Badugi is fast becoming a very popular poker game.

The Rules of Badugi Poker that are provided here are especially for players who have never played Badugi before or who have just started playing.

Badugi Rules

Badugi is a poker variant less popular than Hold'em Omaha or Stud, but according to some experts, it is currently riding a wave of popularity which is bound to make it a featured game. Badugi is basically triple low draw, a poker variant played with blinds just like Hold'em, and in which players need to make 4-card hands with the lowest ranking hand taking the pot.

Badugi play begins with the posting of the blinds. After the BB and the SB are posted, the dealer gives each player 4 cards face down. Players may look at their cards anytime, although they may not take a peek at their opponents’ hands. The deal is followed by a pre-draw betting round in which players have the option to call the BB, to fold or raise it. After the first betting round, players get the choice to replace 0-4 cards from their hands during the draw. The draw process goes around the table in a clock-wise direction, and each player has to wait until the one on his right completes his draw. The draw is followed by a second betting round, in which players can check as well as bet, raise, re-raise, call and fold.

The second betting round is followed by yet another draw, which is followed by betting again. The third betting round is followed by yet another draw, after which the fourth and last betting round occurs. This is followed by the showdown which decides the winner. Pots can be won without a showdown, by forcing all the other players to fold.

Badugi hand-ranking is a story of its own. While each player has 4 cards at showdown, Badugi hands can be one-card, 2-card, 3-card or 4-card ones. 4-card hands are called Badugi. It is important to remember that regardless of their value, a 4-card hand will always beat a 3-card one, a 3 card one will always best a 2 card one, and a 2 card hand will always be better than a one-card one. Same suited and paired cards are excluded from Badugi hands, that’s how you can end up showing down 1,2 or 3 card hands.

When two Badugi hands contain the same number of cards, the better one is the one which has a lower highest card. All you have to do basically is to compare the two highest cards from the two hands.

As far as strategy goes, if you’ve ever played 5–card draw, or any other form of draw for that matter, you’ll probably do OK in Badugi. Many of the basic strategy concepts carry over unaltered from Draw to Badugi. The mistakes (like drawing on the last draw against an opponent who hasn’t drawn a card) are about the same. Much like in Hold'em, one’s position in relation to the blinds is extremely important in Badugi. The player who acts last has a variety of advantages. He can choose to fire out a bluff, having read his opponents based on their actions. He will also be able to get reads on his opponents by assessing their betting patterns.

Another thing that you need to know about Badugi is that the more people there are at the table, the more likely it’ll be that a 4-card Badugi show up. Whatever poker variant you’re playing, you will always pay rake on every hand in which you take part. Therefore, signing up for a rakeback deal makes perfect sense if you’re planning on taking your Badugi prowess online.



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