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3 Card Brag

What is ‘3 Card Brag’?

‘3 Card Brag’ (often ‘Three-Card Brag’) is a bluffing game with a lot of similarities to poker. The game focuses far more heavily on betting and bluffing, rather than on the actions in the game. Players raise high if they wish to play, and hands are ranked at the showdown as they would be in poker – with some differences to the winning hand.

‘3 Card Brag’ Explained

‘Brag’ is a common variant of poker which was often seen in British and European casinos, although its popularity has waned in recent years. It is based on poker and follows much of the same structure, except that players play the cards they are dealt rather than exchanging in the draw or receiving additional table cards. There is some degree of bluffing involved, as the stakes rise high so players need to commit as soon as they feel able. Every bet increase on the last by as much or more as the last bet’s value, so pots in brag can run high. Players bet until everyone is ready to show their hand, and then the best-ranked hand wins the game.

‘Three card brag’ or ‘3 card brag’ is the most common version of this game. Players make the best three card hand they can from the three cards they are dealt, and they bet on this hand throughout the turn. There are other versions of the game, named after the number of cards that are in play. If four cards are used, players can discard one. In five, six and seven card versions, players assemble the best hand of three cards they can from the set available, and discard the rest. Stud versions of the game are also common, along with a trick-taking version called thirteen card brag.