Thanks to the action and excitement of Pot-Limit Omaha, Omaha has become the second most popular form of poker in the world.
Omaha can be played with a variety of betting structures, but only two are used with any regularity:
- Fixed Limit
Omaha and No-Limit
Although it's technically possible to play Omaha as a No-Limit game, this combination is extremely rare. The rules and game-play of Omaha are such that the game requires rules for betting that have some semblance of structure.
In other words, the game is so draw- and action-laden that it doesn't function particularly well as No-Limit.
For this reason, players wishing to play a high-action Omaha game turn to Pot-Limit as their go-to betting structure.
The popularity of Pot-Limit Omaha has surged recently, to the point that this particular Omaha variation is now the second most played poker variant both online and live. In fact, it's not uncommon for 100% of the night's online high-stakes action to take place over Omaha tables.
- Betting proceeds clockwise from the button. The player to the left of the button is the small blind and the player on his left is the big blind. The player on his left is under the gun, and acts first.
- His options are to call the big blind, raise or fold.
- Your minimum bet is equal to the size of the big blind (this is assuming no players have bet before you on this betting round).
- To determine the maximum bet, count all the money in the pot and all the bets on the table, including any call you would make before raising. (It sounds more complicated than it really is.) Two examples for you:
- You're first to act on the flop with a pot of $15. You have the option to check or bet. You can bet anywhere from as little as the amount of the big blind, to the full amount of the pot ($15). Any bet in between is a "legal bet."
- You're second to act on the flop with a pot of $15. The first player bets $10. You now have the option to fold, call ($10) or raise.
- Your minimum raise is equal to the amount of the previous bet. In this hand your minimum raise is $10 ($10 + $10 for a total bet of $20).
- Your maximum raise is the amount of the pot. To figure this out, add up the pot + the bet + your call ($15 + $10 + $10 = $35). You are allowed to bet that total amount in addition to your call, meaning your total bet is $45 ($10 for the call + $35 for the size of the pot).
- You can raise any amount in between the minimum and the maximum raise amount.
- The size of the game is determined by the blind size. The buy-in is usually minimum 20 big blinds and maximum 100 big blinds.
- In Limit Omaha the betting limits are fixed.
- The size of the game is determined by the bet size. For example, in a $4/$8 game the small bet is $4 and the big bet is $8. The blinds would be $2 and $4.
- Play proceeds as it does in any community card game, with the blinds to the left of the button and the play proceeding clockwise.
- Betting and raising are done in increments.
- Before the flop betting works in increments of the small bet; $4 in our example. A bet would be equal to $4, a raise would be to a total of $8.
- On the turn and river betting works in increments of the big bet; $8 in our example. A bet would be equal to $8, a raise would be equal to $16.
The Limit betting structure puts a cap on the number of raises. Most venues allow a maximum of a bet and three raises, although some rooms have a cap of four raises.