Five Card Alternatives
Besides stud and draw, there are a plethora of five card alternatives played in homes. Few five card alternatives are available for online casino play, however. Internet casinos are always expanding and it shouldn’t be surprising that the fast pace of five-card games are coming online all the time.
This five card alternative is available at various online casinos. Push is usually played with three to seven players. There is usually no ante and the pot is built by buying cards to build a better hand in addition to betting in rounds like traditional poker.
The game starts when the dealer deals one card face down to each player. The player to the dealers left is dealt a card face up and has the option to keep or push it to the next player on his left. Pushing requires the player to purchase a new card, one he is forced to keep until the completion of the round. The round is completed once each player has two cards – one face up and one face down.
The player with the highest valued card face up begins betting by calling, raising or folding. Rounds of dealing face up cards, all with the option to push and purchase new ones, followed by betting are played until each player has five cards – one face down, four face up.
The dealer then offers the option of insurance to each player. An insurance card is a blind card purchased for 10 to 20 times the lowest chip value in exchange for any single card in his possession. Best hand wins the pot.
Let Them Ride / Let It Ride
Let Them Ride is a five card alternative that is available at a few online casinos. The goal is to build the best hand possible with three cards and two shared, or community cards.
Each player starts by placing three equal bets. Players are dealt three cards face down and two community cards are placed, face down, in the center of the table. Based on current hand (three known cards and two unknown community cards), players have the option to pull out one bet or “Let It Ride”.
One community card is then revealed. Players again have the option to pull out one bet or let them ride. The second and last community card is exposed. The player with the best hand wins the pot.
Caribbean Stud is another five card alternative that is available at a few online casinos. This game is played against the dealer rather than the other players at the table. Each player starts by making an initial ante and a progressive side bet.
Once all players have anted, each receives five cards face down. The dealer will also be dealt five cards, the last of which is face up. Betting is done in rounds, with the options of call, fold or raise. If a player raises, he must wager twice the ante. The dealer then turns over his other four cards.
If the dealer has an ace and a king or higher, he is “qualified.” If the dealer does not qualify, the player will win exactly what he’s put in, both the ante and the raise. If the dealer qualifies and the player’s hand doesn’t beat the dealer, then the player loses his ante and raise. If the dealer qualifies and the player’s hand beats the dealer, the player will win according to a payout table.
A player with a royal flush when the dealer qualifies, for example, will win 100 times his ante and raise. Two pair pays double the ante and raise, a flush pays 5 to 1.
The progressive bet is paid out based on the value of the player’s poker hand. The pay tables for the progressive bet vary by online casino.
Five card stud and draw are still wonderfully popular games in land based and online casinos but many players are now looking for new variations to these games. Besides Caribbean Stud, Let It Ride and Push, a few online casinos are now offering Mexican Stud, Lowball, Blind Stud and Baseball as five card alternatives.
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