Card games like rummy and poker were always the favourite pastimes for families and friends. In recent years, gaming platforms have developed online card games like online rummy, online poker etc., which the common people have whole-heartedly accepted. Now, we can play our favourite games from anywhere, at any time.
Every card game has a deck which is a pack of cards of identical shape and size. A standard deck of cards contains 52 cards. The cards are divided into two equal sets and shuffled properly before distributing among the players. Not always all the cards are distributed among the players, mostly two-player games. In multiplayer matches, sometimes, all the cards are used up in distribution. Card games started with a 52 card deck. However, over the years, the deck has been shortened to increase the pace of the game and make it more exciting. Usually, the cards that are removed are pip cards, court or Tarot cards. These decks are also known as stripped decks or short decks, or shortened decks.
How stripped decks have evolved
When card games were first introduced, it was a standard 52 cards game, the deck containing four suits, each having ten pip cards and three face cards. Later, in the 14th and 15th centuries, the aces were removed from German and Swiss decks, while the 10s got dropped from the Spanish and Portuguese decks. The reason for the initial removal of these cards was due to production advantages because it was much easier to print 48 cards than 52 using two woodblocks. However, later they were removed to make the game faster. Trappola was the first 36-card deck game.
In the 1700s, the 6s were removed from the European deck to form a 32 card deck, the most popular form of playing short deck poker in France. 32-card and 36-card decks are mostly played in countries like Germany, Russia and Switzerland. In Central Europe, 24-card deck online games like online schnapsen are played, and the deck can be further reduced to 20-card deck games. Counties in Spain, Portugal, Italy and Latin America use 40-deck card games as they drop the higher numbers so that 7 is located just under the face cards.
Asian countries like India also started using striped decks like half decks for traditional cards. Unlike Western countries who have the practice of removing ranks, we mostly created stripped decks by removing suits. In India, Naqsha, a gambling game, replaced the Ganjifa trick-taking game, and many decks only contained half of the traditional suits. Since then, short deck poker and half deck games have been in practice, and if you are in doubt, you can play online card games with half the number of cards in the deck.
British and Scandinavians have not adopted the concept of the stripped deck very well and are most resistant towards its use. They have maintained the 52-card deck format since the start.
The first form of poker used a 20-card deck. The Australian poker form, Manila and Mexican stud used piquet and striped decks. You can also play five-card stud and euchre with a piquet deck and striped deck.
Short Deck Poker
One of the most famous variants of poker is the Texas hold'em. Six-plus hold'em, also known as short-deck hold 'em, is a community card poker variant of the Texas hold'em, which deals with a 36-card deck. The deck lacks cards numbered from 2 to 5. Each player receives two cards face down, and the goal is to make the best card poker hand from any combination of the seven cards, i.e. five community cards that come from a flop, turn and river and two hole cards of each player. The deck is French.
The lowest possible straight in this form of poker is A× 9× 8× 7× 6×.
Texas Hold’em is also known as short deck poker.
You can think that the ace necessarily replaces the 5×. Short deck poker has the same rules as regular poker. There are four streets of betting in short-deck hold 'em -Pre-flop, flop, turn and river. There are some different hand rankings in short deck poker, like a three-of-a-kind beats a straight and a flush beats a full house. The river is often dealt with differently. The variation is that a third hole card is handed to the player in place of a river. Players make their five poker hands from two of three hole cards and three of four hole cards. Straights and full houses are easier to make in this form.
Thus, we find that stripped card games are highly popular among people and online card enthusiasts. So, it is possible to play with half decks. We have tried to give you an overview of how short deck card games have evolved and some poker variants that use this concept, mainly the short-deck hold 'em, a popular poker variant.