Before the Texas Hold’em appearance, this classic form of poker was considered the most popular. 7-card stud is a fairly aggressive and dynamic game with a high risk degree. In order to break a bank, a player needs to know many tactics and strategies that can be applied only in a separate round or game as a whole. Therefore, seven-card stud is not recommended for start learning a poker game.
If you compare this game with the same Hold’em or Omaha, you can see that Stud Poker has a number of significant differences that require separate studying. For example, in the seven-card stud there are no community cards, and some player’s pocket cards are open to opponents. Only “Ante” used as a required bet, which all players deposit. No more than eight players can take part in one hand.
Most often, seven-card studs are played with a fixed betting limit (Fixed-Limit or Short FL), where the size of the minimum and maximum bets, as well as a Raise in each round is strictly limited. For example, in the game “7-card Stud FL $ 2 / $ 4” in the first two rounds the minimum bet will be equal to $ 2, and in the next three – $ 4. Each betting round allows for no more than four times up the bets: a Bet, a Raise, a Re-raise and Kep (or another).
In a 7-card stud, the player has to collect the best 5-card high hand. Each player receives 7 pocket cards, 3 of which are dealt face down and 4 cards face-up.
To form a common bank in a 7-card stud, they use the “Ante” required bet. It has to be put by every player involved in the distribution. The “Ante” size” depends on the betting limit set in a particular game, and on average is 1/10 of the Big Blind.
This stage of the game begins with the first handing of pocket cards. Each player receives two closed and one open card, which in the stud is called the door card. The player with the “door card” of the lowest value should open the first round of betting. If two players got the weakest card with the same value, then the right to open betting is determined by suit. According to the game rules, the Peak has the greatest strength, followed by a Heart, a Tambourine and a Club, which is considered the weakest suit in the stud.
A player with a low “door card” has to make the first bet in the betting round – Bring in, which is considered a required bet. The size of the Bring-in depends on the conditions of a particular game: usually it is half the minimum bet, but if you wish, a player can make a full bet. Then, the play continues clockwise. The following players may Pass – exit the game, Call or Raise the previous bet. When all active players equalize the bets, the initial betting round is considered completed.
Each player receives a fourth upcard, which is called the “fourth street” or “Street.” The player starts with the best combination of two upcards. He can make a minimum bet (bet) or skip a move (check). In this case, the right to decide goes to the next player in a clockwise direction. If the player who opens the round makes a Bet, his opponents can only make a Call, Raise or exit the game. Betting continues until all players equalize their bets.
!!! When the fourth card is dealt, one of the players has an open “Pair”, then he is allowed to make a bet equal to the maximum bet – “Double bet”. In this situation, the rest of the players will be forced to continue the game on the upper Bet limits.
At this stage of the game, the fifth card or Street is also dealt face up. The player starts with the strongest three open cards. In the fifth betting round, players have to raise the minimum bet to the upper limit. The upper bet limit is maintained until the end of the game. Otherwise, betting rules and procedures remain the same.
All players receive the sixth open card or “Sixth street”. Then follows an alternate betting round, which opens the player with the strongest combination of four open cards.
The seventh card or “Street” is dealt face down. Players that have reached this betting round continue to play at the highest bet limits. The right to go first remains for the player with the best combination of open cards. At the end of the last betting round, active players can proceed to the final stage of the game – the showdown.
If at the end of the last betting round in the game there are two or more active players left, the winner of the hand is determined by the strength of their card combination. The first to open the cards is the player who made the last bet or Raise in the final round of betting. Cards are openening clockwise. If the combinations of two players match, the pot is split between them.
As in any other poker game, the distribution in the seven-card stud can be completed before the showdown. For example, in one of the betting rounds a player makes a bet that no one wants to equalize and all opponents simply make Fold. In any case, if the total bank is played out, the whole described process of the game begins anew.
Sometimes it happens that all eight players reach the Seventh Street, and the traditional 52-card deck is simply not enough. In this case, the Seventh up card is put on the table, which is considered common. Any player can use it to form their best hand at the showdown.