Seven Card Stud 8 or Better

Seven card stud eights or better, also known as seven card stud hi lo, is a split pot game, played with two to eight players. As in regular seven card stud, every player is dealt a total of seven cards, three of them face down, and the other four face up.

The objective of this game is to make your best five card high hand, and your best five card low hand using any combination of the seven cards you are dealt. The player with the best high hand wins half the pot, and the player with the best low hand wins the other half. If there is no qualifying low hand, the player with the best high hand wins the entire pot.

A qualifying low hand is made up of five cards that are all eights or lower, the ace counting as the lowest. Pairs can not exist in a low hand, but a straight and/or a flush may. The lowest possible hand would be A,2,3,4,5. The highest possible qualifying low hand would be 8,7,6,5,4.

There are five rounds of betting. In limit seven card stud, all bets and raises must be equal to either the low limit, or high limit bet size depending on the round. In the first two rounds, all bets and raises must be equal to the low limit bet size. In the third, fourth, and fifth rounds, all bets must be equal to the high limit bet size. A maximum of 3 raises are allowed per betting round.

Round One

Two cards are dealt face down to every player, followed by another card face up. The player with the lowest card must bring in, by betting 1/2 o the low limit bet. He may choose to raise by betting the full the low limit bet. Play proceeds clockwise around the table, with each player choosing to fold, call, or raise. All bets and raises must be equal to the low limit bet size.

Round Two

A fourth card is dealt face up to every player. The player with the highest hand showing (at this point, the highest possible would be a pair of aces) is the first to act. He may choose to fold, check, or bet. If two or more players are tied for the highest hand, the one closest to the dealer's left will be the first to act. Play proceeds clockwise around the table as before. If a player is showing a pair at this point, then he and all the other players have the option to bet either the low limit bet size or the high limit bet size. Otherwise, all bets and raises must be equal to the low limit bet size.

Round Three

A fifth card is dealt face up to every player. Play proceeds as in the previous round, with the highest hand betting first, except now all bets and raises must be equal to the high limit bet size.

Round Four

A sixth card is dealt face up to every player. Play proceeds as in the previous round. All bets and raises must be equal to the high limit bet size.

Round Five

A seventh and final card is dealt face down to every player. Play proceeds as in the previous round. All bets and raises must be equal to the high limit bet size. In the rare event that all eight players remain in the hand at this point, there would not be enough cards for each player to receive another one. If that occurs, instead of every player receiving a card face down, a single card is placed in the middle of the table face up which every player is free to use.

Showdown

Anyone who has not folded after the last round of betting will now have the option of showing their hand in hopes of taking down the pot. The person who bet last is the first to show their hand, and then it proceeds clockwise from there, with each remaining player either choosing to show their hand, or muck it. Often times a player will muck their hand if they aren't going to win the pot, and don't want their opponents to see what they played.

 



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