This week I am continuing to write about the history of the most popular styles of poker that we see both in casinos and online today. Omaha is certainly one of the top contenders for this spot, right behind Texas Hold’em which I happened to cover last Sunday.
One might think that Omaha originated in Omaha, Nebraska, given the name of the game, but this is not the case. The origins, like most poker varieties, are relatively unclear to us. The game did show up in Vegas in 1982 and was a sure fire success almost immediately.
The game itself is very similar to Texas Hold’em but instead of being dealt two cards, each player is dealt four. Out of these four cards the player selects the two they wish to use in combination with three of the five community cards. With each turned community card there is a round of betting that occurs. Given these rules you can see the similarities to Texas Hold’em. This makes it slightly more complicated then traditional Texas Hold’em considering the large amount of possible hands and draws for each player with every turned over card.
There a few variations from the style I listed above. The most prominent alterations to the game would be using five cards instead of four in each player’s hand, or during a high low split the game is played with a 9 or 7 high qualifier instead of an 8. These are simple differences but they can keep the game interesting if a group gets tired of the same routine over and over.
Omaha is relatively new and it’s pretty exciting to see a brand new game flourish in such a short amount of time. Unfortunately there is no clear cut history as to where or how this game did evolve. There is little history about it in general due to how new the game itself is! Considering this, who knows what someone might come up with in the coming years! I personally intend to learn how to play this game better. It will be refreshing to step into a new and challenging game to play online or with a good group of friends.
If you are enjoying my brief history of poker articles make sure to keep your eyes open every Sunday for a new one. There are a large number of games that I will visit and I intend to touch on the most popular ones available to us right now.