Key Poker Supplies

Home Poker

Poker is amongst the most popular games that you'll come across all betting houses, both online and land-based. It is not only a fun game but also one that's very rewarding.

If you've played poker, you know that there is not a great feeling than stacking a massive fortress of chips or tokens - but did you stop to wonder why casinos make use of these poker supplies instead of money. There are several reasons for that, which will be explained later on.

Poker Supplies

Chips are not the only accessories used in this game; you'll find a myriad of other accessories - the major ones are discussed below:

  • The Pack:The standard 52-card pack, sometimes with the extra one or two jokers is used as one of the main poker supplies. Although poker is a one-pack game, nowadays casinos use two packs of different colors to speed up the game. While one pack is being dealt, the other is being shuffled in preparation for the next deal. Note that it's customary to keep changing the cards - any player can call for a new pack and it has to be opened in full view of all participants.
  • Poker Chips:Also known as tokens or checks, these are used in all casinos across the world in lieu of cash. In a game of seven or more players, there should be a supply of about 200 chips. Normally, the lightest-colored or the lowest in value chip is the unit. A red chip is worth 5 whites, a blue or other dark-colored token is worth 10, 20 or 25 whites or 2, 4 or 5 reds. When the game is starting, each gamer "buys in" by purchasing a certain number of tokens, which should be equal for all players.

Poker Chips History


Being one of the major poker supplies, you might want to learn how casinos started using the tokens. Back in the nineteenth century, chips did not exist - instead, players gambled with items such as tiny nuggets of gold or gold dust. Clearly, some form of standardization was very much needed. Therefore, gambling establishments and saloons that offered this game came up with their standardization poker supplies - bones, clay and even pieces of ivory.

Unfortunately, these plain accessories were very easy to forge, so they started branding them with unique engravings and features. Forging, however, remained a problem so by the 1880s, commercial companies were commissioned to manufacture customized clay chips for betting houses. These tokens were custom-made thus hard to forge.

Today, these particular poker supplies are also customized and still contain a certain percentage of clay in their compound material - some gambling establishments make use of ceramic chips. Here, texture, weight, design, and color are cautiously controlled to avoid forgery.

Why Casinos Use Tokens

As you are already aware, chips are the currency of poker rooms globally. These are used for a few reasons, not just tradition.

  • Security - They provide an extra layer of security. Casinos have a few tricks they use to discourage people with criminal intent.
  • Convenience - This is quite obvious. In a fast-moving game, it would be very hectic to wait for players to sort of out dollar bills for every bet.
  • Psychology - Operators prefer chips over money since they add a little mental separation between you and your money. You'll be less hesitant to take a big risk since you'll not be holding actual money.