7 Card Stud: The Complete Guide

7 Card Stud Poker

7 Card Stud was once the most popular form of poker, offering a distinct style and strategy. This guide delves into the game’s intricacies, from its historical roots to the complex rules that define it.

The Rules of 7 Card Stud

7 Card Stud differs significantly from Texas Hold’em and Omaha. It’s typically played with up to 8 players and does not involve community cards.

The Setup

There are no blinds in 7 Card Stud. Instead, players post an ante to create an initial pot.

Dealing the Cards

Each player is dealt three cards to start – two face down (hole cards) and one face up (door card). The game then progresses through five more betting rounds, with additional cards dealt (up to a total of seven cards per player).

Betting Rounds

The betting rounds in 7 Card Stud are as follows:

  1. Third Street: Betting begins with the player showing the lowest door card.
  2. Fourth Street: A fourth card is dealt face up, followed by a round of betting.
  3. Fifth Street: A fifth card is dealt face up, with another betting round.
  4. Sixth Street: The sixth card is dealt face up, followed by more betting.
  5. Seventh Street (River): The final card is dealt face down. The last betting round occurs.

The Showdown

If there are multiple players remaining after the final betting round, a showdown occurs. Players reveal their cards, and the best five-card hand wins the pot.

Origins of 7 Card Stud

The origins of 7 Card Stud are less clear than other poker variants. It is believed to have evolved from earlier forms of stud poker in the American Revolutionary War era. The game gained immense popularity in the 20th century before being overshadowed by Texas Hold’em.

Where 7 Card Stud is Played

7 Card Stud is still played in many casinos and is a fixture in some major poker tournaments. It remains popular in home games and is available in many online poker rooms.

Specific Tips for 7 Card Stud

  1. Pay Attention to Up-Cards: Observing opponents’ up-cards is crucial for strategy.
  2. Starting Hands: Strong starting hands are vital due to the lack of community cards.
  3. Remember Folded Cards: Keeping track of folded cards can give you a significant edge.
  4. Bluff Sparingly: Bluffing in 7 Card Stud requires careful consideration due to the visible up-cards.
  5. Manage Your Bankroll: As in any poker game, effective bankroll management is key.

Glossary of 7 Card Stud Terms

  • Ante: A small, mandatory bet all players make before a hand is dealt.
  • Hole Cards: The two private cards dealt face down to each player.
  • Door Card: The first face-up card dealt to each player in 7 Card Stud.
  • Streets: The rounds in 7 Card Stud are referred to as Third Street, Fourth Street, etc.
  • Bring-In: A forced bet posted by the player with the lowest door card on Third Street.
  • Up-Cards: Cards dealt face up, visible to all players.