Draw poker games are mostly played with blinds and positional betting.
General Outline of Play
- Blinds or ante.
- 5 facedown cards to each player.
- First betting round.
- Players discard anywhere between 0 to 5 cards per variant rules.
- Players get replacement cards for the number of cards they discard or extra replacement per variant rules.
- Second betting round.
- Showdown, best hands win the pot.
- In blind games, first betting begins from player to the left of the big blind and subsequent betting begins from player to the left of the dealer.
- In ante games, betting always begins from player to the left of the dealer.
Sequence of betting is similar in the following games per ante and blind rules unless mentioned.
Significant changes in rules applicable in betting, dealing and replacement in draw variants are mentioned under each heading below.
Classical high variants [change]
Standard 5 card draw
- Blinds posting.
- 5 cards are dealt
- 3 cards can be discarded and replaced.
- An Ace or a wild card is required for 4th card replacement per house rules.
Gardena jackpots ("Jacks to open" or simply "Jackpots")
- Ante, no blinds
- Joker as a bug
- In first betting round, “a pair of jacks” or “better” opens the bet, otherwise, players check. (The opening player can discard his jacks in later rounds to make his hand.)
- Players who checked can call or raise if someone opens.
- If no one opens, a new deal begins with re-ante.
- In some cases, when no one opens, the qualifying hand after the re-ante will be kings, and if no kings, the qualifying hand after the re-ante will be Aces, therefore known as progressive jackpots.
Lowball variants [change]
- Blinds posting.
- No checking in first betting round.
- Checking is permitted in second betting round, (no raise after check).
- 7-high hand who checks after the draw forfeits his right to the pot.
- “Ace to five” wins the showdown.
- In high-lo variant 8-high or better low is needed for the low hand.
Badugi (Ace-to-five lowball variant)
- Four cards are dealt, played as 4 card hand.
- Badugi 4 card hand should be of different rank and different suit.
- One card from similar suit and similar rank will be discarded to qualify.
- Final hand can be Badugi 4 card hand > Badugi 3 card hand > Badugi 2 card hand 1> Badugi one card hand after discarding similar suits and similar rank.
• Showdown Ace-to-5 low, played as a triple draw game, 1-1-2-2 betting structure.
- Played for deuce to seven
- Played without “7-high hand” rule or “no check after raise” rule.
Other variant rules [change]
Double-draw and Triple-draw
All of the above stated high variant and low variant games can be played with double or triple draws with three or four betting rounds.
- 4 cards is dealt to each player.
- Players take one card more than what they discard
- Best 5 card hand wins.
- Ante game, no blinds.
- Joker - bug.
- First betting round (can check or open with anything.)
- If the bet is opened, game is continued like traditional draw game (high).
- If the bet is not opened, the game is played like California lowball poker, after the player next to the dealer opens the bet (can check or open with anything.)
- If the bet is not opened, then there is a re-deal and re-ante.
- 3 blinds are placed. Dealer(bet x 1) , small blind (bet x 1) , big blind (bet x 2)
- One joker is used.
- 3 cards are dealt.
- Betting from player after the big blind (no checking)
- Fourth card is dealt
- Second betting (no checking)
- Fifth card is dealt.
- Third betting (can check)
- Normal draw and 4th betting round.
- Showdown Ace-to-5 low.
- 1-2-2-4 betting is followed.