2 Hand Casino Hold’em Live

2 Hand Casino Hold’em Live

Evolution Gaming’s 2 Hand Hold’em live dealer game gives you double the action as you can play two hands at the same time against the house in a version of the most popular poker game running on the planet. The bonus side bet can also give you an extra chance to win up to 100 times your bet with a minimum payout of 7x.

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An Introduction to 2 Hand Casino Hold’em

Since the late 1990s and early 2000s, Texas hold’em has taken over as the most popular form of poker there is by far. Evolution Gaming has taken advantage of this with their 2 Hand Hold’em live dealer tables.

2 Hand Casino Holdem Main Screen
2 Hand Casino Holdem Main Screen

This game offers double the action and some serious strategic changes compared to the traditional Casino Hold’em title.

We’ve seen this developer put together live dealer versions of games that are a bit different than their traditional forms, and this is another example of that particular approach. You can consider this an upgraded version of one of the most popular casino poker forms of all time as well, and it’s hard to argue that it’s one of the most interesting non-blackjack games from a strategic standpoint as well.

If you like poker, and if you like strategy and skill coming into play, then this is a game to check out.

Rules and Gameplay Procedure

You’ll see that there are two hands being dealt on the table for this game, and you have an opportunity to bet on just one of them or both of them. It’s your choice which of the two spots you bet with.

From there, you’ll have the following gameplay procedure for the Two Hand Hold’em tables, which apply to each individual hand:

  • You must place an ante bet to play, but the bonus bet, always twice the size of the ante, is optional (see below for details).
  • You begin by having your two hands dealt two cards each (both face up), while the dealer receives two cards face down. Three community cards are placed on the game board as well.
  • Each of your hands must decide to call or fold. Calling is worth twice the ante, and folding gives up your ante wager and any chance of winning, but it doesn’t affect the bonus bet.
  • If you call, two additional community cards are dealt, and the dealer will show his or her cards.
  • The hands are evaluated based on the procedure we’ll describe below, and the dealer needs to qualify by getting at least a pair of fours.
  • If the dealer happens to not qualify, then the call bet is a push, but the ante bet pays out according to the ante win table (see payouts below).
  • When the dealer does qualify, losing to the dealer has you lose both your ante and call wagers.
  • However, if the dealer qualifies, and you win, then the call bet pays out at even money, and the ante pays according to the table below.
  • Note that ties are a push, and both your ante and call wagers will simply be returned to you.

While this is the basic procedure, note that each of your two hands will be evaluated individually based on the following rules and will be subject to their own payouts. Note also that the bonus bet is always active no matter if you win or lose the hand, so you can get a payout regardless even if you fold your hand for the ante, if the dealer doesn’t qualify or if you lose the hand after the dealer does qualify.

2 Hand Casino Holdem Dealing
2 Hand Casino Holdem Dealing

How Hands Are Evaluated

In most table poker games, hands are evaluated using five cards only. Here, each hand (including the dealer’s hand) is evaluated using the hold’em community card system.

This means that each hand is evaluated using the best possible five-card poker hand between the two private hole cards and the five community cards.

You are forced to have the best possible hand of the seven available, and you don’t have to declare your own hands since it’s done for you automatically. That means you won’t run into a situation like you can in regular poker where you accidentally under-declare your hand and end up with a worse hand effectively than what you could have had based on your cards.

Payouts and Prizes

In the following, we have the payouts and prizes based on the ante and bonus payouts. In the parentheses, we’ll list the ante payouts first and the bonus payouts second.

  • Royal Flush (100x, 100x) – The five top cards AKQJT where they all have the same suit
  • Straight Flush (20x, 50x) – Any five cards in the same suit that are consecutive
  • Four of a Kind (10x, 40x) – Four cards that have the same exact rank
  • Full House (3x, 30x) – Three cards with the same exact rank combined with two different cards of the same rank
  • Flush (2x, 20x) – Five cards that all have a matching suit
  • Straight (1x, 7x) – Five cards with ranks that are all consecutive
  • Three of a Kind (1x, 7x) – Three cards with the exact same rank
  • Two Pairs (1x, 7x) – Two cards with matching rank with two other cards of a different matching rank
  • One Pair (1x, 7x*) – Two cards with the exact same rank

* For the bonus bet, the only pair that gives a payout is a pair of aces.

What you’ll see is that the bonus bet has winnings that are stacked a big toward the upper end of the pay table while the payouts for the ante win are a bit more spread out. That has an important affect on the volatility and the fact that the ante bet has a lower volatility than the bonus bet.

2 Hand Casino Holdem Closeup
2 Hand Casino Holdem Closeup

Basic Strategy in 2 Hand Casino Hold’em Live

The strategic side of this game is one of the main reasons so many people enjoy it. There are a few factors here to consider, and while an in-depth strategic breakdown is a bit beyond the scope of what we’re looking at here, we’ll give you some basics:

  • The option to call or fold is all about the average value of your hand that you can expect to have with two more cards coming.
  • The bonus bet always has the same house advantage no matter how you play, but you will have a variable average house edge based on how you play the ante bet.
  • Because you get to see two hands played out at once, you will have some extra information about which cards are not in the deck since you get to see two more cards that have been dealt.

In short, if you have at least two cards that are higher than the cards on the board, any pair that includes at least one of your hole cards, a straight draw or a flush draw, then you should always call. There are a number of other types of situations where calling is a must, but this covers a lot of them.

How to Win at Two Hand Hold’em

The bonus bet always has a payout rate of about 93.7 percent. That doesn’t change at any point because you don’t have any decisions that affect it.

With correct play, you can get a payout rate of more than 99 percent with the main ante wager. However, there’s a lot of strategy that goes into that, and your actual average payout rate will depend on a combination of luck and how many strategic mistakes you make in your play.

2 Hand Casino Holdem Side View
2 Hand Casino Holdem Side View

There’s really only one decision in this game, which is to call or fold after the hole cards and three community cards have been dealt. What you need to do is use the information in front of you to make the best decision you can on that particular front, but also understand that you will need to be calling a majority of the time (at least 70 percent of the time as a general minimum) to come anywhere near playing correctly.

This is anti-intuitive, especially if you’ve played poker against other people before, because the strategy that most people tend to go with is very conservative and only includes 20 to 25 percent of hands at the most.


Live dealer 2 Hand Hold’em is an excellent game for both recreational and more serious players. It includes enough strategy for it to be an interesting component of the experience, but it’s set up so that you don’t have to play perfectly to have a decent payout rate and a really good time. Add that to the social interactions of talking about hands with other players that you meet from all across, the globe, and you have a winning recipe to say the least.


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