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HORSE Poker Strategy
HORSE is actually an acronym describing a combination of poker games:
- Omaha high-low
- Razz (Seven card stud low)
- Stud (Seven card stud high)
- Eight-or-better (Seven card stud
The background of HORSE
In large cash games in brick-and-mortar casinos, the players often
agree to play a mix of poker games rather than a single game. This reduces
the edge that a single-game specialist has, and emphasizes a player's
breadth across multiple versions of poker. Many people feel that HORSE and
other mixed games are the best judge of a player's true poker ability.
HORSE has also gotten a lot of publicity because it was added to the 2006
World Series as a $50,000 buy-in event - the largest buy-in event at the *WSOP.
And it is now part of
the World Championship Of Online Poker, held annually on
HORSE is one of many popular mixed game variants.
PokerStars offers both HORSE and "HOSE", which is just HORSE without
the Razz (seven card stud low) round.
HORSE is played as one "round" of each of its component games. It
begins with limit hold'em, then limit Omaha high-low, razz (seven card
stud low), seven card stud, and finally seven card stud high-low. When the
seven-card stud high-low round is complete, the game goes back to limit
hold'em, and so on. You can tell which game is being dealt by looking at
the top border of the table window.
When switching from Omaha high-low to Razz, the button is frozen. That
way, when the game switches back to hold'em (after seven card stud
high-low), nobody skips blinds or pays extra blinds.
All the component games in HORSE are played fixed limit - there are no
pot-limit or no-limit games. The limits (such as $5-10) are kept
throughout the game rotation, and you play $5-10 fixed limit hold'em,
$5-10 fixed limit Omaha high-low, etc.
HORSE and HOSE are great ways to develop expertise in multiple games,
and break up the monotony of playing a single game throughout a session.
We encourage you to get comfortable with each of the component games first
so you'll know what's going on, and then jump right into the HORSE and