Badugi Poker – A Nice Alternative to Texas Hold’Em

Why not take a break from playing Texas Hold’em online and give Badugi Poker a try? Many online poker sites have recently added Badugi poker to their sites. Believed to have originated in Korea or China, this game is growing in popularity in the United States and worldwide.

What is Badugi?

Each player is dealt 4 cards and has three draws to make their best hand. The goal is similar to lowball where the lowest cards win. It is different from traditional lowball type games in that the suit and rank of the cards matter. Therefore, the best possible hand in Badugi is 4-3-2-A with no two cards being in the same suit. Aces are always low pussy888.

How is the game played?

Each player is dealt 4 cards and a round of betting takes places. During each of the three drawing rounds, players can discard from zero to four of their cards for new ones from the deck in order to make their best hand. A round of betting occurs after each draw. After the third draw if more than one player remains, the hands of the remaining players are compared and the player with the best Badugi hand is awarded the pot.

How are the hands ranked?

When evaluating a players’ hands, any cards in the same suit or of the same rank are disregarded. When all four cards in the hand are of different suit and rank, that player is said to have a Badugi. If only one player has a Badugi, that player wins the pot. When more than one player has a Badugi, the hands are evaluated by comparing the highest card in each hand. As in lowball, the hand with the lower card is superior. If there is a tie for the highest card, the second highest card is compared. If the ranks of all the cards in the hand are the same the two hands tie. Suits are irrelevant in comparison of two hands. If no players have a Badugi, then any players’ hands with 3 qualifying cards are compared. A four-card hand beats any three-card hand, a three-card hand beats a two-card hand, etc.

How about some examples?

Here are a few examples:

2♠ 4♣ 5♦ 6♥ beats A♠ 2♣ 3♦ 7♥ (both are four-card hands) since the highest card is compared first and the 6♥ is smaller than 7♥.
4♠ 5♣ 6♦ K♥ beats 2♠ 3♠ 4♦ 7♥ since the former is a four-card hand and the latter is a three-card hand. (The 3♠ is disregarded as a duplicate spade, so the hand is a three-card 247.)
A♣ 2♠ 2♣ J♦ loses to A♠ 5♦ 9♦ 9♥. They reduce to the three-card hands A2J and A59.
2♠ 3♠ 4♦ 7♥ beats 4♠ 5♠ 6♦ K♥; both are three-card hands, but the highest in the former is the 7♥ while the highest in the latter is the K♥.
5♦ 7♣ K♣ K♥ beats 2♠ 3♦ K♠ K♦ as the former is a three-card hand (after disregarding the K♣) while the latter is a two-card hand (both kings are disregarded since each is the same suit as another card in the hand).

(Hand examples from Wikipedia)

Badugi’s combination of calculating odds, strategy, bluffing and luck make it one of the most exciting and frustrating poker games you can play. The best way to learn to play is by playing. There are many online poker sites where you can play for free. Try it, You’ll like it!

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