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POKER OVERVIEW

POKER SCHOOL

POKER TOURNAMENTS

GENERAL POKER POLICIES

FREE OMAHA HI LO POKER GAME
By Antawn Blakefield

Click to download FREE Omaha Hi Lo Poker Software

Dealing an Omaha Hi Lo Poker Game

The object of the Omaha Hi Lo Poker Game is to create a High hand using any two out of four pocket cards and three out of five community cards, and a Low hand using any two out of four pocket cards and three out of five community cards. 50% of the pot will be awarded to the best High hand and 50% of the pot will be awarded to the best Low hand. If there is no qualifying Low hand, the whole pot will be awarded to the best High hand.

To qualify as a Low hand, the hand must contain five unpaired cards ranked eight (8) or lower. Straights and flushes are not considered when evaluating low hands. The winning Low hand is the hand with the lowest high card. In case of a tie with the high card, the winning hand is the one with the next lowest high card and so on.

It is not possible to have a qualifying Low hand unless three of the community cards are ranked eight (8) or lower. Aces can be used as the lowest card. A player can use any two of his/her pocket cards for the High hand, and any two of his/her pocket cards for the Low hand.

Before the Deal

  • Players will buy-in for the posted amount.
  • Selected players will post blinds.


The Dealer Button
The dealer in Omaha Hi Lo will start to deal each game contingent on which player has the "button." The button is a graphical representation ("D") of which player is the "dealer." Although our dealer will be dealing the game, the player who has the button placed in front of his seat gets to play his cards as if he were the actual dealer. When the cards are dealt to players, they are dealt in a manner as if the player was actually dealing in a live environment.


Blinds
Because we have a player "on the button" we now ask two players to "post the big or small blinds please." The blinds serve a purpose similar to antes, in that they put forced money into the pot that gives players an incentive to enter the hand. However, only two players will "post" or "put up" the blinds.

The first blind is called the "small blind". This bet is usually half the minimum bet of the game.

So, in a $2-4 game the small blind will be $1. The second blind is called the "big blind" and is always the same size as the game's minimum bet, e.g., in a 2-4 game, the big blind is $2.

The player directly left of the button will have the "small blind." The player directly to the left of the small blind will have the "big blind" of the full amount of the lowest game limit.


Opening Deal
Now that we have a Button and small and big blinds, we are ready to deal. The dealer always deals from the player closest to the dealer's left. Moving clockwise around the table, the game will "deal-in" each player. The players will be dealt four cards face down. A round of betting will occur starting with the player seated to the left of the big blind.


Betting on Opening Deal

The player seated to the left of the big blind will always have the action on the opening deal. This player may not check, but rather can only fold, call, or raise.

The game will now advance to each player seated asking to fold, call, or raise until we reach the big blind for an action decision. If no one has raised by the time the play comes back around to the big blind, the big blind has the option to "check" his own blind wager or raise.

Once all players have completed the first round of wagering, they will proceed to the flop.


Flop
The next cards to be dealt into the game will be the fifth, sixth and seventh cards in the game. These three cards will not be dealt to each player, but rather placed face up in the center of the table.

But before we "flop" anything, we must burn a card. The dealer will deal one face down card into the muck. After the burn card, the dealer will deal three cards face up in the center of the poker table. These three cards are called "community cards" which are available to all players for potential use to make a poker hand. The area in which these cards lie on the table is commonly referred to as the "board".

The look of the flop:

Flop

Now the flop has landed on the "board" and all players now have seven cards available to make their hand, the four "hole" cards that were dealt on the opening round and now three "community cards" which all players may use. In Omaha Hi Lo, each poker hand must consist of exactly two face down cards and three community cards.The rule of the determination of the action is as follows.

After the opening deal, the player who is seated closest to the left of the button shall have the initial action for the remainder of the game. If the player who has the button folds, then the button is still active and will remain in front of that player's seat to keep the position of the button constant throughout that game.

The player that has the action may check or bet. As soon as one player chooses to bet, then the other players in the hand can no longer check; they can only fold, call or raise.


The Turn
The "turn" is the fourth card to be dealt onto the board and the eighth card available to the player. Some players call this "fourth street." However, the most common term used for this round is the "turn". As always, the dealer will burn a card and then deal one card face up onto the board to the right of the last flop card.

The look of the turn:

Turn
The 9 of spades is the "turn card"

At this point the players have access to the four cards on the board and their four hole cards. The game will now declare who has the action, which always begins with the player still remaining in the hand who is closest to the left of the button.


The River
The dealer will then place the fifth and final card on the board.

The Flop Cards turn River

River Look:

River

At this point, five cards are on the board and four hole cards are in the players' hands. The action again starts with the first player still remaining in the hand who is closest to the left of the button. All checks, bets, raises, and folds will be completed and then a showdown will begin.


Who shows first?

The determination of which players' cards will and must be shown first will lie with the player who initiated the action or with the person who initiated the last bet, raise or re-raise. This simply means that whoever had the last action on the river must show his/her cards first.


Suppose a Player wins by default?

A player who has a winning hand does not have to show his/her cards if his/her bet was not called.


Do Players have to show their Cards if they call a bet on the River?

A player is not required to show their cards if, and only if, they are not the player who had the last action. If a player calls a bet and sees that he/she cannot win, he/she may fold his/her cards. Players who are curious about the folded hand may request a hand history to learn it.


Who wins?

In our poker room, as with all, "cards speak." That means our dealer will automatically find the best High hand and Low hand among the players' hands.


Blind Rules

All players must pay for their blinds in full before they are allowed to get the button. Therefore, the player who had posted the small blind in the prior hand will receive the button on the next deal of any game.


If in the event we have a new player to the game, then three (3) actions will occur.

  1. If the new player is seated to the left of the blind, then he/she may choose to "post" the big blind or "wait." If the player does post, then his/her wager is active.

  2. If the new player is seated in the big blind, then he/she is treated as such.

  3. If the player is seated between the button and any blind, then he/she must wait for the button to pass.


Missed Blinds rules and Procedures

  • Missed big blind
    If a player misses the big blind for any reason, then that player may not play in any hands until the sum of all blinds are made up. The game will place an "ML" button in that seat to declare the missed big blind. The game will ask the next active player to the left to post the big blind for the hand. If the missed player makes up the sum of all blinds, then the small blind portion is dead and must be put into the pot before the hand is dealt.
  • Missed small blind
    If a player misses the small blind for any reason, then that player may not play in any hands until the small blind is made up. The game will place an "MS" button in that seat to declare the missed small blind. The game will ask the current big blind to please also post the small blind for the game. The game will further ask the next active player to the left to post the big blind. The player who had missed the small cannot return until after the button has passed. When and if the player does make up the missed small blind, then that money is dead and must be placed directly into the pot before any cards are dealt.

Omaha Hi Lo Poker Games

Omaha Hi Lo Poker Games offer a great variaty of low, medium and high limit games. The offer may vary over time and therefore we do not list the games in this section. However, when setting up and specifying the limits of a game, we follow the general rules described below.

$ (Lower Limit)-(Upper Limit)

Maximum number of players: 2, 5 or 10

Minimum Buy-in=$(10 x Lower Limit)

Small Blind=$(50% of Lower Limit)

Big Blind=$(Lower Limit)


Example: $1-2

Maximum number of players: 10

Minimum Buy-in: $10

Small Blind: $0.50

Big Blind: $1