Omaha Poker: Here’s Where You Get Four Hole Cards Instead of Two

If you’re a poker player you undoubtedly know that Texas Holdem is the number one choice for players at poker room tournaments and cash games. The game is so popular that even James Bond favored it over his preferential game of Baccarat in the 2006 remake of the 1967 movie, Casino Royal..

The lesser known game of Omaha Poker is also offered at most major poker rooms. One version is called Pot Limit Omaha There are two major differences between Pot Limit and No limit Holdem:

· Players are dealt four hole cards instead of two

· Players may only raise to the size of the pot

All the other action is the same. There are five community up cards dealt by the house dealer between betting rounds: three called the flop, one called the turn and one more called the river.

Before play, the dealer places a white disc called the button in front of the player immediately to her left. The button represents a theoretical dealer and holds an advantage for the player because he is the last to act during a hand. The button moves one player to the left after each round.

The first player to the left of the button is called the small blind. The player to the left of the small blind is the big blind. Both players must put a pre-determined amount of money in the pot before any cards are dealt. The blinds also move one position to the left after each round. Their purpose is to incite action by ensuring an ample amount of money in the pot prior to play. The amounts increase after preset timed periods. Four cards are dealt clockwise face down to each player. The first player to the left of the big blind is under the gun and starts the action with one of three options:

o Muck, (fold) all four cards to stay out of the hand

o Call, by betting the amount of the big blind

o Raise, by betting twice the amount of the big blind.

Players may think that having four hole cards to play with may be more beneficial than two as in Texas Holdem but it’s quite the contrary because you can only use two of the cards together with three community cards from the board to make your best possible This makes the game very interesting. Here are some reasons why:

· The size of the pot grows quickly because the four hole cards allow for more drawing hands. Players often see the hands to the end of the betting rounds because the two card choice is not made until the final hand is played.

· In that the drawing hands are more frequent, opponents also have hands that they are more likely to bluff with.

· Double suited hands with high cards such as a Jack, King of spades and an Ace, Queen of diamonds are favorites due to the flush possibilities.

· Unfavorable hands at pre-flop can include three of a kind and two pair because only two of the cards can be used in the final round.

Another version of Omaha Poker is called Hi-LO Omaha, which is played exactly the same as Pot Limit except the pot is divided between the winners with the highest ranking hand and the lowest ranking hand. A winning low ranking hand cannot contain any pair or a card higher than an eight. Also, a straight with ace through five can be used to win a high or low hand.

Next time you’re in the casino poker room you may want to give Omaha a try.

Good Luck!

Gambling Jargon: Know the Lingo to Do the Deeds! Here’s the Jargon for Popular Table Games

Don’t be left out when playing games in the casino! Learn gambling vocabulary as you learn the games. It’s important to understand this so you won’t feel like a novice when playing table games.To get you started, here is the meaning of some of the terminology used in popular gambling games:

BLACKJACK

Basic Strategy – Plays you should make to maximize your advantage

Burn Cards – Removed cards after the shuffle

Bust/Break – Exceeding a hand total of 21

Card Counting – Memorizing played cards with an assigned value

Color Up – Cashing in your chips

Double Down – To double your initial bet following the initial 2 card deal

Even Money – Cashing in your bet for a 1/1 payout when you have a blackjack against a dealer ace

Face Cards – Jacks, Queens, Kings (AKA picture cards)

First Base – First seat to the dealer’s left

Hit/Draw – Calling for another card to add to your hand

Hole Card – The dealer’s face down card

Insurance – A side bet for the player when the dealer has an ace showing

Pat Hand – A had worth at least 17 points

Push/Tie – Player and dealer with the same hand total

Shoe – A device used for holding and dispensing cards

Soft Hand- A hand with an ace counted as 11 or 1

Stiff Hand – A hand with little chance of winning if hit

Surrender – Giving u your hand to lose one half of your bet

Third base – Last seat to the dealer’s right

Up Card – Dealer’s first dealt card face up

CRAPS

Any Craps – A dice total of 2, 3, or 12

Big Red – a bet in the Any Seven box

Boxcars – When the dice total 12

Capped Dice – Crooked dice

Cold Table – When most shooters are not winning

Come Bet – A bet made after the point is established

Come Out Roll – First roll of the dice in a round

Don’t Come Bet – A bet made after the point is established (Outcome is opposite of the Come Bet)

Don’t Pass Bet – Betting against the shooter before the Come Out Roll

Free Odds – An additional bet behind the Pass Line Bet taken at true odds

George – A good tipper

Hardway – A 4,6,8,10 thrown as pairs

Place Bet- Betting that a place number (4-6, 8-10) will be thrown before a 7

Point Number – One of the numbers 4-6, 8-10 made on the come out roll

Press A Bet – To double your bet amount

Proposition Bets – (AKA Prop Bets) one roll and Hardway bets

Right Bettor – Betting that the shooter will win

Seven Out – When a 7 is rolled before the point number

Shooter – Player currently rolling the dice

Snake Eyes – When the dice total 2

Stiff – A poor tipper

Toke – A tip given to the dealer

Vigorish – ( AKA Vig) commission taken by the house

Wrong Bettor – Betting that the shooter will lose

Yo – The number 11 (AKA Yo-Leven)

POKER (TEXAS HOLD’EM STYLE)

Aces Up – A pair of Aces with another pair

All In – Betting all your remaining chips

Ante – The opening bet before dealing begins

Belly Buster – An inside straight draw

Big Slick – An Ace and a King

Blinds – 2 forced bets before any cards are dealt (small blind & big blind)

Boat – Slang for a Full House

Broadway – The highest straight possible with mixed suits, 10, J, Q, K, A

Button – A disk placed in front of a player acting as the dealer

Bullets – A pair of Aces

Call – To match the current bet

Check – To defer making a bet until another player does

Cowboys – Slang for a pair of Kings

Dead Hand – A hand with no chance of winning

Donkey/Fish – A bad player

Drawing Dead – A hand that will lose even if it improves

Flop – The first 3 community cards

Flush – 5 cards of the same suit

Full House – (AKA Boat ) 3 of one kind and 2 of another

Kicker – The highest unpaired card in a hand

Ladies – Slang for a pair of Queens

Muck – Face down discarded hands

Nuts – The highest possible hand

Overcard – A card that is higher than another

Quads- 4 of a kind

Rag(s) – Cards that add no value to your hand

Rainbow – Cards with different suits

River – The 5th and final community card

Rounder – One who makes a living at playing cards

Royal Flush – The highest hand possible, a suited 10, J, Q, K, A

Set/Trips – 3 of a kind

Short Stack – Having the fewest chips at the table

Straight Flush – 5 suited cards in sequential order

Tells – Behavior that gives other players information about how you might play your hand

Tight – Someone who only plays premium hands

Tilt – Desperate to re-coup losses, causing bad decisions

Turn – The 4th community card

Under the Gun – First player to bet after the big blind

Wheel – The lowest straight possible with mixed suits A, 2, 3, 4,5

Wired – A pair dealt in the first 2 cards

So there you have it. Learning this jargon will assist you on your path to becoming a seasoned responsible gambler. Good Luck!