In Texas Hold ‘Em, the dealer begins by shuffling the 52 card deck. In casino and professional play, the dealer doesn’t play. Instead, a dealer button (a round disc) moves clockwise around the table after each hand and it indicates which player would be the dealer if the dealer position changed with each hand.
After this, the blind bets are made by the first two players to the left of the dealer (from here on “dealer” refers to who the dealer button is on). This is done prior to any cards are dealt to ensure that there is a winnings pot for every hand. Generally, the first blind bet is half of the minimum bet and the second blind bet is the full minimum bet. Once these are done, each player receives two cards face down known as the “hole cards.”
From there, a round of betting takes place beginning with the player to the left of the two players who have already posted the blinds. Players can raise, call, or fold when their turn comes. After the first round of betting, the dealer then “burns,” or discards, the top card of the deck and then puts the next three cards face up on the table. These cards are the community cards and they are shared by all players in the game.
This process continues and another round of betting takes place where each player has the opportunity to raise, call, or fold on their turn. The top card is once again burned and another card is placed face-up on the table for a total of four community cards. This is repeated once more with another round of betting, the top card being burned, and another card being placed face-up with the other community cards.
At this point there should be five community cards on the table. Another round of betting then takes place. After the final betting round, all players who remain in the game reveal their hands. The player who made the initial bet or the player who made the last raise shows their hand first. Players can form the best five card combination using their own two “hole cards” and the five community cards. The player with the best hand wins.
There also exists Texas Hold ‘Em Hi/Lo in which the low hand wins the pot rather than the traditional high hand.
SEVEN CARD STUD
At the beginning of a game of Seven Card Stud, each player puts in his or her ante into the pot before receiving their first three cards, two face-down (hole cards) and the third face-up (door card). The player with the lowest door card (if a tie, use suits in reverse bridge order - clubs, diamonds, hearts, then spades) begins betting by putting in a minimum of half the lower betting limit. With each round a new card is dealt face-up until the final round (the seventh card) is the “river” card and is dealt face-down. After this first round of betting, all subsequent rounds begin with the high hand beginning the betting action (if a tie, the player to the left of the dealer begins the betting).
The first two rounds of betting use the lower limit as the betting amount while the last three are at the higher limit. The maximum allowable number of bets per player during any particular betting round is four. This would consist of the opening bet and three raises. Once the betting limit for that round has been reached, players have only the option of calling or folding. Check-and-raise is allowed in all Seven Card Stud games (except on the first round, when any player except the forced bet, on his turn, must either bet or fold; the player with the forced bet does not have a choice of folding).
During the showdown, the player with the highest hand wins the pot. In the case of a tie, the pot is split between the winning players. In the event that there are not enough cards after the fourth betting round for the showdown, instead of dealing the river card to each player, the dealer will turn one card that will be used as a community card.
Omaha, also called Omaha Hold ‘Em, has some similarities with Texas Hold ‘Em, however it has some stark differences as well. The game begins by using a standard 52-card deck and dealing each player four face-down (hole) cards for their initial hand. Once these cards have been received, a round of betting begins starting with the player to the left of the dealer (or to left the left of where the disc is pointing if a dealer button is being used).
"Blinds" are posted by players in consecutive clockwise order from the Button. Action is initiated on the first betting round, by the player on the immediate left of the person who posted the furthest "blind" clockwise from the Button. On all subsequent betting rounds, the action is started by the first active player clockwise from the Button.
After the first round of betting, three cards are placed face-up on the table. This is called the “flop” and these are the community cards which everyone can use. Another round of betting occurs with another card being placed face-up following that, and this is repeated once more. When there are five community cards, a final round of betting takes place.
Players must then reveal their cards and declare their hand. The player must use a combination of three community cards and two cards from their own hole cards when determining their five card hand. The player with the highest hand wins the pot.
Omaha can be played in high or low forms, known as Omaha Hi/Lo. In this variation, the game rules are instead changed so that the low hand wins the pot rather than the high hand..
FIVE CARD DRAW>/h2>
Five Card Draw is probably the most time proven and played game of poker. Simple and concise, it gets the job done while staying fun all the while. Although not often player in casino or tournament play, Five Card Draw is still the most popular poker style used at informal meetings. Like all games of poker, Five Card Draw begins by all players putting in their ante prior to being dealt their cards to ensure there is a pot to be won. From there, each player is dealt five cards face-down by the dealer.
From here, the players look at their cards and then are allowed to begin the first betting round starting with the player to the left of the dealer. Then, each player can choose to discard and replace up to four of the five cards in their hand. The dealer burns, or discards, the top card of the deck prior to dealing out the replacement cards to the players in clockwise order.
After this draw phase, another round of betting ensues again beginning with the player to the left of the dealer. Following this final betting round, if more than one player remains a showdown occurs. The highest hand wins and receives the winnings from the pot.
A variation of Five Card Draw is known as Five Card Stud. Most of the rules remain the same except the “draw” phase of the game is removed. Whatever five cards each player is dealt they must keep and they are not allowed to replace them with new cards.
Lowball is a unique and fun variation to the standard Five Card Draw game of poker. In Lowball, the “worst” poker hand wins rather than the high hand. Lowball begins and operates like a standard game of Five Card Draw with each player being dealt five cards face-down. The first round of betting then commences where each player must either bet or fold.
The players who remain then have the option to replace up to four cards to improve their hands in what is known as the draw. The dealer burns, or discards, the top card of the deck prior to dealing out the replacement cards to the players in clockwise order. After this, another round of betting begins, like usual, with the player to the left of the dealer. Following this final betting round, if more than one player remains a showdown occurs. The highest hand wins and receives the winnings from the pot.
Straights and flushes do not count against the player except in Kansas City Lowball, in which straights and flushes do count against you, so that a sequence must be unconnected in order to qualify. Aces are high only, therefore the best hand is 2-3-4-5-7. The best Lowball hand, therefore, is A-2-3-4-5 and a 2-3-4-6-7 is better than a 2-3-5-6-7. Lowball is played with a 53 card deck. The Joker must be used as the lowest card not already present in the player's hand. Lowball games have two different types of betting structures. In games up to and including $5-10 (also termed "five blind"), the betting is structured. There is an ante and a "blind" bet posted by the first player to the left of the Dealer Button. The blind bet is equal to the lower limit of the structure. For example, a 500-1,000 KSh Lowball game has one $5 blind and it applies toward the opening bet.
Crazy Pineapple is a rather interesting variation to the standard Texas Hold ‘Em style of poker. To begin, each player in the game is dealt three cards that are face-down. These are called pocket or hole cards. After the first round of betting that follows beginning with the player to the left of the dealer, the dealer will turn over three community cards (called the flop) face-up in the middle of the table. Following this, the second round of betting begins and all players must discard one of their pocket cards.
The dealer then proceeds to turn over one more community card (called the turn). The third betting round then commences and involves the dealer turning over the final community card (called the river). After the final round of betting, the showdown takes place between all players still in the game. Players can use any combination of the community cards and their own pocket cards to form the best five card hand. The player with the highest hand wins.
In Crazy Pineapple Hi/Low, the rules are changed so that instead of the high hand winning, the low hand wins instead.
Caribbean poker is a unique variation from all the other forms of poker in that players do not bet against each other. It is an American casino game in which each individual plays against the bank. In some ways, it is similar to a Blackjack style game except using poker rules. To begin the game, both the players and the bank make their antes. Following this, five cards are dealt to the players and the bank, respectively. The difference is that the bank receives one of the five cards face-up while all the rest of the cards dealt to the bank and player are face-down.
From here, the player must decide to either fold (and therefore lose their ante) or make a bet. The dealer then reveals their four remaining cards. If the dealer's hand is not Ace-King or better, the player is paid even money on the ante and nothing (i.e., a push) on the bet. If the dealer's hand is Ace-King or better, it is said to "qualify" (for play against the player). In the case where the dealer's hand is better than the player's, the player's ante and bet are collected by the house. If the dealer's qualifying hand is worse than the player's hand, the player is paid even money on the ante and an amount on the bet according to the player's hand as follows:
AK or pair 1:1
Two pair 2:1
Three of a kind 3:1
Full house 7:1
Four of a kind 20:1
Straight flush 50:1
Royal flush 100:1