Razz Rules

Razz Poker is probably the most profitable game being played right now. With basic Razz knowledge and a little practice, it’s an easy game to win. The best part about Razz is that there are so many players who have no idea how to play the game. After you read through the rules, read a couple of our beginner strategy articles and go play some micro-limit games. It won’t take long before you have a solid grasp on how to play. Practice Razz at Full Tilt Poker or Pokerstars.

For more information about the best sites for Razz, check out our Pokerstars Razz or Full Tilt Razz pages.

Rules of Razz Poker

The rules of Razz Poker are just like 7 Card Stud, except the lowest (worst) hand wins. Razz is played as a fixed limit game, with four cards dealt face up and three cards face down. Instead of blinds, Razz Poker utilizes antes and bring-ins to create action. Antes are typically 20% of the lower betting limit. At Pokerstars however, the antes are between 10-20% of the lower betting limit. Depending on where you’re playing, the bring in can be anywhere from 1.2 – 5 times the size of the ante. At Pokerstars, the antes are low, but the bring in’s are big. At Full Tilt Poker, the antes are more standard. Razz is played with no more than 8 players, as the 52 card deck cannot support more.

  • The lowest 5 card hand wins.
  • Aces are low, kings are high.
  • The best hand in Razz is 5, 4, 3, 2, A, also known as a ‘wheel’ or ‘bike’.
  • Straights and flushes do not count and have no effect on your hand.
  • Unlike 8 or better games, there is no ‘8 or better’ requirement – every hand qualifies.
  • Pairs do not help your hand. Only one card in any pair can be used towards your low hand.
  • Razz hands are counted from the top-down, with the lowest five cards playing. So, a hand of 9, 7, 6, 4, 2 beats 10, 7, 6, 4, 2. If the highest cards are the same, move to the next card down. If those cards are the same, move to the next card down. Example; 9, 7, 5, 4, 2 beats 9, 7, 6, 4, 2.

Example Razz Hand – $5/10 Game ($1 ante, $1.50 bring in)

Ante: Before any cards are dealt, each player must post a $1 ante.

Third Street – The first three cards are dealt; 2 face down (hole cards), and one face up which is called the door card. The player with the highest door card must ‘bring in’ for $1.50. If two or more players share the highest door card, the player who must bring in is based on card suits in the following order; spades, hearts, diamonds, clubs. So, if three players have door card kings, the player with the king of spades is required to bring in. If none have the king of spades, the player with the king of hearts is required to bring in.

After the bring in, players have three options. They can fold, call the bring in, or ‘complete’ to $5. If someone ‘completes’, players must call $5 or raise in $5 increments to stay in the hand.

Fourth Street – One card dealt face-up. The player with the lowest hand showing is first to act. He can either check or bet $5. Play then moves clockwise around the table. If the first player has checked, the next player can either check or bet $5. If the first player has bet ($5), the second player can fold, call, or raise $5. Play continues around the table, with a maximum of 1 bet and 3 raises. (If two players have the same low hand after fourth street is dealt, the player closest to the left of the button is first to act)

Fifth Street – One card dealt face-up, round of betting at the $10 limit. Once again, the player with the lowest hand showing is first to act. This time he can either check or bet the higher limit, in this example $10. All bets and raises are now $10. Play continues clockwise around the table the same as it does on fourth street.

Sixth Street – One card dealt face-up, round of betting at the $10 limit. Action is the same as it is on fifth street.

Seventh Street – One card dealt face-down, final round of betting at the $10 limit.

The player with the lowest 5 card hand wins the pot. Playing online, the last player that bet or raised will automatically show his/her cards first. In a clockwise direction, any player with a losing hand has the option to fold their hand face-up or face-down. Winning hands will automatically be shown face-up.

In total, there are 5 rounds of betting. While Razz Poker is a limit game, 5 betting rounds can generate sizeable pots.

Since very few players understand the rules of Razz Poker, it’s a game that can be very profitable. There are situations where you can plainly see that your opponent can’t beat you, and yet they call and raise you anyway. Learn the rules, practice Razz, and build your bankroll by winning at Razz Poker.

Play at the best room for Razz - Full Tilt Poker

Play at second best room for Razz - Pokerstars