Playing the Street Poker Called “Pusoy Dos”

There is a wide array of poker games around the globe all of which were popularized by casinos, travelers and gamblers. There is one, however, which evolved out of keen ingenuity of Filipinos as regards to card games. In the Philippines, because card games are considered a past time or hobby, one of the games which became a popular poker game is pusoy dos or street poker.

The name derives itself from pusoy the local term for poker, and dos the Spanish term for two. Because the wager for a casino poker game is expensive pusoy dos therefore become one of the alternative card games in the Philippines.

Like any street card game pusoy dos can be played by two to a maximum of four people. This means that in a four-player round each will have exactly 13 cards in his hand. Only a single deck of cards is needed in this card game.

The dealer first sets the minimum wager. Sometimes wagers are set when players have received their cards. After shuffling the deck the dealer then distributes the cards to each player one after another on a rotational manner until the dealer is left with no cards. All the cards are given faced-down to give exclusivity to the one holding them.

In case that there are only 3 players, each will receive 17 cards. The remainder is kept anonymous and will only be revealed after the entire game. If there are only 2 players may decide on whether to split the game into two rounds of 13-cards per game or divide the entire deck into 26-cards for a single-rounded game.

Basic House Rules: 1. The House of Diamonds always prevails. Next are the Houses of Hearts, Spades and Clubs, respectively. 2. Reds are always preferred over the blacks. 3. Proper ranking of cards (from highest to lowest): Twos, Aces, Kings, Queens, Jacks, Tens, Nines, Eights, Sevens, Sixes, Fives, Fours and Threes. Following #1, the Two of Diamonds is therefore the highest single card. 4. The game always starts with the person holding the Three of Clubs. He may put it down as a solitary card or in a pair of threes (the club plus another three-card), or in trios, or quadros or in a full house. 5. Based on the distribution of cards the person beside the person who laid down his card(s) is the next person to play. He must kill the card(s) by putting down a higher card of the same streak. (A streak means that the number of cards to be laid down is the same as that of the previous players.) He can PASS if he has no cards to kill the previous player's cards. 6. A Full house consists of five cards in any of the following combinations: a. A pair of cards + trio (pair: two cards of the same point value; trio: three cards of the same point value) b. Any card + Quadro (quadro: all cards of the same point value) c. Straight (5 consecutive cards from any house ex: 5 of spades, 6 of diamonds, 7 of spades, 8 of clubs and 9 of hearts) d. Straight flashes (5 consecutive cards from the same house) The highest full house is the Diamond suit: 10, Jack, Queen, King and Ace of the House of Diamonds. It cannot be killed by any card combination. 7. The player whose cards were not killed may start a new pattern in which the other players must follow through. 8. He who goes empty-handed first is the winner.