Note that the opener does not actually have to hold jacks, or cards higher than jacks. Any hand that beats a pair of tens is sufficient - for example you could open with two pairs but not with A-K-Q.
The draw is the same as in Five Card Draw, except that if the player who opened the betting discards cards that formed part of the qualification to open, this must be announced and the discarded cards kept separate from the cards discarded by other players.
This is known as splitting openers. For example a player might discard the Q from Q- Q- 7- 6 in the hope of getting a flush, especially if some of the other players seemed to have good hands.
The second round of betting and the showdown are as in Five Card Draw. When the pot is awarded, the player who split openers must show the discarded card s to prove that the opening requirement was satisfied.
If no one has a good enough hand to open or if those that do choose not to open , then the cards are thrown in and it is the next player's turn to deal.
If the opener wins the pot, enough of the opener's hand must be shown to prove that the opener really has jacks or better.
This applies even if all the other players fold on the opener's bet. If the opener cannot show a qualifying hand, the opener's hand is dead.
The opener cannot win the pot. If there was a showdown, the best of the other hands wins the pot. If everyone else has folded the pool remains for the next deal.
Some play progressive jackpots: The rules are the same as Five Card Draw - Jacks or Better except that a player needs a hand at least as good as three of a kind to win the pot.
If the pot is won without a showdown, the winner must expose enough cards to prove that the hand is at least as good as three of a kind.
This of course further reduces the scope for bluffing. If no one has a hand as good as three of a kind after the draw, the pot remains, but the players who folded before the draw are out of the game.
The players who did not fold ante again and there is a new deal involving just these players. To increase the proportion of good hands, some players add a joker, to make a deck of 53 cards.
The joker is not a true wild card but a bug: So for example joker is not a full house but two pairs with an ace kicker. When used in a flush the joker represents the highest card not already present, so for example A- K- J- 4- 2 beats A- 9- 8-joker because the bug represents the K not a second ace.
The bug can be added to any of the above versions: In this variation of Jacks or Better , the four deuces twos are wild cards.
A deuce can be used as any card the holder needs to complete a hand. The highest hand type is Five of a Kind, which is better than a Straight Flush.
Except when making Five of a Kind, a wild card cannot be used to represent a card that is already present in a player's hand.
The only case where this matters is when making a Flush, in which case if you have for example a natural ace, you cannot use a wild card as a second ace.
This variant is found mostly in home poker games and is usually played with the rule that players must declare their own hands the cards do not "speak for themselves" - see poker betting and showdown for details.
It is equally possible to play with any other set of cards wild as agreed by the players, or as specified by the dealer in a dealer's choice game.
For example you one can play with fives wild, or with one-eyed jacks wild. This five-card draw variation is similar to deuces wild except that the wild card is determined during the deal rather than specified in advance.
This is done by dealing a card dealt face up to the table, usually after the fourth card has been dealt to each player. The other three cards of the same rank as the face up card are wild.
This is a five-card draw in which deuces are wild and players are not allowed to draw more than two cards.
There is an extra rule that the player who opens makes the first bet must either win the pot or match it. In other words, if the pot is won by a player other than the opener, the opener must pay to create a new pot equal to the pot was just won.
The deal then passes to the left with no new antes and the game is played for this new pot. This continues until a hand is played in which the opener wins the pot.
If this variant is played in a dealer's choice game, it continues until the opener wins the pot, after which the deal passes to the player to the left of the player who called Diablo, who can then select another game.
To avoid the pot becoming too large, some groups may prefer to put a fixed limit on the size of the new pot that the opener must create after failing to win.
This variation of Jacks or Better works well for smaller groups, say 3 to 5 players, in which case there will be many deals on which no one can open.
The game begins like Five Card Draw. Five cards are dealt to each player and there is a betting round, in which Jacks or Better are required to open.
If someone opens the betting the game proceeds exactly like normal Five Card Draw, and in a showdown the highest hand wins the pot.
If no one opens in the first betting round the cards are not thrown in. Instead the players keep their cards and the game changes to Ace-to-five Lowball , and there is a new betting round begun by the player to dealer's left.
Provided that the betting is opened in this new betting round, the players then have the chance to draw with the aim of making a low hand.
After the draw there is another betting round, begun by the first active player to dealer's left. If more than one player stays in there is a showdown in which the lowest poker hand wins.
Aces are low and straights and flushes do not count, so the best hand is A a "bicycle". A-A is a pair, so it is worse than any hand without a pair, but better than any other pair since aces are low.
It may happen that no one opens in the first betting round, and then after the game changes to Lowball everyone checks again. In this case the cards are thrown in and the turn to deal passes to the left.
To avoid the possibility that a hand is thrown in, some clubs have a rule that when the game changes to Lowball the player to dealer's left must place a "blind" bet, and the betting round begins with the next player to the left.
The player who placed the blind may raise after everyone else has acted even if no one did more than call. The betting round after the draw is begun by the first active player to dealer's left as usual.
Some play that check-raising is not allowed in the Lowball part of this game, and also apply the betting sevens rule as for California Lowball.
Jacks Back is often played with a joker, which acts as a bug for high hands. When the game is played for low, the joker is known as a fitter , and it represents the lowest card not already present in the player's hand.
Other forms of Lowball Draw Poker are described on the Lowball page. This process is repeated: Each drawing round is followed by a betting round.
The card deck consists of cards from Ace high to Seven low in each suit. The main differences from normal Five Card Draw are as follows:.
When it comes to preflop betting, there are two different methods used in 5-card draw. Three different betting structures exist for 5-card draw, too.
You can play fixed-limit, pot-limit, or even no-limit 5-card draw. While all three formats play to the same poker rules , the different betting structures mean your strategy needs to be adapted.
Regardless of the betting structure, this is how to play 5-card draw. Once everyone has paid the ante or the blinds, each player receives five cards face down.
A round of betting then occurs. If more than one player remains after that first round of betting, there follows a first round of drawing. Each active player specifies how many cards he or she wishes to discard and replace with new cards from the deck.
Once the drawing round is completed, there is another round of betting. After that if there is more than one player remaining, a showdown occurs in which the player with the best five-card poker hand wins.
As you can see, the rules for 5-card draw are simple and make for a fast-paced game, which is why the game is popular with new, less experienced players.
One trap lesser-skilled 5-card draw players often fall into is playing far too many hands, particularly hands drawing to a straight or flush. As in games with community cards, your position in relation to the button is also important in 5-card draw poker.
The closer to the button you are, the wider the range of hands you can play profitably. Regardless of your position, you should almost always enter the pot with a raise because limping in usually results in several other players limping behind, which in turn means you need a much stronger hand to win the pot.
Play tight from early positions and raise with hands such as aces or kings. As your position improves, you can add other high pairs such as queens, jacks, tens, and nines, so long as the latter has a good kicker to back it up.
Meanwhile be wary of holdings such as four to a straight or flush, because these are hands with which some players bleed away their bankroll.
Knowing what cards to discard during the drawing round is what makes and breaks a 5-card poker player. On a basic level you should consider the following:.
The above list is only scratching the surface of what you should draw in 5-card draw, but adhering to it, particularly in low-stakes games, should yield positive results.
Once you have a grasp of the basics and are feeling more confident with how to play 5-card draw, you can start applying some more advanced strategies to your game.