Let it ride is a variation of casino poker where the player plays against the house. Unlike other games where the player often delivers bets during the game, here the player can withdraw two of the three bets. The rights to the game belong to Shuffle Master.
In general, let it ride is a kind of five-card stud, where the player uses three of his cards and two of the dealer’s community cards to make a combination. Like most casino poker games, winnings are paid according to the paytable, where the maximum odds are on royal flush and go down to a couple of tens – the minimum playing combination. Below you can see the standard payout table used by most real and online casinos.
Royal Flush 1,000 to 1
Straight Flush 200 to 1
Kare 50 to 1
Full house 11 to 1
Flash 8 to 1
Street 5 to 1
Troika 3 to 1
Two pairs 2 to 1
Pair (tens and above) 1 to 1
At the beginning of the game, the player makes three identical bets in three specially marked boxing zones (with 1, 2, $ symbols). The dealer deals cards – three cards to each of the participating players face down and two or three to himself (also face down). After looking at his cards, the player must make a choice: remove one of the bets (Pull Bet), while the bet is returned back to the player, or leave all three bets in place (Let it Ride, literally translated as “let it ride”, hence the name of the game) . After the choice is made, the dealer discards his top card (if he dealt three cards to himself) and reveals the second card. Now the player already knows four cards that can make a combination. He again faces the same choice: withdraw the second bet (Pull Bet) or leave it (Let it Ride). After the choice is made, the dealer’s last card is revealed and the player sees his final combination. The dealer turns over the cards of all players. If there is no winning combination, then the player loses the remaining bets on the table. If there is a combination, then the player receives the winnings on the remaining bets in accordance with the payout table. Some casinos also offer a side bet, where a player can bet that his three cards will contain a winning combination – a pair or three of a kind. The extra bet payout is usually too low and its expected value is less than -10%.
In the game, the player makes two decisions to withdraw or not to bet. The optimal strategy indicates under which cards to make a particular decision. With three cards, you must leave a bet if you have:
With four cards, you must leave a bet if you have:
By playing with this optimal strategy, you will provide the casino with an edge of 3.51%.