We are a group of professional gamblers. We met in Reno, Nevada, during the summer of 1983, when we were just barely old enough to go gamble at the Casino. There were seven of us at first. Although we had all graduated from high school within a couple of years of one another, we had never properly met until that summer. We were working dead end local jobs—bartending or construction. Jonesy-two-times was a gravedigger. We didn’t have much money at the time, so we kept to the games we knew very well, such as Blackjack, and bankrolled each other. We didn’t know it at the time, but we were a collective. Almost thirty years down the road, having shared triumphs and massive losses, elation and despair, and one severe bout with alcoholic addiction between us, three out of the original seven of us are still fully active professional gamblers.
Every gambler has a specialty, and ours in particular is Caribbean Stud Poker. When we first came across Caribbean Stud we were stunned. Here was Poker, a game we knew intimately, and suddenly it was fast, accessible, and based entirely on the player’s knowledge of the system. It was Poker, but it was a bit like blackjack too. This was in the 1990s, and Caribbean Stud was new, hot, and exciting. It is a game rooted in tradition, but don’t listen to all the legends—Caribbean Stud Poker is brand spanking new.
By the mid 1990s, we were already seasoned gambling veterans, and had the ability to decode the game in order to make it work for us. Make no mistake. For a rookie, Caribbean Stud is heavily stacked in the casino’s favor. This game is neither for the faint of heart, nor for those unwilling to dedicate the time to learn its ins and outs. There are quirks in the betting system that you need to know about, there is ample data to memorize. And unlike the Blackjack table, you are not welcome to sit down with a laminated betting guide. In fact, if you still own a laminated betting guide, you might not be ready to Caribbean Stud Poker.
Knowing how to play, however, has its perks. Caribbean Stud Poker is usually tied to a Progressive Jackpot. Those who have heard of Progressives are nodding in appreciation. For those who haven’t, let’s just say that if you win a Progressive Jackpot, you’ll laugh in the face of the latest state lottery winner. The Jackpots pile up to astounding heights, just like at progressive slots. And if you win…well, you might as well retire.
Here, we will share with you everything we have learned over the years, and tell you where you can find a Caribbean Stud Poker table to suit your needs. We will go through the history of the game, its rules, and the best way to win. It’s a journey we took the hard way. Let us spare you the despair, damage, and potential alcoholism. Let our mistakes be signposts in your journey to professional gambling.