Omaha Hi/Lo: Basic Overview

Omaha Hi-Lo (also known as Omaha/8 or better) is frequently seen as one of the most difficult but well-loved poker variations. It’s a variation that, even more than normal Omaha poker, aims for play from all levels of players. This is the main reason why a once obscure game, has grown in popularity so amazingly.

Omaha/8 begins exactly like a normal game of Omaha. 4 cards are handed out to each player. A round of wagering ensues where players can wager, check, or drop out. Three cards are given out, this is called the flop. A further sequence of wagering happens. After all the players have either called or folded, another card is flipped on the turn. an additional round of wagering ensues and then the river card is revealed. The gamblers will have to put together the strongest high and low five card hands using the board and hole cards.

This is the point where a number of players get baffled. Unlike Hold’em, where the board can be every player’s hand, in Omaha Hi-Lo the player has to use precisely three cards from the board, and precisely two hole cards. Not a single card more, not a single card less. Contrary to normal Omaha, there are two ways a pot could be won: the "high hand" or the "lower hand."

A high hand is just how it sounds. It’s the strongest possible hand out of everyone’s, whether that is a straight, flush, full house, etc. It’s the very same concept in nearly every poker game.

The low hand is more difficult, but really opens up the action. When deciding on a low hand, straights and flushes do not count. the lowest hand is the worst hand that can be made, with the lowest being made up of A-2-3-4-5. Since straights and flushes do not count, A-2-3-4-5 is the lowest value hand possible. The lower hand is any five card hand (unpaired) with an 8 and below. The low hand wins half of the pot, as does the higher hand. When there’s no low hand presented, the higher hand wins the whole pot.

It may seem complicated at the start, after a few rounds you will be able to get the basic subtleties of play with ease. Seeing as you have people betting for the low and betting for the high, and seeing as so many cards are in play, Omaha/8 offers an overwhelming assortment of betting choices and because you have numerous players shooting for the high hand, along with many battling for the low hand. If you like a game with a plethora of outs and actions, it is worth your time to play Omaha 8 or better.


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