Triple Stud Poker is the most recent addition to PokerStars’ stable of mixed games. It’s a fast, fun, and exciting way to master your all-around Seven-Card Stud skills. Here’s how it works. A game of Triple Stud is broken up into different levels. These levels are simply different variations of Stud: Stud Hi, Razz, and Stud Hi/Lo. In Triple Stud, you’ll play 8 hands of each Stud type during each round. This gives you a great opportunity to sharpen your skills at each game, all at the same table. For players looking to improve their all-around Stud prowess, there is truly no better option than a few rounds of Triple Stud. However in order to take advantage of the new game structure, you’ll need to know how each game plays.
Variants in Triple Stud: The Differences
In Triple Stud, the only real difference between the levels is the hands you’re aiming to make at showdown. Yes, each level is a different form of Stud; but each form of stud is identical in terms of betting structure and action rules. All you need to know to master Triple Stud is each game’s unique showdown criteria. Here’s the rundown:
- Stud Hi: The highest five-card poker hand wins at showdown. Any five of your seven cards can be used to make your hand. For example, A-A-3-8-T beats A-K-3-7-7.
- Razz: Razz is simply Stud Hi played backwards. Rather than the hand with the highest value winning, the hand of the lowest rank wins the pot. The best possible hand is A-2-3-4-5; the second best A-2-3-4-6; the third best A-2-3-5-6; and so on. Note that in the razz round of Triple Stud, you’re just aiming for a jumble of low cards; your A-2-3-4-5 doesn’t count as a straight.
- Stud Hi/Lo: Think of Stud Hi/Lo as a combination of Stud Hi and Razz. You’re not only aiming for a high hand, and you’re not only aiming for a low hand; you can aim for both. If two players show down a low and a high respectively, they split the pot; that means neither loses anything but the rake.
As I’ve mentioned, each of the three Triple Stud games is structurally identical. That means the betting is the same, the action options are the same, and the table directions are the same. Here’s a breakdown the betting and action in all the Triple Stud games.
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Let the game begin! Each player is dealt three cards: two face-down, and one face-up. The player with the lowest showing card must post a ‘bring-in’. That is, a forced bet much like the blinds in Hold’Em. The bring-in can be either one half of or equal to the game’s lowest bet. For example, in a game of $1/$2 Triple Stud, the bring-in might be $0.50 or $1, depending on the player’s choice.
The action moves clockwise around the table from the bring-in. Each player can decide to bet, check, call, or fold their hand. Once the action is finished, all players move on to a next round of betting.
A fourth card is dealt to each player face-up. Betting begins with the player showing the highest card. In Triple Stud, much like other forms of Stud, action moves clockwise from the opening player. Betting amounts on fourth street are equal to the lowest blind (so a game of $1/$2 would see a bet of $1 here).
Available betting actions are the same on fourth street as they were on third (check, bet, call, or fold); these actions will remain the same on all future streets. Once all players have completed the action on fourth street, the game of triple stud moves on.
A fifth card is dealt to each player face-up. Betting begins once again (as it will from now on) with the player showing the highest card. From fifth street and onwards, the standard bet amount is equal to the highest blind of the Triple Stud game. For example, our $1/$2 game would see a bet amount of $2.
Once everyone’s done calling, checking, betting and folding, Triple Stud moves on once more.
A sixth card is dealt to each player, this time face-down. Another round of betting ensues.
Finally—the last round of betting. A seventh card is dealt to each remaining player, again face-down. Each player goes through the motions, choosing to check, call, fold, or bet. This round of Triple Stud is done whenever all players have completed the action.
Here’s where it gets interesting. Once seventh street betting is complete, any remaining players must compare their hands. One player will emerge victorious, winning whatever’s in the pot; save a tie, of course, in which case tied players split the pot between them. Which hand wins depends on the active type of stud in the triple stud game.