The popular game of poker is on the rise, thanks in no small part to the onset of modern technology.
Poker has always been a big part of American culture; it flourished in the Wild West, and despite much tighter regulation in the modern world, it remains popular. ReviewJournal.com explain how the World Series of Poker, held every year in Las Vegas, continues to grow in terms of competitors and global reach. In 2021, it was beamed into people’s homes by CBS, having previously been on ESPN.
That increased exposure leads to more people getting involved. In the early part of the century, this phenomenon was known as the poker boom, where players saw the poker film Rounders and the World Series of Poker and bought into the game on a major scale. A crash known as Black Friday brought that to an end in 2011, but since then, the industry has been rebuilding its reputation.
Sadly, real-money online poker games are unavailable in many states; there are seven with the provision to offer such games and only five with operators delivering the service. That means players tend to turn to free-to-play games that offer social elements and a dedicated poker experience. In their overview of poker apps, Poker.org explain how these apps are great for beginners wishing to learn the ropes, which makes them good even if you live in a state with real-money provision. They’re fun without the risk but add to your poker skills over time.
We’ve picked out three of the best free-to-play poker apps here for you to enjoy, should you wish to take up the card game that’s always been a part of American culture.
Zynga Poker can feel like a real-money app; it has the aesthetic of a real-money game and is presented well. Zynga has a track record with apps of this nature; they’re behind other big mobile titles, so they understand the social aspect of putting an app together. Zynga Poker has traditional games, such as Texas Hold’em, and there are tournaments to compete in should you wish. It’s been on the go since before the Black Friday event and has become arguably one of the finest free-to-play apps.
Play WPT is a great app for beginners because it offers a free-to-play experience and features that help someone just starting out. You can access strategy videos and poker training to help boost your confidence before turning your hand to free-to-play games. You can play Texas Hold‘em as with other apps and compete in tournaments, but as this is an official World Poker Tour product, it feels more authentic than some other branded apps.
Appeak Poker offers a freemium experience, which is a free-to-play game in which you can buy extras. This doesn’t mean you’re playing for money, but if you run out of in-game coins, you can buy more; that doesn’t mean a return is available, so be aware of that. It uses Texas Hold‘em, and as with the other games on the list, you can access other players to test your skills against. There are multi-table tournaments to participate in, and the user interface is crisp and easy to understand.
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