Let It Ride is a casino variation of poker, played against the casino rather than against the other players. The game's relatively slow pace and the chance to pull back two of the three bets has made Let It Ride popular with older players and table game neophytes. At the same time, the game's slow pace has resulted in some casino dealers nicknaming the game Let It Die. (A slow-paced game results in fewer tips for the dealer, hence the derogatory nickname.)
"Let It Ride" was invented by Shuffle Master, who owns the trademark to both the name of the game and the logo.
Let It Ride is a variation of five-card stud invented by Michael Parisi & Karen Elder where the player wagers on a poker hand consisting of three cards in the player's hand and two community cards in the dealer's hand. Like in video poker, the payout is determined by the ranking of the player's hand and the payout schedule.
Please note that this is the standard payout schedule used at most casinos. Other payout schedules exist at the option of individual casinos, and appropriate strategy changes with different payout schedules.
How to play
Each player places three equal bets in three spaces labeled (1),(2) and ($).
Optional side bets
Some casinos offer an optional $1 side bet. This side bet offers an additional payout if the player's first three cards contains a winning hand. The house edge on this bet is generally over 13%, making it one of the worst bets for a player in a casino. A more common $1 side bet is against a fixed payout scheduling typically starting with two pair (typically a $4 payout, but really only 3:1 since the original dollar is collected before the hand is dealt) or three of a kind (typically a $8 payout).
Each player receives three face down cards. The dealer deals two community cards face down.
Let It Ride compares the player's poker hand with a payout chart, rather than comparing it with the other players' hands or the dealer's hand. The player's hand consists of the player's three cards and the dealer's two cards.
Each player is required to keep the three cards in full view of the dealer at all times.
Winners are paid according to the payout schedule (pair of 10's or better, two pair, etc.).
After looking at his three cards, each player has the option of pulling back the first bet or leaving the wager there. To leave the bet live is to "let it ride".
The dealer then exposes one community card. The players then each have the option of pulling back the second bet or letting it ride.(they can't add their first bet back on if they get a better hand, however.) After each player decides whether to pull back the second bet, the cards are placed face down on the designated area of the layout and may not be touched again. In the event that a player has a hand that has no chance of winning unless the dealer turns up a pair of 10's or better, the player will root for "Valai" (pronounced VAWL-eye) in coaxing the dealer to turn up a pair of 10's or better. The term "Valai" originated in Macau casinos.
The dealer then turns up the second community card and in a counterclockwise direction, turns the three cards of each player face up. For players with bad hands, hopefully they just achieved Valai.
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