7 Card Stud
Program - Copyright (c) 1993 John Comeau - All Rights Reserved.
Amarillo Slim 7 Card Stud is a detailed simulation of a poker
came featuring 7 card stud. Program features include:
o Bet limits, blind and ante amounts are user selectable.
o On-Line odds, statistics, and help.
o Competition level - User selectable.
o Playing speed - User selectable.
o Scoreboard file to log big winners.
o Digitized sound - with most popular sound boards or with
your PC's Speaker
o Great graphics with EGA or VGA adapter - text mode support
for all others
o User interface allows fast and easy play with mouse or
The IBM PC version of Amarillo Slim 7 Card Stud requires an IBM
PC/XT/AT/PSx or compatible with a minimum 300k of free memory,
and DOS version 2.0 or later. It can be run from floppy disk or
hard disk. A mouse is optional, as is color graphics.
Limited Warranty & Support
Amarillo Slim 7 Card Stud is copyrighted. Duplication of this
software or any package contents, other than for personal
convenience, without the express written consent from Villa
Crespo Software is prohibited by law. See accompanying
registration card for warranty information.
To receive free technical assistance you must have registered by
sending the enclosed Registration Card. Telephone requests for
assistance will not be honored unless you have registered. If
you have trouble getting this software to run properly, please
check this documentation first. If you can't find the solution
to your problem, please contact us at the address/phone number
Villa Crespo Software
Technical Support Dept.
1725 McGovern Street
Highland Park, IL 60035
Your display adapter
Amarillo Slim 7 Card Stud is compatible with all popular display
adapters, including MDA, Hercules, CGA, EGA, and VGA. It supports
both color and monochrome monitors, in either text or graphics
(EGA) mode. If the display looks OK when this program begins
running you can skip the rest of this section.
You can explicitly tell this program what kind of monitor you
have by adding either the MONO or the COLOR switch to the command
line that starts This program. For example:
- 2 -
A:POKER COLOR Starts This program and at the same time tells
it that you have a color monitor.
These and other switches are described later in this document in
the section titled: Command line arguments.
Using your Mouse
Although not required, a mouse can be used with this program if
you are using DOS 3.0 or later. The leftmost mouse button, like
the keyboard's 'ENTER' key, selects (or changes) the item that is
highlighted on the screen. The rightmost mouse button, like the
keyboard's 'ESC' key, causes you to exit from a screen. Moving
the mouse, like the keyboards arrow keys, causes the highlight on
the screen to move in the same direction as the mouse.
Note: To use a mouse you also need appropriate mouse driver
software installed. If you routinely use your mouse with other
software, then either you know how to install the mouse driver
software or it's being installed automatically when you boot your
If you are unsure if you have the right driver software
1. Try the mouse and see what happens. It can't hurt anything
and if it works, you're all set.
2. Ask your favorite computer dealer for help.
The user interface of This program was designed to allow for fast
and easy play. It works as follows:
1. The program shows a menu of choices. One of the choices is
2. You move the highlight left/right/up/down with the arrow
keys (or with the mouse) to the choice you desire.
3. You press the ENTER key (or left mouse button) to select
the highlighted choice.
When running This program pressing certain keys have a consistent
predictable result. These keys are:
ESC Pressing the key marked ESC, called 'the escape key'
usually means, 'get me out of this screen'.
ENTER Pressing the ENTER key (usually a tall dark colored
key marked with an arrow pointing left) means
'select/change the highlighted item'.
ARROWS Pressing the arrow keys on the right hand side of the
keyboard means 'move the highlight over in the
direction of the arrow'.
F2 In the Rules and Controls screens pressing F2 means
'save the rules/controls I'm looking at in a file'. If
- 3 -
you are in the rules screen the rules are saved in a
file called 'RULES.SAV'. If you are in the Controls
screen the controls are saved in a file called
F3 In either the Rules screen or in the Controls screen,
pressing F3 means 'set all the rules or controls to
their default values.' Default values mean the values
as they were the very first time this program was run,
not the default values saved later. Because changing
the rules while a hand is in progress could affect the
outcome of the hand, F3 will do nothing if a hand is
F4 In the Rules screen or the Controls screen, pressing
F4 means 'restore the rules or controls from the
appropriate file.' If you are in the Controls screen
the CONTROLS.SAV file is read. The controls it
specifies become controls for the game in progress. If
you are in the Rules screen the 'RULES.SAV' file is
read. The rules it contains will become the new rules
for the game in progress. Because changing the rules
while a hand is in progress could affect the outcome
of the hand, F4 will do nothing if a hand is in
crtl-C Anytime a game is in progress pressing ctrl-C will
cause the program to immediately clear the screen,
save your game on disk, and exit to DOS.
Choice menus: General Info
Whenever it is your turn to do something - your turn to bet, for
instance - the program will display a menu of choices in the
bottom center of the screen. This is your Choice (or ACTION) menu
box. One of the choices listed in the box is always highlighted.
The highlighted choice is the one that will be selected when you
press the ENTER key. If you prefer one of the other choices, you
must move the highlight to that choice by using the arrow keys.
Another way to move the highlight onto a new choice is to type in
that choice's first letter. You will see the highlight jump
immediately to the choice. When you have highlighted the correct
choice, press the ENTER key to select it.
If your system has a mouse, you can move the highlight from
choice to choice by moving the mouse. You can select the
highlighted choice by pressing the leftmost mouse button.
The sections below describe the meaning of options that may
appear in various choice menus.
End of hand choices
The following choices will appear in the choice menu that appears
at the end of each hand.
Deal Select this option and the program will begin dealing
the next hand. If you have any money left, you will be
dealt in. Otherwise the Computer players will play
among themselves, unless you have extended CREDIT.
Save Select this option to save a game that you want to
- 4 -
continue playing later. The rules, controls,
statistics, and money totals are stored in disk files,
and the program will exit to DOS. The files created by
saving a game will be created in the same directory
where the POKER.EXE file resides. So, if you are
running from floppy disk and want to save the game,
your diskette must be write enabled and must have
sufficient space avalaible.
Quit Select this option when you are finished playing and
don't want to continue at a later time. The program
will display the scoreboard and exit.
Reveal Select this to reveal the hole cards of ALL players
who remained until the end of the hand.
Traditionaly in poker, the only way to insure that you
see the winning players hole cards is to stay in the
pot until the end of the hand - to call every bet
that's made. A player who wins a pot by virtue of
being the only remaining player does not have to
reveal hole cards. By default, this program respects
this tradition by not revealing the cards of such
players. By selecting the "Reveal" option you will
cause the program to break with tradition and show you
any hole cards that remained hidden.
Watch If you select this option, the program will continue
playing without you. When you want to rejoin the game
you can do so by pressing any key on the keyboard. At
the end of the next hand you will return to the end of
hand choice menu.
The following choices are not unique to any particular choice
menu - each appears on several of the programs choice menus.
Ask Select this to get advice on betting from the tutor.
Its advice will appear in a window at the top of the
screen. After you have seen the advice, press any key
and the advice goes away.
Note: The tutor is a 'strong' computer player. But it
has no special knowledge about the outcome of the game
such as what cards will be dealt next or what cards
your opponents hold. Though it gives mostly good
advice, sometimes it is wrong. It always has an
opinion and will be happy to tell you what it is.
Other Select this item to enter the secondary choice menu.
The secondary choice menu contains items for:
o Seeing/changing the house rules
o Seeing what rank of hand beats what
o Seeing program revision information
o Seeing information on players
o Seeing the scoreboard
Pressing ESC returns you from the secondary menu back to the
original choice menu.
- 5 -
The following choices are unique to the menu that is displayed
when it is your turn to bet.
Call When this item appears in a choice menu it means you
owe money to the pot. If you select 'Call,' it means
you want to pay the money you owe, but no more than
that. Paying the money you owe buys you the privilege
of continuing to play your hand, provided no raises
from remaining players are subsequent to your 'Call.'
Fold When this item appears in a choice menu, it means you
owe money to the pot. If you select 'Fold' it means
you do not want to pay what you owe. If you don't pay,
you don't play. You're out of the game for the rest of
the hand and cannot win any of the money in the pot.
Check This item only appears in a choice menu when you don't
owe any money to the pot. Selecting 'Check' means that
you do not want bet any money. If a rule against
check-raising is in effect and you check it also means
that you can cannot raise the pot later in the betting
round. You must either Call (match their bet) or Fold
(pay nothing and wait for the next deal).
Bet This item only appears in a choice menu when you don't
owe any money to the pot. Select 'Bet' if you want to
pay money into the pot (Bet). Whatever money you bet,
your opponents will have to either pay that amount
into the pot( Call), raise your bet (Raise), or drop
out of the hand (Fold).
Note: When this item appears in a choice menu it
always appears twice. Use the top 'Bet' to make a
maximum sized bet, Use the bottom 'Bet' to make a
minimum sized bet. If the minimum and maximum limits
are the same amount, it doesn't matter which 'Bet' you
Raise When this item appears in the choice menu, it means
that owe money to the pot. Select 'Raise' if you want
to pay what you owe plus bet money over and above what
you owe into the pot. Whenever you Raise, your
opponents are forced to either pay an equal amount
into the pot (Call), raise your raise (Raise), or drop
out of the hand (Fold).
Note: When this item appears in a choice menu it
always appears twice. Use the top 'Raise' to make a
maximum sized raise, Use the bottom 'Raise' to make a
minimum sized raise. If the minimum and maximum bet
limits are the same amount, it doesn't matter which
'Raise' you select.
The following choices are unique to the secondary choice menu
that appears whenever menu choice 'Param' is selected.
Odds Select this to go to the Odds screen. The Odds screen
contains helpful information about the current pot
odds and the odds of your hand being improved by the
- 6 -
Stats Select this to go to a series of statistics screens.
On the first statistics screen you will see
information on how often your opponents are staying in
vs. dropping. Other statistics screens display
information on what types of hands have appeared in
the showdown, and what type of hand usually wins in
the game you are playing.
Player This choice puts you into the Players screen. In the
Players screen you will see the names of all players
currently in the game, classified by playing style.
You also can highlight any players name and get more
information about that player.
Rules Puts you into the Rules screen. In the Rules screen
you can examine/change the house rules in effect. If
you enter the Rules screen while a hand is in progress
you may not be able to change any rules that will
affect the hand in progress. If you enter the Rules
screen between hands, you can change practically every
Hands Puts you into the Hands screen. The hands screen shows
the standard ranking of hands in High poker. You can
highlight any hand rank and get a short explanation of
what combination of cards it consists of.
Scores Puts you into the Scores screen. The Scores screen
shows the scoreboard of all-time high scores including
any high scores for the game in progress.
Version Puts you into the title screen where you can see
program revision information. It also has Villa Crespo
Software's address and phone number in case you want
to get in touch with us.
The Main screen
The Main screen displays a picture of the poker table. In the
center of the Main screen is a dollar amount. This is the pot.
All bets made by players during the game go into the pot.
Positioned around the pot are all the player's hands. Near each
hand is the player name and money total. Often, a description of
the player's hand also appears. A description of the player's
entire hand always appears at showdown. Before the showdown a
description will appear only if a player's upcards show a pair or
Your name, hand and money total are displayed in the center of
the screen directly below the pot. Your hand is always displayed
in full. Any description displayed will be that of your entire
hand. Although your entire hand is displayed for you to see, your
opponents cannot see your hole cards until the showdown.
In the bottom right hand side of the main screen you'll see a box
that shows the current hand number and the name of the dealer for
the current hand. At the bottom left hand side the display will
show the activity performed at the moment. At the end of the hand
the name(s) of the winner is displayed here also.
- 7 -
The Hands screen
In the center of the hands screen is a list of the standard ranks
possible for poker hands. The higher on the list a hand is the
better it is. One of these hands is highlighted. A description of
the highlighted hand always appears on the window at the bottom
of the screen. To get a description of a different hand, use the
arrow keys or mouse to move the highlight onto the name of the
hand you want described. Press ESC to exit from the Hands screen.
The following lists ranking of poker hands. Along with each is a
description of that hand, and the standard procedure for breaking
ties, in case two hands of the same rank face each other at the
end of a hand. Ties are quite rare in 7 card stud - though they
are fairly common in games like hold'em where there are common
upcards shared by all players. The list of hands is ordered from
best to worst.
Straight flush Five cards of the same suit and in sequence.
For example: K-Q-J-10-9 all the same suit ('a
Straight flush, king-high'). A Straight flush
running from Ace down to the Ten is called a
Royal Flush. In case of ties the highest
sequence wins, so:
8-7-6-5-4 beats a 6-5-4-3-2.
Four of a kind Four cards of the same rank. For example:
3-3-3-3-Q ('Four threes'). In case of ties
the highest rank set of four cards wins. If
both players have the same set of four, the
player with the highest unpaired card wins.
7-7-7-7-6 beats 5-5-5-5-J
8-8-8-8-J beats 8-8-8-8-6
K-K-K-K-4 ties K-K-K-K-4 and pot is split
Full house Three cards of the same rank, with a pair of
some other rank. For example: 7-7-7-4-4 ('a
Full house, sevens over fours'). In case of
ties the player with the highest set of three
wins. If the sets of three are the same, then
the player with the highest pair wins. So:
A-A-A-6-6 beats K-K-K-7-7
9-9-9-A-A beats 9-9-9-J-J
3-3-3-7-7 ties 3-3-3-7-7 and pot is split
Flush Five cards of the same suit, but not in
sequence. For example: K-10-5-3-2 all the same
suit ('a Flush,king-high'). In case of ties
the player with the highest card wins. If the
highest cards are the same rank, the highest
second card wins. If still tied, the highest
third,. If still tied, the highest forth card,
and if necessary highest the fifth card. So:
A-J-10-5-2 beats K-Q-10-6-3
A-Q-10-5-2 beats A-J-5-4-5
K-J-5-4-3 beats K-J-5-4-2
7-6-5-4-3 ties 7-6-5-4-3 and pot is split
- 8 -
Straight Five cards in sequence, but not all of the
same suit. For example: Q-J-10-9-8 ('a
Straight, queen-high'). In case of ties the
highest straight wins. So:
K-Q-J-10-9 beats Q-J-10-9-8
Q-J-10-9-8 beats 7-6-5-4-3
J-10-9-8-7 ties J-10-9-8-7 and pot is split
Three of a kind Three cards of the same rank. For example:
10-10-10-A-J ('Three tens' or 'trip tens').
In case of ties the player with the highest
set of three wins. If the sets of three are
the same, then the highest unpaired card wins.
If still tied, then the highest final unpaired
card wins. So:
7-7-7-Q-4 beats 5-5-5-A-7
8-8-8-K-3 beats 8-8-8-J-6
Q-Q-Q-K-7 beats Q-Q-Q-K-6
4-4-4-8-8 ties 4-4-4-8-8 and pot is split
Two pairs Two cards of the same rank, with two cards of
some other rank. For example: J-J-9-9-2 ('Two
pairs, jacks over nines'). In case of ties,
the player with the highest pair wins. If
these pairs are the same the player whose
other pair is highest wins. If these are also
the same the player with the highest unpaired
card wins. So:
A-A-4-4-10 beats K-K-J-J-A
K-K-7-7-9 beats K-K-7-7-4
A-A-7-7-Q beats A-A-7-7-8
9-9-7-7-A ties 9-9-7-7-A and pot is split
One Pair Two cards of the same rank. For example:
8-8-J-5-2 ('a Pair of eights'). In case of
ties, the player with the highest pair wins.
If both pairs are same the player with the
highest unpaired card wins. If still tied, the
second highest unpaired card decides it, or if
still tied, the third highest unpaired card.
J-J-6-3-2 beats 8-8-6-5-4
8-8-J-6-4 beats 8-8-7-6-4
K-K-Q-8-4 beats K-K-Q-7-4
4-4-8-6-3 beats 4-4-8-6-2
9-9-K-J-4 ties 9-9-K-J-4 and pot is split
Runt None of the above. No pairs, no sequence of 5
cards, no 5 cards of the same suit. For
example: K-J-9-5-2 in different suits ('a
Runt, king-high'). In case of ties the player
with the highest card wins. If the highest
cards are the same rank, the highest second
card wins. If still tied, the highest third.
If still tied, the highest forth card, and if
necessary highest the fifth card. So:
A-J-10-5-2 beats K-Q-10-6-3
A-Q-10-5-2 beats A-J-5-4-5
K-J-5-4-3 beats K-J-5-4-2
8-6-5-3-2 ties 8-6-5-3-2 and pot is split
- 9 -
The Scores screen
The Scores screen contains a scoreboard listing the 10 best
performances by human players in past games. Human players are
eligible for the scoreboard after any game in which they have won
money. The 'score' is calculated based on amount of money won,
number of hands, and adjusted based on the ante, blind bet, and
maximum bet size. If you change the ante, blind bet or maximum
bet sizes during a session, the score is based on the sizes
resulting in the lowest score.
The Version/Title screen
The Version screen tells you what version of this program you are
running. There are no parameters to change on this screen. You
exit the Version screen by pressing the ESC key.
The Rules screen
The Rules screen lists all the 'House rules' currently in effect.
One of these rules in this screen is always highlighted. A more
detailed explanation of the highlighted rule appears in the
window at the bottom of the screen. To get a detailed explanation
of any rule on this screen, move the highlight onto that rule
using the arrow keys or the mouse. Its explanation will appear in
the bottom window.
Whenever you are in the rules screen you may change some of the
rules. Some are not changeable during the play of a hand.
Pressing ENTER changes the highlighted rule. Whenever a rule
changes in response to the ENTER key, the explanation in the
window may also change to reflect the new rule. Before the game
begins, you can change any rule on this screen. After the game
begins there are a few restrictions on changing rules. If you
enter the rules screen while a hand is in progress, the program
will not allow you to change any rules. If you enter the rules
screen between hands you can change all rules. Changing any
rules will affect the game in progress. The new rule will go into
effect on the very next hand.
You can exit from the rules screen at any time by pressing the
The 'House rules' available are explained in the following
This is the maximum amount that a player can bet at any time. Its
value can be set from 1 to 100.
Note: You cannot exit from the Rules screen while Maximum bet is
less than Minimum bet.
This is the smallest amount that a player may bet. Its value can
be set from 1 to 100.
- 10 -
In real-life poker games it is common to be able to bet any
amount from the minimum to the maximum so long as it is an even
multiple of the minimum. However, This program requires that all
bets be either the maximum or the minimum - no bets in between.
This is no great loss in limit poker because it is rare that a
bet other than the minimum or maximum is a player's best choice.
The maximum bet is often the best choice to build a pot you
expect to win, or to drive other players out of a pot to improve
your winning chances. The minimum bet is often the best choice
when you desire to use up a raise in order to keep the price of
reaching the showdown as low as possible. A bet between them is
rarely the best choice, and when it is, it is only marginally
Antes and Blind bets
In the absence of a blind bet, this is the amount each player
must put into the pot before each hand is dealt. Values for the
ante range from 0 (no ante) to 50. If a blind bet is selected,
the blind bet is the ante and the value of this rule is moot.
This is the amount of the blind bet. Its value ranges from 0 to
100. If this value is 0, no blind bet is selected and the first
person to speak in the first round has the freedom to make a bet
or not. When this value is greater than 0 a blind bet of this
value is required of the first person to speak in the first round
of betting. As with any other bet, subsequent players must call
or drop. Unlike any other bet, the player who makes the blind bet
can raise themselves. The blind bet only applies to the very
first betting round in the hand.
This is the maximum total number of raises that will be allowed
in a betting round. The first bet in a round does not count
against this limit. So, for example, if the maximum bet is $25
and this rule limits raises to 3 per round, the most a round of
betting could cost is $100. Having a limit on the number of
raises is standard practice in fixed limit poker. Without such a
limit, two players, each convinced they had the best hand, could
raise each other for round after round, causing half of the
players to go broke on one hand. That is against the spirit of
limit poker. A limit on the number of raises per round is
important for another reason. In real-life poker, two players,
cheating as a team, could raise round after round to break one or
more honest players caught between them.
This rule allows you to enable or prohibit the practice known as
"Check- raising". When a player checks, then later in the same
round raises the pot, it is called "Check-raising". Some people
consider check-raising to be a less than polite practice. Others
consider check raising to be just another tool in a well rounded
arsenal of poker ploys and strategies. Check raising is usually
permitted in casinos and public card-houses, and is the default
status in this game.
This determines the size of each player's bankroll at the start
of a session. Use the ENTER key when this option is highlighted
- 11 -
to select an amount between 500 to 3000.
The game default ('No') is to drop players from the table if they
run out of money. Please note that during a hand, a player is
allowed to borrow temporarily, in order to complete the hand. By
changing this rule to 'Yes' you will allow your opponents (and
yourself) to borrow money (go negative) when necessary, to stay
in the game. There are two interesting applications of this
1) Forbid credit, and see how many hands it takes you to bust
all other players from the table and become the big champ.
2) Extend credit, and save and resume your sessions to always
have at hand how badly you have, over time, beaten your
opponents (or how badly they have beaten you!).
The 'Controls' screen allows you set up various environment
options designed to make your session comfortable and to your
liking. The options available for you to set up are explained in
the following sections:
This option allows you to control whether the game will generate
appropriate sound effects and to what degree. Use the 'ENTER'
key to cycle through the allowed choices.
This rule determines how players upcards are displayed. Cards can
be displayed in the order in which they are dealt, with the
oldest card on the left and the most recently dealt card on the
right. This is typically what happens during a real game. Often,
the commonly used rules forbid players from rearranging their up
cards in a sequence other than how they were dealt.
The alternative is to display cards in sorted order. Displaying
in sorted order makes it easier to see pairs and sequences.
Sorted order means from left to right: pairs first in descending
order, then single cards in descending order. These are the three
possible settings of the 'Upcard sorting' rule:
None All players upcards will be displayed in the order
in which they were dealt.
Mine Your upcards will be displayed sorted highest to
lowest. The upcards of computer players will be
displayed in the order in which they were dealt.
All Upcards of all players will be displayed sorted
highest to lowest.
This allows you to select how fast the computer players will play
while you are still in the game. The higher you set it for, the
faster they will play. On the slowest setting, '1', players will
- 12 -
take about 2 seconds for each bet decision. On the fastest
setting, '10,' players will make their decisions in far less
time, depending on the speed of your computer. Also note that on
slower machines such as the original 4.7mhz PC the Strong players
may take up to a second for each decision regardless of what the
speed is set to. This Play Speed setting does not affect the
quality of the computer players decisions.
Alt Play speed
This allows you to select how fast the computer players will play
after you have dropped out of the game. The higher the number you
set it for, the faster they will play.
7 card stud
In 7 card stud each player makes their best 5 card hand from
their 3 hole cards and their 4 up cards. The dealing sequence is:
3 cards(two down and one up), an upcard, an upcard, an upcard, a
downcard. There is a betting round after each event in the
Note: In an 8 player game, if all players stayed until the end 56
cards (7 cards times 8 players) would be required and a standard
deck has only 52 cards. If, when it is time to deal the seventh
card to all players, there are not enough cards in the deck, then
no one gets a seventh card. Instead, the showdown immediately
Anytime only one player remains, all others having dropped out,
the hand is over. The remaining player gets the pot and does not
need to reveal hole cards.
If more than one player reaches the showdown, all players reveal
their hands. The player with the highest ranked hand gets all the
money in the pot. Though ties are a rare occurrence in 7 Card
stud, they do happen every so often. If two or more players tie
with the same rank high hand, all players with the winning high
hand get an equal share of the pot. Any odd dollars that cannot
be divided, will remain in the pot for the next hand.
The Players screen
In the center of the Players screen are the names of all players
currently in the game. Players are listed in one of 4 columns
depending on their playing strength. The Strong players
constantly base their play on: the number of players in the game,
their position, the odds offered by the pot, and their estimation
of their opponents hand values and their own hand's chance of
winning. The casual players are generally unaware of the pot odds
and the various possible values of their opponents hands. They
depend almost entirely on 'rules of thumb' such as:
"Two pairs or more is a betting hand."
"Never drop with a possible flush."
Average players lie somewhere between these two extremes. And of
course Human players can be totally unpredictable.
- 13 -
Using the arrow keys or mouse, choose as few as 1 and as many as
7 of the listed players to compete against you. Select a desired
player by highlighting the name, then pressing ENTER to include
or exclude it from the game. Included players will display a
check mark by their names.
There are five different computer players for each of the three
playing styles: Casual, Average and Strong. There is one human
Casual Average Strong Human
Rocky Tex Mohsin You
Sarge Jake Greek
Fingers Doc Bret
Kid Vegas J. Alice
Betty Annie Roscoe
The following sections describe the general characteristics of
each of these styles of players.
The casual players are generally unaware of the pot odds and
the various possible values of their opponents hands. They
depend almost entirely on 'rules of thumb' such as:
"Two pairs is a betting hand."
"Never drop with a possible flush."
The Strong players constantly base their play on their
position, the number of players in the game, the odds offered
by the pot, and their estimation of their opponents hand
values and their own hands chance of winning. It can be
expensive to have strong players in the game - But beating
them can be very satisfying.
Average players fall between the extremes of casual and
strong. They have some awareness of the pot odds vs their
chance of winning, and they use this information to a certain
This is You for instance. Different human players can be
quite different in skill and style, so I can't give you much
any general information here. Some of them are more cunning,
resourceful and inspired than the computer players when it
comes to adjusting their play to take advantage of their
opponents, and bluffing.
The Statistics screens
There are 3 statistics screens which may be viewed by choosing
'Stats' from the 'Other' menu. When viewing a statistics screen
pressing any key will cause you to cycle to the next screen.
Pressing the ESC key causes you to exit the statistics screens -
and puts you back to the main screen.
- 14 -
The first statistics screen shows what percentage of the time
each player has been in the game after the first betting round,
and at the showdown. It may be interesting to compare your
figures with those of players of different skill levels. The most
common mistake of inexperienced poker players is to stay in the
pot too often. It can also be a mistake to drop out too often,
but inexperienced players rarely make this mistake.
The second statistic screen shows the number of times various
categories of hands have appeared in the showdown - plus what
percentage of the time that hand has won the pot.
The categories of hands on the second screen are:
Runt(less than a pair)
Pair of Twos, Threes, Fours or Fives
Pair of Sixes Sevens, Eights, Nines or Tens
Pair of Jacks, Queens, Kings, or Aces
2 pair smaller then jacks over twos
2 pair equal to or higher than jacks over twos
3 of a kind
Full House (or better)
For each category, three statistics are listed. They are:
1. The number of times the particular hand has won when it
has appeared in the showdown.
2. The number of times the particular hand has appeared in
3. The percent of the time the particular hand has won when
it appeared in the showdown.
The three columns to the left show these statistics for the
current session only. The three columns to the right show these
statistics for all sessions including the current one. The
rightmost column has the number of times the hand has appeared in
a showdown. The middle column has the number of times the hand
has won. The leftmost column gives the winning percentage. You
can use these figures as a guide to your own play. The number of
players in the game has a large effect on these stats. The more
players in the game, the better a hand it takes to win. The stats
given are only for games with the specified number of players.
The stats will, however, be fairly consistent regardless of
strength of the players in the game.
The third statistics screen shows how much money players of each
type - Human, Casual, Average and Strong have won or lost.
The Odds Screen
The Odds screen contains helpful information such as the odds now
being offered by the pot and the odds of improving your hand.
At the top of the odds screen are 2 lines that tell you what the
computer's estimation of the pot odds are. The first of these
lines tells the simple pot odds. Simple pot odds are how much is
in the pot versus how much you owe. So if there were $75 in the
pot and you owed $25, there is three times as much money in the
pot as you owe, therefore the simple pot odds would be 3 to 1. In
cases where you owe no money simple pot odds cannot be
- 15 -
calculated; They are infinite.
The second line lists the estimated odds to reach showdown. This
is how much money is estimated will be in the pot at the showdown
versus how much estimated money you will have to pay to reach the
showdown. This form of pot odds is more subjective, since neither
of the numbers used to calculate it is known for sure. But this
form of odds is often a more realistic calculation to use in
guiding your play.
When there are cards to come, the Odds screen will contain a
table of possible improvements for your high hand. These are the
hands you can improve to when the next card(s) is dealt. The
table shown lists hand values along with the odds against
improving to that hand value, and the odds against improving to
at least that hand value, which is calculated by adding all the
odds for achieving hands above it.
When there are cards to come, the odds screen will tell you what
is the best final hand possible for you when all the cards are
dealt. The game determines this by removing from possibility any
cards which are open and visible to all players on the table.
Also shown is an estimate of the odds against a hand of the type
you hold winning in a showdown. These odds are calculated for a
typical game. They do not take into account the values of the
up-cards showing or the strength of the betting in the current
Command line arguments
When starting this program you can follow the program name with
one or more optional command line arguments (switches). There are
several recognized arguments, which give you control over such
things as display and monitor type and display colors.
Normally, the program will automatically recognize which type of
display your computer uses. Your intervention will not be
required. Should you find it necessary to force a particular
mode, legal switches for the command line are described
immediately below. Those switches that represent the default
start-up values are marked with an asterisk(*).
COLOR Color monitor attached to display.
MONO Monochrome monitor attached to display. You can use
this switch to force a monochrome presentation even
if you do have a color monitor.
TEXT Forces the program to ignore the EGA/VGA graphics
capability of your system - display will be in
80x25 character text mode.
LAPTOP In some laptops, the presence or absence of a
graphics card and the type of display (LCD,
backlit, etc.) may affect the quality of the game
display. If you are having difficulty playing on
your laptop, try this switch to see if it improves
the screen readability.
BLUE * Blue display background. One of two optional
background colors for color displays. The two
options are provided because personal color
- 16 -
preferences vary from person to person and because
no two monitors are exactly alike.
GREEN You may prefer the Green background.
EGA64K Forces this program run as if your system had IBM's
original 64k EGA graphics board without the
piggyback add-in, even if your EGA/VGA has more
memory than that. With this option, your display
will be limited to 4 colors. If your system has no
EGA or VGA capabilities, this option is ignored and
your display will be in text mode.
HELP Display a brief summary of all legal command line
If there are conflicting switches, for instance MONO and COLOR,
appearing on the same command line, it is switch closest to the
end of the command line that takes precedence.
Whenever This program is started it also looks in the current
directory for a file named "POKER.CLI". You can create an ASCII
file named "POKER.CLI" with any text editor. Any switches that
appear on the first line of "POKER.CLI" will be recognized by the
program just as if they were typed in on the command line.
In the case of conflicting switches in the "POKER.CLI" file
combine with those which may appear on the command line, it is
the command line switch that takes precedence.
This section is a primer on odds, how to calculate them, and how
to use them for better play.
Pot Odds are a ratio of reward to risk: What can I gain/how much
must I risk to gain it. For instance: it is your turn to speak,
the pot contains $75 and you owe $25. Your potential gain ($75)
is three times your potential risk ($25). In such a case it is
commonly said that 'The pot is offering you 3 to 1 odds'.
In general, the higher the odds offered by the pot are, the
better it is for you. High pot odds mean you are risking a
relatively small amount for the chance of winning a large amount.
Improvement Odds are a measurement of how likely future cards are
to improve a hand. Like all odds they are a ratio, a ratio of
cards that don't improve your hand to cards that do.
For example, you are playing draw poker and are dealt 5 cards.
You have no pairs, but 4 of the cards are spades. If you draw one
card, what are the odds against improvement to a flush? Your draw
card could be any one of the 47 cards you haven't seen yet. Of
these cards 9 are spades(you have 4 of the 13 leaving 9) and the
other 38 cards are not spades. The cards that don't give you a
flush are roughly four times as numerous as the cards that do, so
it can be said that the odds against you getting your flush are 4
to 1 against. The lower the odds against improvement are, the
better it is for you.
Now let's combine the pot odds and improvement odds examples and
test them out. If you played 47 hands, once for each card in the
- 17 -
deck, and got a different card each time. Assume you paid $25
each time to get a chance to win the $75 already in the pot.
That's 3 to 1 odds. Here's what happens:
9 times get flush win $75 9 * 75 = 675 gain
38 times miss flush lose $25 38 * 25 = 950 lose
Total = $275 (big loss)
Suppose there had been $100 in the pot instead of $75. The pot
odds would have been 4 to 1. We would expect this:
9 times get flush win $100 9 * 100 = 900 gain
38 times miss flush lose $25 38 * 25 = 950 lose
Total = $ 50 (smaller loss)
Finally, suppose there had been $125 in the pot instead of $75.
The pot odds would have been 5 to 1. We would expect this:
9 times get flush win $125 9 * 125 = 1125 gain
38 times miss flush lose $25 38 * 25 = 950 lose
Total = 175 (big gain)
So what conclusions do we draw from this?
If the pot odds are less than the odds against you winning,
don't pay the money - it's a bad bet
If the pot odds are larger than the odds against you winning,
pay the money - it's a good bet.
If a good player knows he is beaten, he will not stay in unless
the odds offered by the pot are greater than the odds against his
improving enough to win.
This odds discussion has been simplified. It ignores the fact
that your flush could lose to a stronger hand. It ignores the
money you might additionally gain by betting again when you make
your flush. However these other factors are relatively minor
adjustments to the formula and tend to average out.
Computer players / Human players
As good as computers are at what they do, they are no match for
human beings (yet!) when it comes to creative use of psychology,
bluff, counter bluff, and intuition. These can be large factors
in poker games, particularly when high stakes are involved.
Another factor is your unintentional or unconscious behavior.
Things like: The way you hold your breath as the final card that
might give you a flush is dealt. The expression on your face when
you make the flush. The way you gush with confidence as you make
the big bet to bluff them out when you didn't make the flush. A
human opponent can make use of such information, a computer
cannot (yet!). So when you play against real-live human players
be careful. But have fun!
- 18 -
- 19 -
Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
Equipment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
Limited Warranty & Support . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
Your display adapter . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
Using your Mouse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
User Interface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Choice menus: General Info . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
End of hand choices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
General choices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
Bet choices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
Param choices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
The Main screen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
The Hands screen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
The Scores screen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
The Version/Title screen . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
The Rules screen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Maximum bet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Minimum bet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Antes and Blind bets . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Raise limit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Check-raising . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Initial Stake . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Extend Credit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
Controls . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
Sound . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
Upcard sorting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
Play speed . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
Alt Play speed . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
7 card stud . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
Who Wins . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
The Players screen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
Casual . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
Strong . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
Average . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
Human . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
The Statistics screens . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
The Odds Screen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Command line arguments . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
Odds . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
Computer players / Human players . . . . . . . . 18