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List of poker variants

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The card game of poker has many variations, most of which were created in the United States in the mid-1800s through the early 1900s. The standard order of play applies to most of these games, but to fully specify a poker game requires details about which hand values are used, the number of betting rounds, and exactly what cards are dealt and what other actions are taken between rounds.

Popular poker variants

The most popular poker variants can be divided into three broad groups:

Some common rule variations include:

  • Wild cards are added. This can range from adding jokers as wild card, to making certain low cards such as deuces wild to the 7-card stud variant named baseball.
  • Lowball: The lowest hand wins the pot. There are different rules about whether or not aces count as low, and the effects of straights and flushes. The most common variants are Razz and 2-7 Triple Draw
  • High-low split: the highest and lowest hands split the pot. Generally there is a qualifier for the low hand. For example, the low hand must have 5 cards with ranks of 8 or less. In most high-low games the usual rank of poker hands is observed, so that an unsuited broken straight (7-5-4-3-2) wins low (see Morehead, Official Rules of Card Games). In a variant, based on Lowball, where only the low hand wins, a straight or a flush does not matter for a low hand. So the best low hand is 5-4-3-2-A, suited or not.
  • Players can pass cards to each other. An example of this would be Anaconda.
  • Kill game: When a fixed-limit game is played and some condition triggers the stakes to double. A common version is if the same player wins two plus in a row.
  • A twist round in which players can buy another card from the deck. If a player does not like the purchased card, the player can purchase another one by adding money to the pot. This is sometimes called a "tittle."

Mixed poker games

Poker can be played in a mixed game format in which each variant will usually be played for a fixed number of hands or time and then the players will move on to the next game. There are many types of mixed poker games. The most notable mixed poker variation is HORSE poker, a mix of Texas hold 'em, Omaha high-low, razz, seven-card stud and seven-card stud eight-or-better.

Specific poker variant games

Some poker games don't fit neatly into the above categories, and some have features of more than one of these categories. These variants are most often played in home games, usually as part of a dealer's choice format.

High Chicago or Low Chicago

Either of these two versions can be played in any stud high game. In High Chicago, or sometimes simply called Chicago, the player with the highest spade face down (referred to as in the hole) receives half the pot. In Low Chicago, the player with the lowest spade in the hole receives half of the pot, with the A♠ being the lowest. If the player with the highest hand also has the highest/lowest spade in the hole, then that player receives the entire pot - having won both sides of the bet.

Follow the Queen

This 7-card stud game uses a wild-card designated as whichever card is immediately dealt (exposed, or face-up) after any queen previously dealt (exposed). In the event that the final card dealt (exposed) is itself a queen, then all queens are wild. If no queens are dealt (exposed), then there are no wilds for that hand. Betting is the same as in normal 7-card stud games. Follow the Queen is a typical game variant in Dealer's Choice poker games.[1][2]

Countdown

In this 5-card game, the dealer gives each player 5 cards face down. After the first round of betting, each player may choose to replace zero to three cards. A second round of betting follows and then players may opt to replace zero to two cards. Upon completing another round of betting, each player may replace one card of the cards in their hand. After a final round of betting, any remaining players show their hands, and the highest 5 card hand wins. The cost of cards doubles each round. For example, if the dealer says each replacement card costs $10 in the first round, then each card costs $20 in the second round, and $40 in the final round. When players purchase cards to replace ones in their hand, they put the cost of the cards in the pot.[3]

This game will only work with 4 players (or fewer) otherwise you will run out of cards.

Criss Cross poker

Criss Cross Poker is one of the few games derived from Texas Holdem that give players eight cards to make their best hand with. This game is best played with 6-8 players because of the number of cards used during the game. Criss Cross Poker can be played with wild cards and because of that players can expect more players to stay till the end of the game and bigger hands than you would normally see in Texas Holdem. Each player is required to ante before the deal. Once the players have placed their antes into the pot, the dealer can begin to give each player five cards faced down. Players are able to look at their cards but must keep them hidden from the other players. Once all of the cards have been dealt, the first betting round will begin. The player to the left of the dealer will open the betting. After the initial betting round is complete, the dealer will deal five cards face down in the center of the table. These cards are called the “community cards” and will be used by all of the players at the table with their hands to make the best poker hand possible. The cards will be placed in a cross formation with one top, one bottom, one right, one left and one middle card. The dealer will flip over the first card on the table. The first card can be any card except the middle card. The middle card is always the last card to be turned over. A betting round will start with the same rules applying as before. All betting must start with the first player to the left of the dealer. The dealer will turn over the second card on the table, and again another round of betting will take place. This pattern continues until all of the outer cards have been turned over and each card is followed up with a round of betting. The final card to be turned over is the middle card. This card is wild and can be used in combination with the player’s hands and the board. Any player who has the same ranked card in their hand can use that card as wild to complete their best poker hand. A final betting round will take place and the player with the best five card poker hand wins the pot. When using the board, players can only use three cards that are directly related. This means either the horizontal row or vertical row. You can’t mix and match the cards.[4]

Double Cross poker

Double Cross poker is a High-Low variant of Criss Cross Poker, one of the few games derived from Texas Holdem that give players seven cards to make their best high hand or low hand with.[5] This game is best played with 6-8 players because of the number of cards used during the game. Double Cross Poker can be played with wild cards and because of that players can expect more players to stay till the end of the game and bigger hands than you would normally see in Texas Holdem. Each player is required to ante before the deal. Once the players have placed their antes into the pot, the dealer can begin to give each player four cards faced down. Players are able to look at their cards but must keep them hidden from the other players and may only use two of these cards in their final high or low hand. Once all of the cards have been dealt, the first betting round will begin. The player to the left of the dealer will open the betting. After the initial betting round is complete, the dealer will deal five cards face down in the center of the table. These cards are called the “community cards” and will be used by all of the players at the table with their hands to make the best poker hand possible. The cards will be placed in a cross formation with one top, one bottom, one right, one left and one middle card. The dealer will flip over the first card on the table. The first card can be any card except the middle card. The middle card is always the last card to be turned over. A betting round will start with the same rules applying as before. All betting must start with the first player to the left of the dealer. The dealer will turn over the second card on the table, and again another round of betting will take place. This pattern continues until all of the outer cards have been turned over and each card is followed up with a round of betting. The final card to be turned over is the middle card. If playing with a wild card, this card is wild and can be used in combination with the player’s hands and the board. Any player who has the same ranked card in their hand can use that card as wild to complete their best poker hand. Because this is a high-low split game, the pot is divided between the player with the best traditional hand (called the high hand) and the player with the best low hand, each formed using two down cards from the player's hand and three cards from the board either horizontally or vertically. If a declaration game, a final betting round will take place after a "declare" and the player with the best five card high hand or the best five card low hand, using two down cards and three board cards, split the pot. When using the board, players can only use three cards that are directly related. This means either the horizontal row or vertical row. You can’t mix and match the cards.

There are two common methods for playing high-low split games, called declaration and cards speak. In a declaration game, each player declares (either verbally or using markers such as chips) whether he wishes to contest for the high hand or the low hand. The lowest hand among those who declared low wins that half of the pot, and the highest hand among those who declared high wins that half. In a cards speak game, all players simply reveal their cards at showdown and the hands are evaluated by all players; high hand wins half of the pot and low hand wins the other half. Especially when using the ace-to-five low method, it is possible for one player to have both the low hand and the high hand, and therefore win all of the pot (called "scooping," "hogging" the pot, or "going pig"). In the event more than one player ties for either high or low, the pot can be further split into quarters or smaller fractions. For example, if one player has the high hand on showdown, and two other players tie for the best low hand, the high hand wins half of the pot and each low hand wins only a quarter of the pot.

In Double Cross poker, where each player has a selection of nine cards, each player chooses five of his cards to play as his high hand, and/or five of his cards to play as his low hand. The sets may overlap: for example, combining four down cards and three board cards (horizontally or vertically), a player having 7-7-6-4-4-3-2 can play a high hand of 7-7-4-4-6 (two pair, sevens and fours) and a low hand of 7-6-4-3-2 (seven-high). The player may play any two down cards with any three horizontal or vertical board cards to make a high hand or any two down cards with any three horizontal or vertical board cards to make a low hand. If the player in a declaration game is attempting to "scoop" the entire pot, by winning both the high and the low hands, the player may play any two down cards with any three horizontal or vertical board cards to make a high hand and any two (the same or different) down cards with any three (the same or different) horizontal or vertical board cards to make a low hand. Any player who declares an attempt to scoop the pot must win or tie for the high hand AND win or tie the low hand. If they were to lose either the high hand or the low hand, they would receive no share of the pot.

Billabong and Shanghai

Just as Oxford stud is a mixed stud/community card version of Texas hold 'em, Billabong is a mixed version of Manila. Each player is dealt two down-cards and one up-card. Low up-card starts the betting with a Bring-in if you are playing with one, otherwise high card starts the betting. Next, two community cards are dealt, followed by a second betting round, beginning with the player with the best exposed partial poker hand (counting the community cards, as in Oxford stud). Then a third community card is dealt, followed by a third betting round. Finally a fourth community card is dealt, followed by a fourth betting round and showdown. Each player plays the best five-card hand he can make from the three in his hand plus the four on the board in any combination.

Shanghai is the same game with an extra hole card, but no more than two hole cards play. That is, the game begins with each player being dealt three down-cards and one up-card; each player must discard one of his hole cards at some point during the game as determined ahead of time. The most common variation is to discard immediately as in Pineapple; the second most common is to discard just before showdown as in Tahoe.

Guts

Guts is a family of games that are cousins of poker rather than poker variants. They usually involve hands of 3 or fewer cards, ranked similarly to hands in poker, and multiple successive rounds of betting each of which consist of the decision to be "in" or "out", and each with its own showdown. The losers of rounds of guts generally match or double the pot, which grows rapidly.

Five-O poker

Five-O Poker is a heads-up poker variant in which both players must play five hands of five cards simultaneously. Four of the five cards in each hand are face-up. Once all five hands are down, there is a single round of betting. The winner is determined by matching each hand to the corresponding hand of the opponent. The player with the stronger poker hand in three (or more) out of the five columns, wins, unless a player folds on a bet that was made. If a player beats their opponent with all five hands, this is called a “Five-O” win.

Chinese poker

Chinese poker is a 2-4 player poker game with thirteen cards. The idea is to make three poker hands with increasing rank : two with five cards and one with three cards. If one of the hands does not adhere to increasing rank (i.e. is mis-set), the hand is declared dead and results in some sort of penalty.

Kuhn poker

Kuhn poker, using a three card deck, is more of game theory problem than an actual game people play, but it can be played by two players.[6]

See also

References

  1. ^ Pokernews.com: Fun Home Poker Game Rules - Follow the Queen
  2. ^ Pokerrules.net: How to Play Follow the Queen
  3. ^ Pokerrules.net: How to Play Countdown Poker
  4. ^ "Onlinepoker.net : How to play Criss Cross Poker". [Online Poker].
  5. ^ Zee, Ray (1992). High-Low-Split Poker, Seven-Card Stud and Omaha Eight-or-better for Advanced Players. Two Plus Two Pub.; 2nd edition, ISBN 9781880685105[page needed]
  6. ^ "A Parameterized Family of Equilibrium Profiles for Three-Player Kuhn Poker" (PDF).
This page was last edited on 22 September 2021, at 16:46
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