Texas Hold’em is a variation on the classic Poker family of games. Players are dealt two cards each, and 5 additional cards are dealt face-up on the table. Players may make winning hands from any combination of their own 2 cards or the 5 cards on the table. The face-up cards are dealt in phases with betting in between each phase. The majority of the gameplay happens when betting between each phase of the game.
Skill Gaming Compliance
This game does not use Linden Dollars in any capacity. Players do not buy into the table. All betting on this game is done with fake poker chips that have no value and can not be redeemed outside of the game. The poker chips are used expressly to determine the winner of the game and no monetary reward is derived from the game regardless of number of poker chips the winner holds at the end of the game. This is done to comply with Second Life’s Skill Gaming policy.
Most K.R. Engineering games have a variety of options or “house rules” that can be turned on and off by the game owner to change how the game plays. These options can include changing the winning criteria for a game, adding new rules or disabling other rules, or just placing time limits on how long you can be away before the game skips you. It is often helpful to know what house rules you are playing with when you sit down at a game. You can touch the game logo on any K.R. Engineering game to see a list of which options are enabled and which are not.
For owners/administrators wishing to change these options, please see the Administration section of this article.
If you are new to owning a K.R. Engineering game or have upgraded from an older game version, then you may have questions about your new table. Please see this FAQ for answers to some of our most common beginner questions.
Bug Fixes and Upgrades
Most owners of K.R. Engineering games are entitled to free upgrades to newer versions of the game. If a new update is available, then following the updating instructions for your game will result in a new copy of the most recent version being sent to you by the update server. This process is not automatic. You must request an update manually.
If you are having problems with your game, please search this knowledge base or contact us for product support. If the problem you are having has not previously been encountered, a new game version will be released with a fix as soon as possible, and you may qualify for a bug bounty.
DISCLAIMER: The appearance and feature set of games are subject to revision between versions as the capabilities of Second Life change over time. Please see the detailed ChangeLog for your particular game before upgrading. By upgrading. you are agreeing to accept any and all changes that have been imposed on the updated version of the game.
Joining the Game
Most K.R. Engineering games can be played simply by right-clicking on a chair and choosing “Play.”
K.R. Engineering games can be played on a variety of themed furniture objects, and the “chairs” may not always look like chairs. For example, on the Chess theme, the “chairs” are the giant chess pieces. If you are unsure what is a chair and what isn’t on a particular theme, that’s okay! You can right-click and select “Play” on any part of a theme and it will automatically place you in an available chair, even if you didn’t click on a chair specifically.
Important: K.R. Engineering games use a rezzing system. This means that the game (buttons, dice, cards, game boards, etc) is a separate object from the furniture/rezzer/theme. You must right-click on the theme to play, not the game itself, as you cannot sit on the game pieces (such as dice, game boards, cards, etc). You must sit on the furniture around the game to play, not the game pieces.
While most game themes include furniture that you can sit on, there may be some exceptions. The Pocket theme, for example, cannot be sat on, as it has no chairs. Instead, you can join a game on a Pocket theme by clicking the MENU button on the game.
Important: To play Texas Hold’em, you must be wearing the Texas Hold’em HUD. To get a HUD, press the ‘HUD’ button on the table. You will be given an object called Texas Hold’em Game HUD. Find this under your Objects folder and wear it.
After all players who wish to play have been seated, anyone may press the START button to begin the game. The game will give each player a fixed number of starting chips with which to bet during the game. One player will be designated the “Dealer” of the current round, but this is a title only and the game will still handle all dealing operations automatically on their behalf. On subsequent rounds, players will take turn being the Dealer, as this impacts game play (discussed more below).
If Ante is enabled on the game, players will automatically have 1 chip taken from them at the start of each round as a mandatory Ante to the game pot. If at any point during the game a player is unable to Ante (that is, they have 0 chips), then they are removed from play for the remainder of the game. Ante is disabled by default on Texas Hold’em, but may be enabled by the owner.
The game plays in consecutive rounds until all but one player has run out of chips. The last player is declared the winner of the game. Almost all of the game play occurs as a result of the strategy and techniques of the players when betting.
Each round occurs in 5 phases. The Pre-Flop, The Flop, The Turn, The River, and Showdown. Each of this phases is explained in order below.
When the game starts, players will be dealt 2 cards each that only they can see. These are known as ‘hole cards.’ These cards will appear on your own personal Texas Hold’em HUD and will not be visible anywhere else until the final phase of the round (Showdown), and then only if you choose to use them.
After the all players have been dealt their hole cards, the game will open betting. By default, the game will be using blind betting, although this can be disabled by the game host if desired. See the Betting section for a full explanation of how betting works.
This phase allows players to make bets based on how good their hole cards are. A pair, especially a high pair, is setting you up well for the rest of the hand. Statistically, the best two cards to have in your hole is two Aces.
After betting has completed with all players either calling or folding, the game will progress automatically to The Flop.
At the start of The Flop phase, 3 cards are dealt face up in the center of the game. These are known as the Community cards. These community cards will also appear in your Texas Hold’em HUD alongside the two hole cards that you were dealt in the previous phase. During The Showdown phase, players will be allowed to make a Poker hand out of any combination of their own hole cards, and the community cards. The Flop is your first taste of what your ultimate hand may look like, as you now have five total cards to look at (2 hole cards + 3 community cards).
After the first 3 Community cards are dealt, players will once again be allowed to bet based on the merits of the 5 cards they can now see. There are only two more cards to be dealt in the next phases, so if your hand is looking weak at this point then you are not in a strong position for the final showdown coming up. See the Betting section for a full explanation of how betting works.
After betting has completed with all players either calling or folding, the game will progress automatically to The Turn.
At the start of The Turn phase, a single additional Community card is dealt face up in the center of the table. The table will now have 4 Community cards showing. Like before, this new Community card will also show up in your Texas Hold’em HUD alongside your other cards.
After the 4th Community card is dealt, players will once again be allowed to bet based on the merits of the 6 cards they can now see. There is only one more cards to be dealt in the next phase, so if your hand is looking weak at this point then things are looking quite dire for you. See the Betting section for a full explanation of how betting works.
After betting has completed with all players either calling or folding, the game will progress automatically to The River.
At the start of The River phase, a single and final Community card is dealt face up in the center of the table. The table will now have 5 Community cards showing. Like before, this new Community card will also show up in your Texas Hold’em HUD alongside your other cards. You now have all 7 cards and no additional cards will be dealt during this round. Your final hand must constructed using 5 of the 7 cards you see on your HUD.
After the 5th and final Community card is dealt, players will once again be allowed to bet based on the merits of the 7 cards they can now see. There are no more cards to be dealt. See the Betting section for a full explanation of how betting works.
After betting has completed with all players either calling or folding, the game will progress automatically to Showdown.
The Showdown phase is where a winner is declared for the round. During the showdown phase, each player must choose 5 of the 7 cards on their HUD to play. Cards are chosen by clicking on them on your HUD. Once you have selected 5 cards, a button will appear at the top of your HUD giving you the option of playing the cards you have selected. If you change your mind about which cards you have selected, you can simply click a selected card again to deselect it.
See the Poker Hands section for a list of possible Poker hands and their ranking.
Played cards will appear face down on the table until all players have played their final hand, at which point all of the cards will be turned face up to reveal the winner.
The game will declare a winner immediately, but it will not progress automatically to the next round. This is so that players can take as long as they want to examine the cards that were played on the table, if they wish to do so. To begin the next round, any player can touch the DEAL button on the table. At the start of the next round, the dealer will advance to the next player and the game will reshuffle all of the cards to begin a new round, returning to the Pre-Flop phase.
Rounds continue until only a single player remains, at which point the remaining player is declared the winner of the game.
Betting in Texas Hold’em is the most complicated part of the game, and also 95% of how you as the player interact with the game. Aside from betting, the only interaction you will make with the game is to select 5 cards to play at the end of each round. Because of this huge emphasis on betting, it is important to have a thorough understanding of how it works.
By default, Texas Hold’em uses Limit betting, Blinds and NO Ante. These settings can be changed by the game owner.
There are 4 standard betting options on your turn. You can:
- CHECK: Checking means that you choose not to bet at all. This is only an option if there is currently no bet and everyone else also chooses to check. If any other player chooses to bet after you check, then you must call, raise, or fold as normal.
- RAISE: Raising the bet means you want to bet MORE than anyone else currently has bet. Raising the bet will require that all other players fold, call, or choose to raise as well.
- CALL: Calling a bet means that you don’t wish to raise, but you do wish to continue playing. Calling will match your contribution to the pot up to the current bet. If no other player raises after you call, then you will not be required to contribute more. If another player raises after you call, then you will be required to call again up to the new bet level or fold.
- FOLD: Folding means that no longer wish to play in the current round/hand, either because you cannot or do not want to contribute any more to the pot. By folding, you will not be required to increase your bet by any amount, but you will also not be eligible to win the current round. After the round has concluded, you will play as normal for the next round. When you fold, you do not get your pot contribution back.
When Blinds are in use in the game, two players will be required to make mandatory contributions to the pot each round. This is often done in lieu (absence of) of an ante because otherwise there would be no forced interaction with the game, and a game could go on forever with players choosing not to contribute each round.
Blinds come in two parts: small blind, and big blind. The small blind is equal to HALF of the big blind, and is forced upon the player immediately next in line to the dealer. The big blind is the player next in line after the small blind.
For the purposes of this text, we will assume the game is on the default setting of having a big blind of 10. This makes the small blind equal to 5.
The small blind player must then contribute 5 chips to the pot at the start of each round regardless of what hole cards they are dealt. If they do not have 5 chips, they will have to go All-In. If they have NO chips, they lose and are removed from the game.
Likewise, the big blind player must then contribute 10 chips to the pot at the start of each round regardless of what hole cards they are dealt. If they do not have 10 chips, they will have to go All-In. If they have NO chips, they lose and are removed from the game.
After this, betting continues normally. The player next in line after the big blind must choose to call up to the big blind amount (10), raise, or fold. When betting goes around the table and returns to the small blind, they must also choose to call up to the big blind amount (10) or fold.
Blinds only occur on the Pre-Flop phase (first betting phase) of each round. Later phases, including the Flop, the Turn, and the River, do not have a blind bet. A game host can raise or lower the blind bet levels.
When Limit is enabled there is a fixed bet enforced on players. This fixed bet applies both to opening a betting round, and also to any subsequent raises.
- During the Pre-Flop and Flop phases, the fixed bet is equal to the small blind (see Blinds above).
- During the Turn and the River phases, the fixed bet is equal to the big blind (see Blinds above).
If the small blind is 5 and the big blind is 10, this means that on the first two phases of the game players must have an opening bet of 5 and any players who wish to raise them must do so by 5. That means if Player 1 opens the betting with 5, Player 2 must CALL, FOLD, or RAISE BY 5 bringing the bet up to 10. During the third and fourth phases of the game, this amount goes up to 10. During the third and fourth phases of the game, if Player 3 bets 10, and Player 4 wishes to raise, they MUST raise to 20 (10 over the previous player’s bet).
When No-Limit is enabled, there is a minimum bet enforced on players. This minimum bet is equivalent to the last bet made. For example, if Player 1 bets 6 chips, then Player 2 must raise by a minimum of 6 chips if they want to increase the bet. This means player 2 would be required to raise the bet to at least 12. If Player 3 then wishes to also raise, they would be required to raise by at least 12, making the bet now 24.
If Limit Hold’em is disabled, and No-Limit Hold’em is disabled, then the game defaults to standard betting where there is no minimum and no fixed bets.
By default there is no forced ante, but this can be turned on by a game host. If enabled, all players must contribute 1 chip to the pot at the start of each round. If a player is unable to contribute their ante, they lose and are removed from the game.
There are 9 basic poker hands, ranked in descending order from best to worst:
- Straight Flush – A straight flush consists of all cards in sequential order AND all cards being the same suit. Straight flushes can normally only be beaten by other, better straight flushes.
- Example: 4 of Clubs, 5 of Clubs, 6 of Clubs, 7 of Clubs, and 8 of Clubs would be Straight Flush. It would be beat by a Straight Flush (of any suit) where the highest card was greater than 8. (4-5-6-7-8 all of the Clubs suit)
- A Straight Flush where the highest card is an Ace is called a Royal Flush, and is normally the highest hand in the game. (10-J-Q-K-A all of the same suit)
- Four of a Kind – Any four cards of the same rank, regardless of suit.
- Example: Jack of Clubs, Jack of Diamonds, Jack of Spades, and Jack of Hearts. (J-J-J-J)
- Full House – A full house is any hand for which you simultaneously hold a Three of a Kind and a Pair.
- Example: Two 4s and three 7s. Or Three Jacks and Two Aces. (4-4-4-7-7 or J-J-J-A-A)
- Flush – A flush is any set of 5 cards that all have the same suit, regardless of their rank. They do not have to be in sequential order.
- Example: 3 of Clubs, 7 of Clubs, 9 of Clubs, 10 of Clubs, Ace of Clubs. (3-7-9-10-A all of the Clubs suit)
- Straight: A straight is any set of 5 cards that have sequential rank, regardless of suit.
- Example: 7 of Clubs, 8 of Hearts, 9 of Diamonds, 10 of Clubs, Jack of Spades. (7-8-9-10-J)
- Three of a Kind – Any three cards of the same rank, regardless of suit.
- Example: Queen of Clubs, Queen of Hearts, and Queen of Spades. (Q-Q-Q)
- Two Pair – Any two distinct pairs of cards.
- Example: Holding the Jack of Clubs and the Jack of Hearts, while also holding the 6 of Clubs and the 6 of Diamonds. (6-6 and J-J in the same hand).
- Pair – A pair is any two cards of the same rank, regardless of suit.
- Example: 5 of Clubs, and 5 of Diamonds. (5-5)
- High Card – If you have no other hand, you will always have a High Card. This is the worst possible hand, but it is a hand. High Card is simply the value of the highest card in your hand.
- Example: If you are holding 4-6-7-J-Q in your hand, then Queen is your high card, regardless of suit.
All hands can be beaten by better variants of the same hand. For example, A pair of Jacks (J-J) will beat a pair of Eights (8-8). A high King will beat a high Jack. A full house consisting of Kings and 7s (K-K-K-7-7) will beat a full house consisting of Jacks and 10s (J-J-J-10-10). Etc.
Players may only win up to an amount equal to their own contribution from each of the other players. That is, if your total contribution to the pot on a given round is 30 chips, you may only win 30 chips from each of the other players. That means if there are 3 players, your total maximum win is 90 chips.
If a player wins whose contribution to the pot is lower than everyone else’s (likely because they went all-in), then any leftover chips are put into a side pot. The winner of the side pot is determined by the next highest hand to the winner. If in the event the winner of the side pot is also unable to claim the entire side pot, another side pot is set aside for the third highest hand, and so forth until the entire pot has been claimed.
Bluffing and Folding
Bluffing is one of the most important strategic options in Poker. If a player successfully bluffs and convinces all of their opponents to fold before the Showdown phase, then they will win by default and do not have to reveal their hand.
Leaving the Table
If you leave a Poker game in progress, you will fold automatically for the round, and not be dealt in to any subsequent rounds until you return. If the game ends before you get back, you simply forfeited. If you return to the table before the game ends, you will not be able to play in the current round, but will be dealt in automatically during the next round.
For information on switching out tables and themes, please see this FAQ entry. For an overview of the theme/table administrative menu, please check out our Game Rezzer Administration article. For detailed information on customizing animations and camera views, please see our Player Experience Customization article.
Poker supports Card Design add-ons! Click here for more information.
K.R. Engineering card games that use a standard playing card deck (and some that use non-standard decks) will allow you to change the cards to be anything that you want if you’re willing to make your own textures for them. You can find more information and instructions by visiting our Custom Cards article.
Gaming.SL Live Integration
Gaming.SL Live (also known as Gaming.SL or G.SL) is gaming platform and services system developed by K.R. Engineering, which brings a variety of enhanced features to games in Second Life that are not possible with Second Life alone. In addition to the features described in this article, G.SL can integrate with your table in the following ways.
Gaming.SL connected games have a grid-wide top score database that allows players to compete and have a pervasive record of their high scores. These high scores can be viewed by using a Top Scores display board in Second Life or by accessing the Top Scores page on the Gaming.SL website. Scores can be filtered down by region, specific game tables, dates, and other criteria.
In addition to recording high scores, games keep a running tally of the total number of times players have won on a game. This information can be viewed on a Top Winners display board in Second Life or by accessing the Top Winners page on the Gaming.SL website. Winners can likewise be filtered by region and other criteria to see a more specific list of winners.
On supported games, players will also be assigned a rank that compares their performance to other players who have played the same game. Players can improve this rank by playing well against other players. Rank information can be viewed on a Top Ranked display board in Second Life or by accessing the Top Ranked page on the Gaming.SL website.
Gaming.SL includes support for Achievements in participating games, where-in you can unlock trophies by performing miraculous or mundane feats of gameplay. Achievements are awarded automatically and announced in Second Life when they are unlocked. Players can check their own achievements by visiting the Achievements page on the Gaming.SL website.
Gaming.SL supports the option to have ongoing recurring Jackpots where players can win cash prizes just for playing, no purchase necessary! Visit the Jackpots page on the Gaming.SL website to see the current jackpot standings, and who you need to defeat to win a prize. Prizes are based on ranking on a leaderboard that is erased during each jackpot period. Players must play during each period to be eligible to win during that period.
Gaming.SL connected games utilize a licensing system that allows scores, ranks, winners, and other attributes to persist between rezzes of the same game, regardless of location in Second Life. This licensing system also allows games to have COPY permissions while still offering instancing control.
Games that use Gaming.SL Live can also optionally be specified as a PUBLIC game by the game’s owner. This will display the game on the Gaming.SL Live Games page, including game status, options, and location, and a button to let a user teleport straight to the game to play. All games default to PRIVATE unless explicitly changed by the owner of the game.
To access the game’s administrative menu, simply click and hold your mouse button down on any part of it for two seconds. A menu will pop up on your screen displaying current settings and providing options to change them. (In slow simulators, this may take slighter longer than two seconds, just hold the mouse button down until you see a menu.)
On certain rezzer versions, depending on where you click, you may open the REZZER’S administrative menu instead of the GAME’S administrative menu. This is okay! If you are in the rezzer admin menu, you can switch directly over to the game admin menu by pressing the “Game ↗” button. Likewise if you open the game menu by mistake, and wish to switch over to the rezzer menu, you can simply press the “↙ Rezzer” button.
Some elements of the administration menu are accessible only by the owner, while others can be accessed by anyone who is considered an administrative user, either explicitly added or implicitly through the Group Admin feature.
There are too many options to fit in a standard dialog window, so the window has been divided into pages. You can use the <<< and >>> buttons at the bottom of the admin menu to change which page of options you are currently viewing. If you don’t see the option you want, it’s on another page!
Many options that were formerly in the game admin menu have been moved to the table/theme/rezzer admin menu. These are options that are game-independent, such as admin users, branding, sound volume, and updating. These options are now set on the table/theme/rezzer and apply automatically to whatever game is being played on that table or theme. For details on accessing the rezzer admin menu and what options are in it, please see the Game Rezzer Administration article.
- Indicators: A menu for changing the color of the turn indicator lights on the game board.
- Color: An alternate way to access the color/theme menu for the table. This is the same as pressing the Color button on the table top.
- Cards: Access the card customization menu. See the ‘CUSTOM CARDS’ section below for more information.
Administrative User Options
- ↙ Rezzer: This button will directly open the rezzer’s administrative menu instead of the game’s menu.
- Players: Access the player management menu to skip or evict players from the game.
- Abandoned: Select this button to change the number of seconds the table waits to reset an abandoned game after all players have left.
- Timeout: Select this button to change the number of seconds the table waits for idle players to begin their turn. If they don’t roll before the timeout occurs, the game will skip them for this round.
- Quiet: Enable quiet mode, reducing the amount of chatter that the game will send to local chat.
- Chatty: Disable quiet mode.
- Start 50: Start with 50 betting chips per player.
- Start 100: Start with 100 betting chips per player.
- Start 200: Start with 200 betting chips per player.
- Play Left: Game play passes to your left (clockwise) around the table.
- Play Right: Game play passes to your right (counter-clockwise) around the table.
- Text On: Enable hover text for player scores.
- Text Off: Disable hover text for player scores.
- Ante On: Enable forced ante for each round of the game, requiring players to contribute 1 chip.
- Ante Off: Disable forced ante for each round.
- Checking On: Enable the option to Check when betting, allowing players to choose not to bet.
- Checking Off: Disable Check as a betting option.
- Blinds On: Enable Blind Betting, requiring a forced bet from two players each round (small blind and big blind).
- Blinds Off: Disable Blind Betting.
- Limit Bet: Enable Limit Hold’em, requiring a minimum bet of the small blind on the first two phases, and big blind on the second two phases.
- No-Limit Bet: Enable No-Limit Hold’em, requiring players to match the previous bet when raising.
- Basic Bet: Players can bet or raise by any amount.
- Big 4: Set big blind equal to 4 chips (and small blind equal to 2 chips).
- Big 10: Set big blind equal to 10 chips (and small blind equal to 5 chips).
- Big 20: Set big blind equal to 20 chips (and small blind equal to 10 chips).
- Show All: All 7 cards (including hole cards) will be shown at showdown, even if not used for hand.
- Show Played: Only the 5 cards chosen to be played will be shown at showdown.
If you have more questions, please use the search tool on our main page to browse our many helpful articles and FAQ entries. If you can’t find the answer you’re looking for, you can contact us for assistance.
You can find the ChangeLog for Texas Hold ‘Em by visiting this article.