Stud Poker

written by: James

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7-card Stud is a game that is starting to gain a bit more popularity as more and more players' everyday are attempting to try new poker games online. Stud can be found in a 'Hi' version where the best 5-card poker hand wins or in a 'Hi/Lo' version where it is possible to split the pot between the best 5-card poker hand and the best low 5-card poker hand. Stud can also be found in several mixed game variations such as Horse and Hose.

Since more players everyday are giving other games such as 7-card Stud a shot, these games tend to be relatively soft and are easy pickings for those who know how to play well. This means more money in your pocket.

For those of you that would like to learn a new game, crush some fish in the process and win some money, Stud may just be the ticket for you. For those of you that are ready to learn how to play this challenging game, we have provided the rules on how to play 7-card Stud below.

For our examples, we will be using $5/$10 for stakes.

7-Card Stud Rules

* Since 7-card Stud is not played with blinds, each player will be forced to pay an ante. The size of the ante will vary depending on the stakes of the games that you are playing, but are about 10% of the small bet. So in our example, it would be about $.50.

* Once the antes have been posted, the dealer will now deal 3 cards to each player, one at a time, with the last card being dealt faced up. This card is known as the 'door card.'

* The player with the lowest door card will be the player who 'brings in.' Bringing in is a forced bet and is generally double the size of the ante. In a $5/$10 game, the bring in would be about $1. This player can also choose to 'complete' the bet which means betting the smallest of the two bet sizes for the game. Using our example a 'complete' bet would be $5.

* Each player after the 'bring in' will act depending on what has happened before them with their options being to check, call, fold or raise using the maximum for this round (also known as third/3rd street) which is $5. Since Stud is played using a fixed limit format, players cannot bet any more or any less than the 'fixed' amount. So, if the fixed amount for this round was $5, a player could not bet $2, $3, $4.50 or $6. They are only able to bet the 'fixed' amount for that round.

* After the betting round, the dealer will now deal the 4th card to each player faced up. This card is also known as 4th street.

* The betting round will start with the player who has the best 2 cards exposed will begin the betting round. For example, if one player had K-Q and another had 2-2, then the player with 2-2 will start the betting round. The betting for this round is generally using the small bet.

If an opponent has a pair showing, then the betting for this round can be either the smaller or the bigger bet. So if a player had 2-2 showing, then betting for this round can be $5 or $10.

Also, most betting rounds are capped at three raises per round. This can be different depending on where you play.

* After this betting round, the dealer will now deal 5th street. This card is also dealt faced up.

* Once 5th street has been dealt, another betting round will begin with the player with the best 3 cards showing. Betting at this round will be at the larger of the two bet sizes.

* 6th street will be dealt faced up after the betting round has finished. This is the last card dealt faced up.

* Another betting round will begin using the larger of the two bet sizes and starting with the player with the best hand showing.

* After the betting round, the 7th and final card will be dealt. This card is known as 7th street and is dealt faced down.

* One last betting round will begin starting with the player who has the best hand. The last betting round also uses the bigger of the two bet sizes.

* After the betting round has finished, the remaining players will flip over their cards and the player who has the best 5-card poker hand. Once the hand is over, the antes will be posted once again and the hand will start again from the top.

Stud Notes

* Not every hand has to go to showdown. If a player bets or raises enough to cause all the other players in the hand to fold, then this player will win the pot and will not have to show their hand.

* In Stud Hi/Lo, the pot can be split amongst 2 players if one player has the best high card hand and another has a low card hand with 5 cards between Aces and 8's with the best low being a wheel (A-2-3-4-5).

* If there are 8 players in the hand and the dealer runs out of cards before the final street, then a card will placed in the middle that will act as a community card for all players to use.

Playing 7-Card Stud

To a beginner, 7-card stud may seem like a complicated game but once few hands are played, it actually will become easy. Once a player has a firm grasp on the rules of 7-card Stud, they can then focus on advanced concepts such as bluffing and board texture and start working on churning a profit online.