Different Poker Game Variants and How to Play

Poker has truly made its impact on the online gaming industry with the introduction of various poker variants in different platforms. These poker selections are stapled options at most gaming sites, including PokerNewsHeadlines, because of their popularity among web-based gamers nowadays. Furthermore, almost all online poker sites carry these poker variants in their platforms and use these games in online poker tournaments.

Event organizers are also hosting these poker games in their live gaming tournaments. They may sometimes feature one poker only events or multi-poker games for its huge number of tournament participants. Moreover, these variants - which are composed of simple to complex poker gameplays - are offering huge payout values and jackpots in some of the biggest poker events today.

Here are some of the best poker variants available in multiple online and offline platforms today:

Texas Hold'em

This is probably the most popular poker variant in the world today. Most online and live poker tournaments also use Texas Hold'em in some of their major events which constantly entice more participants every season. It is also the best variant to start off for beginners who want to familiarize themselves on the gameplay of poker games.

Texas Hold'em features a 52-card deck wherein the dealers - actual and virtual - deal the hole and community cards. The hole cards are the two starting cards dealt with each player which should remain face down until the end of the game. Players need to complete the best five-card combinations using their hole cards and the other cards to be played on the table. Once all players have their own hole cards, the dealer will then proceed in dealing the three initial community cards.

The community cards will be placed in the middle of the table for every player to see and plan their next move. Players can either call the play wager, raise the current stake, or fold their cards and quit the round. These actions will also happen when the fourth card or the turn and the fifth card or the river are dealt together with the first three community cards. All remaining players after the final actions are taken will then have to show their hole cards and the dealer will determine the winner.


Omaha is another poker variant which has the same gameplay as Texas Hold'em. But instead of just getting two starting cards, players are initially dealt with four hole cards. However, they only need to choose two of these four initial cards - which will be their played hole cards - and discard the remaining cards to continue the game.

The same rounds will happen during this game. The community cards will be dealt, followed by the turn and the river, with the call, raise, and flop actions happening in between. The only difference these two games have is the ranking of their winning poker hands. The high paying pockets kings and pocket aces in Texas Hold'em are not that rewarding in the Omaha variant.

Omaha Hi-Lo

This is considered as one of the most exciting poker variants available today. Omaha Hi-Lo, also known as Omaha/8, features a split spot which is divided to the best high hand and low hand in the table after all rounds are completed. This means that the player with the best high hand combination and the player with the best low hand combination will split the total prize at stake. The split may happen between two players or one player can take home the entire prize pot if they have both the best high and best low combinations. This is called scooping in this poker variant.

The same Omaha gameplay, as well as the action rounds, are followed in this poker variant.

Seven-Card Stud

Before Texas Hold'em gained its popularity in the poker realm, Seven-Card Stud is considered the best poker variant played back then. This game has an exciting gameplay wherein players are initially dealt with three starting cards - two faces down and one faces up cards. These are the hole cards (face up) and the door card (face down). The lowest valued door card on the table determines which player starts the wagering round.

There is no community, turn, and river cards dealt in this poker game. Instead, players are given with four more cards with the fourth, fifth, and sixth cards dealt face up, and the last card or seventh card dealt face down. This gives each player four faces up cards and three faces down cards.

They need to choose the best five-card combination from these cards. The hand rankings are similar to the initial poker variants, wherein the highest paying poker hand wins the pot at stake.


Meanwhile, Razz is another variant which has the same gameplay as Stud. Players are dealt with seven cards - four faces up and three faces down. But instead of playing the highest hand combination, they need to aim to get the lowest hand to win. It may be somehow tricky for players but with the proper gameplay and strategy, they will surely end up big winners in this game.

Five-Card Draw

This is considered the simplest poker variant mostly played for fun in the industry today. Five-Card Draw players start with five face-down cards dealt by the dealer. The objective of the game is to form the best five-card hand combination possible with a bonus discard round for players. During this round, they may either keep all their initial cards or discard some and draw the same number of cards as replacement from the remaining deck. After players have decided their playing hands, all hands will be revealed, and the best hand will be declared the winner.

There are also other poker variations like 2-7 Triple Draw, HORSE, Badugi, Chinese Poker, and Irish Poker which are constantly gaining their popularity among online and offline players.