Q high.
  • If the dealer's hand does not qualify, then the dealer pays each active player an amount based on the player's Ante according to the predetermined pay table. The dealer returns the active player's Call wager. In one exemplary payout scheme, the amount paid to each active player is at least 1 to 1 of the Ante.
  • If the dealer's hand does qualify, then the dealer compares the dealer hand 46 to the player hand 44 of each active player. The dealer may settle with each player in turn as follows. If the player's hand 44 ranks higher than the dealer's hand 46, then the dealer pays to the player an amount based on both their Ante and their Call wager. If the player's hand 44 ranks lower than the dealer's hand 46, then the player forfeits both their Ante and their Call wager to the dealer.
  • If the player's hand ranks higher than the dealer's hand, then in one exemplary payout scheme the amount paid to the player is at least 1 to 1 of their Ante. If the player's hand ranks higher than the dealer's hand, then in one exemplary payout scheme, the amount paid to the player for their Call wager is dependent upon a predetermined pay table 60. In one embodiment, this pay table is as follows:
    Wild Card/Wild Card At least 8 to 1 (the player's Call wager)
    Royal Flush At least 5 to 1
    Straight Flush At least 3 to 1
    Straight At least 1 to 1
    Pair At least 1 to 1
    Flush At least 1 to 1
    High Card At least 1 to 1
  • In one embodiment of the invention, each active player who placed a Pair Up wager is paid winnings if their hand meets a predetermined minimum rank. In one embodiment, the player's are paid winnings for their Pair Up wagers in accordance with a pay table. One exemplary Pair Up wager pay table is as follows:
    Wild Card/Wild Card At least 40 to 1 (of the Pair Up wager)
    Royal Flush At least 10 to 1
    Straight Flush At least 5 to 1
    Straight At least 1 to 1
    Pair At least 1 to 1
  • If the player's hand is other than a winning hand (for example, Q high card), the player loses their Pair Up wager (the dealer collects the wager).
  • In one embodiment of the game, a player may be permitted to place a fourth wager (“Bonus wager”). In one embodiment, a player is required to place the Bonus wager before they are dealt their hand of cards. If the player does not place a Bonus wager, the player is not entitled to any Bonus wager winnings. In addition, in one embodiment, if a player does place a Bonus wager but does not place a Call wager, then the player's Bonus wager is collected along with the Ante and any Pair Up wager.
  • In one embodiment, an active player is awarded winnings for their Bonus wager if their player hand achieves at least a predetermined minimum rank prior. In one embodiment, player Bonus wagers are paid in accordance with the following:
    Royal Flush At least 30 to 1 (of the Bonus wager)
    Straight Flush At least 5 to 1
    Ace High Flush At least 3 to 1
    King High Flush At least 2 to 1
    Flush At least 1 to 1
    Straight At least a Push
    Pair At least a Push
  • If the player's hand is other than a winning hand (for example, Q high card), the player loses their Bonus wager (the dealer collects the wager).
  • As described in more detail below, in one embodiment, each active player is paid for any winning hand when the player placed a Pair Up and/or Bonus wager, regardless of the outcome of the dealer's hand (i.e. regardless of whether the dealer's hand qualified and regardless of whether the player's hand beat the dealer's hand). In such an embodiment, the player's Pair Up and Bonus wagers are simply wager that their hand will achieve a particular minimum ranking which entitles them to a payout.
  • The operator of the game may define a minimum and/or maximum wager amount for the Ante, Call wager, Pair Up or Bonus wagers. These minimums and maximums may be different for the different wagers. For example, a minimum Ante of $1 may be required, while a maximum Pair Up wager of $25 may be permitted.
  • Exemplary Game Outcome Determinations
  • FIG. 4 illustrates various player and dealer hands and game outcomes in accordance with the above-described method. In this figure, the first column, entitled “Player's Hand,” illustrates an exemplary player hand for a particular game. The second column, entitled “Dealer's Hand,” illustrates an exemplary dealer hand for each corresponding game. The third column, entitled “Player's Wager,” indicates whether the player placed a Call wager. The fourth column indicates the payout to the player for their Ante (in all cases, it is assumed the player placed an Ante, or else the player would not have received their player hand), if any, based upon the player and dealer hands illustrated in the corresponding first and second columns. The fifth column indicates the payout to the player for their Call wager, if any, based upon the player and dealer hands illustrated in the first and second columns.
  • In a first example illustrated in the first row of the diagram of FIG. 4, the player has received a “pair” (both playing cards of the player's hand have a rank of 7, but are of different suits). The dealer's hand comprises playing cards with the ranks of Q and 2 of different suits, resulting in a hand of Q high card. The dealer's hand qualifies since it has a minimum rank of Q high. However, the player's “pair” outranks the dealer's Q high hand (according to the rankings illustrated in FIG. 3. The dealer pays the player 1 to 1 for their Ante, and 1 to 1 for their Call wager (in accordance with the pay table illustrated in FIG. 5).
  • In a second example illustrated in the second row of the diagram of FIG. 4, the player has received a “pair” (both playing cards of the player's hand have a rank of 5 and are of different suits). The dealer's hand comprises playing cards with the ranks of 10 and 7, resulting in a hand of 10 high card. The dealer's hand does not qualify since it does not result in at least Q high. Since the dealer hand did not qualify, the dealer pays the player 1 to 1 for their Ante and returns the player's Call wager (denoted as a “push” in FIG. 4).
  • In a third example illustrated in the third row of the diagram of FIG. 4, the player has received playing cards with the rank of K and 3, of different suits, resulting in a hand of K high card. The dealer's hand comprises playing cards with the ranks of K and 10, of different suits, also resulting in a hand of K high card. However, the dealer's hand outranks the player's hand since the dealer's second card, a 10, outranks the player's second card, a 3. Since the dealer hand qualifies (one of the playing cards of the dealer has a rank greater than Q), the player loses both their Ante and Call wagers.
  • In a fourth example illustrated in the fourth row of the diagram of FIG. 4, the player has received playing cards with the ranks 6 and 5, but these cards are of the same suit. Since the cards have a sequential rank and are of the same suit, the player's hand is a Straight Flush. The dealer's hand comprises a “pair” (both playing cards both have the rank of 3, but are of different suits). Since the dealer's hand qualifies, the dealer pays the player 1:1 for their Ante and pays the player 3:1 for their Call wager (in accordance with the pay table illustrated in FIG. 5).
  • In a fifth example illustrated in the fifth row of the diagram of FIG. 4, the player received playing cards with the ranks 6 and 2 of different suits, for a resulting hand of 6 high card. The dealer's hand comprises playing cards having the ranks of 5 and 3 of different suits, for a resulting hand of 5 high card. In this example, the player did not place a Call wager. As such, the player forfeits their Ante to the dealer according to the rules table 64 as shown herein.
  • Example Pay Tables
  • FIG. 5A illustrates an example embodiment of a pay table 60 for a Call wager and a Pair Up wager. It should be understood that this is but one possible pay table and as such, the claims that follow are not limited to this particular pay table. Possible two card winning combinations are shown, along with respective Call wager payouts and Pair Up wager payouts for those particular winning combinations/rankings. For example, assuming a player placed $10 ante and placed a $10 Call wager, if the player's hand was a Joker/Joker combination of cards, the player would be paid $80 for their Call wager (see column 2, row 1 of the pay table illustrated in FIG. 5A where the hand “Joker/Joker” pays Call wagers at the rate of “8 to 1”). Further, assuming that the player had placed an option Pair Up wager of $10, the player would be paid $400 for that wager (see column 3, row 1 of the pay table illustrated in FIG. 5A where the hand “Joker/Joker” pays Pair Up wagers at “40 to 1”).
  • It is noted that in one embodiment, the payout determination for the player's Pair Up bet is independent of the dealer's hand. In other words, so long as the player is active and placed a Pair Up wager, the player is paid winnings according to the “Pair Up Wager” pay table. This is true even if the dealer's hand did not qualify, or if it did qualify, whether the player's hand beat the dealer's hand or the dealer's hand beat the player's hand.
  • FIG. 5B illustrates an embodiment of another pay table 62 that may be generally disposed or displayed in the player display portion 22. This pay table 62 illustrates pay outs for Bonus wagers for different hands. The payout amounts shown in FIG. 5B are merely illustrative of possible payouts to the player. The first column of the pay table identifies possible hand outcomes (denoted “PLAYER CARDS” in the heading of the first column of FIG. 5B). The second column of the pay table demotes payouts for a Bonus wager for those particular hands (denoted “BONUS PAYS” in the heading of the second column of FIG. 5B).
  • For example, assume that a player is active (placed an Ante and Call wager) and had previously placed an optional $10 Bonus wager. If the player is dealt a Royal Flush card combination (an Ace and a King of the same suit), then in accordance with this pay table, the player is awarded $300 for the $10 Bonus wager (see column 2, row 1 of FIG. 5B, where a “Royal Flush” is paid at a rate of “30 to 1”). Conversely, if the player only received a hand comprising a “Straight” then the result is a “Push.” The term “Push” may denote that the player's wager is returned, or that the wager remains on the table (such as at the BONUS portion 42) until another round of the game.
  • It is noted that in one embodiment, the payout determination for the player's Bonus wager is independent of the dealer's hand. In other words, so long as the player is active and placed a Bonus wager, the player is paid winnings according to the “Bonus Wager” pay table. This is true even if the dealer's hand did not qualify, or if it did qualify, whether the player's hand beat the dealer's hand or the dealer's hand beat the player's hand.
  • FIG. 5C illustrates a rules table 64 which may be displayed on or adjacent the table. In one embodiment the rules table 64 may be located in the general region of the player display portion 22. Alternatively, the rules table 64 may be in alternate locations with the pay table 60 or another pay table 62 located between a first player location 20 adjacent to a second player location and the rules table 64 located in a third player location adjacent to either the first player location or adjacent to the second player location. In other embodiments, the rules table 64 may be anywhere on the gaming table layout 10 that is visible to the players of the game.
  • According to the exemplary rules table 64 as illustrated in FIG. 5C, a Joker or “wild” playing card may be paired with another playing card to form a “pair” or matched two card hand for either the dealer or the player (see first line of FIG. 5C). Other entries of the rules table 64 indicate that in this example embodiment: (a) the Call wager and the Ante must be equal in amount (see second line of FIG. 5C); (b) at least one playing card of the dealer hand 46 must have a rank of at least Q for the dealer to qualify in the game (see third line of FIG. 5C); and (c) if the dealer does not qualify, the player's Ante is paid at the rate of 1 to 1 (see fourth line of FIG. 5C). The rules table 64 may be altered by the operator of the game.
  • The operator of the game may alter the Call wager pays and the Pair Up wager pays of FIG. 5A and the Bonus wager pays of FIG. 5B. By way of illustration, Table 1 shows different embodiments of a payout schedule for the Pair Up wager placed by a player in the game described herein. As used in Table 1, the term “Push” means that when the player hand is equal to the dealer hand, nothing is won or lost and thus the player's wager is returned.
  • Alternatively, the term “Push” as used in Table 1 may also be used in the same manner as described above for a Bonus wager (see above description of FIG. 5B). The term “N/A” as used in Table 1 (see below) means that the hand is not a winning hand, and the player loses their wager.
    TABLE 1
    Embodiments of the PAIR UP Payout Schedule for the
    Two Playing Card Hand Poker Wagering Game (game).
    Hand Type 1 2 3 4 5 6
    Joker/Joker 40 to 1 50 to 1 50 to 1 40 to 1 60 to 1 50 to 1
    Royal Flush 20 to 1 25 to 1 35 to 1 25 to 1 30 to 1 30 to 1
    Straight Flush 5 to 1 6 to 1 5 to 1 6 to 1 5 to 1 5 to 1
    Straight 3 to 1 2.5 to 1 2.5 to 1 2.5 to 1 2.5 to 1 2.5 to 1
    Pair 1 to 1 1 to 1 1 to 1 1 to 1 1 to 1 1 to 1
    Flush N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
    Hand Type 7 8 9 10 11 12
    Joker/Joker 40 to 1 50 to 1 40 to 1 40 to 1 40 to 1 50 to 1
    Royal Flush 30 to 1 25 to 1 30 to 1 20 to 1 30 to 1 30 to 1
    Straight Flush 5 to 1 4 to 1 4 to 1 5 to 1 5 to 1 5 to 1
    Straight 2.5 to 1 3 to 1 3 to 1 2.5 to 1 1 to 1 1.5 to 1
    Pair 1 to 1 1 to 1 1 to 1 1 to 1 1 to 1 1 to 1
    Flush N/A N/A N/A N/A Push Push

    Gaming Machine
  • FIG. 6 depicts a gaming machine 70 which may be configured to present a game of the invention. Hereinafter, the term “gaming machine” is used to denote a mechanical, electro-mechanical and/or electronic machine which may be used to present the game, either for wager or for free or “pay to play” entertainment.
  • In one embodiment, the gaming machine comprises a stand-alone type computing device, either portable or in desktop form. The gaming machine 70 comprises at least one display 72 and a processing unit configured to generate game information (such as by executing software code). In one embodiment, the processing unit may be configured to generate one or more random numbers or the gaming machine may otherwise include a random number generator, which random numbers may be used to generate random game events (such as random card selection or random game outcomes).
  • The gaming machine includes video signal generation element for generating a video signal or data which causes the display 72 to display game information. For example, the display 72 may be configured to depict at least one dealer playing card 74 and at least one player playing card 76, it being understood that the order of appearance of the dealer playing card 74 and the player playing card 76 is not limited to the specific illustration of FIG. 6.
  • The gaming machine 70 may further comprise at least one currency or currency equivalent acceptor/receptacle 80 for receiving currency or currency equivalents (as described above for the gaming table layout 10) and a currency or currency equivalents payout dispenser 82 for paying the player. The term “currency or currency equivalents” is defined herein to mean monetary currency, such as bills, notes or coins, or equivalents thereto, such as tokens, redemption slips or redemption cards, credit or a debit cards, and the like.
  • The gaming machine 70 may include a player input permitting a player to place an ante or wager. In one embodiment, the display 72 may be configured to receive input from a player, such as to a wager indicia 78 displayed on the display 72 which indicates an amount of a wager placed by the player. In other embodiments, the gaming machine 70 may include a “bet one” and/or “bet max” button. In one embodiment, the display 72 displays a video representation of the wagering region 24 of the gaming table layout 10 described above, wherein the wagering region of the gaming table layout may be configured with a Bonus wager area 42, the Pair Up wager area 40, the Ante area 26 and the Call wager area 28.
  • The gaming machine 70 may further comprise at least one player interface 84. The player interface 84 may include one or more input devices which permit a player to provide input to the gaming machine, such as to initiate game play and the like. The one or more input devices may comprise the display 72 (such as when the display 72 is touch-sensitive), and/or a button, voice activated device, a mouse, a keyboard, a tablet or a joystick or other means permitting the player to provide input to the machine.
  • Referring again to FIG. 6, the gaming machine 70 may be configured to display a wide variety of information other than game data and game results. Examples of alternative information include depictions of the pay tables 60,62 of FIG. 5A/5B (see above description) and the rules table 64 of FIG. 5C (see above description).
  • In other embodiments, the gaming machine 70 may be a remote station or a terminal. In such configurations, game information may be generated remotely and may be transferred to the machine, such as via a wired or wireless communication link. In those configurations, the gaming machine 70 may be configured primarily to display game information and receive input from a player.
  • As indicated, in one embodiment, the gaming machine 70 may be configured to present the game in a wagering (for payout) format. In other configurations, the gaming machine 70 could be configured to award points or prizes, rather than monetary payment. Also, the gaming machine 70 could be configured to present the game solely for entertainment (whether the player is required to pay to play the game, as in “arcade” fashion, or is permitted to play the game for free).
  • In addition, while the gaming machine 70 may include a currency or currency equivalent acceptor, the acceptance of value may be by electronic transfer of credits or the like from a remote location or use of credits or value stored at a remote location, such as at a central server.
  • Gaming Machine Game Version
  • One embodiment of the invention comprises methods of presenting and playing a game of the invention on a gaming machine. In a wagering format, a player provides value to the gaming machine 70, such as by providing currency or currency equivalents to the currency equivalents acceptor/receptacle 80 of the gaming machine 70. The player may then utilize credits corresponding to the deposited currency/currency equivalent to place one or more wagers, such as by utilizing the player interface 84 to place an Ante, a Pair Up wager, a Bonus wager and/or a Call wager. The Ante/wagers may be of the same type as described for the table layout version.
  • Either upon the player placing the appropriate Ante (and any optional Pair Up, Bonus or other wager) or providing other input, such as pressing a “deal” button, the gaming machine presents the game. In one embodiment, this comprises the gaming machine 70 displaying the player hand. The player is then permitted to inspect their hand and elect to place the Call wager.
  • If the player elects to fold (i.e. not place a Call wager), the player may provide input to that effect (such as by pressing a “fold” button). In the player elects to place a Call wager, the player may provide the appropriate input. In that case, the gaming machine 70 may then cause the display 72 to display the two card hand 46 of the dealer.
  • The central processing unit of the gaming machine 70 (or remote server or other device, in a distributed environment) is configured to determine the game outcome, such as in accordance with the rules described above relative to the table game version of the game.
  • In one embodiment, a credit count is displayed by the display 72. When a player places an Ante or wager, the number of credits wagered is deducted from the credit count. When the player obtains a winning result, the credit count is increased by the number of awarded credits. The player may cash out of the game of the gaming machine 70 by activating a “cash out” input of the player interface 84 and collecting the credits in the form of currency and/or currency equivalents payout dispenser 82.
  • While the invention has been particularly shown and described with reference to preferred embodiments thereof, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that the foregoing and other changes in form and details may be made therein without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.

Claims (20)

1. A method of playing a two card poker game comprising the steps of:
providing at least one deck of playing cards;
receiving a first wager from at least one player that a player hand, comprising two playing cards, will exceed a dealer hand, comprising two playing cards;
receiving an optional second wager from the at least one player that the player hand will achieve at least a first predetermined rank;
dealing said two playing card hand to the at least one player;
receiving an optional third wager from the at least one player, wherein if said third wager is not received, the at least one player forfeits the first wager;
evaluating the player hand;
paying the at least one player in response to the second wager if said player hand achieves the first predetermined rank;
determining whether the dealer hand qualifies by achieving a second predetermined rank;
responsive to the dealer hand not qualifying, paying the at least one player in response to the first wager and returning the third wager to the at least one player; and
responsive to the dealer hand qualifying, paying the at least one player if the player hand is a winning hand as compared to the dealer hand for the first wager and the third wager.
2. The method according to claim 1 further comprising receiving an optional fourth wager from the at least one player that the player hand will achieve at least a third predetermined rank.
3. The method according to claim 1 wherein the at least one deck of playing cards further comprises two additional playing cards having a wild card indicia.
4. The method according to claim 3 wherein the wild card indicia is selected from the group consisting of a joker, a token, an illustration, an advertisement, a casino logo and a message.
5. The method according to claim 2 wherein the first wager is an ANTE wager, the second wager is a PAIR UP wager, the third wager is a CALL wager and the fourth wager is a BONUS wager.
6. The method according to claim 1 wherein an amount paid in response to a winning first wager comprises:
at least 1 to 1 if the dealer hand ranks lower than the second predetermined rank, and
at least 1 to 1 if the player hand ranks higher than the dealer hand.
7. The method according to claim 1 wherein paying the third wager comprises the following payouts:
Wild Card/Wild Card At least 8 TO 1 Royal Flush At least 5 TO 1 Straight Flush At least 3 TO 1 Straight At least 1 TO 1 Pair At least 1 TO 1 Flush At least 1 TO 1 High Card At least 1 TO 1.
8. The method according to claim 1 wherein paying the third wager comprises the following payouts:
Wild Card/Wild Card At least 40 to 1 Royal Flush At least 10 TO 1 Straight Flush At least 5 to 1 Straight At least 1 to 1 Pair At least 1 to 1.
9. The method according to claim 2 wherein paying the third wager comprises the following payouts:
Royal Flush At least 30 to 1 Straight Flush At least 5 TO 1 Ace High Flush At least 3 to 1 King High Flush At least 2 to 1 Flush At least 1 to 1 Straight At least a Push Pair At least a Push.
10. The method according to claim 1 wherein the first wager must have an equal value to the third wager.
11. A gaming table layout according to the method of claim 1.
12. A gaming machine comprising at least one display according to the method of claim 1.
13. The method according to claim 12 wherein said at least one display comprises at least one of the following: said two card hand of said dealer, said two card hand of said at least one player, said predetermined pay table and a rules table of said two card poker game.
14. A method of playing a two card poker game comprising the steps of:
providing at least one deck of playing cards comprising fifty-two playing cards and one or more wild playing cards;
receiving an ANTE wager from at least one player, the ANTE wager comprising a wager that a player hand will exceed in rank a dealer hand;
receiving an optional PAIR UP wager from the at least one player, the PAIR UP wager comprising a wager that the dealer hand will comprise a pair;
dealing two playing cards to each hand to create at least one player hand and the dealer hand;
receiving an optional CALL wager from the at least one player, wherein if the CALL wager is not received, then the at least one player forfeits the ANTE wager;
paying a payout to the at least one player in response to the PAIR UP wager if the player hand achieves a rank of pair or higher;
determining whether the dealer hand achieves at least a Queen high card rank;
paying a payout to the at least one player in response to the ANTE wager and returning the CALL wager to the at least one player if both playing cards of dealer hand rank lower than at least said Queen high card rank; and
comparing the dealer hand to the player hand and, if the dealer hand is at least Queen high card rank, then paying winning ANTE wagers and CALL wagers.
15. The method according to claim 14 further comprising
receiving an optional SUPER BONUS wager from the at least one player that the player hand will achieve at least a pair rank.
16. The method according to claim 14 further comprising paying the CALL wager at the following payout rate:
Wild/Wild At least 8 TO 1 Royal Flush At least 5 TO 1 Straight Flush At least 3 TO 1 Straight At least 1 TO 1 Pair At least 1 TO 1 Flush At least 1 TO 1 High Card At least 1 TO 1.
17. The method according to claim 14 further comprising paying the PAIR UP wager at the following payout rate:
Wild/Wild At least 40 to 1 Royal Flush At least 10 TO 1 Straight Flush At least 5 to 1 Straight At least 1 to 1 Pair At least 1 to 1.
18. The method according to claim 15 further comprising paying the SUPER BONUS wager at the following payout rate:
Royal Flush At least 30 to 1 Straight Flush At least 5 TO 1 Ace High Flush At least 3 to 1 King High Flush At least 2 to 1 Flush At least 1 to 1 Straight At least a Push Pair At least a Push.
19. A gaming table layout for a two card poker wagering game comprising:
a dealer location configured to receive two cards which form the dealer hand;
at least one player location configured to receive two cards which form the player hand; and
a wagering region associated with a player location, comprising at least an ANTE portion provided for a first wager, a PAIR UP portion provided for an optional second wager, a CALL portion provided for an optional third wager coupled to said first wager of said ANTE portion and at least one of the following: at least one pay table and at least one rules table of said two card hand poker wagering game.
20. The layout according to claim 19 further comprising a BONUS portion provided for an optional fourth wager.
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