How to Play Badugi Poker
The discipline Badugi poker is a relatively new card game that came to us from Asia, and to be precise – from South Korea. This variety, let's say, is not the most popular on the market, but it can offer non-standard gameplay, which captivates fans of the exotic formats.
The popularity of the game increased in 2008 when the world's largest online room PokerStars added it to its list of offers. This option will serve as an ideal entertainment during a home poker party, because it's full of action.
Many people are not even aware of the existence of such a poker type, but we will fix the situation. In the article you will find detailed Badugi rules, as well as some basic tips for choosing starting cards.
Badugi Poker: a Brief Overview
It combines the characteristics of draw poker and lowball, and therefore is very similar to 2-7 triple draw. However, the hand ranking system here differs from other variations with the exchange, as well as the number of pocket cards – there are 4 of them (dealt blindly). A full deck of 52 cards is used (from 2 to A), without jokers.
Your goal is to take the pot by collecting the weakest combination in the hierarchy, and these are necessarily cards of different suits without pairs. Or you can get the pot by forcing all opponents to fold their hand in the betting process.
Translated from Korean, “badugi” means “rainbow”. It reflects the key aspect of the game, that is, the variety of cards.
Each participant is given the chance to change the composition of the starting hand in order to collect the best combination of cards. There are 3 exchange rounds in total, each followed by a betting round for a total of 4 rounds of betting.
Options for action:
- skipping a move (check);
During draws (exchanges), it is allowed to get rid of 1 to 4 cards at the discretion of the player, or leave the hand unchanged. This option is called "stand".
The action in the Badugi game is usually played in a fixed-limit format. During the first two rounds of betting, a small bet is used, and in the third and fourth rounds a big bet is used. For example, at a table with a $1/$2 limit, at first you can bet only $1, and then $2.
There are also options with no limit and pot limit), but they are less popular.
The hand begins in the same way as when playing Texas Holdem, PLO and Draw poker – the blinds are paid. Participants in positions to the left of the button put down small blind and big blind. Then everyone is dealt four pocket cards.
If you know the rules of Badugi poker, then you will like this easy and exciting format. Here you need to bet a lot and defend your right to the pot. Let’s consider all the stages of the game step by step:
- First bet
The player to the left of the BB starts the betting round and the next decision is made clockwise. Participants have three options to choose from (fold, call or raise).
- First exchange
The players who are left in the hand may discard any number of their hole cards (from 1 to 4). They get the same number of new elements from the deck in return.
It is not necessary to exchange cards if you are satisfied with the starter set (this also applies to the other two rounds). During the exchange, the person sitting to the left of the button position is the first to make a decision.
- Second bet
The next round of betting comes, and it goes according to the already familiar scenario. If one participant manages to knock out all his opponents from the fight, he takes the bank and the game ends.
- Second exchange
Everyone can again exchange any number of their pocket cards, or leave them unchanged.
- Third bet
Another chance to try to knock out opponents from the hand. You can bet, check, call, raise or fold.
- Third (and final) exchange
This is the last opportunity to discard unwanted cards and improve your hand. The replacement algorithm is similar to the previous rounds.
- Fourth bet round
Active players check, bet, call or raise, and fold one last time. If there are two or more people left in the hand, then a showdown occurs. According to Badugi rules, the best low hand wins the pot.
Everyone who has not folded up to this point demonstrates the collected combinations and compares them. For example, a hand of 8♠-5♦-3♣-2♥ beats 9♣-6♥-3♦-2♠. Also, do not forget that an ace in this variety refers to the lowest rank, it is used as a “1”.
Hand Combinations in Badugi
In Badugi hand rankings, the combinations are different from the traditional sets of cards used in Holdem or Omaha poker. The most remarkable thing is that aces are considered exclusively low cards, and the presence of pairs or flushes work against you. However, there are no straights in the game, so four cards in ascending order will not harm you in any way.
Here it is possible to collect the following hands:
|4-card or “Badugi”||This is the strongest one in this game. It is a combination of cards of different suits (rainbow hand) in different denominations, where the best set is from ace to 4.||A♣-2♥-3♦-4♠ (nuts)|
K♣-Q♦♠-J♥-10♠ (the worst possible badugi hand)
|3-card||Three cards of different suits or unpaired. If several players have collected the same combinations, then the fourth one can play the role of a kicker.||A♦-3♠-5♣-5♥|
|2-card||A set of two cards of different suits. Since the example on the right has two suited elements and a pair of threes, only A (ace) and one four are counted.||А♠-2♦-4♣-4♦|
|1-card hand||Worst possible hand. When you have a four of a kind or all elements of the same suit, then only one of them counts.||К♠-К♣-К♦-К♥|
Basic Strategy for Beginners
Choosing the right starting cards to play is a key element of success. Let’s see what combinations are considered to be Badugi best hands from each position:
- Early position – open raise with good 4-card combinations, as well as with 3-card combinations up to six.
- Medium position – enter the game with 3-card hands up to seven and 4-card hands up to jack.
- Late position – freely raise with good and average 3-card hands up to a nine.
- Small Blind – open even with average 3-card sets. If someone has already raised, you should significantly narrow your range.
- Big Blind – use strong 2-card and medium-strength 3-card hands to defend against late position raises. If players in the early/middle position have raised, use a narrower range.
The Badugi poker format is relatively young, but it can be an interesting one to try. Especially for poker players who are already bored with two-card Holdem and want to learn something exotic and non-standard.
1. Players must be aged 18 and above to participate in this promotion.
2. Welcome Bonus and Honeymoon promotion for new players only over a limited period .
3. Welcome Bonus only available to new players that make an initial deposit. The minimum deposit necessary to obtain a matched bonus is $10, or if a player chooses the $100 in rewards the minimum deposit necessary is $20.
4. $50 Free Play offer made up of $52.50 in free All-In Or Fold SNG tickets from Welcome Bonus and $2.50 in free tickets from Daily Freebie.
5. Free tickets automatically credited to eligible players’ accounts over a six day period.
6. A 100% matched deposit bonus worth a maximum of $600 can be claimed by players selecting ‘Match Bonus’ when making their first deposit(s) over a limited period.
7. Bonus cash is released at a rate of $1 for every $5 paid in net rake/tournament fees.
GGPoker standard rules apply. Play responsibly. www.begambleaware.org.
100% First Deposit Bonus
Make your first-ever real money deposit using the bonus code ‘STARS600’, and we will give you a 100% bonus up to $600. To claim the full value of the bonus, you can make up to three qualifying deposits in 60 days.
Alternatively, deposit using code ‘THIRTY’ and claim $30 of free play.
How the 100% First Deposit Bonus works
Once you’ve made your deposit, you need to earn redemption points by playing real money games. Unless stated otherwise, you will earn 5 redemption points for every USD $1 you pay in rake or tournament fees (6.5 points per £1, 4 points per CAD $1, or 5.5 points per EUR €1).
Every time you reach 180 redemption points we’ll credit your Stars Account with $10 cash. You have four months after each qualifying deposit to earn all the redemption points needed to release your bonus.
You may only take advantage of one of our first deposit offers, but may be eligible for further deposit bonuses open to existing players. You can view any bonuses you have, alongside information on expiry dates, redemption point requirements and more, under the ‘My Stars’ menu.
Please note that redemption points will not be earned at pot-limit or no-limit tables with blinds of $5/$10 or higher, 8-game tables with stakes of $20/$40 or higher, or other limit games with stakes of $20/$40 or higher.
The following are the terms and conditions of the "£20 Bonus Package Promotion" (the "Promotion") for www.888poker.com (the “Site”). The Promotion is organized by 888 UK Limited.
This Promotion is an ongoing Promotion, currently without an end date, we will provide reasonable notice of when the Promotion is to come to an end (the “Promotion Period”).
888poker may cancel, modify or suspend the promotion, and any of the bonuses or benefits offered hereunder, where required for security reasons, to comply with applicable law or regulation, due to abuse or otherwise where the promotion is not capable of being conducted as specified as a result of exceptional circumstances. Other than where necessary to prevent fraud or other similar unlawful behavior, any such modification, suspension or cancellation will not apply to you if you have already opted into the promotion, made a deposit in expectation of receipt of a bonus or other benefits offered, and/or commenced play in relation to the promotion, bonus or special offer prior to the date of the communication of the modification, suspension or cancellation.
No-one under the age of 18 may participate in the Promotion and the Promotion is only available to eligible members located in the UK.
You may be asked at any stage to provide us with a proof of age and/or identity.
You may only enter this Promotion once.
For security and verification purposes, we reserve the right to limit participation in this Promotion to: (i) one per household; (ii) one per computer terminal; or (iii) one per mobile device.
During their engagement period and for a period of 24 months thereafter, none of our officers, directors, employees, consultants or agents or any other company within our group of companies or our suppliers, vendors or white label partners are permitted to participate in the Promotion, nor is any supplier or vendor. This restriction also applies to relatives of such persons and for this purpose 'relative' means any of a spouse, partner, parent, child or sibling.
If you have a pending message on the Site’s cashier regarding your recent gaming activity, we reserve the right to revoke your eligibility to participate and/or continue to participate in this promotion. In such event, any bonus and/or other benefit which you have received and/or are eligible to receive under this promotion, shall be forfeited by you.
The Promotion is a new registration offer with the Site and completely replaces any similar registration offer with the Site.
All bonuses and promotional offers, and any winnings generated through the wagering of either of the aforesaid, will be cancelled at withdrawal if any of the applicable conditions have not been met in full.
You hereby agree to these terms and conditions which govern the Promotion, along with the "User Agreement" which includes but is not limited to the "Bonus Policy".
Withdrawing funds your deposit balance (otherwise known as “Transaction Balance” in our Withdrawal Policy) is available for withdrawal at any time. General withdrawal terms apply, for further info see our Withdrawal Policy.
In order to meet the applicable wagering requirement, no real money shall be deemed to contribute (in full or in part) to the wagering requirement, unless otherwise specified by us.
Available funds will always be used before Restricted Funds (to include Money transferred) and the balance of both will be displayed in your My Account
You may only participate in the Promotion, if you have not previously registered with the Site. If you benefit from this Promotion you will not be eligible to benefit from any other first deposit bonus or first deposit offer with the Site. If you have benefited from another first deposit offer with the Site you are not eligible to benefit from this Promotion.
You may not combine this registration offer with any other type of registration offer provided by the Site.
In order to be eligible and receive the Tournament Tickets (as defined below) granted under the Promotion, during the Promotion Period: (i) you must either download the 888poker client on PC or mobile application or click ‘Instant Play’ on the English non-download version of the Site; (ii) open a new user account with the Site; and (iii) verify his/her e-mail address by clicking on a link within the e-mail body or by SMS to the phone number entered within 14 days of the Site sending the email to you, otherwise the bonus offer will expire and you shall forfeit the bonus offer.".
Under the terms of this Promotion, eligible players will be entitled to receive £20 worth bonus (granted in USD at equivalent value of USD 25 in accordance with the Exchange Rate as defined in the User Agreement referenced above) that will be given as Tournament Tickets, according to the following allocation: 50 tickets of $0.1buy-in and 20 tickets of $1 buy-in.
Once claimed, Tournament Tickets will be granted in batches as follows:
First batch worth $5 (10 tickets of $0.1buy-in and 4 tickets of $1buy in) will be granted following your fulfilment of point 3 above.
Second batch worth $10 (20 tickets of $0.1buy-in and 8 tickets of $1buy in) will be granted 3 days after the bonus was claimed.
Third batch worth $10 (20 tickets of $0.1buy-in and 8 tickets of $1buy in) will be granted 7 days after the bonus was claimed.
If you don’t use the Tournament Tickets granted under the Promotion within 24 hours of being credited to your account, such Tournament Tickets shall expire and you shall forfeit each of such Tournament Tickets.
A Tournament Ticket possesses a fixed value and may only be used in tournaments that have a buy-in equal to that of the value of the Tournament Ticket. For the avoidance of doubt, Tournament Tickets may not be used as a buy-in for a tournament where the buy-in is less than the value of a Tournament Ticket.
A Tournament Ticket can’t be used by a player to re-buy chips or to add chips to his/her stack during a tournament.
Tournament Tickets may not be: (i) exchanged or converted into cash; (ii) joined together to create a higher value ticket; or (iii) transferred by a player to another player.
For further terms and conditions in relation to the use of Tournament Tickets, please see our Bonus Policy.
Badugi is the name of a special kind of poker, which is considered to be a fairly new and not very popular format. This is a type of game with card exchanges where you need to collect the lowest possible hand according to special rules. Combinations and the course of the game are described in more detail in our material.
The best hand in this discipline is the Badugi hand. These are four cards from ace to four, and always of different suits. So an example would be A♣-2♥-3♦-4♠.
In the Badugi poker game, there is a special rule regarding the ace card – it is always considered the lowest possible card. That is, an ace is equal to “one”.