Badugi Poker - 4 Card Triple Draw Poker

Also known as Badougi or Padooki poker, this game is pretty much like triple draw lowball poker, with the difference being that it is a 4 card variation.

How Badugi Poker Works

First, each player is dealt four cards face down (hole cards). The betting begins and 3 drawing rounds ensue (between each one is another betting round). At the end of the final round the game isn’t over but instead there is a showdown. What happens is the showdown is that the player who has the best hand gets the pot. Betting in badugi poker is pretty much the same as for other poker games, except since there are four cards the way the hands are ranked is different to those of other types of poker.

How Hands are Determined in Badugi

Hands in badugi poker are known as “rainbow hands.” This is because they always comprise different suits and different ranks. Once the cards have been drawn and wagers made, players must get rid of any card that is a pair or a suit and has to remain with just one, two, three or four cards that have totally different suits and ranks. No doubles must be in the hand.

Winning Hands in Badugi

Four card hands beat three card hands but three card hands beat two card hands, etc., etc. Sometimes in the game the four card best winning hand is referred to as a “badugi,” hence the name. In a game situation in which two players have the same amount of cards, the one who has the lowest card wins. (In this game aces are considered low). But when there is even a tie over the lowest card, the competition is then moved over to the next highest card in their hand and if another tie occurs, the procedure is repeated until a winner emerges this way. The best possible winning hand one can get is 4, 3, 2, Ace and the next is 5, 3, 2, Ace.

Frustrations of Playing Badugi Poker

As in all poker games (and probably indeed all gambling games), badugi poker can be extremely frustrating. Players can find themselves in a situation in which they are only one card from having a winning four card hand but then they just don’t card that one card they need as the probability of getting it is one in four due to the suits. That probability can actually be even lower due to the fact that it must be a different rank than the other three cards the player has in their hand. Still, no doubt that which makes the game so frustrating, at the same time makes it extremely exciting. Maintaining your composure in the game will only help you against your opponents, and this game is one for sure that you want to learn to do that.