Game Review

High Stakes Texas Hold'em Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Jon Wahlgren

No more, no less

With the influx of card and parlor game adaptations hitting DSiWare, it’s odd to see that poker, arguably the most popular competitive card game in town, is so underrepresented. Seeing this gap, Hudson has leaped in with High Stakes Texas Hold ‘Em, doing exactly what it says on the tin.

The whole package couldn’t be more basic. You take on three computer opponents in single-player mode and raise, bluff and check your way to the top. Choose the blind size, your starting funds and you’re off. Leaving the table gives you the option to save and resume later in case you’re on a hot streak and the game tracks what types of hands you play.

There’s no real in-game tutorial for those that don’t know their pairs from their straights; that’s relegated to the game manual -- although there is a handy-dandy reference chart of all possible hands but one button press away at all times.

Apart from some decent 3D animations that pop up from time to time, the visuals are on the same basic level as Windows Solitaire. And you’re going to want to turn the sound off. There is exactly one loop played ad infinitum, and it isn’t even very catchy.

Poker just wouldn’t be poker without some friends, and High Stakes allows four players to link up locally and scam each other. It's a shame there's no real online mode since it would add a good deal of longevity for those who can't scrounge up friends to play with whenever you feel like playing. In order to play locally you’ll all need a copy of the game, and at 500 points each it kind of kills the value.


High Stakes Texas Hold ‘Em is a poker game. As such, you can play poker. Poker poker poker. With a lack of online multiplayer it's a tough sell to those without DSi-bearing friends, and even still can't be fully taken advantage of until a 2000 point total investment is made. At that point, you’d all be better off buying a 300 point deck of cards and a few bags of Funyuns. We hear life has some really cool photorealistic visuals and built-in voice chat too.

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User Comments (9)



nintendogamerftw said:

I loled at that last sentence in the conclusion.
Too bad this game doesn't offer more variety though, or even an online multiplayer mode.



Jacob said:

I was very close to buying this, but I seen your review and helped me decide whether or not to buy it. Thank you!!!



TKOWL said:

500 points? 200 would be OK but their asking price is WAAAAY too much



rosemo said:

I agree. A 24 block game with no features other than playing the card game itself should have been 200 points. I guess they are figuring that the multiplayer is what puts it in 500 point territory but still...if each player has to have the game, then it should still be 200 points. Now if there were local wireless play and wifi play, then that may be different.



barucci2000 said:

... no extra features, only no limit texas hold'em, only 4 player ( even if you play against the COM)



ramstrong said:

I actually like this game a lot. There are bad points, sure. Annoying music you can't turn off. It also keep tracks hands dealt in real time, but win/loss ratio is only recorded when you win or went bankrupt. The AI is decent, albeit with loopholes I can take advantage of. This is a great way to learn Texas Holdem (arguably the best poker play there is). I disagree that real-life is better. Well, depends on your circle of friends, . There's no feature that is missing. I really like the fact that it keeps statistics automatically. Like I said, great for LEARNING Texas Holdem.

Does anybody feel up to it to review EA version? I find EA version to be geared toward action-oriented crowd. Better AI personalities, sure, but it seems they ramp up the action a lot. And if that's not fast enough, it also up the ante quite high (in a long game) so that you're forced to gamble and bluff a lot. And should you happen to have bad run of cards, may as well kiss your money goodbye. I also do not like the fact that you can raise after checks. EA's version is definitely geared more toward luck, rather than Hudson's skill.

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