7 Card Draw Poker – How to Play

7 Card Draw Poker7 Card Draw Poker is one of a group of so-called community card games. The history of the game is not clear.  Some say it originated in France or  Germany, others say it originated in Persia. Another similar game originated in New England called Brag and involved bluffing just like Poker. The only difference is it is played with 3 cards.

The first recorded  game was in New Orleans in 1829 and was played with a 20 card deck. The object was to bet on who had the highest hand. It was not long before the 52 card deck was introduced to up the odds. It was used on the Mississippi riverboats to extort money from travellers.

Stud poker was introduced during the American Civil War, it was popular with troops on both sides. The best 7 Card Stud Player is acknowledged to be Red Hodges who is credited in the Poker Hall of Fame. There were however many other famous poker players during the Wild West era.

The Object of the Game

In the game players try to win money by either out betting the other players out of the pot, or by showing the best hand at the end of the game.

A good strategy is to bet lean when you have a poor hand and bet high when you have a good hand. That way you conserve you money for when the odds of winning are better

Players compete for the pot to which all players contribute by way of betting. If playing in a casino the pot will be held in casino chips. The cards are dealt randomly and each player attempts to make the best hand to win the pot. It is not always the best hand which wins. The pot is awarded at the conclusion of each hand. The game is played hand by hand and players can join or leave the game between hands.

The pot can be divided in the case of equal scores but usually it is awarded outright. When a players folds their cards any claim on the pot is forfeited.

It is a psychological game. Players make decisions based on their prediction on events. The decisions are bet, raise, call or fold and it can be a game of bluff. Players can enhance their position by being deceitful because the primary cards dealt can be kept secret.

The object is to make the best seven-card hand.

How to play 7 card draw poker

It is important for the players to read all visible cards and pay attention to the dead cards.

It is one of the first poker games most people learn When they have learned this game all of the other games are easy. 7 card draw poker begins with each player being dealt seven cards face down. The betting begins with the two players to the left of the dealer. The first player on the left posts the small blind and the second player to the left posts the big blind. The game continues around the table until all the players have made their decision.

You can then swap the not so good cards in your hand and try to improve your hand. After everyone has had a chance to swap as new betting round begins. After it has ended the player with the best 5 card combination wins. The game can be more exciting that five-card poker because of the extra two cards available for each player.

Sometimes there may be a shortage of cards. In that case the discarded cards will be shuffled and used to swap the remaining cards. The game can be played with two players but a maximum of six.

First Betting Round

Players can call the big blind amount or the raised amount it they have a good hand. Not forgetting it may be improved in the draw round.

If a player’s hand is really good they have the option to raise.

Folding is also an option it all looks hopeless.

When all players have made their decision the hand moves on to the next round known as the draw round.

Draw Round

The draw round follows the first betting round and it gives the remaining players the opportunity to improve their hands. Each player can swap up to seven cards. Swapping is executed clockwise around the table until all the players have completed the draw round.

Second and Final Betting Round

If a player is satisfied they can check for free unless there have already been any bets or raises before. Action moves clockwise around the table until everyone has either checked, bet, raised or folded.

It more than one player is left  in the game, it continues to the showdown.


Remaining players show their hands and the player with the best ranked hand wins the pot.

Then a new game begins.

If you fully understand the basics of 7 Card Draw Poker why now choose an online casino, sign up and practice for free. Improve your knowledge of the game and test your skills.

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