Stud, like its name suggests is a real “mans’ game” where men are men and virgins are nervous (if you’ll excuse the comparison).
Seven Card Stud is strategy heavy game, involving plenty of skill and discipline it’s more tricky to analyze than Texas Holdem Poker because it has five betting rounds compared to Hold ‘em’s four.
To play and win stud poker online there are some basic rules, tips and tricks that should allow you to clear a tidy profit at the online table.
The first thing to remember is that Stud is a HIGH card game and (especially in Seven Card Stud) winning hands are often decided by the highest pair rather than by straights, flushes and the big hands you see in the movies.
With that in mind if you get dealt the start of a straight or flush, don’t get overly excited unless you have at least two high cards or one card that is higher than anything up on the board.
If you have a low pair as your starting hand, it has to improve or turn a high pair quickly to justify staying in the hand (you’ll still be “in game” if you fold, and you should use this down time to study the players still sitting in on the hand).
Now (what should be an obvious warning) as soon as you see your high hand beaten on the board, fold, repeat FOLD it’s unlikely that you’ll still have the best draw hand, unless say you have the nuts.
Play your early high hands FAST this could have you winning without improvement (and all these wins add up soon enough).
If you have good draw hands play em SLOW to draw in the other players, and let the pot swell.
Stud allows you to plump your bankroll by stealing the antes. A good excuse to bay (aka steal) the ante is when you get dealt a scare card (usually an Ace or a King) face up, which happens (odds say about 11% of the time) bet as if you’ve got the big pair and watch your opponent (hopefully) fold their hands against your “mighty” hole cards.
But beware; take the time to figure out the skill level of your opponents before you bluff. Bad players are often incapable of grasping the simple concept of the bluff, especially if they just don’t know whether or not they’re holding a decent hand.
Even the greats remember being beat by a rube who didn’t have the sense to get out before he rivered a winning hand against the odds.
The Gods of poker have a wicked sense of humour.
Next tip – become a card pathologist, that means know when your hand is alive and when it has “passed on”. Most pairs, straight draws, flush draws can e played when your cards are live (that means when there are still cards to dealt) know what you need to make that winning hand, know what cards are left out there, think about the odds and do the maths. As the great Dan Reed said, “You will show your poker greatness by the hands you fold, not the hands you play.”
Online Stud favours aggressive play but don’t play every hand as if you’ve been on the angry pills.