Poker Variations: Know Your Games

You will be the ultimate card shark after you learn about the different poker variations.

Draw Poker Variations
With draw poker games, players receive a full hand on the initial deal and then draw cards from the deck to replace cards discarded from the hand.

  • Five-card draw. Five-card draw poker games are the most common of the draw poker variations, where players receive five cards on the initial deal, and then a round of betting ensues. After the betting, players may discard up to three cards to draw fresh cards from the deck, followed by a final round of betting.

Stud Poker Games
In stud poker games, players receive a set number of cards dealt down so that it isn't visible to other players, and subsequent cards are dealt up on a round basis as betting occurs.

  • Seven-card stud. In seven-card stud poker games, players receive two cards down and one card up in the initial deal. A round of betting ensues, and then the dealer deals another card up, followed by another round of betting, until six cards have been dealt. The dealer deals the seventh card down, followed by a final round of betting.
  • Five-card stud. In five-card stud poker games, players receive one card down and one card up in the initial deal. A round of betting ensues, and then the dealer deals another card up, followed by another round of betting until five cards are dealt. A final round of betting ensues after the final card.

Community Card Poker Variations
In shared card poker variations, each player receives a few cards, which they then combine with house cards to make a hand.

  • Texas hold -em. In Texas hold -em poker games, each player is dealt two cards down, and five cards are dealt down to the table. A round of betting follows the deal, and then three house cards are turned up. A round of betting follows, and then another card is turned up. One more round of betting, the final card is turned up, and then a final round of betting.
  • Omaha hold -em. In Omaha hold -em poker games, each player receives four cards dealt down, and five cards are dealt down to the table. A round of betting follows the deal, and then three house cards are turned up. A round of betting follows, and then another card is turned up. One more round of betting, the final card is turned up, and then a final round of betting. Each player must use two cards from his hand and 3 cards from the table.

Poker variations: alternate rules, card values and winning hands
Many poker players opt to use house rules to make poker games more interesting. House rules may include poker variations such as assigning certain cards to be wild cards or have arbitrary values, dictating that the lowest hand wins instead of the high hand, declaring that a low hand must be under a certain value or the ability to buy extra cards. Adding house rules to poker games gives players a lot more options.

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