Texas Hold'em Poker Rules
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Hold'em Poker, (also known as Texas Hold'em Poker) is the most played poker game in the world. There are three types of Hold'em, characterized by their betting limits:
Limit Hold'em (There is a specific betting limit applied in each game and on each round of betting).
Pot Limit Hold'em (A player can bet what is in the pot).
No Limit Hold'em (A player can bet all of his/her chips at any time).
1. Hole Cards. Each player is dealt two cards face down.
2. The Flop. Three cards are dealt face up on the table.
3. The Turn. A fourth card is dealt to the table.
4. The River. Finally, a fifth card is dealt to the table.
The five cards on the table are called community cards. Your hand is formed by taking the best poker hand you can by using any five out of the seven cards (5 community + 2 hole cards). Remember, all players have access to the community cards. There are four rounds of betting in total, one after each round of cards is dealt.
In Hold'em, players receive two down cards as their personal hand (hole cards) and five community cards face-up in the middle of the table (also known as the board). Your hand is determined by using the best five of those seven cards (in any combination) with the best hand winning the pot. A player may even use all of the cards on the board and no personal cards to form a hand (called playing the board). If players aren't dealing (such as with online games), a dealer button is used. A dealer button is a small disc used to indicate the theoretical dealer of each hand. After each hand is completed, the dealer button moves clockwise to the next active player. This player will be considered "the dealer" for that hand. This way each player has equal opportunities to be in early, middle and late position.
There are four betting rounds in Hold'em. In Limit Hold'em, one bet and three raises are allowed for each betting round. To continue to play, players must act on each betting round and call all betting action to them (unless they are "all-in"). Betting always proceeds in a clockwise rotation. Note: The usual structure is to use two blinds, but if desired, the game can be played with one blind, multiple blinds, an ante, or combination of blinds plus an ante. Prior to dealing the cards, two blinds (the Small Blind and the Big Blind) are placed in the pot by the two players to the immediate left of the dealer (or the "dealer button"). The blinds are put in to start the action. The two players immediately to the left of the dealer button place blind bets to start the pot (similar in principle to an ante). The player to the left of the dealer button posts the "small blind" (usually equal to half the lower stake). The player to the left of the small blind is required to post the "big blind," usually equal to the lower stake limit. All the blinds in Hold'em poker are considered live bets and the players who posted them will have the option of checking, calling, raising or folding when the betting returns to their position. Remember, the dealer button (and therefore the small blind and the big blind) move around the table clockwise after each hand, so each player will post the blind bets over time.
Betting Rounds: 1) First Betting Round - Everyone is dealt two down cards ("hole cards"). The action begins with the player to the left of the Big Blind folding, calling, or raising. Action continues with all players making one of these decisions. 2) Second Betting Round - Upon completion of the first round of betting, the dealer then turns over three cards simultaneously (community cards known as "The Flop"). Beginning with this round of betting (and throughout the remainder of the hand), the player to the left of the button acts first. A player may now check (not bet or fold) or bet if there is no betting in front of them. If there is betting and/or raising in front of them, they may Call, Raise, or Fold. 3) Third Betting Round - Following the completion of action on the "flop", the dealer turns over another card (known as "The Turn" or "Fourth Street"). This is the third round of betting. (In Limit Hold'em, the amount bet doubles on "The Turn".) The betting again starts with the player closest to the left of the button. 4) Fourth Betting Round - Following the completion of action on "the turn", the dealer turns over the last card (known as "The River" card or "Fifth Street"). This is the final round of betting. Upon completion of the final round of betting, the best hand wins the pot. Once all the bets have been made, there are two possible outcomes: either all the players but one have folded (and hence that person wins the pot), or the remaining players reveal their hands and the best hand wins the pot.
The game play remains same for both No-Limit and Pot-Limit Texas Hold'em game with a few exceptions to the rules mentioned above: In Limit Texas Hold'em a maximum of four bets is allowed per player during any betting round. This includes a (1) bet, (2) raise, (3) re-raise, and (4) cap, but in No-Limit Texas Hold'em and Pot-Limit Texas Hold'em there is no limit to the number of raises that a player can make. The only limit is that you cannot raise yourself. If all the other players in the hand only call or fold, the player would not get an option to raise because the last raise was done by him.
Omaha is a variation of Hold 'em played with four hole cards instead of two. At showdown, the best five-card hand using exactly two of your hole cards and three cards from the board wins. Unlike Hold 'em, you may not use more than three cards from the board. The betting and blinds are exactly the same as in Hold 'em.
Seven Card Stud Rules
Each player starts with two hole cards and one upcard; there are then three more rounds of upcards, with betting after each card, and a final downcard, followed by a final betting round. Each player ends up with seven cards: four face up and three face down. The player holding the best hand using any five of their cards wins the pot. As in Hold 'em, aces play both high and low.
Part lowball, part 7-card stud, the goal is to make the best five-card low hand from seven cards. Each player starts with two hole cards and one upcard; there are then three more rounds of upcards, with betting after each card, and a final downcard, just as in stud. Each player ends up with seven cards: four face up and three face down.
The player holding the best low hand using any five of their cards wins the pot. Aces are always low, and flushes and straights have no effect on the value of a hand. Also, it's good to remember that drawing a pair will not hurt your hand. The best possible hand is A-2-3-4-5.