China Underground > Entertainment > The Origins and Evolution of Pai Gow Poker: From Ancient China to the Casino Floor

The Origins and Evolution of Pai Gow Poker: From Ancient China to the Casino Floor

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Poker is among the titles that gather fans from across the world because it’s fun and competitive. Even though you can find a wide range of poker alternatives, some are a lot more sought-after in certain countries.

China is probably not the first place that comes to mind when discussing poker. Sure, the sport is popular there, but it’s nowhere near as big as in other parts of the globe. Fortunately, one poker variation is way more popular there than elsewhere, and its name is Pai Gow Poker. In fact, after you find out which is the best Chinese betting site, you will notice that it will always be one of the available titles.

Not many people know Pai Gow Poker and what it offers, so this review will go through all the important information you should be aware of. Despite the fact that gambling is regulated in this country, people find a way to access it, and some of them may be able to put the game to the test.


Pai Gow Poker is among the several poker alternatives that users can test when they want to have fun. Some people also call it Double-Hand poker, so check whether this option is available in your online casino.

What’s interesting about Pai Gow, in general, is that this is a special game known for using dominoes. It has always been popular in the Asian country, but due to its growing popularity in some jurisdictions, you can come across a lot of titles around it, including poker. 

Pai Gow Poker is unique in many ways, and unlike the classic title, this one will need cards, not dominoes.  It was first introduced in 1985 in the USA, not in China. However, it quickly became popular in other parts of the world.

The person responsible for this game is Sam Torosian, who’s also the Bell Card Club’s owner. He came up with the idea after realizing that the 13e-card game was too slow and complicated. Surprisingly, the new title became a huge hit and quickly took off in Las Vegas before it became popular worldwide.

How to play?

What’s interesting regarding Pai Gow Poker is that the title has a deck that consists of 562 cards, as well as 1 joker. Unlike other poker options, where you can play with fewer people, this one requires you to have 6 players, as well as a dealer. The idea of the game is for the players to try and win against the banker.

Once you decide to give it a shot, you will get a 5-card hand, as well as a 2-card hand. The idea will be to beat the bankers’ hand.

Remember that the 5 cards you will get should be higher than the 2-card hand. Of course, the cards will be shuffled before they are dealt, and everyone will receive unique positions for betting. Sometimes, there could be fewer platters, but they will still receive a card that will be moved to the discard pile later on. Of course, this rule may be slightly different because you can find several Pai Gow Poker alternatives., depending on where you play the game. If we exclude the classic variation popular in China, you can also find special options in Vegas.

Last Updated on 2023/09/13

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