For Apple-dedicated casino games enthusiasts who enjoy the complexities of pai gow poker, iPad pai gow poker is a natural fit. Both iPhones and iPads connect their users to endless gaming options at mobile casino sites, and games coded to play on one will play on the other. The iPad’s large touchscreen is ideal when players are separating the seven cards dealt into two pai gow hands, and it delivers the beautiful graphics and animations of the best pai gow poker sites faithfully.
iPad pai gow poker also gives players the choice between instant no-download games played directly via the browser, and downloadable pai gow poker apps. Some apps are free, and deliver free play only, some apps carry a download fee but offer permanent free games thereafter, and others will be free to download, but then offer the player the option of opening a casino account to play for real money, or permanent free play if they prefer it. So players have access to both forms of play wherever and whenever they like.
Chinese Tile Game Adapted to Cards
iPad pai gow poker is based on an ancient Chinese game of pai gow, which uses tiles similar to those found in mahjong. Casino entrepreneurs Fred Wolf and Sam Torosian invented the card version, pai gow poker, in the 1980s. It is played with a standard 52-card deck, plus one Joker that acts as a Wild card.
The original table game features up to six players, with a dealer position that passes clockwise from player to player on each successive hand. The house has no stake in the game, and makes its cut by taking a commission from each winning pot. Most modern iPad pai gow poker options are much simpler: the player plays a hand against the house only, winning even money on the bet if they beat both the dealer’s hands.
Setting Hands is Key
After the player has placed a bet and hit the deal button, iPad pai gow poker deals player and dealer seven cards each. The player must then arrange their cards into two hands, a five-card hand and a two-card hand, that contain the best online poker combinations possible. The five-card hand must be of higher value than the two-card hand.
Once the player has set their hand, the dealer’s hand is set according to a ranking system known as the House Way. Most iPad pai gow poker apps and instant-play sites also offer the player a House Way button, which will automatically set the player’s hand in the best possible pai gow poker combination, but players can usually set their hands manually as well, if they prefer to.
Both Hands Need to Win
There are three possible outcomes when the player’s and dealer’s iPad pai gow poker hands are compared. If the dealer’s five-card hand and two-card hand both beat the player’s five-card and two-card hand, the player loses. If both the player’s hands are stronger, the player wins. If one hand wins and the other loses, the result is a push, and the player simply gets the bet back. Individual hands that are tied count as a win for the dealer, however, which tilts the odds slightly in the house’s favour.