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How to Play Big O Poker

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What is Big O

Big O is a form of Omaha poker where instead of four cards, players receive five cards. The format is also played Hi-Lo split with half the pot being awarded to the high hand, and the other half to the low hand - providing there is a low hand that qualifies under the 8 or Better rule.

Here we go over the poker rules for Big O.

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Why Is It Called Big O?

There are a number of reasons why this format has been come to be known as Big O.

Firstly, the full name of 5 Card Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better can be a bit of a mouthful, with Big O much easier to say.

Alternatively, the addition of an extra card to a player's hand makes this automatically bigger than most Omaha poker formats, where players receive just four cards.

How to Play Big O

In order to be able to play Big O, you must first understand the rules of Omaha Hi-Lo, the game Big O is based on.

As always with split pot games, it is important to play starting hands that have the ability to qualify to win both the high and the low pots. With the additional card, the potential two-card combinations a player may have within their hole cards increases from 6 to 10, meaning that stronger hands will be required to win either pot.


Related: Bluffing in 'Big O' and Other Split-Pot Games


That means hands like two-pair and three-of-a-kind will hardly ever turn up as a winner at showdown in Big O. Straights and flushes and stronger hands in general will be more likely to be the winner more consistently.

Big O at the World Series of Poker (WSOP)

Big O has featured at the World Series of Poker (WSOP) since 2015 when it was included in the Dealer's Choice mix for the first time. In 2016, a new Omaha Mix event was introduced where players play three different Hi-Lo Omaha variants: Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better, Omaha Hi Lo 8 or Better and 'Big O'


Related: John Beauprez Offers Big O Advice With WSOP Tournament Looming


The format features in the Big Bet Mix event which was introduced to the WSOP in 2017.

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