Poker Game Description
Badugi is a poker game in which each player receives four cards dealt face down and is played by a maximum of six players. The object of the game is for the player to retain the lowest possible hand by exchanging cards avoiding cards that are paired with each other or share a common suit. There are four betting rounds and three opportunities to exchange cards. The game is offered in a Fixed Limit betting or Pot Limit format. At the showdown, the player with the lowest value hand wins the pot.
General Rules Overview
In Badugi poker, the goal is to hold the lowest possible hand at the showdown. Aces are considered the lowest card. When cards within the same hand are paired or of the same suit, the highest card is discounted in the evaluation of the hand. The hand is then evaluated based upon the remaining number of cards.
A "Badugi" is defined as holding four cards that are not suited nor paired. The best possible Badugi hand would be A234; all unsuited. The worst hand still meeting the definition of a Badugi would be K,Q,J,10; all unsuited. Any hand defined as a Badugi is superior to any hand containing suited cards or pairs.
If a final hand contains a pair, only one card of the pair can be used in determining the winner. The paired card deemed least advantageous to the player is discounted and the hand is evaluated as a three-card hand. If the hand contains two pairs or trips, two cards would be discounted and the hand is evaluated as a two-card hand. If the hand contains four-of-a-kind, three cards would be discounted and the player would hold the worst possible variant; a one-card hand.
In a similar fashion, if a final hand contains two suited cards, the lowest card is retained and the highest card is discounted resulting in a three-card hand. If three cards were suited, the highest two cards would be discounted resulting in a two-card hand. In an extreme case with all cards suited in the final hand, the player would hold the worst possible variant; a one-card hand.
Hands containing both suited and paired cards are extremely weak as both the above rule-sets for discounting cards come into play limiting the number of cards that will be evaluated on the showdown.
A Badugi is a superior hand to any three-card, two-card or one-card hands. In similar fashion, any three-card hand is superior to any two or one-card hand and so on. If both players have a similar number of cards evaluated at the showdown, the hands are compared by evaluating each of the hands from the highest to lowest cards.
By way of examples:
Player 1 has 8, 4, 3, A
Player 2 has 8, 5, 2, A
Both players have a "Badugi" (four-card hand) since they both have four cards that are unsuited and non-paired. On evaluation from highest to lowest card, both hands contain an eight however Player 1 holds the best hand when comparing the 5 versus the 4 on the next highest card.
Player 1 has 10, 9, 9, 4
Player 2 has K, 7, 6, 2
Both players have three-card hands. Player 1 would have a three-card hand consisting of 10, 9, 4 with the 9 having been discounted since is it paired with the 9 and is higher in value to the same suited 4. Player 2 would have a three-card hand consisting of 7, 6, 2 as the K would be discounted as the higher same suited card. Evaluating from highest to lowest of the two three-card hands, Player 2 holds the better hand.
Player 1 has 5, 5, 5, A
Player 2 has 9, 6, 4, 2
Both players have two-card hands. Player 1 would have a two-card hand consisting of any of the five's plus A. Player 2 would have a two-card hand consisting of 4, 2 as the top two highest value hearts would be discounted. Evaluating from highest to lowest of the two two-card hands, Player 2 holds the better hand.
Player 1 has 9, 7, 5, 2
Player 2 has 6, 4, 4, A
Player 1 has a three-card hand consisting of 9, 5, , 2 that would automatically beat Player 2 who holds a two-card hand consisting of 4, A
Click here for a list of the top 25 ranked Badugi hands
Fixed-Limit Games - The dealer enforces the bet limits, which are determined by the stakes offered at the particular table. For example, at a $4-$8 table, the limit on any bet is $4 on the first two betting rounds and $8 on the final two betting rounds. There is a bet and three raises allowed in each individual round. Each bet or raise is at the limit for that round. Thus, the first player to bet in the first round of betting has the choice of folding or betting $4. If someone has made a bet, the next player has the choice of folding, calling the $4, or raising $4 (making the total bet at that point $8). If there has been a raise, the next player has the choice of folding, calling the $8, or raising $4 (making the total bet at that point $12).
The blinds are a bet/ante related to the small bet. The Small Blind is one half the small or minimum bet rounded down to the nearest dollar or even denomination while the Big Blind is equal to the small bet. By way of example in a $1-$2 fixed limit game, the big blind is $1 and the small blind is $.50.
Poker Game Betting The betting starts after four cards are dealt to each of the participating players. At this point, there is a round of betting. After all bets have been equalized, active players exchanges from 0-4 cards from their hands. Players are given the two subsequent opportunities to exchange cards followed by a betting round. The final bet round and showdown occurs after three opportunities to exchange cards should two or more players remain in the pot.
Posting to Enter a Game
New players can enter a game in the big blind position to avoid paying the new player post, which is equivalent to the big blind. A new player can choose to post the equivalent of the big blind to enter the game at any time except when he is between the button and the big blind position. A returning player who has missed the big blind or small blind can choose to post the missed blinds and reenter the game, as long as he is not between the button and the big blind position. A seated player who has missed the blinds or a player just sitting down can always choose to wait for the blind, that is, sit out until the blind gets to him.
Other Important Points
Buy-In - The minimum buy-in is generally 10 times the small bet.
Badugi Dealing The starting dealer position, or dealer button, is chosen at random and moves clockwise one player after each hand. To start a hand, the cards are dealt in a clockwise direction from the dealer button. All new players to the game must either post the equivalent of the big blind or wait for their turn in the big blind. This prevents players from gaining an advantage by avoiding the blinds and jumping in and out of games. Each time the cards are dealt, a new betting round begins. A hand starts when the first card is dealt and ends when a winner is declared.
Dealer Button - The yellow disk (labeled with a D) that moves from player to player at the beginning of each hand is called the dealer button. It identifies the current dealer position-as if that player were actually dealing the cards. The player at this location is said to be on the button. After each completed hand, the dealer button moves one player to the left.
Missed Blinds - Players are required to post the small blind and the big blind once per round or their equivalent upon re-entry to the game if the blinds are missed. The software will prompt you if you have missed one or both blinds to put in the correct amount. You can also wait for the blind to get to your position. This is called coming in on the blind. (The term also applies to when you first sit down.) (Also see "Posting to Enter a Game" above.)
Raise/Call/Check/Fold - Once a betting round has started you must act on one of these options.
Option - The player who has the big blind is given the option to raise, check, call, or fold when it is his turn. If no one has raised, the big blind has the option of checking (that is, not increasing the bet) or raising.
Discard - After the first round of betting, active players are offered the opportunity to draw to their hands. That is, they can discard to change or improve their four-card hands by replacing none, some, or all of their cards.
As there are only 52 cards in the deck, there will be occasions depending upon the number of players active in the hand and the number of cards exchanged where there will be insufficient cards without re-using previously mucked cards. When this occasion arises, the mucked and discarded cards are shuffled and used to complete the hand.
© 2017 CMEI. All Rights Reserved.