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Last Updated: April 26, 2017

3 Card Brag

Introduction

3 Card Brag is a nearly the same thing as Three Card Poker. There are some minor rule changes in the hand order, which marginally benefit the player, but it's otherwise the same thing.

Rules



I'm going to assume the reader is already familiar with the rules to Three Card Poker so will just explain how they are different in this game. First, there is some different terminology to the hands. Here is a translation guide:

3 Card Brag to Three Card Poker Translation Guide

3 Card Brag Three Card Poker
Prial Three of a kind
Running Flush Straight flush
Run Straight


Second, the order of hands is different. The only change is a three of a kind beats a straight flush. Or, to put it in 3 Card Brag terminology, a Prial beats a Running Flush.

Third, the hand order within some of the hands is different. To be specific:

  • 3-3-3 is the highest three of a kind (Prial). Otherwise, three of a kinds are ranked as in Three Card Poker.
  • A-2-3 is the highest run or running flush (straight or straight flush). Otherwise, they are ranked as in Three Card Poker.


The Ante Bonus pay table in 3 Card Brag follows the usual 1-4-5 pay table but with the top two hands reversed, as follows:

Ante Bonus

Hand Pays
Prial 5 to 1
Running Flush 4 to 1
Run 1 to 1


There is also the equivalent to the the Pairplus, which 3 Card Brag calls the "Pair Bonus." It follows the liberal 1-4-6-30-40 pay table, but again with the top two hands reversed

Pair Bonus

Hand Pays
Prial 40 to 1
Running Flush 30 to 1
Run 6 to 1
Flush 4 to 1
Pair 1 to 1


Strategy



The strategy is the same as in Three Card Poker, raise on Q-6-4 or better.

Analysis



The rule about the 3-3-3 and A-2-3 being the highest three of a kind and straight respectively cuts equally both ways. So, for purposes of analysis, we can ignore that rule.

However, the rule about switching the three of a kind and straight flush helps the player with both the Ante Bonus and the Pair Bonus. To be specific, the change in hand order lowers the house edge on the Pair Bonus from 2.32% to 2.14%. The house edge on the Ante bet is reduced from 3.37% to 3.35%.

Conclusion



If Three Card Poker is your game, why not convert to 3 Card Brag? It is practically the same thing but with a lower house edge, especially on the equivalent to the Pairplus bet.



Discussion about 3 Card Brag in my forum at Wizard of Vegas.


Written by: Michael Shackleford

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