Omaha Poker Rules

If you want to play the game, you need to learn the rules first. Read about the ins and outs of Omaha Hold’em and see if you can outplay your friends.

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How to Play Omaha Poker?

The Objective

The objective of Omaha is to make up the highest possible five-card poker hand using a combination of the four pocket cards you are initially dealt and five community cards on the table. The main distinction of Omaha poker rules from those of Texas Hold'em is that you must use exactly two of your pocket cards to make up the winning hand. Below is a general explanation on how to play Omaha Poker. The basic rules for all Omaha variants are the same with the exception of the different betting structures between them.

General Rules

From the very beginning players must receive their four pocket cards. Betting action proceeds clockwise around the table, starting with the player to the left of the big blind. Then comes the community cards, and players continue to place their bets.

Player Betting Options

In Omaha, as in other variations of poker, the player has the option to 'fold', 'check', 'bet', 'call' or 'raise,' depending on the action taken by the previous players.

Fold – the player pays nothing more to the pot and discards their hand, waiting for the next deal. If nobody has yet made a bet, then a player may either check (decline to bet, but keep their cards) or bet.

Check – the player doesn't bet, but keeps their cards.

Bet – a player increases the amount of the initial bet, from the cost of the big blind or the amount of the previous bet.

Call – a player makes a bet equal to the amount of the previous player.

Raise – a player increases the amount of the previous bet.

Pre-Flop

Every player receives 4 pocket cards. The first player to the left of the big blind starts playing. He can call the amount of big blind, raise, or fold. Omaha Poker betting rules depend on the variety of Omaha. Explanations of the betting action can be found below.

The Flop

After the first round of betting is complete (that is, everyone calls to have bet the same amount or has gone all in), the "flop" is dealt face-up on the board. The flop is the first three community cards available to all active players. Play begins with the active player immediately clockwise from the button (the dealer).

The Turn

The Turn is the fourth community card in an Omaha game. Play begins with the active player immediately clockwise from the button.

The River

The river is the fifth and final community card in Omaha poker. As with the Turn, betting begins with the active player immediately clockwise from the button.

The Showdown

All players show their cards. If there is only one final player (all others have "Folded"), he is able to muck his pocket cards and not show them. The player with the best five-card hand wins the pot or both players with the best and the lowest combination win (depending on the variation of Omaha Poker). Both variations of Omaha presented here (Omaha Hi & Omaha Hi/Lo) are considered to be No Limit Omaha. The minimum bet in No Limit Omaha is the same as the size of the big blind, but players can always bet as much as they like up to all of their chips.

Omaha Poker Tips:

1. An important detail when thinking over your Omaha poker strategy is that in Omaha, players must use two and only two of their four hole cards in combination with exactly three of the cards from the board.

2. Omaha Hi/Lo strategy is to make up not only the highest combination of cards, but also the lowest one.

3. To make up the lowest "low combination" a player must be able to play an 8-7-6-5-4 or lower (this is why it is called "eight or better"), so the best “lowest combination” is t5-4-3-2-A.

4. Poker Ranks used in Omaha Poker are the same as in Texas Hold'em.

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