Texas Hold’em – You will find plenty of Texas Holdem action at Carbon Poker and most any other online poker room.
Texas hold’em (also hold’em, holdem) is the most popular poker variant played in casinos in the United States. Hold’em is a community card game where each player may use any combination of the five community cards and their own two hole cards to make a poker hand, in contrast to poker games like stud or draw where each player holds a separate individual hand.
After slow but steady gains in popularity throughout the 20th century, hold ’em’s popularity surged in the 2000s due to exposure on television, on the Internet, and in popular literature. During this time hold ’em replaced 7 card stud as the most common game in U.S. casinos, almost totally eclipsing the once popular game. The no-limit betting form is used in the widely televised main event of the World Series of Poker (WSOP) and the World Poker Tour (WPT).
Because each player only starts with two cards and the remaining cards are shared, it presents an opportune game for strategic analysis (including mathematical analysis). Hold ’em’s simplicity and popularity has inspired a wide variety of strategy books which provide recommendations for proper play. Most of these books recommend a strategy that involves playing relatively few hands but betting and raising often with the hands one plays.
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Seven Card Stud – You’ll find 7 Card Stud action at Carbon Poker.
The game begins with each player being dealt two cards face down and one card face up. If played with a bring-in, the player with the lowest-ranking upcard pays the bring-in, and betting proceeds after that in normal clockwise order. The bring-in is considered an open, so the next player in turn may not check. If two players have equally ranked low cards, suit may be used to break the tie and assign the bring-in (see high card by suit). If there is no bring-in, then the first betting round begins with the player showing the highest-ranking upcard, who may check. In this case, suit should not be used to break ties. If two players have the same high upcard, the one first in clockwise rotation from the dealer acts first.
After the first betting round, another upcard is dealt to each player (after a burn card, and starting at the dealer’s left as will all subsequent rounds), followed by a second betting round beginning with the player whose upcards make the best poker hand. Since fewer than five cards are face up, this means no straights, flushes, or full houses will count for this purpose. On this and all subsequent betting rounds, the player whose face-up cards make the best poker hand will act first, and may check or bet up to the game’s limit.
The second round is followed by a third upcard and betting round, a fourth upcard and betting round, and finally a downcard, a fifth betting round, and showdown if necessary. Seven-card stud can be summarized therefore as “two down, four up, one down”. Upon showdown, each player makes the best five-card poker hand he can out of the seven cards he was dealt.
You may note that seven cards to eight players plus four burn cards makes 60 cards, and there are only 52 in the deck. In most games this is not a problem because several players will have folded in early betting rounds. But there are certainly low-stakes home games where few if any players fold. If this is the case in your game, you may want to limit the game to seven players. If the deck does become exhausted during play, previously-dealt burn cards can be used when only a few cards are needed to complete the deal. If even those are not sufficient, then on the final round instead of dealing a downcard to each player, a single community card is dealt to the center of the table, and is shared by everyone (that is, each player treats it as his seventh card). Under no circumstances can any discarded card from a folded hand be “recycled” for later use. Unlike draw poker, where no cards are ever seen before showdown, stud poker players use the information they get from face-up cards to make strategic decisions, and so a player who sees a certain card folded is entitled to make decisions knowing that the card will never appear in another opponent’s hand.
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Omaha – You’ll find plenty of Omaha action at Carbon Poker.
In North American casinos, the unadorned term “Omaha” can refer to several poker games. The original game is also commonly known as “Omaha High”. A high-low split version called “Omaha Hi-Lo”, or sometimes “Omaha eight-or-better” or “Omaha/8”, is also played.
In Europe, “Omaha” still typically refers to the high version of the game, usually played pot-limit. Pot-limit Omaha is often abbreviated as “PLO.” Pot-limit and no-limit Omaha eight-or-better can be found in some casinos and online, though no-limit is rarer.
It is often said that Omaha is a game of “the nuts”, i.e. the best possible high or low hand, because it frequently takes “the nuts” to win a showdown. It is also a game where between the cards in his hand and the community cards a player may have drawing possibilities to multiple different types of holdings. For example, a player may have both a draw to a flush and a full house using different combinations of cards. At times, even seasoned players may need additional time to figure what draws are possible for their hand.
The basic differences between Omaha and Texas hold ’em are these: first, each player is dealt four cards to his private hand instead of two. The betting rounds and layout of community cards are identical. At showdown, each player’s hand is the best five-card hand he can make from exactly three of the five cards on the board, plus exactly two of his own cards. Unlike Texas hold ’em, a player cannot play four or five of the cards on the board with fewer than two of his own.
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Five-Card Draw – You’ll find 5 Card Draw action Carbon Poker.
In casino play the first betting round begins with the player to the left of the big blind, and subsequent rounds begin with the player to the dealer’s left. Home games typically use an ante; the first betting round begins with the player to the dealer’s left, and the second round begins with the player who opened the first round.
Play begins with each player being dealt five cards, one at a time, all face down. The remaining deck is placed aside, often protected by placing a chip or other marker on it. Players pick up the cards and hold them in their hands, being careful to keep them concealed from the other players, then a round of betting occurs.
If more than one player remains after the first round, the “draw” phase begins. Each player specifies how many of his cards he wishes to replace, and discards them. The deck is retrieved, and each player is dealt in turn from the deck the same number of cards he discarded so that each player again has five cards. It is important that each player discards the cards he wishes to replace before he takes any replacements, and that he takes the same number of replacements as he discarded.
A second “after the draw” betting round occurs beginning with the player to the dealer’s left or else beginning with the player who opened the first round (the latter is common when antes are used instead of blinds). This is followed by a showdown if more than one player remains, in which the player with the best hand wins the pot.
Rummy – You’ll find plenty of online Rummy action at Rummy Royal.
The Play – In each turn, a player may either take the top card of the stock, or some portion of the discard pile. (Depending on the game, for example the entire pile, or only the top card.) There may be further requirements that restrict taking cards from the pile, for example, you may have to meld the top card of the pile in order to take it.
After you take card(s), you may, depending on the game, make melds and add cards into existing melds by placing the cards that form a meld face-up on the table. In some games, the distinction between your own melds and other players’ melds is made, and you may be allowed to add cards only into your own melds. Some games do not make this distinction. Some games allow melding only at the end of the hand.
You end your turn by placing a card from your hand on the top of the discard pile, and the turn passes to the next player. The next player is usually the one in your left, but some games allow anyone steal a turn if they can make certain types of melds with the top card of the discard pile.