What is Pokdeng and how to play it?

Pokdeng, also known as Pok Deng or simply POK, is a traditional Thai card game that has gained immense popularity not only in Thailand but also around the world. With its easy-to-understand rules and fast-paced gameplay, เกมไพ่ป๊อกเด้ง is loved by many players of all ages.

Overview of the game

The objective of Pokdeng is simple – to have the highest-ranked hand among all players at the table. It is typically played with a standard deck of 52 cards, although there are variations that utilize joker cards as well. Each card carries a specific value, which contributes to the overall score of a hand.

To begin the game, each player is dealt two cards face down, and then a third card is placed face up on the table. This communal card becomes the basis for comparison and creates opportunities for players to build stronger hands. The highest-ranking card in Pokdeng is the Ace, followed by King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, and 2.

How to play?

The scoring system in Pokdeng is based on the sum of the values of the two or three cards held by each player. A player can choose to play their hand as either two separate cards or as a combination of the three cards. The goal is to reach a total value of 8 or 9, known as Pok or Deng, respectively, which yields the highest score.

However, if the initial sum of a hand exceeds 9, only the rightmost digit is considered. For example, if a player has a 6 and a 7, their total is 13, but in Pokdeng, it will be read as 3. This unique feature increases the intensity and strategic elements of the game.

Once all players have set their hands, they compare their scores with each other and with the communal card. The player with the highest-ranking hand wins the round and receives the agreed-upon point. In most cases, the game is played with a wager, and points are accumulated over multiple rounds.

What makes Pokdeng particularly exciting is the ability to improve your hand by drawing the communal card. If a player’s initial hand is not strong enough, they have the option to draw one additional card from the deck. This can greatly enhance a player’s chances of securing a higher score, but it also comes with the risk of busting if the total exceeds 9.

Furthermore, Pokdeng includes special card combinations that yield bonus points. For example, if a player has two identical cards, known as twins, they earn additional points. In some variations, certain combinations such as all face cards or all 10s can also bring extra rewards.

The beauty of Pokdeng lies in its simplicity, coupled with the strategic decision-making required to achieve the best possible hand. It brings together elements of luck and skill, making it engaging and enjoyable for players of all levels.


Whether you are new to the world of cards or a seasoned gamer, Pokdeng guarantees excitement and friendly competition. So, gather your friends and family, grab a deck of cards, and enjoy the thrill of Pokdeng – the traditional Thai card game that has captured hearts worldwide.