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Updated: February 26, 2024
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Types of Poker Games

When we think of poker, it’s usually the Texas Hold’em variant of poker that comes to mind. However, did you know that there are a wide range of poker variants that one can enjoy? Yes, apart from Texas Hold’em there are other variants like Omaha, Razz, Badugi, Five Card Draw, that are enjoyed by many. The wide variety of poker games makes things more interesting and allows players to switch up the fun if they do get slightly bored of playing Texas Hold’em. Let’s take a look at the different types of poker games and their variations.

Poker games variations

Poker games can be divided into various types: community card poker, stud poker, draw poker, and others. While similar, rules in each type vary accordingly. Here’s what sets them apart.

Community Card Poker Games

Variants that fall under community card poker use shared cards or ‘community cards’ in the game. This means that they have to use a combination of the cards they are dealt and the community cards to form a hand. Texas Hold’em and Omaha are the most popular poker game variants under this category.

Draw Poker Games

In draw poker type games, the players are dealt hands that are hidden from their opponents. Players can then try to get the best possible hand by drawing and replacing a certain number of cards. Poker variants that fall under this category are Seven Card Draw and Five Card Draw which are most commonly played.

For example, in Seven Card Draw, players are dealt seven cards and then allowed to replace up to three of their cards with three fresh card games.

Stud Poker Games

When it comes to stud games, the rules are relatively simple. Players are not allowed to trade any of their cards and the final hand will include all the original cards. When a hand is dealt, players need to only decide whether to fold or play the hand. There is no strategizing involved. This means that stud poker type games can be played by even those who don’t know poker very well.

Mixed Poker Games

Players can also play more than one type of poker in one sitting; this type is called a mixed game. One of the most popular mixed game played is H.O.R.S.E which includes, Texas Hold’em, Omaha Hi/lo, Seven Card Stud (low hand wins), Seven Card Stud (high hand wins), and Seven Card Stud (hi/lo split).

Miscellaneous Poker Games

While a majority of poker variants fall under the above categories, there are also those that cannot be put into a particular category. These kinds of games may not necessarily be played in casinos. Some of these games also include wild cards.

Top Poker Variations

Now that we’ve discussed the types of poker games, let’s take a closer look at the most popular poker variants that are played. 

List of top poker variants:

  1. Texas Hold’em
  2. Omaha 
  3. Open Face Chinese (OPC)
  4. Seven Card Stud
  5. Razz
  6. 5-Card Draw
  7. Badugi

Texas Hold’em

The most popular and widely played poker variant is Texas Hold’em. When introduced to poker, players are taught this variant. Within the game, it is the No Limit Hold’em that is a favourite among players. In No Limit Hold’em there is no limit to how much a player can bet and allows players to even go all-in with their stacks. Having no betting limits makes No Limit Hold’em an entertaining and enjoyable game to play.

Also Read:

Texas Holdem Poker Rules

Texas Holdem Poker Strategies

Omaha

Omaha poker also known as Pot-Limit Omaha is perhaps the second most played poker variant. There are also variants of Omaha poker that are played. Some of these variants are:

  • Omaha Hi
  • Omaha Hi/Lo
  • 5-Card Omaha

The basic rules in Omaha are the same as Texas Hold’em and follow the same hand rankings. But what sets Omaha apart from Texas Hold’em is that instead of getting two hole cards to play with, players will get four. Players can only use two of their hole cards and three from the community cards to make the best possible hand.

Open Face Chinese (OFC)

Chinese poker is very different from other variants of poker. The game is relatively new and is not like other traditional poker games. Open Face Chinese poker (OFC) is a variant of Chinese poker and in the game, players will have to draw cards from one single deck. The main focus of players will be to get the best possible hand. The game differs vastly as no bets are placed during each round of play but instead players play on a point base system. The entire game is tallied with points.

Some variants of OFC Poker are:

  • Pineapple OFC Poker
  • Double-Check OFC Poker
  • Turbo OFC Poker
  • Backhand poker
  • Middle hand poker
  • Front hand poker

While there are some who play OFC, the variant is not quite as popular as other variants. However, players can have a lot of fun playing the game.

Seven Card Stud

Stud poker is relatively easier to play than most poker variants which is why it’s picking up in popularity. In a stud poker game, the cards are shuffled in an order of face up and face down cards. Bets are placed at the end of each round.

In Seven Card Stud, players get two cards face down and one card face up. After a betting round is done, the active players will then get three more cards face up and one card face down and a betting round takes place after each card is dealt. At showdown, each player will turn up the two face down cards and select five from their seven cards as their final hand.

Razz

Razz is a form of stud poker that is similar to Seven Card Stud. It is played by s good number of poker players. The only difference between Razz and Seven Card Stud is that Razz is a low ball game. So, instead of playing the best high card hand, players will have to make the lowest possible five-card hand from the seven cards that are dealt.

5-Card Draw Poker

In 5 card draw poker, players are required to create the highest ranked five-card hand. As the name indicates, the game ends with the player who has the most significant hand. In the beginning, players will get to choose their cards. These cards will remain hidden from the opponents to prevent cheating. As the game progresses, players can develop a strong hand to beat the other players. However, the game has a high-risk and high-reward factor, making it impossible for players to read their opponents’ cards.

Badugi

Badugi is similar to draw and lowball poker variants. The game Is different as it uses a high-ranking system in order to get the best hand. The game is versatile and players will find themselves discovering new things as they continue to play the game.

Conclusion

With so many variants of poker, its hard for players to restrict themselves to just one. The different types of poker games and the wide variety to choose from makes poker an entertaining card game. Don’t be afraid to explore and try out new variants of the game as it will only help you expand your knowledge of the game further.

FAQs:

How many poker variants are there?

There are three types of poker variants: community card games, stud games, and draw games. Among these the most popular ones are Texas Hold’em and Omaha poker.

Which is the best poker variant of poker?

The most played poker variant is Texas Hold’em poker with the No-Limit Hold’em being the most played.

What other poker variants are there apart from Texas Hold’em?

Besides Texas Hold’em, there are other poker variants that can be played like Omaha poker, Seven Card Stud, 5-Card Draw, etc.

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