Chinese Poker

Chinese Poker

As the name suggests, Chinese Poker came to the Western world from China. In Asian countries this is one of the most popular card games. Chinese Poker has a long history, however, a worldwide fame came to this game only in the 20th century. Today Chinese Poker is very popular among professional poker players and is always played during the biggest poker championships.

The Origin of Chinese Poker

Unfortunately, the exact origin of Chinese Poker is unknown. What we do know is that it was invented in China. Chinese Poker is very similar to Pai Gow poker, as both are “setting games”, which means that players have to create a certain number of card sets. Several historical records show that Pai Gow was very popular in China in the 10th century, AD. Chinese emperor of that time – Mu-Tsung loved playing a card game that resembled Pai Gow, therefore it is possible to assume that Pai Gow and Chinese Poker have similar roots. In the 19th century Chinese Poker was first played in the USA.

Chinese Poker Rules

Chinese Poker poker is played with 2 to 4 players, however there is a variation that involves 5 players. To start the game you need a standard 52-card deck. After shuffling a dealer gives each player thirteen cards. The aim of the game is to break these cards into 3 sets or hands, called – ‘front’, ‘middle’ and ‘back’. The ‘back’ and ‘middle’ are 5-card sets, while the ‘front’ – is a 3-card set.

The ‘back’ set is the highest ranking set, the ‘middle’ is the middle set and the ‘front’ is correspondingly the lowest ranking set. In the 3-card set straights and flushes do not count.

When all players have all three card sets, they put the cards on the table face-down. The ‘back’ is the closest set to the player, then you put the ‘middle’ and the ‘front’ set. Now it is time to open the cards and compare the sets. ‘Back’ sets are compared with the ‘back’, ‘front’ with the ‘front’ and ‘middle’ with the middle. The hand is won by the player who makes three straights or flushes.


The main feature that distinguishes Chinese Poker from other poker variants is the fact that Chinese Poker does not have chips or betting. In Chinese Poker players win not stakes, but points or units that have a certain monetary value which players determine before the game.

Chinese Poker has several scoring methods: ‘1-3’ and ‘4-2’ scoring methods. In ‘1-3’ scoring method a player who wins two out of three sets is awarded one point and three points for winning 3 sets. With ‘2-4’ scoring method, players get 2 or 4 points: four for winning 3 sets and 2 for winning 2 sets. The scoring system is agreed between the players.

Chinese Poker is an interesting and exciting game. Though it differs from a traditional poker, it is very popular among players all around the world. Even professional poker players enjoy playing Chinese Poker, since it may involve large stakes. To get a more detailed information about Chinese Poker, visit Cruelpoker.com. By visiting this website, you will find detailed Chinese Poker instructions and will get a chance to try your luck in online gambling.

About the Author: Andrew Ferguson

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