Poker is arguably the most popular card game in the world, and the history of the game of poker dates right back to the early 1800s, where mentions to a simple competition “The Lying Game” can be found in journals and literature.
Henry George Bohn was the first author to mention draw poker in his publication “New Handbook of Games,” in 1850. More works concerning the game of poker – including the much celebrated “The Game of Draw-Poker: Mathematically Illustrated” by Prof. Henry Winterblossom – were published later that century, as the game’s popularity grew across America.
In 1925, community cards were introduced to the game of poker. This innovative aspect added an exciting new feature to traditional draw poker, and it’s how the most popular form of poker, Texas Hold ‘em was created.
When the World Series of Poker Tour (WSOP) was launched in 1970, Texas Hold ‘em was their primary game of choice – it was the perfect form of the game from a spectatorship standpoint, as fans could visually see five of the seven cards a player could use to make up their hand. Jonnie Moss was the inaugural WSOP winner. Four years later, Starla Brodie became the first female winner of a WSOP mixed-gender event, in what was one of the greatest upsets in WSOP history.
By the mid-80s, poker had made a home for itself in mainstream society. WSOP events started to gain television coverage, and the game featured in many TV shows around this period, including an iconic episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation.
[pullquote]Poker’s popularity has grown exponentially over the years, and it’s amazing to see such a humble and traditional game holding its own in the modern day market.[/pullquote] But what does the future hold for the game of poker?
Well, the professional tour has almost reached the pinnacle of what it can achieve. The World Series of Poker and European Poker Tour travel around the world, bringing poker to the masses. Tournaments are well sponsored; there is plenty of television coverage, and they continue to draw in large crowds. While the popularity of live poker remains at the high level it currently sits, tournament prize pots will continue to increase. It’s simply a case of maintaining the progress it has already made.
However, online poker has become just as popular, maybe even more popular, than live poker. Planet Poker – launched in 1998 – was the first website dedicated to online poker, allowing card lovers to compete against players from around the world, without leaving the comfort of their home. Since then, online poker has continued to develop, expanding onto mobile platforms in the mid-2000s. It’s in this aspect of the game where improvements and modifications are constantly being made, to take online poker to an even higher level.
The main goal of online poker progression is to make it as near to a live poker experience as possible. Virtual reality technology is hitting mainstream markets at the moment, and experiments are ongoing which fuse online poker with virtual reality.
Website Poker Tube posted an article at the start of last year, discussing whether virtual reality is the missing link in taking online poker to a bigger, more exciting platform.
Casino VR is one of the market leaders in offering online poker combined with virtual reality. They are already hosting free multiplayer tournaments for Gear VR and Oculus Rift users, where they can sample the exciting new features virtual reality can bring to online poker.
Poker will always have its traditions and its storied history. As the world around it expands, poker will continue to evolve with it and the capabilities of what the game can achieve online seem endless. It’s clear that the game of poker can look forward to a very exciting future.