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September 21, 2017, 9:22 am
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Unearth the Fascinating Past of Pai Gow History

Just like the game Pai Gow Poker, Pai Gow history is quite interesting. As a variant of poker, the game has only really existed for a few decades.  However, the game on which it is based has been around for centuries.  Therefore, to understand where the poker version came from, it's first important to visit the roots of the game.

Why should you learn the history of the Pai Gow game? While it is true that learning this information will not necessarily help you in your strategy to win, what it can do is provide you with further knowledge and understanding of the game.  This, in turn, could prove useful in ways that you might find surprising.

Pai Gow Poker is derived from an ancient Chinese game known as Pai Gow.  Roughly translated the name of the game means "make-nine".  The game wasn't originally played with cards, but with a dice and dominoes tiles. The goal of players was to obtain more tile combination that were closer to nine than their opponents.  This was actually a complicated process. The reason being, players were not free to choose their own tiles.

At the start of the game, the dealer made four groups of dominoes.  The dice was then rolled to determine which player would receive the tiles. Therefore, you had to make nine out of the tiles you are given.

Over the years, the Pai Gow game evolved and changed and different variations of it sprung up in China.  Finally, in the 20th century, the game found its way to North America when it was brought to the United States by Chinese immigrants.  However, instead of using the traditional tiles, cards were used. This altered the game once more, as it applied the basic hand rules of poker with the extra feature of including a Joker in the deck.

In the 1980's, the two men credited with creating the poker variation is Fred Wolf and Sam Torosian.  Wolf was a game creator at the time, as well as the manager of Commerce Casino.  To attract customers and maintain a strong consumer base, he invented all sorts of games to compete with the competition. Pai Gow Poker was one of them, and was practically an instant hit.  By the late 1980's the game could be found in California, Las Vegas casinos, and in Atlantic City.

The poker version of Pai-Gow functions in a similar way to blackjack, in that the players do not compete against each other, but play against the dealer. A maximum of 6 players can engage in a game at one time.

Today, Pai Gow history continues and can be played online at many virtual casino destinations.

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