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A poker home game is what it says on the tin: a game of poker hosted in the comfort of your home.
You might think that hosting a poker night with your friends or co-workers might be a difficult and expensive task, but with a little creativity and some help from this article, you’ll be well on your way to running a home game that could become a regular date on the social calendar.
What makes a fun home poker game?
A home game of poker should be focused firmly on making sure everyone enjoys themselves. It’s critical that each player feels relaxed and comfortable in their surroundings and with what they are doing.
As a home game host, the onus is firmly on you to get a consensus among your friends or co-workers as to which poker game to play.
It might be Texas Hold‘em, it may be Omaha Pot Limit. Either way, obtain a consensus with your guests to keep as many players happy as possible.
It’s also vital that you make sure each player is au fait with the rules of the variant of poker you decide to play.
There’s nothing worse than sitting at a table with two players continually asking questions and slowing the gameplay down each hand.
Start as you mean to go on by laying out the rules from the outset and answering any questions your friends or co-workers may have before you begin.
Essential Poker Equipment for Your Home Game
If you want your home game to go out with a bang, you’ll need to invest a little of your hard-earned money in some essential gadgets that make life easier at the poker table.
If you’re hosting on a strict budget, you may opt to purchase a felt layout to overlay on a dining table.
Alternatively, if you want to create that casino poker room vibe, a dedicated poker table with cup holders and padded armrests will add a touch of professionalism to your cash game or tournament.
Out of ten possible players around your dining room poker table, the likelihood that one or two players are unable to shuffle cards properly is high.
An easy way to navigate around this problem is to purchase an automatic shuffler that does the hard work for you. It will save time and ensure even inexperienced players can randomize the order of the cards.
Ideally, it’s also worth investing in 100 percent PVC playing cards that are made to last and can cope with minor spillages that invariably occur when drinks and snacks get involved.
Cheaper cards are more prone to wearing and creasing, making them harder to shuffle and deal in the long run. If you choose to run your home game as a single table tournament rather than a cash game, consider a blind timer as it is a useful way of helping players know when the small and big blinds are due to increase next.
Also, there’s tournament software you can download onto a desktop or laptop, which display the blind structure and the time remaining in the current blind level.
Finally, consider your home game surroundings. Picking the right room to play is vital to creating the right atmosphere.
Basements or converted lofts make for good locations as they usually generate intimate, cozy atmospheres.
However, dining rooms can also offer logistical benefits, such as close proximity to the kitchen for beverages and snacks as well as the restroom. Simply put, choose a location that suits the needs of your players best.
Looking to make your poker home game a social event that friends or co-workers look forward to playing more often?
By considering the equipment and setting of your action, you’ll make your guests feel extra special, creating the interaction and ambiance that poker is supposed to generate.
Whether you’re striving for a serious home poker league or a laid-back excuse to get your friends together, a little effort in your home game setup goes a long way.