Whether you’re just getting started as a poker player or you have a decent number of games under your belt, you might be aware that there are different types of poker that you can play online and in person.
The most prevalent poker game online and in live poker rooms is Texas Hold’em, making it the de-facto starting point for so many new players.
But as we explain in this article, there are a number of different poker games you can play to keep things interesting. So, without further ado, here are four poker games you can try today.
If you’re just getting into poker, then it makes sense to focus on Texas Hold’em, as it’s the most common and widely played poker game out there. There are four key stages to Texas Hold’em that you need to be aware of:
- Stage 1: The pre-flop: Here, you and all other players at the table are dealt two cards (known as hole cards) face down.
- Stage 2: The flop: After an initial round of betting, the flop is when three community cards are dealt face up on the table in view of all players, followed by a round of betting.
- Stage 3: The turn: A fourth community card is drawn and added to the table, with another round of betting.
- Stage 4: The river: This is the final card to be dealt and completes the game after one last round of betting.
The dealer calls for bets after every stage of Texas Hold’em, and you can choose to call, raise, or fold, depending on the hand that you have in front of you at the time.
To win the pot, you need to have the best hand at the table at showdown or force everyone else to fold. Here are the poker hands ranked in the game:
- Royal flush
- Straight flush
- Full house
- Two pair
- One pair
- High card
Of all the different types of poker, Texas Hold’em is the most widely played, and therefore, it’s the best version to play if you’re just getting started.
How to play Omaha is quite simple because it’s very similar to Texas Hold’em poker. But there are a few key differences that you need to take into consideration.
The main difference is that each player at the table is dealt four hole cards rather than two. Still, you can only use two of your cards to make a hand, but you get to choose which of the four you wish to play, making your decision based on the community cards at the table.
As such, you need to be clear about the order of the best poker hands and have a good idea about what hand you’re trying to build.
The same number of community cards are in play in Omaha and Texas Hold’em, and the betting stages are also the same. Following the river, the players left in the showdown reveal their cards, and the player with the best poker hand takes the pot.
Before Texas Hold’em became the go-to poker game of choice for most players, 7-card stud was the main game at most poker tables. Strategy and skill play a big part in 7-card stud, as your job is to engineer the best possible 5-card poker hand with the cards in play.
To begin, each player at the table receives two cards face down and one card face-up. Following the initial deal, you are required to place your initial bets.
Then, the dealer gives each player still in the game a further three face-up cards and another face-down card, with another betting interval. Every player then has seven cards in front of them.
Before the showdown, each player turns all of their hole cards face up and selects five of their seven cards to form the best possible poker hand.
Another popular poker game is 5-card draw. Many people agree that 5-card draw is actually the easiest type of poker, even if it’s not as popular as Texas Hold’em and Omaha.
As is the case with most poker game variations, the aim is to make the best poker hand possible with five cards. The best hands are the same in 5-card draw as they are in Texas Hold’em, running from high card to a royal flush (worst to best).
The deal begins with every player receiving five cards face-down. This is followed by a round of betting. If more than one player is still in the game, each player can decide how many cards they would like to draw from the deck to replace those within their hand. You can also hold if you don’t want to draw and are happy with your cards (this is called stand pat).
Another round of betting follows the draw, which leads to the showdown, in which every player remaining in the game reveals their hand. You will claim the pot if you have the best poker hand remaining at the table.
Recap: Different poker games to play
As you now know, there are various poker games that you can play online and at real-life poker venues. Texas Hold’em and Omaha are by far the most common, but you will also find 7-card stud and 5-card draw at selected online poker sites and in some poker rooms in different parts of the country.
While it’s good to mix things up when playing poker, just be sure to read through the rules of each variation and develop a strategy that will serve you well as you take a seat at the respective poker table, be it online or at a poker room near you.