Card Stud Poker - How to Play Five Card Stud Poker,
Rules, Strategy Tips
objectives and basic strategies for playing 5 Card Stud Poker
that are shown here are those generally agreed to and recommended
by the experts on bet limit poker games. Understanding the rules
and basics is needed to know how to play at all competetive levels.
Solid intermediate and expert level poker normally requires lots
of at-the-table, or online game playing experience.
5 Card Stud Poker - 2 to 8 Players, Rules
hand wins || Ace plays both high and
low for straights || Three raise limit
per round || Cards speak
Distribution and Betting Procedure
$2/$4 Five Card Stud games.
After all players have anted $.25 or so, (1.) Each
player is dealt one card face down and one face up. The player with
the lowest upcard makes an forced bet of either $1 half minimum bet
or $2 full bet
(player's choice) to start the game*. The rest of the players, in
clockwise order, either call the opening bet, raise it, or not call
and "fold" their hands back to the dealer. (2.) All
get a third card face up followed by a round of $2 betting. From
this round on, the player with the highest upcard(s) is always first
to check or bet. (3.) After
the fourth card is dealt face up, the minimum bet goes to $4. (4.) Then
the fifth card is dealt face up and followed by the final round of
$4 betting. The dealer then determines the highest hand and awards
*(Note). Only for the purpose of determining the lowest upcard to
bring in the betting, the card denominations are sub-divided by these
suit values in decending order: Spades the highest, through Hearts,
Diamonds, and Clubs the lowest.
to Play Five Card Stud
Five Card Stud is mostly a game of HIGH CARDS and PAIRS. Don't
play for straights and flushes unless you have three cards to
a straight flush on third street, or it looks like you might
luck into a straight or flush on fourth. With only one down card,
it is easier than most games to put your opponents on hands.
Pay close attention to how they each play. Usually don't start
without either a pair or at least one live card that
beats the board. Usually fold if you do not have at least a pair
in the first three cards. Almost always fold when you are beaten
on the board and do not have a good draw to the best hand.
HIGH CARDS - 10 thru A .
LOW CARDS - 2 thru 9
DOOR CARD - The exposed upcard of a starting hand.
LIVE DARDS - Cards that have not been revealed on the
board and are possible to get.
DEAD CARDS - Cards that have been revealed and
no longer in the deck.
FAST PLAY - Bet, raise and re-raise to get as
many other players out as possible.
SLOW PLAY - Just check and call along to keep other players
in the game and increase the pot odds.
CHECK-FOLD - Check when you can and fold if you are bet
into. Gladly accept all free cards offered.
ANY PAIR - Fast play low pairs to try to
get heads up. Consider folding if you don't get
trips or a live upcard on third street. Bet/Call
BOTH CARDS HIGHER Than the BOARD - ie: You hold 9 8 and
there is no opponent upcard that is higher than 7.
HIGH HOLE CARD that BEATS the BOARD with ANY UPCARD - ie:
You have Q down/ 6 up and there is no opponent upcard that is higher
HIGH HOLE CARD with a HIGH UPCARD that BEATS the BOARD -
An Ace up is a good hand that you can sometimes take past third
street unpaired, if you have a good kicker. The high card in the
hole does not have to beat the board.
DON'T PLAY for STRAIGHTS and FLUSHES, except for three cards
to a straight flush.
USUALLY FOLD if you don't have a PAIR or
better in the FIRST THREE CARDS.
Remember the folded cards so that you know which cards are "live".
Play only live cards from the start and at least semi-live
cards from the middle to the end.
Study your opponents. When he or she plays a low upcard,
it is likely that the card is paired or just a loose starting
hand of some sort. Does the player bluff? Can he or she be bluffed,
Unless you are playing a strong draw hand, usually fold if
your complete hand is beaten on the board by
an opponent's upcards.
Usually don't play low hole cards.
Don't fall in love with your Ace in the hole. If that's all
you have, against apparent strong hands, usually
Beware of the paired door card. This often means trips,
especially if it is a low pair.
Get caught bluffing once in a while. It is a way to vary
your play and not be too predictable. You win pots that you don't
deserve when your bluff works. You lose a few chips when it doesn't
work but it will get you calls from weaker hands down the line
when you are strong and need the action.
Look for reasons to fold early. When someone else
gets the card you wanted or you suspect that you are unprofitably
chasing a better hand - fold it up. Trust your instincts
and you will usually be right.
Make'em pay to try to draw out on you when you have
a good hand.
fun and GOOD LUCK!
Note about Five Card Stud -
grandpappy of modern poker games has almost slipped off the popularity
charts in favor of Hold'em and
others so places to play are not very easy to find. . As more and
more players come online, the game might just make a little comeback
for two reasons. . . First, it is by far the fastest poker game
that there is (well over a hundred hands an hour on a good site).
I find that refreshing because I like to wait for quality starting
hands in any game, and when my cards are not running well, long
waits between hands gets tiresome. . . The second reason is that
this game is so simple that everyone understands how to play. However,
it seems that not very many know how to win at it, especially in
the lower limit games. That makes for one of the easier games to
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