Online poker is in something of a state of flux in America. Some states are experiencing booms – particularly since the pandemic period closed casinos and card sharks chose to swim in the digital pool. For most, playing poker for real money stakes isn’t yet legal. Currently, online poker is legal in Nevada, Delaware, Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Connecticut – however, no operator licenses have yet been applied for in the final two, as they’re not currently part of the Multi-State Internet Gaming Agreement and are seen as too small to be viable as individual markets.
For most of the country, free-to-play apps are currently the way to go, and there are some good ones out there. Whether folks are looking to learn the game for the first time, have a platform for fun games against friends, or brush up on their skills before hitting the now-reopened card rooms, there’s a full deck out in cyberspace. Let’s take a look at four aces.
Poker All Day
Formerly named PlayWPT, as it’s the app of the World Poker Tour, this app covers two bases – the player who’s already serious and those who want to get good quickly. It allows multi-table playing, which is normally the preserve of desktop poker sites – although perhaps a larger-screened phone like the Samsung Galaxy range or a tablet may be the best bet over something smaller like an iPhone SE, say. Tournaments come thick and fast, and it’s noticeably short on ads over some of its tablemates. Perhaps not for the beginner, although crash courses hurt less when the chips are virtual.
Zynga Poker is quoted by Poker.org as one of the best poker apps round, and it’s certainly one of the biggest. Launched way back in 2007 as an in-screen game for Facebook and MySpace, it’s had time to build up a huge community that has followed it onto the iOS and Android platforms. With a user base (defined as logging in at least once a month) of over 65m players, it’s easy to pick up and find a quick game anytime. For groups of friends, it offers the ability to create private rooms for a game around the virtual table. In a nod back to its roots, you can find and add friends directly from social media, making the function fairly fluid.
Governor Of Poker 3
For a gentler progression through the world of Texas Hold ’em, Governor Of Poker 3 lets you get the cowboys (an opening hand of two aces) without frightening the horses. Structured more like a traditional video game, the player travels around a virtual Lone Star State, beating opponents of increasing difficulty as you make your way west to the bright lights of Vegas. While it does have a multiplayer option, that’s not really Governor’s USP, and it works best as a longer, solo quest. It can be downloaded free of charge to PCs from the Steam store for folks who prefer more involving games to be on a computer over a mobile device.
World Series Of Poker
Even on a free-to-play app, gamers want to be guaranteed they’re in good hands – we’ve discussed prior how ‘Online Reputation Is Everything’ and they don’t shoot much straighter than the WSOP. The leading name in tournament poker has a virtual stakes app that more than lives up to its moneyed equivalent. For the complete beginner, this official app offers free coaching. Should players decide to disregard advice and strike out on their own, busting a bankroll due to bad beats doesn’t last for long, with free chips every four hours. BleacherReport.com even reports that you could qualify for the fabled tournament through the app, as one player did, while he slept!
Playing in a safe environment can be rewarding. Getting good before you hit the Golden Nugget can be invaluable.