If you're a fan of casino table games, then you know baccarat and poker are some of the most frequented ones. The two games might share some similarities but also several differences.
We'll explore the baccarat vs poker question in our Wizard Slots blog post below. However, you can play both casino games online at Wizard Slots if you prefer to explore the differences on your own.
What Is Poker?
Poker is a card game where participants place wagers and play, intending to have the best winning hand. The objective could change depending on the poker variation you play. Standard poker uses a 52-card deck, but more decks might be used depending on how many players are in the game.
The rules might change as you hop from one poker variant to another. However, you should be okay if you understand the betting principles and poker hand combinations.
- Five of a Kind: highest possible hand in games with at least one wild card like two one-eyed J's, a joker, or four deuces.
- Straight Flush: The highest possible hand in a standard 52-deck game. It has 5 cards, all in the same suit following a sequence. For example, the 6, 7, 8, 9, & 10 of spades would be considered a straight flush. The A, K, Q, J, & 10 in a single suit is a royal flush. A royal flush is a rare hand to have and beats any other straight flush hand.
- Four of a Kind: Ranks below a straight flush. An example would be four 3s or four Aces.
- Full House: Consists of three matching rank cards and two cards in another rank, like three 8s and two 4s or three Aces and two 6s.
- Flush: Five cards in the same suit but no particular sequence to rank.
- Straight: Five cards in a sequence like 10, 9, 8, 7, & 6. They don't need to be matching suits.
- Three of a Kind: Three cards of the same rank. For example, three Js, three 7s, and three 4s.
- Two Pairs: A hand with a pair of cards in one rank and another pair of another rank plus a 5th card of another rank. For example, Q, Q, 7, 7, & 4.
- Pair: Contains one pair of cards that are the same rank and three different rank cards. For example, Q, Q, K, 4, & 3.
- High Card: If you don't have any of the poker hands discussed so far, the highest card in your hand plays. Ace is the highest high-card hand.
What Is Baccarat?
Baccarat is a card game where gamblers place wagers on whether they think the Banker hand or the Player hand will win. Alternatively, they can also bet on the outcome being a tie. The respective hand wins by having the closest value to 9.
Each card in baccarat has a value. For example:
The Ace is 1.
Cards 2 to 9 are worth face value.
10s and all royal cards are worth zero.
If any hands total more than 9, we only consider the last digit. So, for example, a hand worth 19 would count as 9.
You place your bet before the hands are dealt. They are then compared, and depending on the totals, they may receive a third card. The dealer decides this according to an existing set of rules.
Is Baccarat Similar To Poker?
Baccarat and poker are both card games, but that's one of the only similarities between them.
Punters wager on which hand they think will emerge the best between the Banker hand and the Player hand in baccarat. So, they don't have any cards in the game. However, in poker, each player is dealt cards.
In poker, the aim is to make the best hand possible, whereas, in baccarat, players bet on the hand they think will win before any cards are even dealt.
The house edge in baccarat varies depending on which bet you make. For example, if you bet on the Banker hand, the house edge is 1.06%. However, if you bet on the Player hand, the house edge is 1.24%. In addition, if you bet on a tie, the house edge rises to 14.36%.
Poker, on the other hand, has a house edge ranging from 0% to 5% if you play online.
Does Baccarat Have The Best Odds?
It's easy to assume that the Banker hand and Player hand pay out evenly. The payout odds are set at 1:1 anyway. However, the banker's hand has a 45.8% chance of winning, while the player's hand has a 44.62% chance.
So, it's no wonder many players favour the Banker hand. However, baccarat is a game of chance. Furthermore, most baccarat games have a rule where the house takes a 5% commission on any winning Banker bets due to the slight advantage the hand has.
Most players believe that baccarat has the best odds because of the low house edge. However, they forget that this is a game of chance, so we can never predict the outcome.
Baccarat vs Poker - Which Is Better?
Ultimately, we cannot decide which is better between baccarat and poker. It comes down to the player's personal preferences. The two games have different objectives, so comparing them is unfair.
You can play baccarat and poker online to decide which one you like best. Both are available to play online at Wizard Slots.
*All values (Bet Levels, Maximum Wins etc.) mentioned in relation to these games are subject to change at any time.