32 Card Draw

Last updated: January 20th, 2015

Learning Poker: The Ultimate Guide to the Rules of 32 Card Draw

Are you ready for some fast-paced, high-stakes poker action? 32 Card Draw is full of great hands and fast-paced gameplay. Also known as "Stripped Deck" or "7-A Five-Card Draw" poker, this game involves removing all cards numbered 2 to 6 from the deck. This way, you're only playing with the top half of the deck. With this deck, it's much easier to get a great hand like a full house or even four of a kind.

The Name Says it All

You've probably guessed why the game is called 32 Card Draw by now. When all cards between 2 and 7 are removed from the deck, you're left with only 32 cards to play with. It might sound like it will be easy to play this way, but many people actually have a far more difficult time betting, since every player can end up with a great hand almost every round. For those who have mastered full-deck poker games, 32 Card Draw can present an interesting new challenge. Want to know how this game works? Let's get started with some basic rules.

A Brief Note for New Players

If you're familiar with basic Five Card Draw poker, then you should be able to figure out the basics of 32 Card Draw. But be careful - there are some subtle differences. Also, if you're used to playing other poker games like Texas Hold'em, then you'll have to get used to a new set of hand rankings in 32 Card Draw.

Hand, Suit, and Card Rankings

The hand rankings in 32 Card Draw are as follows, ranked from highest to lowest: a royal flush beats a straight flush, which beats four of a kind, which beats a flush, which beats a full house, which beats a straight. A straight defeats three of a kind, which defeats two pairs, which defeats one pair, which defeats high cards. The suits are ranked from high to low as follows: hearts, diamonds, clubs, and spades. In the event of a tie, the winner will be decided based upon suit ranking. In this type of poker, it's also important to be aware that aces can be either high or low. So a straight could go 10-J-Q-K-A, but it could also go A-7-8-9-10.

Small, Big, and Over Blinds

The game starts with anywhere between two and five players. If there are three or more players, then there will be three blinds: small, big, and over. After the cards are dealt, the action starts with the first player to the left of the dealer in the first round. In the second round, however, the action starts on the player to the left of the over blind (that is, as long as enough players are present - if not, the action will start with the player to the left of the big blind). If you're playing heads-up poker (one-on-one), the action will start with the small blind.

Betting in Limit, No Limit, and Pot Limit Games

There are three different game types in 32 Card Draw. The first is Limit poker. In this kind of game, players are only allowed a maximum of four bets, and the bet and the raise are agreed upon in advance. In a Pot Limit game, the amount of money in the pot determines the maximum amount of money that a single player can bet at one time. So if the pot is at five dollars, the maximum amount for any single bet is five dollars. In contrast to Limit poker, however, there is no limit to the amount of raises players can make in Pot Limit poker, as long as the raise is equal the largest blind (for a two to three player game, the big blind is largest, and for a four to five player game, the over blind is largest). The final game type is No Limit. As the name implies, there is no limit to the number of raises a player can make, or the amount of their raise. However, the same rules for minimum raises as used in Pot Limit games also apply here, meaning that the minimum for any raise must be equal to the largest blind.

Different Buy-ins for Each Game Type

When determining which type of game you want to play, you should also be aware of the different buy-in limits for each game type. With Limit poker, the minimum buy-in is equal to ten times the big blind amount, and there is no maximum buy-in. With Pot Limit and No Limit poker, in contrast, there is a set amount for both minimum and maximum buy-ins. These amounts are agreed upon before the game starts. Typically, the minimum buy-in will be equal to the small blind times 20, and the maximum buy-in will be equal to the big blind times 100.
Identifying the Dealer

In 32 Card Draw, as in other poker games, the dealer is the last to bet. The dealer in this case will be identified by the dealer button, which will move clockwise one spot after each hand. Once the dealer is identified, five cards will be dealt face down to each player.

Determining Blind Amounts

The position of the dealer determines the position of the small, big, and over blinds. The player to the left of the dealer acts as the small blind. This player will post the amount for the small blind, which will be equal to half of the table's lower limit stake. After that, the next player to the left will be the big blind. The big blind will be set at two times the amount of the small blind. Then, if you are playing with four or five players, the player to the left of the big blind will act as the over blind. The over blind will be equal to twice the amount of the big blind, which will also be equal to the table's upper limit.

How Betting Works

After the blinds are set, the first betting round will begin. Betting starts with the player to the left of the largest blind. In order to stay in the hand, each player must at least match the amount set by the largest blind. Betting will then proceed based on the rules of whichever game type you are playing (Limit, Pot Limit, or No Limit). In addition to the specific betting rules for each game type, there are also some general betting rules that apply to all games in 32 Card Draw poker.

General Betting Rules

When all players have either matched the largest blind or folded, the betting player will have three options: check, call, or raise. With a check, you can pass the bet over to the next player. However, if someone has already raised the bet, you will no longer have the option to check. In that case, if you do not want to call or raise the bet, you must fold. To call, you must match the largest bet so far. If you are the first to bet after the largest blind, then you will have to match that blind amount in order to call. The third option is to raise a bet. The way raising works will depend on which version of the game you are playing (see the section above on betting in Limit, Pot Limit, and No Limit games).

Discarding in 32 Card Draw

After the first betting round, players will have the option to discard and re-draw cards. In 32 Card Draw, players can discard up to four times, drawing a new card each time. If you do not want to discard, you can simply keep the cards you already have in your hand. Because this game involves a "stripped" deck, there is always the possibility that the deck could run out of cards, especially when you are playing with five players. When this happens, the remaining cards in the deck will be used first. After that, the discards are shuffled and reused. However, players can never receive the same cards they previously discarded back into their hand, because their discards are left out of the pile that is shuffled for them.

Parole: Splitting the Pot

After the discard round comes the second round of betting. This round contains one of the unique features of 32 Card Draw poker, a feature called "Parole." Here's how it works: Betting starts with the player to the left of the largest blind. That player has the option to choose Parole, or "splitting the pot." If Parole is chosen, then the pot will be split evenly between all the players who are still in the hand, and the next hand will then be dealt. Parole, however, cannot be invoked unless every player in the hand agrees upon it. If there is not unanimous agreement to invoke Parole, then the second round of betting will continue as normal. Once again, betting will be subject to the rules of each game type.

The Final Showdown and the Winner

The final part of gameplay is the Showdown. This is where remaining players in the game reveal the cards in their hands, and the winner is determined. The Showdown occurs once all bets are equal. The player who was the last to raise during the final betting round is the first to reveal their hand. The option to reveal them moves clockwise around the table (the reveal is optional since players can choose to either show or "muck" their hand if they have a lower ranking hand than what's already shown on the table). The winner is then determined based on who has the best five-card hand (see the section on hand, suit, and card rankings above). In the event that every player chose to check during the last round of betting, the first player to show their cards will be the first player to the dealer's left who did not discard.

The Order of Play

In order make sure you have an understanding of how the game is played, let's quickly go over the order of play. The first thing that happens is dealer selection. Once the dealer is determined, the cards are dealt and the blinds are posted. After the blinds are posted, the first round of betting will begin. When this round is over, the discard round begins. After each player has chosen whether or not to discard and replace up to four of the cards in their hand, the second round of betting will begin. This is the time when a player can call for Parole. If all other players agree, the pot is split evenly between the players who are still in the hand, and a new hand begins. If there is no Parole, then betting continues as normal, based on the rules specific to whichever type of game you are playing. Then, when all bets are equal, the Showdown takes place. Finally, the winner of the Showdown takes the pot, and play moves on to the next hand.

Table Stakes Rules

In addition to the basic rules of 32 Card Draw poker, and the rules of each game type, there are also some table stakes rules that apply to every game and tournament. First, you cannot add any chips to your stack during a hand. You must wait until a hand is over if you want to add any chips. This only applies, however, to players who are participating in a hand. If you are not involved in a hand, you can add or re-buy chips during that time. The second table stakes rule is that you cannot remove any chips from the table until you leave the game. This keeps the gameplay fair as it keeps the number of chips available for play at an even level. Do you think you can handle a game of 32 Card Draw? There are a lot of rules to remember, but once you get the hang of it, this game can make for extremely exciting poker. It may take some time for players to learn the difference between 32 Card Draw and other poker games, especially because the hand ranking in 32 Card Draw is different than in most other games. As long as you are aware of the differences, however, you should be able to figure out the basics of this advanced poker game. And, with some practice, you might even become a 32 Card Draw master.


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