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The rules of Omaha Poker are simple. Players must make the best five-card hand using a combination of two hole cards and three community cards. Each player at the table receives four hole cards, face-down cards dealt only to them which are kept secret from other players. After all players have received their hole cards, a round of betting will commence. The order of the betting is determined by who has the button. Players to the left of the button are the small blind and the big blind respectively, with the player immediately after the blinds being the first to bet pre-flop.

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After all players have either bet or folded their hands, three face-up community cards will be dealt (the flop). Players will continue to bet after the fourth card (the turn) and fifth (the river) community card are dealt. Finally, remaining players will reveal their hands (the showdown) and the winner will take the pot.

Types of Betting in Omaha Poker

Depending on the betting system being used, the way Omaha Poker is played can change wildly. It is important to be aware of the differences between betting systems.

  • Pot Limit Omaha– In Pot Limit Omaha (PLO), the maximum that can be bet at any time is the total sum of the chips in the pot. This makes it very cheap to play in the beginning of a hand, but very expensive by the end. Pot Limit Omaha Poker is one of the most popular types of Omaha Poker.

  • Fixed Limit Omaha– In a Fixed Limit Omaha (FLO), a player may only bet or raise an amount equal to the size of the blinds. In Fixed Limit Omaha, a pot can be raised a maximum of four times before the limit has been reached. Fixed Limit games see large numbers of players seeing the river, as it is relatively cheap to continue to play.

  • No-Limit Omaha– In No-Limit Omaha (NLO), players can bet or raise as many chips as they want at any point during the game. No Limit games are often very aggressive, with players attempting to price out other players with drawing hands.

Variant Omaha Poker Rules

There are three major Omaha Poker variants, and it is important to know the difference between them.

  • Omaha Hi– In Omaha Hi, the highest five card hand wins. This is the most common type of Omaha Poker.

  • Omaha Hi/Lo– In an Omaha Hi/Lo game, the pot is split 50/50 between the player with the highest hand the player with the lowest hand. A low hand would be five small cards with no pairs or straights. For instance 7-6-5-4-2 would be a very strong low-hand. The best possible hand in Omaha Hi/Lo is one which has both the highest and lowest hands at the same time, thus winning the entire pot.

  • Omaha Lo– The least common variant, in Omaha Lo the smallest hand (as described above) wins the entire pot.

Gaining Experience

The best way to learn the rules of Omaha Poker is to play. For new players, it is suggested they try using the play-money tables at an online poker website such as Bodog, Full Tilt Poker, or PokerStars. Being able to experience the game with no risks is the perfect way to hone your Omaha skills. After they have become comfortable with the flow of the game, it is easy to make a deposit to one of these and begin playing cash games.

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