Belonging to the category of open-handed pokers, also commonly referred to as studs, the five-card stud is actually its oldest historical variation.
In the family of studs, you mainly have two versions of poker: five-card stud and seven-card stud.
As its name suggests, with the five-card stud, players receive 5 cards. However, what makes this variation of open-handed poker special is that each player receives only one closed card and 4 open cards.
Five-card stud principle
The principle remains classic: constitute the best combination of 5 cards. Possible winning hands are the same as for hold'em poker.
Five-card stud rules
The number of players for a five-card stud game can vary between 2 and 10. Basic rules remain the same as for traditional hold'em types of poker: the game alternates bidding rounds and card distribution.
However, action choices during bidding are different from hold'em pokers, as well as the order in which players can talk. This is what we are going to see in detail, by studying the proceedings of a five-card stud game.
Five-card stud game proceedings
Before starting the game, each player must bid the same amount, which is determined in advance and called the ante.
With five-card studs, the dealer is not designated by whether or not he possesses the "button" token; there is no specific position in the game. The dealer distributes a closed private card to everyone, which is called the "hole" card, followed by an open card, visible to everyone.
First bidding round
Players discover their open and closed cards. The player who has the smallest uncovered card must bid a forced opening called "bring-in". Then, talking rounds follow each other clockwise.
During this first bidding round, players can either "call" the bet, "raise" the pot, or even "re-raise". Once this betting round is over, the dealer distributes another open card, i.e. visible to everyone, to each player still in the game, clockwise.
Second bidding round
Contrary to the first bidding round, it's the player who has the strongest combination of 2 open cards who has to make a "bring-in" bid and choose between dropping out, checking or betting.
Following players, in a clockwise manner, can choose to call, re-raise or fold. The dealer then gives each player a third card visible to everyone.
Third bidding round
The proceedings are the same as for the second bidding round: it's the player showcasing the strongest combination of open cards who has to make a forced bid. This player can then choose between folding, checking and betting. Other players, on the other hand, can either call, re-raise or fold.
A new open card is distributed.
Fourth bidding round
That's when the last betting round happens: the principle is the same as for the second and third bidding round. It's the player with the best combination formed with those 4 open cards who is forced to bet and chooses to drop out, check or bet.
Other players then have to choose between calling the bet, re-raising or folding. Each player still in the game has 4 open cards and only one closed card.
It is time for players still in the game to unveil their 5-card hands publicly. The best combination wins the pot. In case there is a draw, the pot is split between the players.