Omaha Poker is an action-packed variant that always makes for a fun gaming experience. With more cards in play than Texas Hold’em, this game sees many more players involved in each hand which makes for big pots and plenty of excitement.
There are plenty of different Omaha poker variants, each putting their own unique spin on the game. So, you have many options to choose from if you’d like to mix things up a little bit, and you can always look forward to having a great time playing Omaha online.
If this is the first time you’ve heard of this poker variant or just want a refresher, be sure to read our easy to follow guide below before you start playing!
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How to Play Omaha Poker
Omaha Poker is a fairly straight forward game. The player must create the highest-ranking five-card hand, using exactly three community cards and two of their hole cards. In Omaha Hi-Lo, there are two pots where half is awarded to the player with the lowest hand as well as the player with the highest hand.
In all Omaha variants, the game begins when each player is dealt four hole cards that only they can see. The small blind and big blind place their antes, and the first player to actually act is left of the big blind. At this point, players can choose to call, raise or fold – depending on the strength of their hand.
The flop occurs after the first round of betting, where three community cards are dealt. The betting continues, with players choosing to check, bet, raise or fold. The next two rounds of betting occur after the turn (the fourth community card) and the river (the fifth community card). Then, if there are two or more players left in the hand, there is the showdown, where they reveal their cards and the pot goes to the player with the highest-ranking hand.
What Is the Difference Between Texas Hold’em and Omaha Poker?
The best way to understand how Omaha poker works is by taking a look at the game in comparison to Texas Hold’em, the most popular online poker variant. Firstly, Omaha is played with four hole cards rather than two. As such, the odds of making big hands are higher.
As is the case with Texas Hold’em, Omaha requires players to make 5-card hands. They must use two of their four hole cards, however, whereas Hold’em allows players to use none, one or both, to make their hands.
Since players have more cards, there is more potential to make big hands, so you’ll find that there is usually a lot more action in Omaha Games than there is in Hold’em games. For example, AA would be a huge hand in Hold’em but, in Omaha, the other two hole cards are incredibly important. Many Omaha players will apply Texas Hold’em strategy with a hand like this, but it is not a particularly big hand outside of Hold’em.
Why Is Omaha Almost Always Pot Limit?
In the online and land-based poker worlds, Omaha is almost always exclusively offered as a Pot-Limit game. It’s very rare that you’ll find No Limit Omaha games and, if you do, these tables aren’t usually very busy.
This is because Omaha is already a high-action game. Operators don’t need to make the game No Limit in order to get plenty of action out of players and make for an exciting experience.
In Omaha poker games, all players have the potential to make very big hands. You’ll notice at No Limit Omaha tables, that there is a lot of shoving when players have hands that would be strong in Texas Hold’em but not particularly valuable in Omaha – such as AA. So, having no betting limits can take the fun out of it.
Omaha Poker Variants
One thing that you will notice when browsing the Omaha section of any online poker site is that there are many different variants available. Each one caters to a different kind of player, so it’s important to understand the differences between them.
- Pot Limit Omaha Hi-Lo: this is a split-pot game, where two players receive payouts for having the highest hand and the lowest hand
- 5 Card Pop-Limit Omaha: in this version, players are dealt five cards instead of four
- Pot Limit 5 Card Hi-Lo: players are dealt five cards each, and payouts are awarded for the highest and the lowest hands
- Courchevel: an Omaha game played with 5 cards, where one community card is shown before the first round of betting
- Courchevel Hi-Lo: the same as above, but with a split-pot
- Omaha 3-2-1: in this version, three flops, two turns and one river are dealt, and players can choose which of the flops and turns they want to use when making their hands
Omaha Poker Tournaments
Omaha poker tournaments offer players the chance to cash in on large lump sums of money. The most common types of Omaha tournaments you’ll find are guaranteed tournaments and progressive knock-outs. Sit n Gos tend not to be very common for Omaha.
You’ll always find a good range of Omaha poker tournaments at most online poker sites. Buy-ins are available for players with varying budgets, starting at just $1 and going all the way up to $500 and more for high rollers.
Omaha Online Poker Bonuses
When it comes to looking for a place to play Omaha poker online, bonuses should be a major factor in your decision. There are hundreds of places where you can play this game, but you should keep an eye out for the sites with the most generous bonuses. These are just a few of the different promotion that you’ll be able to take part in when playing Omaha online poker:
- Welcome Bonus: the operator will match your first deposit usually by 100%
- Reloads: offered on specific days of the week, you can claim 25%, 50% and 100% matches on your deposits
- Player points: you earn player points for every hand that you take part in, and you can redeem these points for bonuses
- Leaderboards: players with the most points make it to the top of the leaderboard, and the top earners receive prizes
- Rakeback: the operator pays loyal players back a portion of their rake