May 11, 2022

RDR2 Poker Game Guide: How to Play and Win

As a game about cowboys and outlaws, it seems only natural that Red Dead Redemption 2 allows players to pass the time playing poker. The minigame itself is simple and not too flashy, but the player really has to think things through if they want to make a profit. Someone who learns the ropes can find a reliable source of money, while simply reloading will likely leave Arthur’s wallet a little lighter in the end.

Poker is a returning item from the original RDR, and while the minigame itself is still largely the same, there are a few differences. The biggest advantage for a player would be a pre-existing knowledge of poker, but new card players can get their hands on the game as well. Just like hunting for the perfect skins in Red Dead Redemption 2, poker is all about practice and learning the rules. The rules of poker may seem a bit confusing at first, but playing a few hands should help players understand how the game works.


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Playing poker well can give Arthur some extra spending money. It may not be the most lucrative activity in the game, but it can be a fun and profitable diversion from the main story when the player wants to give Arthur some time off. Additionally, a few of the game’s Gambler challenges, including the first, require Arthur to play poker, so he’s useful for that reason as well. Remembering a few tricks, Arthur may be one of the most skilled card sharks in the west.

Red Dead Redemption 2: Learning the Game and the Hands

Learning the poker hands of RDR 2 is the first step to victory.

RDR 2 is a very realistic and detailed game, and this can also be seen in its poker mechanics, which are quite faithful to real-world Texan Hold ‘Em. In poker, each player is dealt two cards and three cards will be added to the center of the table. These center cards are known as community cards, and each player can use them in conjunction with their own two cards to create their hand at the end of the turn. After the first betting round, another community card will be added, and after another betting round, a fifth will be added. Once the fifth and final community card is on the table, there is one more round of betting before players reveal their hands. Whoever has the best hand wins all the money wagered on that hand.

The rewards for a poker hand are not as great as red dead onlinegold bars, but learning how to earn is still important. The winning hands in order are a pair of any similar card, two pair, three of a kind, a straight (five cards in order, such as 2-3-4-5-6), a flush (5 cards of the same suit), full house (three of a kind and pair of another), four of a kind, straight flush (a straight and a flush combined) and finally a royal flush (a 10, jack, queen, king and ace of the same suit). If a player does not have a winning hand, he must rely on his highest card. If a player doesn’t have a winning hand, then their best option would be to fold because they have no chance of winning unless every player fails to draw a winning hand, which is highly unlikely.

Just like patience to catch fish RDR 2, keeping track of the cards is the key to success in poker. The game will inform the player of their current hand, so this information should be used to advise them to make smart decisions. If there is only one community card left and the player still has nothing, it is probably best to cut their losses and wait for the next hand to have a chance of winning.

Related: RDR 2’s Most Disturbing Side Missions Explained

Red Dead Redemption 2: How to play and when to bet

Making smart bets in RDR 2 poker keeps Arthur in the game and grows his wallet.

Of course, one’s own hand should be the biggest indicator of when it would be wise to bet. If you are playing with a bad hand, such as no pair or only one pair, then it would be wise to keep your own bets low. If someone starts raising the pot significantly, then that’s the best sign for a player with a bad hand to fold. Like trying to storm RDO gang hideouts, it’s better to know when to flee than to suffer a major loss. Likewise, if one opens with a good hand and very promising community cards, betting aggressively could pay off. Opponents can even go to bed early, giving the player an automatic win if they all do. In the case of a spectacularly good hand, such as a four-better, the player should feel confident to make big bets, as they are likely to pay off very well. Especially in the case of a royal flush, which is essentially an instant win.

Likewise, keep a very close eye on how other players are playing. If no one is making a move to raise the pot, then chances are no one has drawn a very good hand, and they are willing to keep the stakes low to minimize their losses. It’s like knowing when to repair your guns and when to save the oil for later. Generally, if the first person to raise the pot did so a small amount, then they may have high pair or two pair. However, a big raise probably indicates a very good hand, and the player should only continue if he has cards in which he feels very confident.

There is a mechanic Red Dead RedemptionThe poker minigame that didn’t make it into the sequel, and that’s cheating. First RDR the player could cheat while wearing the elegant costume, but this option is no longer available. The most illegal thing Arthur can do is get up from the table and shoot his opponents, and it won’t earn him anything but a bounty on his head.

Where and when to play poker in Red Dead Redemption 2

The only way to play poker in RDR 2 is to find a table, which luckily isn't too difficult.

There are several areas in the game where the player can play poker, usually located in cities. There are games to join in Valentine, Tumbleweed, Saint Denis, Blackwater and Flatneck Station. However, since Arthur has a permanent dead or alive bounty in Blackwater, the player will likely have to wait until the epilogue to play there as John. There will occasionally be games at the Van Der Lindes campsite that Arthur can also participate in. Games at Valentine, Tumbleweed and Flatneck stations are $2.50, while games at Saint Denis and Blackwater are $5.00.

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The player will likely be introduced to poker through the “Who Is Not Without Sin” mission, where Arthur takes the place of an inebriated Reverend Swanson at a poker table for the first part of the mission. While not particularly significant as Dutch’s early foreshadowing of his own downfall, it’s a good way to get introduced to the minigame, and the player can play for as long as they want. It’s also a good chance to complete the first Gambler challenge to win 5 hands of poker. There is another mission later in the game, “A Fine Night of Debauchery”, which also requires the player to play poker, albeit this time with Strauss helping to rig the game in Arthur’s favor. Technically, this makes this the only time in the game where the player is allowed to cheat.

There are certain restrictions as to when the player can play poker. If the game location is closed, it will not be available. A good rule to remember would be that late night and early morning poker games will not be available like gambling businesses. Even after beating RDR 2poker is still a solid source of entertainment, so knowing when to play is a good thing to remember.

Although not as lucrative or widely available as hunting, poker is a great source of fun and money in Red Dead Redemption 2. By playing smart, the player can get closer to being able to buy everything they need for Arthur. If a player is looking to become the ultimate cowboy in Red Dead Redemption 2then sooner or later they will have to sit down at a poker table.

Next: Red Dead Redemption & RDR2’s Complete Story, Explained

Red Dead Redemption 2 is available for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC and Google Stadia.

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