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♠ Texas Hold'em ♠
♠ Omaha Poker ♠
Did You Know?
Omaha Hi and Omaha Hi/Lo
From a structural perspective, Omaha is a lot like Texas Holdem. It too is a community card game, and it too features a flop made up of three cards, a turn and a river to form the board. Players are required to make their showdown hands using some of the cards off the board and some from their pockets.
Apparently, the only difference between the two siblings is that Omaha gives players four pocket cards instead of the two that Texas Holdem does. How that and an apparently equally minor rule concerning the number of pocket cards one can use in his showdown hand, shape the winning strategies of the two variants is a different matter though.
Omaha is a game which offers skilled players an overwhelming edge over beginners and rookies of all types. Therefore, a good player will always prefer to take rookies on at the Omaha tables rather than at the Texas Holdem ones which may turn frustrating on account of the high variance they feature.
Being the “game of nuts” that it is, the variance in Omaha (and in Omaha Hi/Lo) is much smaller. All this happens on account of the 4 hole cards, which offer players much more generous information about the makeup of their future showdown hands than the 2 hole cards in Holdem.
This abundance of information allows good Omaha players to simplify their choices to the extreme, or rather to a point where they’re either getting a great price, a good one or a very poor one on their call.
Compared to Texas Holdem, Omaha is an extremely slow game. In Holdem, good players will secure tiny edges hand after hand, and the pace of the game will allow them to go after this tiny edge time and time again. In Omaha, hunting for such tiny edges is a waste of time. The edges here come about seldom, but they’re as big as a house and that’s when it’s worth getting your money in.
This is why despite the fewer hands played per hour, a skilled Omaha player can show a higher hourly rate than a skilled Texas Holdem one. The reason for this is not just in the massive edges I wrote about above, but also in the fact that most Omaha players have no clues about the peculiarities of the game. Most online Omaha players make the transition from the Holdem tables to Omaha, looking to spice things up a bit. They usually play Omaha as if it was Texas Holdem and that player base is a true gold-mine for battle hardened Omaha veterans.
So why do people still play Holdem mostly instead of Omaha? Well, for the rookies, it’s certainly a healthy choice to stay off the Omaha tables. Whether they avoid it knowingly or not is a different matter, but the fact is that almost 100% of online poker beginners start off on the Holdem tables
Holdem games are also much more widely available than Omaha ones, and when it comes to tournaments (both MTTs and SNGs) Omaha is almost non existent.
So, despite the fact that there’s obviously more money in Omaha than in Holdem (at least on an hourly basis), Holdem offers a set of advantages that make it a much more popular choice than Omaha.
Whether you’re playing Omaha or Holdem though, always remember to sign up for a rakeback deal. You’ll thank yourself at the end of every month.
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Last Updated 23 July 2016