How to Play Five Card Draw Poker – Rules of 5 Card Draw

Five Card Draw Poker started out as a home game and has made its way to the world of online casinos. This game has been around since the American Civil War and was revolutionized during this time period.

The concept of draw games is fairly simple but differs slightly from other poker formats such as Omaha and Texas Holdem. Five Card Draw Poker is a great game for beginner poker players. The object of the game is simple: get the highest five-card poker hand possible.

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Five Card Draw Poker uses antes like most draw games. Antes are used in place of blinds, which are more common in games like Holdem or Omaha. Antes are required by each player before the hand begins.

In Five Card Draw Poker each player receives five cards. These cards are face down, otherwise referred to as hole cards. In Five Card Draw there is only one draw phase and two betting rounds. This is partially what contributes to the simplicity of Five Card Draw – each hand has a small number of phases.

Once the initial five cards are dealt, there is a round of action (betting). Typically, the action begins to the left of the dealer and moves in a clockwise motion.

After the first round of action, the draw phase begins. During the draw phase, players can discard three to four cards. The amount of cards that players are allowed to draw varies from table to table but typically the limit is three or four.

Players will receive an equal amount of cards to the discarded amount. After the draw phase, there is a final round of action. If the action is called or checked down, the remaining players will go to a showdown to reveal the winner.

Each player has a few options during the action rounds: check, call, raise or fold. You can only check if no one has previously bet. Calling is just matching the bet already made before you. Raise means raising the bet. Fold means to turn in your cards and exit the hand.

Strategy – Hand Strength

The object of Five Card Draw Poker is to get the best five-card hand possible. The ranking structure used is the standard poker hand ranking that is used in Omaha and Texas Holdem.

Worst to Best:

  • Pair – two of the same valued cards
  • Two Pair – two sets of paired cards
  • Three Of A Kind – three of the same valued card
  • Straight – five consecutive cards
  • Flush – five suited cards
  • Full House – three of a kind and a pair
  • Four Of A Kind – four of any same valued card
  • Straight Flush – five consecutive cards (suited)
  • Royal Flush – 10,J,Q,K,A (suited)

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Knowing your position and hand strength is vital to your success in Five Card Draw Poker. The later you are in the action, the better your position is. In Five Card Draw Poker, you need to be able to assess your hand and determine whether you should even stick around for the draw phase.

Knowing what to do can be determined based on your hand, your position and how many players remain in the hand. If your opponent is drawing more cards than you, you may be able to bet them off the pot in the final betting round. For example, if you draw one card and your opponents draw three and four prospectively, the odds that you hit your one versus hitting three or four are definitely in your favor.

Being able to read your opponents and also pay attention to their draws while using your position can be extremely advantageous. These are key elements to any draw poker game and especially crucial in Five Card Draw, which only has two rounds of action and one draw phase. The game is fast paced due to the low number of phases. Five Card Draw is a fun game and can help new players in learning the fundamentals of poker. If you’re new, try playing for fun or low stakes at first. Online casinos nowadays make the game very accessible with loads of action.