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Get ready to take your poker nights (or your online live-dealer poker) to the next level! Learning how to play 5 card poker is your ticket to becoming the ultimate card shark and impressing your friends with your newfound skills. Get the inside scoop with our comprehensive guide and start winning big in no time.

When you’re wanting to play five-card draw poker, it’s going to be a good introduction to one of the simplest poker variations out there.

More common in at-home games than in casinos, the popularity of this game has fallen to the wayside after games like Texas hold ’em and Omaha poker gained notoriety. However, several online poker games are in the style of 5-card draw poker today.

Requirements For Five Card Draw Poker

Like other poker games, not much equipment is required to get started. A standard deck of 52 cards, some poker chips, and 6 players is all you’ll need to play five-card poker.

The same hand rankings are used as in Texas hold’em in this game.

Learn The Rules Five Card Draw Poker

One of the most simple poker games around, you’ll typically play in 5 or 6-handed format, although having 6 players is ideal.

Before the dealer deals out 5 cards to each player, blinds must be placed like in Texas hold ’em. These are posted by players to the immediate left of the dealer. You may also place an ante bet, however, they’re not as common in this poker game.

Once all blinds have been placed, and the cards are shuffled, the game starts. The first card pulled off the deck goes to the player in the small blind position, moving around the table clockwise.

All players are dealt five cards placed face down, not to be seen until every player has received five cards. Only then play begins. It’s important to remember that five card poker is a poker variation, and each player will be dealt an entire hand before the first betting round. There are no community cards in gameplay, and gameplay is a little different.

Once all players have five cards, the first round of betting begins, where players place their initial bet. After this betting round begins, action will start with the player to the left of the big blind. 5 card draw poker is usually played as the pot limit or fixed limit.

What’s The Difference Between Ante Games and Blind Games

These describe the two variants of five card poker. What you want to play really just depends on personal preference.

Blind Games

In this variation, the player seated to the left of the dealer is referred to as the small blind. They place a small bet, almost always half of the big blind, before any cards are dealt.

The person seated to the left of the small blind is called the big blind. They will also place a bet before cards are dealt, and this is usually a big bet, twice the size of that placed by the small blind. Anyone who wishes to play after hands are dealt has to match the big blind to join in.

Ante Games

Like with other poker variants, everyone will need to place a predetermined amount into the pot before being dealt into the game.

Placing Bets When You Play 5 Card Draw Poker

Betting rules are similar to poker play in Texas hold ’em, where the first player has three options during gameplay.

  • Fold – This means you are ending your hand because you don’t wish to continue with the game, and no bets are placed.
  • Call – This is a bet you place that matches the big blind amount.
  • Raise – This will depend on the betting structure, but the raise size may be capped by a fixed limit that matches the size of the pot or just however much the player has on hand.

This action moves through each player until they have determined which action they wish to take. Then the game moves on to the drawing stage. After this initial round, an additional action can be taken, called a check. This happens when no bets have been placed; you can decide to move on to the next player and basically bet 0.

Five Card Poker Draw Stage

First Draw Round

This portion of gameplay begins with the small blind player or the first active player seated to their left. During this drawing round of play, they can discard as many cards as they wish and exchange those with new cards from the deck. The player can also decide they don’t want to exchange any of their cards, called standing pat.

When the player decides not to stand pat in the game, they’ll place all the cards they want to discard onto the table, and the dealer will exchange them with the same number of new cards from the deck.

This part of the game allows players to build better hand ranks. All active players have this opportunity in this stage, and this moves clockwise, just like with the initial betting round. Final betting round starts once all active players have exchanged cards.

Second Betting Round

Betting rules continue to be the same as this second round moves clockwise from the small blind or first active player seated to the left of the small blind. The difference in this betting round is that the player can pass the action on to the next player. Betting continues until every player has made their call. If all players fold except one in this round, that player automatically wins the pot. If not, the game proceeds to the showdown round, where the best hand determines the winner.

Five Card Poker Hand Rankings

This poker game uses the same standard hand rankings as many other poker games.

This means in five card draw poker, the weakest hand is a high card, and the strongest is a straight flush. Straights beat trips, and flushes beat straights. The pot will be split if two or more players have the best hand.

One important thing to note about the hand rankings when you play 5 card draw poker is that suits don’t come into play. Players in this game can have flushes in different suits, which can be confusing to beginning players.

Hierarchy of Rankings in 5 Card Draw Poker

From best hands to weak hands, there are the hands you’ll want to memorize before playing:

  • Five of a kind – if you’re playing with wild cards
  • Royal Flush – This will almost always be the winning hand, cards in order from a 10 to an Ace
  • Straight Flush – 5 cards of sequential rank, the suit doesn’t matter
  • Four of a Kind – Four cards of the same value
  • Full House – Three cards of the same value and two additional cards of the same value
  • Flush – 5 cards of the same suit that don’t have to be in order
  • Straight – 5 cards of sequential rank, the suit doesn’t matter
  • Three of a Kind – Three cards of the same value
  • Two Pairs – Two sets of two cards that have the same value
  • One Pair – One set of two cards that have the same value
  • High Card – This means you have one card of value, aka not a good hand

Five Card Draw Poker Summarized

Whether you’re a novice or a more experienced player, all poker players will love a chance at this variation of a classic casino game. Once you understand the core concepts and betting structures, you can start playing in no time, and you and your friends will all have a blast playing this poker variation. While there are plenty of other variants for you to explore, this option offers an easy pick-up-and-play style anyone can enjoy.

Ava Richardson

Ava has been covering casino industry news for over 3 years, keeping readers informed about the latest developments and industry trends. Her reporting is known for its accuracy and depth, making her a trusted source for casino enthusiasts and industry professionals.

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