Fun Home Poker Game Rules: 7-card Draw Roll Your Own
My friend and I were in the office late, having each had a lot of paper work to get caught up on. We were in the mood for some diversion. I asked him if he wanted to play some poker. He heartily agreed.
This time it was just he and I. To spice things up a bit I suggested that we play a game that works well with only two or three players – since so much of the deck is used up. It's called 7-card draw roll your own.
The game is simple – and great for building drama and pots.
Each player is dealt seven cards. There is a round of betting. There is a draw. Players may draw as many cards as they like. There is another round of betting.
Each player then arranges his hand in the order in which he'd like to reveal each card in turn. He places it down in a stack in front of him. The order of the cards cannot change from this point. Each player then reveals his first card. The high exposed card has the option of betting, as in any stud game.
The game continues as each card is exposed in turn, with a betting interval in between each exposed card. Finally, when six cards are exposed, there is a declare of high or low. If two or more players are competing for either half of the pot there is a final betting round. The last card is then revealed and the pot awarded.
If you've been counting along you would have tabulated nine betting rounds for this game: one before the draw, one after the draw, one for each of six exposed cards, and one after the declare. There's the potential for a huge pot.
Mike and I had the following hands before the draw. We were playing $1/2 with a $1 dealer ante.
I had dealt. So pre-flop Mike had the first action. He had three perfect low cards, but needed a strong draw to hit a decent low or high. So he checked.
I had trips; a good pre-draw hand. So I bet.
Mike called. I've never seen anyone fold pre-draw in this game – there are just too many possibilities.
Mike drew two cards, discarding the and the . Frankly, I would have thrown all four high cards – looking for the perfect wheel. But hey, that's strategy. And after-hours office poker is mainly about killing time and having fun.
I drew four cards, throwing away the , , , and . I was going for the full house or quads.
Mike picked up the and – hitting a wheel! The lucky SOB.
I also picked up low cards – the , , , and . No full house.
We each arranged our hands and then flipped over the first one.
Mike flipped over the .
I turned the . Betting began with Mike.
He bet $1. I raised. He called.
He turned over the , showing
I turned over the , showing
He was high and checked. I bet $1. He called.
On the next card he showed: .
I showed: .
He checked. I bet $1.00. He called.
On the next up card the limits doubled to $2.00 where they would remain throughout the rest of the game.
He showed: .
I showed: .
I bet $2.00. He raised $2.00. I re-raised $2.00. He called.
On the next card he showed: .
I showed: .
I bet $2.00. He called.
On the next card he showed: .
I showed .
I was high with my trip 8s. I wanted very badly to convince him I had a full house – which would be higher than any hand he could have for high. So I checked, hoping for a check raise. He bet $2.00. I raised. He re-raised me. I re-raised him. And he called.
We then declared.
He declared low. I declared high. We split the pot. He and I revealed our last cards.
He showed the for the wheel. I showed the for trip 8s. My betting had convinced him that I had the full house. Otherwise he would have declared both ways and scooped a monster. I felt that I had won even though I had just broken even. Hey, sometimes breaking even is the best you can hope for.
Just then, a third guy from the office, Brian, stopped by. "Poker?" I asked. He smiled and said that he was really busy – but that he'd love to play. We dealt him in. We played a few hands that weren't contested after the draw. And then this hand came up that really had us shaking our heads and laughing.
I started the betting at $1.00. Mike and Brian each called.
I drew two cards.
Mike drew four cards.
Brian drew five cards.
I bet $1.00 after the draw. Mike raised $1.00, Brian re-raised, and I capped it. $16.00 in the pot after the draw.
We arranged our cards. They each laughed as they did this. I tried to keep a poker face. It was tough. I had been dealt a full house, Jacks full of Kings. I didn't improve on the draw – getting a 5 and a 7. I figured that I couldn't pretend to be low for very long so I'd just try to keep it looking like two pair as long as possible and hope that one of them caught a flush or a straight or a flush and was going for high.
I turned the
Mike turned the
Brian turned the
I was high and bet $1.00. Mike called and Brian raised. I re-raised and Mike and Brian called. $28 in the pot.
I was high and checked (hoping to get them to think that I respected their lows and might be trying to sneak in for high – normally a dangerous game). Mike bet. Brian called. I called. $31 in the pot.
I was still high and checked. Mike bet $1.00, Brian raised. I called. Mike re-raised. Brian capped it. I called and Mike called. $43 in the pot.
I checked. Mike bet $2.00. Brian just called – apparently now concerned that I might have what looked like his flush beaten. I raised $2.00. Mike raised me. Brian just called. I capped the betting and Mike and Brian called. Pot is $67.
I bet $2.00, Mike, who was now showing both a 6 high straight and a very good 65 low raised, Brian – looking like he might have a flush or maybe 3 nines or nines full called. Neither posed any threat to my Jacks full house. So I re-raised and Mike capped it. Brian and I called $91 in the pot.
I was just hoping that they'd both stay in the pot until the end so I could maximize what I figured would be a terrific half pot win.
On the last up card before the showdown we showed the following exposed hands:
Master poker player that I am, this was how I figured out their hands – with 6/7th's revealed.
Mike, who was a pretty tight player, I figured for the Ace high flush and the wheel. Brian, who was not very tight and really didn't understand this game and the high values winning hands could have, I figured for a flush that he initially thought would be good, but then got scared might be against a better hand. I also thought he might have some awful middling hand. Maybe he was just hoping that we'd each go in the same direction and he could sneak in for half. But as the hands were developing I figured he was just calling because he had already put in so much.
Anyway, back to the action. I was high with Kings up showing. I bet $2.00. Mike raised. Brian re-raised! This surprised me. He only had a few bucks more. I figured he was making some last ditch dramatic attempt to win. I capped it and they both called. $115 in the pot.
We each declared at the same time using the one chip for low, two chips for high, and three chips for both. (We played that if you declared "both" and tied for one direction you would split the pot with the other person you tied with (some people played that you have to win outright in both directions to win a hand "both ways")
I declared high. Mike paused a long time. And then he finally declared low. Brian declared high. I once again tried to figure out what they had. It seemed obvious that I would win for high, Brian had a flush and Mike had low locked up.
So I bet $2.00. By our rules, since Mike was the only player going in his direction, he could not accelerate the betting. He could only call – which he did. Brian raised. I didn't understand this. But as it was it was his last $2.00. So I called. And Mike called. $127 in the pot.
We revealed the following hands:
I had Jacks Full.
Mike had the wheel (and an Ace high flush – but he only had declared low so the high hand was irrelevant).
Brian had a straight flush!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Mike took down $63 and Brian, with the winning high hand, took down $64 (extra chips go to the high hand).
Great card shark I am, I lost over $40 in a little office $1/2 hand! Next time I'm sticking to 7 stud.