Title:
Method of playing multiple round poker-type game
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A poker-type game in which there are a plurality of game play rounds. In each round, players wager on hand values. Optimal hand values may change from round to round, so that players may be playing for a high value hand in one round, and for a lower value hand in a prior or succeeding round. In each round, players may proceed through a series of hand declarations and challenges, wherein two players are able to compare their hand values. The losing party in such a challenge pays an amount to the prevailing party. In embodiment, a player pot may be constituted, consisting of player wagers, with the total amount constituting an exchange rate. The payment amount for a lost challenge in the first round may be equal to the exchange rate, for the second round may be equal to two times the exchange rate, and for the third round may be equal to three times the exchange rate. Play may be continuous over more than one three round game.



Inventors:
Hoover, Dirk C. (Twain Harte, CA, US)
Application Number:
11/635184
Publication Date:
06/12/2008
Filing Date:
12/08/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63F1/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
PIERCE, WILLIAM M
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WEISS & MOY PC (4204 NORTH BROWN AVENUE, SCOTTSDALE, AZ, 85251, US)
Claims:
I claim:

1. A method for playing a poker-type of game comprising: determining a desired order of hand values for a multiple round game, wherein at least one hand value is high and at least one hand value is low; dealing a first set of cards to each of a plurality of players; facilitating play of a first round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the first set of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the first set of cards received by each player and by reference to the determined order of hand value; dealing a second set of cards to each of the plurality of players; facilitating play of a second round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the first and second sets of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the first and second sets of cards received by each player and by reference to the determined order of hand value; dealing a third set of cards to each of the plurality of players; and facilitating play of a third round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of cards from at least two of the first, second and third sets of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the hand and by reference to the determined order of hand value.

2. The method of claim 1 wherein the first set of cards comprises two cards.

3. The method of claim 1 further comprising accepting a wager from each of the plurality of players.

4. The method of claim 3 wherein the total amount of accepted wagers constitutes an exchange rate.

5. The method of claim 4 further comprising facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the first round of play to a player who has won the challenge.

6. The method of claim 5 wherein the amount of the payment is equal to the exchange rate.

7. The method of claim 1 wherein the second set of cards comprises three cards.

8. The method of claim 4 further comprising facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the second round of play to a player who has won the challenge.

9. The method of claim 8 wherein the amount of the payment is equal to two times the exchange rate.

10. The method of claim 1 wherein the third set of cards comprises two cards.

11. The method of claim 1 further comprising facilitating a discarding by the plurality of players of at least one card from the first, second and third sets of cards to comprise a complete player hand.

12. The method of claim 1 further comprising a discarding by the plurality of players of two cards from the first, second and third sets of cards to comprise a complete player hand consisting of five cards.

13. The method of claim 4 further comprising facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the third round of play to a player who has won the challenge.

14. The method of claim 13 wherein the amount of the payment is equal to three times the exchange rate.

15. A method for playing a poker-type of game comprising: determining a desired order of hand values for a multiple round game, wherein at least one hand value is high and at least one hand value is low; accepting a wager from each of the plurality of players; dealing a first set of cards to each of a plurality of players; facilitating play of a first round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the first set of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the first set of cards received by each player and by reference to the determined order of hand value; facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the first round of play to a player who has won the challenge; dealing a second set of cards to each of the plurality of players; facilitating play of a second round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the first and second sets of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the first and second sets of cards received by each player and by reference to the determined order of hand value; facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the second round of play to a player who has won the challenge. dealing a third set of cards to each of the plurality of players; facilitating play of a third round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of cards from at least two of the first, second and third sets of cards permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the hand and by reference to the determined order of hand value; and facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the third round of play to a player who has won the challenge.

16. The method of claim 15 wherein the total amount of accepted wagers constitutes an exchange rate and wherein the amount of the payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the first round of play to a player who has won the challenge is equal to the exchange rate.

17. The method of claim 15 wherein the total amount of accepted wagers constitutes an exchange rate and wherein the amount of the payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the second round of play to a player who has won the challenge is equal to two times the exchange rate.

18. The method of claim 15 wherein the total amount of accepted wagers constitutes an exchange rate and wherein the amount of the payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the third round of play to a player who has won the challenge is equal to three times the exchange rate.

19. The method of claim 15 wherein the first set comprises two cards, wherein the second set comprises two cards, and wherein the third set comprises three cards and further comprising facilitating a discarding by the plurality of players of at least one card from the first, second and third sets of cards to comprise a complete player hand consisting of five cards.

20. A method for playing a poker-type of game comprising: determining a desired order of hand values for a multiple round game, wherein at least one hand value is high and at least one hand value is low; accepting a wager from each of the plurality of players; wherein the total amount of accepted wagers constitutes an exchange rate; dealing a first set of cards to each of a plurality of players; wherein the first set comprises two cards; facilitating play of a first round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the first set of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the first set of cards received by each player and by reference to the determined order of hand value; facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the first round of play to a player who has won the challenge; wherein the amount of the payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the first round of play to a player who has won the challenge is equal to the exchange rate; dealing a second set of cards to each of the plurality of players; wherein the second set comprises three cards; facilitating play of a second round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the first and second sets of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the first and second sets of cards received by each player and by reference to the determined order of hand value; facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the second round of play to a player who has won the challenge; wherein the amount of the payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the second round of play to a player who has won the challenge is equal to two times the exchange rate; dealing a third set of cards to each of the plurality of players; wherein the third set comprises three cards; facilitating a discarding by the plurality of players of at least one card from the first, second and third sets of cards to comprise a complete player hand consisting of five cards; facilitating play of a third round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the complete player hand, permitting a challenge by another player, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the complete player hands hand and by reference to the determined order of hand value; and facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the third round of play to a player who has won the challenge; wherein the amount of the payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the third round of play to a player who has won the challenge is equal to three times the exchange rate.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates generally to card games and methods therefor and, more particularly, to an improved poker game and method therefor.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Card games are popular both socially and for gambling purposes. Poker, and its many variations, is among the most common card games, especially for gambling. The general aim of poker is to collect a five card hand that is superior to the five card hand of one or more opponents or to try to bet in such a way as to cause opponents to believe that their hand is inferior and subsequently “fold” (concede or turn in) their hand. In the game of poker, several players compete against one another for one cumulative “pot” or sum of money. In casinos, the dealer or “house” draws a percentage, otherwise known as “the rake”, of each pot, thus generating revenue regardless of which player wins each hand.

There are many separate types of games within the poker family (such as Texas Hold'em, Seven-Card Stud, Draw Poker, Hi-low, and Omaha) all of which provide alternative formats for competing over a five card hand. Typically, these games involve a standard 52-card deck, although some variations use multiple decks or add a few cards called jokers which can be used as a substitute for any card in the deck.

Of all the many variations of poker, Texas Hold'em is the arguably the most famous, and perhaps the most popular. However, many poker players find that waiting for a high-quality poker hand is both time-consuming and boring. Attempts have been made to liven up the game in several different ways. Gaming machines, such as video poker machines, allow poker players the ability to play games with greater frequency. In addition, many of these machines offer variations on the game of poker which cannot be found in casino poker rooms, such as the use of multiple decks and jokers. The proliferation of so many different variations of poker and the use of joker cards is a sign that poker player crave change.

A need exists for providing a new, exciting variation of poker, including a method therefore.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

In accordance with one embodiment of the present invention, a method for playing a poker-type of game is disclosed. The method comprises: determining a desired order of hand values for a multiple round game, wherein at least one hand value is high and at least one hand value is low; dealing a first set of cards to each of a plurality of players; facilitating play of a first round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the first set of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the first set of cards received by each player and by reference to the determined order of hand value; dealing a second set of cards to each of the plurality of players; facilitating play of a second round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the first and second sets of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the first and second sets of cards received by each player and by reference to the determined order of hand value; dealing a third set of cards to each of the plurality of players; and facilitating play of a third round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of cards from at least two of the first, second and third sets of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the hand and by reference to the determined order of hand value.

In accordance with another embodiment of the present invention, a method for playing a poker-type of game is disclosed. The method comprises: determining a desired order of hand values for a multiple round game, wherein at least one hand value is high and at least one hand value is low; accepting a wager from each of the plurality of players; dealing a first set of cards to each of a plurality of players; facilitating play of a first round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the first set of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the first set of cards received by each player and by reference to the determined order of hand value; facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the first round of play to a player who has won the challenge; dealing a second set of cards to each of the plurality of players; facilitating play of a second round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the first and second sets of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the first and second sets of cards received by each player and by reference to the determined order of hand value; facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the second round of play to a player who has won the challenge; dealing a third set of cards to each of the plurality of players; facilitating play of a third round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of cards from at least two of the first, second and third sets of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the hand and by reference to the determined order of hand value; and facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the third round of play to a player who has won the challenge.

In accordance with a further embodiment of the present invention, a method for playing a poker-type of game is disclosed. The method comprises: determining a desired order of hand values for a multiple round game, wherein at least one hand value is high and at least one hand value is low; accepting a wager from each of the plurality of players; wherein the total amount of accepted wagers constitutes an exchange rate; dealing a first set of cards to each of a plurality of players; wherein the first set comprises two cards; facilitating play of a first round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the first set of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the first set of cards received by each player and by reference to the determined order of hand value; facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the first round of play to a player who has won the challenge; wherein the amount of the payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the first round of play to a player who has won the challenge is equal to the exchange rate; dealing a second set of cards to each of the plurality of players; wherein the second set comprises three cards; facilitating play of a second round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the first and second sets of cards, permitting a challenge by another player of the hand, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the first and second sets of cards received by each player and by reference to the determined order of hand value; facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the second round of play to a player who has won the challenge; wherein the amount of the payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the second round of play to a player who has won the challenge is equal to two times the exchange rate; dealing a third set of cards to each of the plurality of players; wherein the third set comprises three cards; facilitating a discarding by the plurality of players of at least one card from the first, second and third sets of cards to comprise a complete player hand consisting of five cards; facilitating play of a third round of play by the plurality of players, wherein one player may declare his hand consisting of the complete player hand, permitting a challenge by another player, and wherein the outcome of the challenge is determined by a comparison of the complete player hands hand and by reference to the determined order of hand value; and facilitating a payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the third round of play to a player who has won the challenge; wherein the amount of the payment by a player who has lost a challenge during the third round of play to a player who has won the challenge is equal to three times the exchange rate.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is an image of a screen shot, illustrating a manner in which a poker game consistent with an embodiment of the present invention may be displayed on a computer monitor or the like.

FIG. 2 is a flow chart, illustrating a method of playing a game of poker consistent with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 3 is an illustration of a scorecard that may be utilized in connection with a game of poker consistent with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of a play table, illustrating a challenge in a poker game consistent with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 5 is a top view of a play table with embedded video monitors, which may be utilized in connection with the play of a poker game consistent with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 6 is a side view of the table of FIG. 5.

FIG. 7 is a top view of an embedded monitor from the table of FIG. 5.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

In its most basic form, a poker game consistent with embodiments of the present invention involve multiple rounds of play, with betting permitted on hand values achieved on a round-by round basis. In one embodiment, three rounds are contemplated—a first round in which two cards are dealt, a second round in which three cards are dealt, and a third round in which two cards are dealt. In the third round, according to this embodiment, two cards are discarded, so that a player may form his/her best five card hand. It should be noted that the number of rounds, and number of cards dealt in each round, may be varied as desired.

Another aspect of a poker game consistent with an embodiment of the present invention is that desired hand values—whether high or low—will alternate from round to round. Thus, the desired hand value for round 1 may be high, for round 2 may be low, and for round 3 may be high again. Alternative, the desired values can alternate from low to high to low. Taking the first example (H-L-H), players in round one will wager on who has the highest value hand, based on the cards dealt during the first round (e.g., two cards). During the second round, they will wager on who has the lowest value hand, based on the value of all cards dealt during rounds one and two (e.g., five cards). During round three, they will wager on who has the highest value hand, based on the final hands to be played (e.g., five out of a total of seven cards dealt). It should be noted that other variations may be desired, such as H-H-L or L-L-H.

The order of the values for the rounds may be determined before play begins. In one embodiment, the player to the left of the dealer determines value order—in other words, whether the game will be H-L-H or -L-H-L. Alternatively, value order may be determined randomly through use of a dice or the like. As shown in FIG. 1, it may be desired to provide a visual display of the selection, for example by having H-L-H and L-H-L play spaces, with the selected space being illuminated or otherwise indicated.

The play and wagering a poker game consistent with an embodiment of the present invention may proceed as follows:

1. At the beginning of the game, each player places a wager amount (e.g., one game unit) into a pot. The total amount placed in the pot is considered to be the “exchange rate.” For example, if there are seven players, the exchange rate for the first round is 7 units, the exchange rate for the second round is 14 units, and the exchange rate for the third round is 21 units.

2. Hand value order (e.g., H-L-H or L-H-L) is determined.

3. Players are dealt their first two cards, and play proceeds.

4. Play preferably begins with the first player to the left of the dealer, and moves to that player's left. Players may pass or “declare.”

5. A player declares by moving their cards face down to the center of the table, for challenges by other players. (See the topmost image in FIG. 4.) One at a time, the remaining players may pass or “challenge” the declared cards. If a player chooses to challenge, he/she moves their cards to the center of the table as well. (See middle image in FIG. 4.)

6. The player who has declared and the one who has challenged examine each other's cards (see bottom image in FIG. 4), preferably without revealing the cards to other players, and the victor of the challenge is determined. The loser must pay the victor. In one embodiment, the amount of such payment is the exchange rate. For example, if there are seven players and thus the exchange rate is 7 units, the loser must pay the victor 7 units. (In the second round, the exchange rate would be 14 units, and in the third round it would be 21 units.) Payment may be immediate or at the end of the round.

7. Play continues until each player has had an opportunity to challenge the original “declared” hand, and had its challenge resolved as set forth above.

8. In one embodiment, after each player has had an opportunity to respond to the original declared hand, each player has the opportunity to “declare” their hand, so as to enable other players to challenge their hand in the manner set forth above. Challenges are resolved and payments made as set forth above.

9. After the conclusion of the first round, the second round begins. Based on the original value order, the value for the second round changes from H to L or L to H.

10. The dealer deals three additional cards to each player, so that players now have five card hands, Play proceeds with players being able to “declare” and “challenge,” as described above with respect to the first round.

11. After the conclusion of the second round, the third round begins. Based on the original value order, the value for the third round changes from H to L or L to H.

12. The dealer deals two additional cards to each player. Players select their five best cards, and discard two. Play proceeds with players being able to “declare” and “challenge,” as described above with respect to the first round. A flow of play as described herein is illustrated in FIG. 2.

13. In one embodiment, a new game is commenced, with the deal passing to the left or otherwise as desired. Players again place a game unit into the pot, and play proceeds through three rounds as set forth above. In one embodiment, play proceeds continually, through more than one game, until a player has won three legs (i.e., contested challenges) or three uncontested challenges.

Play of a poker game as described above may be facilitated through the application of one or more of the following rules:

1. A player is out when their available game units of play are insufficient to meet pot value;

2. Only one player may act at a time;

3. Deal is determined by a high card draw at the beginning of the game, and moves after the completion of three rounds;

4. Player card values are kept private and, correspondingly, players are not allowed to help other players;

5. Players are not permitted to surrender their hand during rounds.

It can be seen that a poker game as described herein provides a number of advantages as compared to prior art games. For example, folding is eliminated, so that players remain involved throughout the game. In addition, money can change hands during the course of the game, rather than only at the conclusion of play. Still further, the changing from high to low during game play, on a round to round basis, increases the chances that players will have competitive hands for at least one round of the game.

Play may proceed using a standard 52-card deck, For a table version of the present game, it may be desired to provide a pot device. The pot device will hold the wager amounts that are placed in the pot, It may be desired to provide on the pot device a counting means, for example an abacus type of system, an electronic counter, or other desired means, to track the number of game units contained within the pot. (See, e.g., FIG. 1).

Particularly for the table version, a score card such as the one illustrated in FIG. 3 may be desired. A score card, which may be maintained by the dealer for the whole table, permits tracking of the outcome of individual declarations and challenges on a player by player basis, for each round of play. It may permits a recording of legs, for purposes of determining ultimate disposition of the pot. The score card may be embodied in a paper format, in a dry erase display, in an electronic display, or otherwise as desired.

The present invention may be played live, as a table game. Alternatively, it may be embodied as an electronic poker game, in the form of an electronic game terminal (i.e., a video poker terminal) or as a game that may be played over the Internet (or other computer network) on a personal computer or the like.

Turning to an Internet version of the present game, play may be facilitated over the Internet or other computer network by multiple players utilizing personal computers or the like. In such a version, dealing of cards, determination of hand order, resolution of challenges, and/or scoring may be automated, so as to streamline game play. By relieving players of the responsibility to accomplish such things manually, speed and ease of play can be enhanced.

In another embodiment, a game consistent with the present invention may be played in a live tournament format and, in one embodiment, a televised tournament format. For such an embodiment, supplemental scoring features may be desired, in order to determine which players advance. For example, points may be assigned for winning a pot (e.g., 10 points), for winning a leg (e.g., 5 points), and/or for winning a challenge (e.g., 1 point). Depending on how structured, it should be noted that a player may buy in to the tournament, not succeed in advancing to the next round of play, yet still accumulate more money than the initial buy-in. In one embodiment, a departing player may receive back a portion (e.g., half) of the buy-in.

In one version of a tournament as herein described, it may be desired to match up advancing players with a set of qualifiers, including for example players who have qualified based on successful Internet play. Substantial prizes can be awarded to the victors in such tournaments, including exotic travel, cash, etc.

Referring now to FIGS. 5-7, in one embodiment, a poker game consistent with an embodiment of the present invention may be embodied in a video terminal, to be played as a version of video poker. It may be desired, as illustrated in FIG. 5, to provide a player table to facilitate table play by a plurality of players, each utilizing a video terminal and playing against each other. In this format, cards will be dealt on a round by round basis electronically, and displayed to players on their terminals. As shown in FIG. 6, it may be desired to angle the display, so as to preclude a viewing of player cards by other players, so that declarations and challenges may proceed as described above.

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.