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Old 02-16-2019, 12:26 AM   #1
Poker Hat
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5 card variant of NLH

One of the things that bothers me about NLH, is how infrequently your cards connect with the flop.

I came up with a variant of NLH involving 5 hole cards instead of two.

Does this variant already exist?
Is Omaha just an improvement of this variation?

It's the same as NLH, but you're dealt 5 cards instead of 2.

On the flop, you discard one card when the action comes to you.

On the turn, you discard a 2nd card when the action comes to you.

On the river, you discard a 3rd card when the action comes to you.

This way, if the game does make it to the river, it's just like NHL where you have two cards. If the game has 9 players, the river card is exactly the 52nd card in the deck including the burns.
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Old 02-17-2019, 05:12 PM   #2
Sean Snyder
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Re: 5 card variant of NLH

I've played a few similar variants but not this one exactly

More cards to start doesnt do a ton since the discarding part of the game still makes the game basically just holdem. 56789 double suited is bad and AA732 with 72s is still a great hand and the AA is almost always what your ending hand will be. Even pretty hands like QQJJT/QQJT9 double suited will have you drawing down to the pair of queens usually.

I've suggested a lot of games that I thought were "holdem, but better" in my games and there is rarely interest. Repeatedly discarding also makes for a much slower live poker game and is confusing for some players.

Imo the best way to improve on holdem is to take concepts from stud. Something like 2 down 1 up starting hand, 2 card community flop, 1 card community turn and each player gets a river card face down.

I'll also use this opportunity to shill what I think would be a brilliant game that I've never seen played. 5 card triple draw high.
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Old 02-17-2019, 06:52 PM   #3
Rob...Chill
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Re: 5 card variant of NLH

We only played it once but I like it. We played double the size for the round +
Button ante (40-80 Game would play 80-160 for example). Preflop is normal then dealer burns flop, turn and river at once, then last betting round.

We just tried it because I was trying to get people to play LA style
Single draw limit but everyone here seems to hate it.
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Old 02-17-2019, 11:24 PM   #4
zoogenhiem
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Re: 5 card variant of NLH

Pokerstars used to spread at EPT events a game they called NLH rivers. Regular NLH but each player gets their own river. They did it both face up and face down. Not spread anymore so maybe not so popular but seems worth a try.

Games that increase VPIP are generally good as are games people don’t know how to play.
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Old 02-18-2019, 08:38 AM   #5
uberkuber
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Re: 5 card variant of NLH

@OP:
In your variant, the river would be a 53th card 9-handed because there are 3 burnt cards.
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Old 02-18-2019, 08:02 PM   #6
100bb/100
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Re: 5 card variant of NLH

sounds like an interesting variant, your hole cards decrease as the board increases. I dont think that 5c plo is necessarily an improved version like you were asking, because having no limitation on the ways our pocket/community cards can interact gives the game that extremely dynamic quality. Also, because people are discarding every street this gives you a secondary insight into their ranges

something that took my a while to realize is that part of the beauty of NL is that we connect so infrequently. In fact, this is what defines the game and makes it so much different: because range vs range dynamics become everything, and the game starts to extend beyond the board/hole cards into this abstract theoretical place. this happens in every variant but more in NL, it is the defining strategic feature of the game IMO

I have always enjoyed the dynamic variants more, though. omaha and its cousins are my fave
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Old 02-18-2019, 10:29 PM   #7
ScotchOnDaRocks
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Re: 5 card variant of NLH

Quote:
Originally Posted by uberkuber View Post
@OP:
In your variant, the river would be a 53th card 9-handed because there are 3 burnt cards.
Dream crusher imo
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Old 02-19-2019, 04:57 AM   #8
electrical
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Re: 5 card variant of NLH

I have played a game they called Romanov, where you are dealt 5 cards, round of betting, then discard as many cards as you like, but whatever you keep must be part of your final 5-card showdown hand. Then there is a normal flop, turn and river, then showdown (discard preflop but after betting). If you keep a 4-card flush for example, you only need one card from the board to complete it. If you're dealt a pat hand you can just play that. Didn't like the game much, and didn't play it enough to figure much out about it.
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Old 02-19-2019, 04:13 PM   #9
Sean Snyder
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Re: 5 card variant of NLH

A guy I'm friendly with has mentioned playing something similar to electricals game in his home game. Only difference is the discard round is after the flop action. At least I think that's how he described it to me. Sounded kinda fun
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Old 02-20-2019, 01:07 PM   #10
Poker Hat
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Re: 5 card variant of NLH

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Snyder View Post
I've played a few similar variants but not this one exactly

More cards to start doesnt do a ton since the discarding part of the game still makes the game basically just holdem.
Part of the problem with hold em' is when you go card-dead. I just can't stand it. I always go through an annoying period where it seems like every hand I'm dealt contains a 2, 3, 4 or 5. And it seems like this always happens at times when I really need some decent cards. Like when I need to double up to avoid getting blinded out. The last thing anyone wants is to go card-dead.

With my variation, at least it gives you a shot at having two cards that you can do something with.

Also, my variation would probably discourage people from jamming their whole stack pre-flop with mediocre cards. When you have 8 other players at the table each holding 4 cards, you're likely to get called with KK QQ at the very least. It might help suppress the bingo player who jams far too often.

With that, a downside might be the difficulty in getting someone to fold pre flop with an open. If you're dealt 5 cards, there's usually a lot of potential for that hand to turn into something when the community cards come out. I imagine most people would just call at the very least. You'd get some big pots though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob...Chill
We only played it once but I like it. We played double the size for the round +Button ante (40-80 Game would play 80-160 for example). Preflop is normal then dealer burns flop, turn and river at once, then last betting round.
I'm glad you like it. I haven't had a chance to play it yet with other people.

Quote:
Originally Posted by uberkubber
@OP:
In your variant, the river would be a 53th card 9-handed because there are 3 burnt cards.
No need to have a burn card for the last card in the deck silly!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 100bb/100
Something that took my a while to realize is that part of the beauty of NL is that we connect so infrequently. In fact, this is what defines the game and makes it so much different: because range vs range dynamics become everything, and the game starts to extend beyond the board/hole cards into this abstract theoretical place. this happens in every variant but more in NL, it is the defining strategic feature of the game IMO
That's so very, very true. Dealing out 5 cards instead of 2 would probably make ranging more difficult because the probability of more than one player having an over-pair, top pair and drawing hand would be high in every round.

Quote:
Originally Posted by electrical
I have played a game they called Romanov, where you are dealt 5 cards, round of betting, then discard as many cards as you like, but whatever you keep must be part of your final 5-card showdown hand. Then there is a normal flop, turn and river, then showdown (discard preflop but after betting). If you keep a 4-card flush for example, you only need one card from the board to complete it. If you're dealt a pat hand you can just play that. Didn't like the game much, and didn't play it enough to figure much out about it.
Okay now, that's a very similar game. I've never heard of it. The main difference being that you can take hold more than two hole cards on the river but must play them all. That's an interesting twist because if you're dealt four-of-a-kind you can take it all the way to the river. You can't with my variation. You'd have to painfully discard part of your quads. Playing all the remaining cards in your hand is sorta similar to Omaha where you must play 3 (If I remember correctly).

I'm glad you mentioned this game because I now see that it's better to discard the first hole card before the flop comes out rather than after. This way, you'll have 2 cards before the river where you're forced to make a critical decision instead of being given the river card information you needed to make it.

So yeah, that's better.

You're dealt 5 cards, discard one when the action comes to you.

*note: You wouldn't want to discard before the action comes to you because it informs your opponents that you intend to play the hand. If you hang onto those cards, nobody knows if your going to fold.

On the flop you discard again leaving you with 3.

On the turn, you discard for the last time leaving you with the two cards that you'll finish the round with. This gives anyone still in the hand one solid shot at pinning their opponent down to a range.

Much better!

Last edited by Poker Hat; 02-20-2019 at 01:14 PM.
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