One of the simpler variations of poker, and one that is the first introduction of many poker players to the game of poker, is 5-Card Draw. In France, this variant is also called “closed poker”.
More common in games with friends than in casinos, closed poker has been overtaken in popularity by games like Texas Hold’em and Omaha when it was the most played variant a few dozen years ago. ‘years.
But there are still a lot of closed poker fans around the world – especially in the world of online poker where there are several sites offering cash games and tournaments.
How to play 5 card poker?
If you have played any other form of poker, the rules of 5-Card Draw are similar in that the object of the game is to make the best 5-card poker hand. Much like Texas Hold’em, the hand rankings, from weakest to strongest, are as follows:
- High card
- A pair
- Two pairs
- Three of a kind
- Straight flush
- Royal Flush
Regarding bets before card exchanges, there are two different methods used in 5-Card Draw. Either all players pay a bet before receiving their cards (this is more common in home games), or there is a small blind and a big blind like in Texas Hold’em.
Three different betting structures also exist for closed poker. You can play the draw in limit, no limit or pot limit. Although all three formats play with the same poker rules, the different betting structures mean that your strategy needs to be tailored. For example, some hands that you wouldn’t play in 5-Card Draw limit become playable in no-limit because in the latter case you can bet enough to force your opponent to fold.
No Limit makes you dream and you immediately imagine a clash between cowboys to know, forgive me for the expression, who “has the biggest”. But, if you have madmen who bet a lot every time, the pot limit allows you to have that excitement of large bets by limiting despite the size of the bets.
Regardless of the betting structure, here’s how to play 5-Card Draw.
After everyone has paid the required bet or blinds, each player is dealt five cards face down. A betting round then takes place. If more than one player remains after this first betting round, there is a first exchange. Each active player specifies the number of cards he or she wishes to discard and replace with new cards from the draw pile. If you are happy with your current hand and don’t want to draw cards, you “stay”.
Once the exchange is complete, there is another round of betting. After that, if there is more than one player left, the players show their hands (reveal their hands) and whoever has the best wins the chips.
As you can see, the rules of closed poker are straightforward and allow for quick play, which is why the game is popular with less experienced new players. It is also with this variant that I started.