Razz Poker - Seven Card Stud Low

When playing Razz poker (a form of stud poker), the poker player wants to make the lowest five card hand from the seven cards he or she is dealt

General Idea of Razz Poker

Basically, razz is a type of stud poker that in the majority of cases is played as lowball (ace to five low) poker. (Ace to five low is the way low hands are usually evaluated in any poker games, especially in games that involve high-low splits). The game is usually played by at least eight players and betting is limited (only a fixed amount can be bet per player at each round).

Winning Hands in Razz Poker

Razz is just like other low hand/lowball games (the ones in which the player wants to get poor hands) in that pairs are not something you want to try and get. (Based on the fact that you don’t want to get any good hands.) So if let’s say you get a pair and your opponent doesn’t get a pair, then your opponent wins by virtue of this fact. And then, if there are two people with pairs, the one who got the lower pair beats the one with the higher pair. So even more so does a razz poker player want to avoid getting flushes and straights. In this game, an ace is a good card – the only difference is, is that it counts as the lowest card. So what you really want to try and do is form the lowest five card hand from the seven cards being dealt to you. The best possible hand is a 5-4-3-2-Ace. This is called the “wheel” or “bicycle.” So basically anything typically “high” or “good,” is actually the opposite in this game.

Other Forms of Razz Poker

Although the ace to five low is the main form of razz poker, there is also the deuce to seven razz. This is played less often. This form of razz is pretty much based on seven card stud poker, with the exception of (as in razz poker in general) everything is opposite and it is the lowest hand that wins the game. Again, there are seven cards dealt but the player only uses the “best” five when trying to make the “worst” (lowest) hand.

How Razz Poker Works

At the beginning of the game, the compulsory (ante) bets are made which are fixed. Thereafter all players get dealt two hole (face down) cards and one (door) face up card. The one who gets the highest door card has to put in the first compulsory bet (known as “bring it in”) which usually amounts to a third – a half of the standard bet. If there is a situation in which more than one player has an equal high door card, the suit determines whose is higher (spades being highest, then hearts, diamonds and clubs. Next each player still in the game gets another door card and the game continues until the fifth card when the betting doubles. The seventh card is another hole card and the player who opened on the sixth card beings the action. The deal always rotates to the left after each hand.