Title:
POKER GAME
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention presents a method of conducting a poker game. The method includes a step of dealing at least one pocket card to each of a plurality of players. The at least one pocket card forms a pocket card pool for the player. The method also includes a step of dealing alternative community cards. Each of the players can choose between the alternative community cards. Each of the players may be allowed to switch their choice. The method also includes a step of dealing at least one non-alternative community card. The alternative community card, as chosen, and the non-alternative community card together form a community card pool for the player. At the showdown, each player can use a combination of the pocket card pool and the community card pool to make up a five-card poker hand.



Inventors:
Haag, Margaret Louise (Washington, MO, US)
Application Number:
12/423346
Publication Date:
10/14/2010
Filing Date:
04/14/2009
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63F1/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
COLLINS, DOLORES R
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
KANG INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAW, LLC (WASHINGTON, MO, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A method of conducting a poker game, comprising the steps of: dealing at least one pocket card to each of a plurality of players, wherein said at least one pocket card forms a pocket card pool for the player; dealing a first alternative community card to a first alternative community card area and a second alternative community card to a second alternative community card area; allowing each of said plurality of players to choose between said first alternative community card area and said second alternative community card area; dealing a first non-alternative community card to a first non-alternative community card area, wherein said first alternative community card and said first non-alternative community card form a community card pool for the player who chose said first alternative community card area, and wherein said second alternative community card and said first non-alternative community card form said community card pool for the player who chose said second alternative community card area; and allowing each of said plurality of players to use a combination of said pocket card pool and said community card pool to make up a five-card poker hand.

2. The method of claim 1, further comprising: dealing a third alternative community card to said first alternative community card area and a forth alternative community card to said second alternative community card area; wherein said first alternative community card, said third alternative community card and said first non-alternative community card form said community card pool for the player who chose said first alternative community card area, and wherein said second alternative community card, said fourth alternative community card and said first non-alternative community card form said community card pool for the player who chose said second alternative community card area.

3. The method of claim 1, further comprising: dealing a second non-alternative community card to a second non-alternative community card area; wherein said first alternative community card, said first non-alternative community card and said second non-alternative community card form said community card pool for the player who chose said first alternative community card area, and wherein said second alternative community card, said First non-alternative community card and said second non-alternative community card form said community card pool for the player who chose said second alternative community card area.

4. The method of claim 1, further comprising: dealing a third alternative community card to said first alternative community card area and a forth alternative community card to said second alternative community card area; and dealing a second non-alternative community card to a second non-alternative community card area; wherein said first alternative community card, said second alternative community card, said first non-alternative community card and said second non-alternative community card form said community card pool for the player who chose said first alternative community card area, and wherein said second alternative community card, said fourth alternative community card, said first non-alternative community card and said second non-alternative community card form said community card pool for the player who chose said second alternative community card area.

5. The method of claim 1, wherein said at least one pocket card comprises three pocket cards and said three pocket cards form said pocket card pool for the player.

6. The method of claim 1, further comprising: commencing a betting round prior to the step of dealing said first and second alternative community cards.

7. The method of claim 2, further comprising: commencing a betting round prior to the step of dealing said third and fourth alternative community cards.

8. The method of claim 1, further comprising: commencing a betting round prior to the step of dealing said first non-alternative community card.

9. The method of claim 3, further comprising: commencing a betting round prior to the step of dealing said second non-alternative community card.

10. The method of claim 1, further comprising: commencing a betting round prior to the step of allowing each of said plurality of players to use said combination of said pocket card pool and said community card pool to make up said five-card poker hand.

11. The method of claim 2., further comprising: allowing each of said plurality of players to switch between said first alternative community card area and said second alternative community card area, prior to the step of dealing said first non-alternative community card.

12. The method of claim 7, further comprising: allowing each of said plurality of players to switch between said first alternative community card area and said second alternative community card area, prior to the step of dealing said first non-alternative community card; wherein said switch requires a minimum bet.

13. The method of claim 3, further comprising: allowing each of said plurality of players to switch between said first alternative community card area and said second alternative community card area, prior to the step of dealing said second non-alternative community card.

14. The method of claim 9, further comprising: allowing each of said plurality of players to switch between said first alternative community card area and said second alternative community card area, prior to the step of dealing said second non-alternative community card; wherein said switch requires a minimum bet.

15. The method of claim 4, further comprising: allowing each of said plurality of players to switch between said first alternative community card area and said second alternative community card area, prior to the step of dealing said first non-alternative community card; and allowing each of said plurality of players to switch between said first alternative community card area and said second alternative community card area, prior to the step of dealing said second non-alternative community.

16. The method of claim 1, wherein said first alternative community card area is marked with a first color, and said second alternative community card area is marked with a second color, said first color being different from said second color.

17. The method of claim 16, further comprising: requiring each of said plurality of players to declare which alternative community card area the player chooses; wherein each of said plurality of players is provided with a lammer having a first side marked with said first color and a second side marked with said second color so that the player can make a declaration by placing the first or second side of said lammer up.

18. The method of claim 1, further comprising: allowing each of said plurality of players to make a bonus bet prior to the step of dealing said at least one pocket card; and paying a bonus, according to a predetermined bonus rate, to any player who made a bonus bet and whose said at least one pocket card meets a predetermined condition.

19. The method of claim 5, further comprising: allowing each of said plurality of players to make a bonus bet prior to the step of dealing said three pocket cards; and paying a bonus, according to a predetermined bonus rate, to any player who made a bonus bet and whose said three pocket cards meet a predetermined condition.

20. The method of claim 19, wherein said predetermined condition comprises a situation that said player receives a Queen in said three pocket cards.

21. The method of claim 19, wherein said predetermined condition comprises a situation that said player receives an Ace in said three pocket cards.

22. The method of claim 19, wherein said predetermined condition comprises a situation that said player receives said three pocket cards of a kind, a flush, or a straight.

23. The method of claim 1, wherein said step of allowing each of said plurality of players to choose between said first alternative community card area and said second alternative community card area takes place at the same time with the step of allowing each of said plurality of players to use said combination of said pocket card pool and said community card pool to make up said five-card poker hand.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

Not Applicable.

BACKGROUND

1. Field of the Invention

This invention generally relates to card games, and more particularly to a poker game.

2. Description of Related Art

Poker is one of the most popular card games. Texas Hold'em (also called “hold'em”) is a variation of the poker game. In Texas Hold'em, each player is dealt two cards facing down, referred to as “pocket cards” (also called “hole cards”). The dealer also deals five cards facing up, referred to as “community cards” (also called “shared cards” or “window cards”). Any player can use the five community cards in combination with their two pocket cards to make up a five-card poker hand.

There are betting rounds each time the dealer deals one of the five community cards. Betting begins with the player to the left of the dealer. The player can “bet,” “check,” or “fold.” Once the first bet is made, the remaining players may “call,” “raise” or “fold.” Until the first bet is made, each player in turn may “bet,” “check” or “fold.” “Checking” is to not place a bet. “Folding” is to drop out of the hand losing any bets they have already made. “Calling” is to match the highest bet so far made. “Raising” is to increase the previous high bet. In the end, the one who has the highest hand wins.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a significant variation from known poker games, in which each player can choose between at least two flop cards (alternative community cards).

According to the present invention, there is provided a method of conducting a poker game. The method includes a step of dealing at least one pocket card to each of a plurality of players. The at least one pocket card forms a pocket card pool, which the player will use to make a five-card poker hand at the showdown. The method also includes a step of dealing a first alternative community card to a first alternative community card area and a second alternative community card to a second alternative community card area. Each of the plurality of players is allowed to choose between the first alternative community card area and the second alternative community card area. The method also includes a step of dealing a first non-alternative community card to a first non-alternative community card area. The first non-alternative community and the alternative community card, as chosen, form a community card pool. At the showdown, each player can use a combination of the pocket card pool and the community card pool to make up a five-card poker hand.

In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, the first alternative community card area is marked with a first color (for example, red), and the second alternative community card area is marked with a second color different from the first color (for example, blue). In a preferred embodiment, each player can be provided with a lammer having a first side marked with the first color (for example, red) and a second side marked with the second color (for example, blue) so that the player can make a declaration which community card area the player chooses by placing the first or second side of said lammer up.

In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, the method further includes a step of dealing a third alternative community card to the first alternative community card area and a forth alternative community card to the second alternative community card area. In this embodiment, each player therefore has a pair of alternative community cards (which can also be referred to as “flop cards”), as chosen (the first and third alternative community cards; or the second and fourth alternative community cards), in addition to the non-alternative community card in the community card pool.

In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, the method further includes a step of dealing a second non-alternative community card to a second non-alternative community card area. In this embodiment, each player therefore has two non-alternative community cards (which may be called “turn card” and “river card,” respectively) in addition to the alternative community card(s), as chosen, in the community card pool.

In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, each player is dealt three pocket cards, which form a three-pocket-card pool for the player.

In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, a betting round takes place prior to dealing the first and second alternative community cards (flop cards). Additionally or alternatively, a betting round can take place prior to dealing the third and fourth alternative community cards (flop cards). Additionally or alternatively, a betting round can take place prior to dealing the first non-alternative community card (which can also be referred to as “turn card”). Additionally or alternatively, a betting round can be had prior to dealing the second non-alternative community card (also referred to as “river card”). Additionally or alternatively, a final betting round can take place before the showdown, where each player can use a combination of the pocket card pool and the community card pool to make up a five-card poker hand.

In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, each player can have an option to switch between the first alternative community card area and the second alternative community card area. The switch can be made before the first non-alternative community card (“turn card”) is dealt. Preferably, the switch option can require a minimum bet. Additionally or alternatively, each player can have a chance to switch between the first alternative community card area and the second alternative community card area before the second non-alternative community card (“river card”) is dealt. Again, this switch option can also require a minimum bet.

In an embodiment of the present invention, each player can have an option to make a bonus bet prior to the step of dealing pocket cards. In this embodiment, a bonus is paid, according to a predetermined bonus rate, to any player who made a bonus bet and whose pocket cards meet a predetermined condition. In a preferred embodiment, the predetermined condition can include a situation where the player receives a Queen in three pocket cards. Additionally or alternatively, the predetermined condition can include a situation that the player receives an Ace in three pocket cards. Yet additionally or alternatively, the predetermined condition can include a situation where the player receives three pocket cards of a kind, a flush, or a straight.

In an embodiment of the present invention, each player can make a choice between the first alternative community card area and the second alternative community card area when making up the five-card poker hand. In this embodiment, the player does not declare which alternative community card area he/she chooses to use until the showdown takes place.

Further areas of applicability of the present invention will become apparent from the detailed description provided hereinafter. It should be understood that the detailed description and specific examples, while indicating the preferred embodiment of the invention, are intended for purposes of illustration only and are not intended to limit the scope of the invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The above and other objects and features of the present invention will become apparent from the following description of preferred embodiments given in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a top plan view of a playing table for an embodiment of poker game according to the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a flow chart of an embodiment of poker game according to the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The present invention is a variation of hold'em poker games. In the illustrated embodiment of the present invention, each player 50 chooses the best five cards from a pocket card pool consisting of three pocket cards (also called “hole cards”) 61, 62, 63 and a community card pool consisting of four community cards (also called “shared cards” or “window cards”) to make up a five-card poker hand. The community card pool consists of a turn card 68, a river card 69, and two flop cards 64, 66; 65, 67. The two flop cards 64, 66; 65, 67 are a pair of cards as chosen by each player 50 between two pairs of flop cards 64, 66; 65, 67. Accordingly, the flop cards 64, 66; 65, 67 can also be referred to as “alternative community cards” in this application. Meanwhile, with the turn card 68 and the river card 69, each player does not have other options, and accordingly they can be referred to as “non-alternative community cards” in this application.

Shown in FIG. 1 is a system 10 in which an embodiment of the present invention can be practiced. The system 10 includes a playing table 20, a dealer 40, and players 50. The playing table 20 has a community card area 30. The community card area 30 includes a first flop card area 32, a second flop card area 34, a turn card area 36, and a river card area 38. Preferably, the first flop card area 32 is marked red and the second flop card area 34 is marked blue. Alternatively, other colors or indicia can be used to indicate the first flop card area 32 and the second flop card area 34.

Shown in FIG. 2 is a flow chart of an embodiment of the present invention. The poker game rule shown in FIG. 2 can be called “River Boat Switch” because each player 50 can switch between the two flop card areas 32, 34 as explained below. Upon START, the dealer 40 deals three pocket cards 61, 62, 63 to each player 50 facing down in a clockwise direction (Block 110).

Then, the first round of betting begins with the player 50 to the left of the dealer 40 (Block 112). This player 50 may “bet,” “check,” or “fold.” Once the first bet is made, the remaining players 50 may “call,” “raise” or “fold.” Until the first bet is made, each player 50 in turn may “bet,” “check” or “fold.” “Checking” is to not place a bet. “Folding” is to drop out of the hand losing any bets they have already made. “Calling” is to match the highest bet so far made. “Raising” is to increase the previous high bet.

Next, the dealer 40 deals a first flop card 64 to the first flop card area 32 (red area) and a second flop card 65 to the second flop card area 34 (blue area) (Block 114).

Then, the second round of betting takes place (Block 116). When “betting,” “checking,” “calling,” or “raising,” each player 50 declares which one (red or blue) between the first flop card area 32 (red area) and the second flop card area 34 (blue area) they choose to play with. There could be provided a flop selection indicator 52 to each player 50. The flop selection indicator 52 can be a flop lammer having a red side and blue side. Using this flop lammer, each player 50 can make a declaration by placing the blue or red side of their respective flop lammer up in front of their respective space.

Next, the dealer 40 deals a third flop card 66 to the first flop card area 32 (red area) and a fourth flop card 67 to the second flop card area 34 (blue area) (Block 118).

Then, the third round of betting commences (Block 120). When acting in turn, each player 50 may switch from the first flop card area 32 (red area) to the second flop card area 34 (blue area) or vice versa. The switch can be made, for example, by turning over their respective flop lammer 52. The switch option may require a minimum bet.

Next, the dealer 40 deals a turn card 68 to the turn card area 36 (Block 122). The turn card 68 is a community card (also called “shared card” or “window card”) shared by all players.

Then, the fourth round of betting commences (Block 124). When acting in turn, each player 50 may switch again from the first flop card area 32 (red area) to the second flop card area 34 (blue area) or vice versa by turning over their respective flop lammer 52. Again, the switch option may require a minimum bet.

Next, the dealer 40 deals a river card 69 to the river card area 38 (Block 126). The river card is also a community card (also called “shared card” or “window card”) shared by all players.

Then, the fifth round of betting takes place (Block 128).

Next, players 50 reveal cards at the showdown (Block 130). Each player may use any combination of the three pocket cards 61, 62. 63, and four community cards (a turn card 68 and a river card 69 plus two flop cards 64, 66; 65, 67, either red or blue) to make up a five-card poker hand. The player 50 can only choose either one between the first and second flop card areas 32, 34 (red or blue). In other words, the player 50 cannot take one from the first flop card area 32 (red) and one from the second flop card area 34 (blue). The player 50 with the highest poker hand wins the pot. If a tie occurs, the pot may be split.

Various modifications could be made to the exemplary embodiment, as described above with reference to the corresponding illustrations, without departing from the scope of the invention. Examples of variations can include an optional bonus bet before the initial dealing of three pocket cards 61, 62, 63 of Block 110. A bonus is paid to any player 50 who makes the bonus bet and receives pocket cards that meet a predetermined condition. The amount of bonus can be determined based upon the probability that the predetermined condition can be met.

The predetermined condition can include a situation that the player 50 receives a Queen in his/her pocket cards 61, 62, 63. Accordingly, this variation can be called “River Boat Queens.” In this variation, when a player 50 makes a bonus bet and receives a Queen in his/her three pocket cards 61, 62, 63, the player 50 can be paid a bonus that, for example, equals his/her bonus bet. If the player 50 receives two Queens in his/her three pocket cards 61, 62, 63, the player 50 can be paid higher odds, for example, 2-1 odds. If the player 50 receives three Queens, the player 50 can be paid highest odds, for example, 10-1 odds. Other predetermined bonus rates can also be employed.

Additionally or alternatively, the predetermined condition can include a situation that the player 50 receives an Ace in his/her pocket cards 61, 62, 63. Accordingly, this variation can be called “River Boat Aces.” In this variation, when a player 50 makes a bonus bet and receives an Ace in his/her three pocket cards 61, 62, 63, the player 50 can be paid a bonus that, for example, equals his/her bonus bet. If the player 50 receives two Aces in his/her three pocket cards 61, 62, 63, the player 50 can be paid higher odds, for example, 2-1 odds. If the player 50 receives three Aces, the player 50 can be paid highest odds, for example, 10-1 odds. Other predetermined bonus rates can also be used.

Additionally or alternatively, the predetermined condition can include a situation that the player 50 receives three pocket cards 61, 62, 63 of a kind, a flush, and/or a straight. This variation can be called “River Boat Slam.” In this variation, when a player 50 makes a bonus bet and receives three pocket cards 61, 62, 63 of a kind, a flush, and/or a straight, the player 50 can be paid a bonus with a predetermined bonus rate. The bonus rate can be predetermined based upon the probability that the respective conditions can be met.

Other examples of variations to the exemplary embodiment, as described above with reference to the corresponding illustrations, can omit the declaration during the second round of betting taking place of Block 116 and the switch option during the third and fourth rounds of betting of Block 120 and Block 124. In other words, each player 50 does not declare which one between the First flop card area 32 (red) and the second flop card area 34 (blue) he/she chooses to use until the end of the game. Accordingly, the player 50 chooses which flop area he/she chooses at the showdown of Block 130. This variation can be called “River Boat Slide.”

The variation of “River Boat Slide” can be combined with the variations of “River Boat Queens,” “River Boat Aces,” and/or “River Boat Slam.” In other words, in the variation of “River Boat Slide,” each player 50 can make an optional bonus bet before the initial dealing of three pocket cards 61, 62, 63 of Block 1-10. If a player 50 makes the bonus bet and receives pocket cards 61, 62, 63 that meet a predetermined condition, the player is paid a bonus. The amount of bonus can be determined based upon the probability that the predetermined condition can be met. The predetermined condition can include a situation that the player 50 receives a Queen in three pocket cards 61, 62, 63 (River Boat Queens), a condition that the player 50 receives an Ace (River Boat Aces), and/or a condition that the player 50 receives three pocket cards 61, 62, 63 of a kind, a flush, and/or a straight (River Boat Slam).

As various modifications could be made to the exemplary embodiment, as described above with reference to the corresponding illustrations, without departing from the scope of the invention, it is intended that all matter contained in the foregoing description and shown in the accompanying drawings shall be interpreted as illustrative rather than limiting. Thus, the breadth and scope of the present invention should not be limited by any of the above-described exemplary embodiments, but should be defined only in accordance with the following claims appended hereto and their equivalents.