Guide to Popular Skill Games

Skill games are games where, although luck can play a part, it’s the ability of the players and the strategies that they use that are generally the biggest factors in determining who wins. This in contrast to the majority of gambling games, such as those that you find in casinos, which are games of chance where luck is the overriding factor.

Games of skill can still involve gambling though because they can be played for real money stakes as well as purely for entertainment purposes. The gambling for such games is usually a simple case of each of the players agreeing on a stake with the winner taking all. There are other ways to gamble on them too, such as participating in real money tournaments for example.

Our skill games section contains guides to a number of popular games that are played by people all over the world, for money and for fun. On this page we have provided a brief overview of each game: if you are looking for more information on a specific game please use the links below.

Poker

There are few, if any, skill games that are more widely known than poker. It’s easily the most popular skill game that’s played online, and there are loads of poker sites where you can play over the internet for money.
We actually have a whole section dedicated to poker on this website. We provide plenty of information for beginners, tips on choosing where to play (along with recommendations), details of the various different forms of the game and a whole lot of advice on game strategy.
If you are interested in learning more about this game, finding a reputable poker site, or becoming a better player, then you should definitely take a look at our comprehensive guide.

Poker Guide

Backgammon

Backgammon is another very popular game and is one of the oldest board games around. It’s commonly played for gambling purposes although there are also many that play it purely for fun. It’s not exactly a simple game, but it doesn’t take too long to learn all the rules either.

There’s a lot of strategy involved in backgammon, but getting lucky is also a big part of the game. This is because you have to roll a dice to determine which moves you can make. Overall, this is definitely a game of skill.

Backgammon Guide

Rummy

Of all the different card games played in the world, rummy is one of the most popular. There are several different formats of the game, such as Canasta and Basic rummy. Yet no matter which format you play, they are all based on the same basic concept  to collect melds. A meld is a run of cards which can be either sets of three or four cards of the same ranks or three or more sequential cards in the same suit.

Rummy Guide

Dominoes

Dominoes is another very old game, in fact it’s been around for hundreds of years. It has been played for real money stakes throughout history, but it’s also enjoyed by many who play just for fun. There are a number of different variations of dominoes which can be broadly divided into two categories: blocking games and scoring games.

Dominoes Guide

Chess

Chess is one of the greatest skill games of all time. It’s fairly complicated, but the rules are actually not too difficult to learn. It’s vastly more difficult to master the game, and it takes a great deal of practice and study to become highly skilled at it. Although chess is not traditionally considered a gambling game, there are those that play it for money.

Chess Guide

Tonk

This game is played mostly in the United States, Tonk is quite similar to rummy. It’s a quick and simple game and can be played for fun or for wagering purposes. There are a few variations of the rules, but the basic concept of the game is always the same.

Tonk Guide

Yahtzee

Yahtzee is a fun, simple dice game that’s played all over the world. Although luck is a huge factor involved, because you are ultimately relying on the results of dice rolls, there is some strategy involved. It’s played mostly for entertainment, but it can be played with money at stake.

Yahtzee Guide

Spades

Spades is another very popular card game. It comes from the Whist collection of games and is often considered a good introduction to the more complicated game of contract bridge. The rules are pretty simple, and it doesn’t take long to learn them. Commonly played for fun, you can gamble on spades too.

Spades Guide

Contract Bridge

Contract bridge, usually known simply as bridge, is one of the most loved card games of all time. It’s played by four people in two teams of two. It’s somewhat more complex than many other card games, and although the rules aren’t too difficult to learn, mastering the game is definitely a challenge. Most of the time this game is played for entertainment more than for money, but it certainly can be played for real money stakes.

Contract Bridge Guide

Checkers

Checkers, also known as draughts, is a fabulously simple two-player board game. It’s very popular all over the world, with people of all ages being able to play it. Despite its simplicity, this is a game of pure skill with no luck involved at all. There are a few different variations, but the basics are the same throughout them all. It can easily be played for money, but it’s also played just for fun.

Checkers Guide