Poker is an incredibly beloved and popular game all around the world. One thing new players may not know is that there are actually many different types of poker games, each with new rules and game mechanics. In this article, we compiled 10 poker variants that are sure to spice things up and keep players entertained for hours on end.
1. Texas Holdem
By far the most popular and well-known kind of poker, Texas Holdem has taken the poker scene by storm. With millions of devoted players, Texas Holdem is the easiest way to start playing poker for beginners. In the game, players must make the best five-card hand possible with the two cards they are dealt (known as hole cards) and the community cards in the middle. The community starts with three cards, known as the flop. Betting begins to the dealer’s left, where players can check, call, bet, or fold. At the end of each betting cycle, the community is dealt 2 more cards, one at a time, known as the turn and the river. Finally, when all five community cards are revealed, the player with the strongest hand wins. Before that happens, you can also win by getting all the other players to fold. It is a fantastic game for everyone, from beginners starting their poker journey to pros who play poker for a living.
2. Omaha Poker
Like Texas Holdem, Omaha Poker is also a community card game where each player is dealt four hole cards instead of two. Once again, five community cards are dealt face-up in the middle, and players use any combination of their hole cards and the community cards to make the best hand possible. The game is also often played with a pot limit, meaning a player can only raise by the current value of the pot. This makes it perfect for those who enjoy more tactical play compared to Texas Holdem, and those who aren’t afraid to put a lot of time into learning the game basics.
In this game, each player is dealt two hole cards and one face-up card. Four more face-up cards are then dealt to each player, with one final hole card being dealt face-down. Players then make the best hand possible using any combination of their seven cards. It is also played with fixed betting limits, making it great for players who want a slower game and like paying close attention to other players’ folded cards.
4. Five-Card Draw
A bit simpler than some of the other variants, Five-Card Draw poker is a game where each player is dealt five hole cards. Players can then choose to discard any number of their hole cards and draw new ones from the deck to make a better hand. This makes it perfect for players who want a very simple yet fun and exciting game of poker.
5. Razz Poker
A variant of Seven-Card Stud, Razz Poker is a game where the aim is to make the lowest hand possible. The rules are essentially identical to Seven-Card Stud, except players aim for the lowest hand rather than the highest. Like Seven-Card Stud, it is easy to learn and rewards people who can keep track of other players’ cards.
6. Badugi Poker
Another unique variant, Badugi Poker, is a game where each player is dealt four hole cards. However, instead of aiming for the best hand possible, players are looking to make the “Badugi,” which is a hand containing four cards of different suits and ranks. For example, a hand consisting of an Ace of Hearts, 2 of Spades, 3 of Clubs, and 4 of Diamonds would be a Badugi. Although unorthodox, it is perfect for those who want a completely new poker experience.
7. H.O.R.S.E Poker
This game combines several different poker variants, namely Hold ‘Em, Omaha, Razz, Seven-Card Stud, and Eights or Higher, a form of Seven-Card Stud. Players rotate through each game, with the letters in HORSE representing the order in which the games will be played. Its complexity rewards those who are good at multiple different kinds of poker.
8. 2-7 Triple Draw Poker
In the form of poker, each player is dealt five hole cards and can then choose to discard any number of them after each of the three draw rounds. The aim is to make the lowest hand possible using traditional poker hand rankings. With three draws and four betting rounds, triple draw is excellent for those who like bluffing and lowball type poker games.
9. Anaconda Poker
Another unique game, Anaconda Poker, is played with seven cards dealt to each player face-down. There are three betting rounds, and after each round, players exchange cards with each other. Once the rounds are over, the remaining players make the best hand possible using their seven cards. It is great when playing with friends as there is constant player-to-player interaction.
10. Chinese Poker
Perhaps the most unique game on this list, Chinese Poker is a game for up to four players where each player is dealt 13 cards. They then have to split these cards into three hands: two containing five cards each (known as the “middle” and “back” hands) and one containing three cards (the “front” hand). The aim is to make the best possible hand in each section, and players score points based on how their hands stack up against the other players. While not the best for beginners, the game is a lot of fun with tons of action all throughout. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned player, trying out some new poker variants is a great way to spice up your game and keep things interesting. So why not give some of these a try? The best way to do that is by playing free poker on sites like GGPoker, the world’s largest poker room. These sites support a wide variety of poker forms that can be played anywhere at any time. We hope you learned some new ways on how to play poker.