Omaha is also sometimes called Omaha Hold ‘Em, like the game it was derived from. The term Hold ‘Em refers to any poker game with cards that are shared by all poker players. For more information on basic rules, poker tips, and variations of Omaha, read below. Then head over to our casino, one of the best in Oregon and Washington, to try your hand at all of our poker games.
Omaha resembles Texas Hold ‘Em with two key differences. In Omaha, each player receives four pocket cards, and must play two of them at the showdown, along with three from the table, to form the best five-card hand. Play starts with the dealer dealing each player four cards face-down (hole or pocket cards). Once all players have received their cards, the first round of betting occurs. The dealer then burns, or discards, a card to reveal three community cards (board cards) face-up. This is called the flop, and is followed by the second round of betting. The dealer then burns another card and reveals one more community card face-up on the table (the turn, or fourth street). Players then bet for a third time. The dealer now burns one more card and reveals one final community card (the river, or fifth street). The final round of betting takes place, after which there is a showdown. Every remaining player faces-off by showing their hand, starting with the bettor, who is the player who is first to bet in a particular round. As mentioned above, players must use two of their pocket cards and three community cards to create the best possible five-card hand. However, all four of each player’s pocket cards must be shown.
A popular variation of Omaha is Omaha High-Low. This game is typically played with a high-low split of eight-or-better. Players are going for both a high hand and low hand. To do this, each player may use any combination of two pocket cards and three community cards for the high hand and another, or the same, combination of two pocket and three community cards for the low hand. The rules of Omaha High-Low are the same as regular Omaha, with one added wrinkle; a qualifier of eight-or-better for the low hand applies to all high-low split games (unless specifically posted as otherwise at the table). If there is no hand that meets this qualification for low, then the best high hand takes the whole pot.
A low hand can be difficult to read if you’re a beginner. As a simple rule of thumb, judge your low hand by reading it as a number. The smaller the number, the better. For example, a low hand of 65432 beats a 74321. As the hand develops, try to always know what the three best hand possibilities are, and how they might change on the next card. The best hand is also called the ‘nut’ hand. Every now and then it doesn’t hurt to get caught in a bluff, as long as you’re not betting the farm. Getting caught is a good way to avoid being too predictable. This way, you might win a few pots that you don’t deserve. Sure, you’ll lose a few chips when your bluffs don’t work but this will get you calls from weaker hands down the line when your hands are really strong and you need the action. Remember, the best thing to do is keep your opponents guessing.