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Full History of Three Card Poker

Full History of Three Card Poker

Three card poker has become a popular game because of its simplicity. It is very entertaining and has gained a lot of popularity quickly. Three card poker is a variation of the game Brag, which is a British-derived version. 

It was popularized as Casino Brag in the United States. However, it was later changed to three card poker. Derek Webb, an English professional poker player, created it. Webb may have been in Las Vegas, Nevada, when he played poker. 

However, he felt that the game was too slow and boring. Webb created three card poker in 1994. It was first played at casinos in Great Britain. This form of poker quickly gained popularity and attracted a lot of people. It is now found in nearly every casino worldwide.

Its moniker was Primero, Bragg, Casino Brag, and then Three Card Poker/Tri Card Poker. Let's look at each one individually and trace the path from Renaissance-era Italy to modern-day Las Vegas and cyberspace.

Tri-Card Poker/Three Card Poker

Webb started Prime Table Games (PTG), a company to promote and sell the game. Webb initially targeted the UK market but was soon forced to expand his reach after encountering regulatory problems. Las Vegas was the obvious choice. 

PTG again struggled to convince Las Vegas, Reno, and Atlantic City casinos to support the new game. Webb refused to give up and eventually gained the support of a Mississippi-based Casino. Grand Casino Gulfport was the first casino to offer Webb's invention. 

PGT promoted the game until 1999 when Shuffle Master, an American company, bought the rights to the game from overseas. Shuffle Master recognized the potential of the product and sought to make it more appealing to American players. 

First, the name of the game was changed from Casino Brag into Three Card Poker. Brag is a popular European game, but it is not well-known in America. The combination of Shuffle Master's connections in the U.S. and the change in the name made the game more relatable.

It became a hugely popular game in America, and it is still being played in many casinos around the globe. It has become a popular table game and is now a standard offering at most online casinos.

Webb was able to achieve his original goal of having his creation in UK casinos. Webb's home country allowed him to play the game in 2002 after relaxed regulations. It also enjoyed great success there. It is also now available in many fixed odds betting shops across the British Isles.


Primero means "first" in Italian. Three card poker is of Italian origin and is the first to be mentioned in literature. Some claim that the game originated in Spain, where it was called Primera. Primero is a Spanish word. 

The game quickly became Prime in France and then Primero in the UK. It has been called the "mother of all poker" over the years. 

The hand rankings were significantly different from today's 52-card deck. While four-of-a-kind flushes are still possible, partial flushes (i.e., Flushes that don't make use of all cards are not possible, and reverse flushes, which strangely recognize the player's cards (i.e., Four cards of different suits. 

This hand was recently reintroduced in Badugi, a poker variant. In this game, there was no place for pairs or straights. They would be coming later.

Casino Brag

Derek.J.Webb is the man who can claim credit for casino three-card poker's invention and growth. Webb, a man who loved gambling and especially poker, was a professional poker player before developing and marketing this game. 

Webb realized that certain game elements could be lost when it was changed from a game between players to one against a house.

Webb added the ante bonus to compensate, and the pair plus side bet increased the game's appeal. Webb now had a product that combined a popular game with the desire of casino players to get small amounts. Webb's in-built house edge would also be attractive to casinos. The ex-card shark took his game to market.


Brag, as it was later called, is the British version of Primero. It is easily recognized as the most popular poker game in the world. It uses the same 52-card deck, and the hand rankings are much more familiar. 

They are very similar to the three card poker version at casinos. One exception is Brag, where three of a type is the best hand. Poker is all about a straight flush.  These rankings would be adjusted by the five-card versions of the game, which will later adjust for changes in probabilities and new hand combinations.

Brag, a thrilling betting game, is still popular around the globe. It was very popular in England even into the 20th century. 

The game proceeds in the same way as poker today, except that to "see" an opponent's hand, a player must bet twice the amount of his previous bet. An Englishman noticed a gap in the market in the 1990s and tried to transform this historic game into one that could be used at the casino tables.


Despite the growing popularity of casino-style gaming worldwide, Webb's invention will likely continue to be enjoyed by millions of people, as evidenced by the recent Macau gambling boom and increasing number playing online. 

While the game may evolve, some providers have recently added a progressive jackpot feature to their games. This side bet allows all bets to go into one pot until a participant is dealt a Royal Flush. 

These pots are rare and can be extremely large. Million-dollar jackpots have been seen in Vegas. It is hard to predict the future for this game, which started its journey in the 16 century.