Poker Variations

There are probably hundreds of poker variations, but these can be divided into three main types:

  • draw poker – players are dealt full hands of five cards each, keep their hands hidden, and draw to replace cards in the hope of improving their hands. An example is Five-Card Draw (for details, see poker games).
  • stud poker – players are dealt combinations of face-up cards and hidden cards in multiple betting rounds. The most popular example is Seven-Card Stud.
  • community card poker – players are dealt fewer than five cards, keep these cards hidden, and can choose one or more shared cards, which are placed face-up on the board, to make up the total of five cards they play. Popular examples are Texas Hold ’em and Omaha.

See poker games for descriptions of the most popular poker variations.

In most games, the highest-ranking poker hand wins the pot. In "High-Low Split" games, the two players with the highest and lowest hands split the pot – provided a player’s meets a condition that qualifies it as a low hand. In "Low" poker variations, the player with the lowest-ranking hand wins.

Other Poker Variations

In some variations of poker,

  • a "kill" is established; this usually involves doubling the stakes if a player wins the pot twice in a row
  • one or more wild cards are define
  • players can choose to pass cards they want to get rid of to other players (as in Anaconda)
  • players can buy another card from the deck by adding to the pot
  • a stripped deck consisting of 32 or fewer cards is used; an example is the Manila poker game