Seven Card Stud is one of a number of stud poker games that are popular throughout the world. And here at Unibet we’re dedicated to bringing you the best card games on the planet, which is why we’ve created this Seven Card Stud guide to teach you the basics of the game.
We have loads of Seven Card Stud suites here at Unibet Poker so you can play to a varying degree of skill and difficulty.
The most important aspect of Seven Card Stud is to have fun.The thrill of the deal and the uncertainty of the hidden cards makes for a great all-round gaming experience. You can win on excellent skill as much as sheer luck!
There really is something for everyone in Seven Card Stud and this guide will take you through how to play the game, what the best hands are and how to win at Seven Card Stud. There is another variant of poker that is also exciting - you can read more about Omaha Poker in our beginner's guide.
How to play Seven Card Stud
The best way to learn about how to play Seven Card Stud is to go through an example game. Below, we’ve created a scenario where you’re sat on a table of five players. We will take you through how the game unfolds and the betting options available.
It’s good to remember there are three actions you can take in Seven Card Stud. One is to match the bet of the minim stage. The other is to raise the bet to double that stake, to which others must then call. And the third is to fold if you don’t think you hand is strong enough.
The dealer button will move clockwise around the table at the start of every game. This signifies which player is the ‘dealer’ for that game — but don’t worry, our online Seven Card Stud game will deal for you!
Example: You enter a Seven Card Stud game with four other players. You’re the dealer for the first game.
Pay the ante
All players must pay the ante bet. This is a small bet to get the game underway and is the same for all players.
Example: The small bet in this game is 5 chips and there are 5 players. Each player therefore pays 1 chip as the ante bet.
Each player receives two cards facing down, one card facing up. There are no blind bets. Instead, everyone places a bring-in bet to start. Betting begins with the person who has the lowest up card, called the ‘door card’. The first player pays a bring-in, which is usually the price of the ante bet. Or they can pay the full amount of the small bet. Because Seven Card Stud is a fixed stake game, you can only bet on certain limits agreed before the game starts. Other players must then match that bet, fold or raise.
Example: Your door card is a 4 Hearts, the lowest of the cards on show. Each bring-in is 5 chips. You decide to pay the full bet of 25 chips to complete. This means any other player who wants to stay in the game must also complete, or the will fold. They can also double the bet if they want to raise. Two players fold and two players call your bet. There are now 5 + 25 + 25 + 25 + 25 = 105 chips.
Each player remaining in the game receives a fourth card, facing up. This betting round is called Fourth Street and starts with the player who has the strongest two-card showing. They can bet on the small fixed bet, while others can raise. Eventually, everyone who still wants to stay in the game bets the same amount.
Example: You receive a 4 Diamonds, while the other two remaining players are yet to make a strong hand. You therefore have the strongest hand and make the first bet. You bet another 25 chips, which the others match. The pot is now 105 + 75 = 180 chips.
Fifth and sixth cards
The same betting pattern goes around again, with a fifth and then a sixth card drawn up on each players hand. The bet limit also increases here, to big bets.
Example: You receive a 8 Clubs in the fifth round and call someone else’s 50 chip bet. The other person folds, meaning only two of you are remaining. The pot is now 180 + 100 = 280 chips.
You then receive a 8 Hearts, handing you Two Pairs and a strong hand. You place another 50 chips, which your opponent calls. The pot is now 280 + 100 = 380 chips.
This is where things get really interesting. The last card for each player is placed face down on the table. You now have three face down cards and four face up cards. You then go through one last betting round. After this, you’re allowed to look at your cards and the aim is to make the best five-card poker hand from your seven cards. Whoever has the best hand wins the game and the money.
Example: You both make the large bet of 100 chips, meaning there is a final pot of 480 chips. You have 4H, 4D, 8C, 8H in your up cards. You turn over your down cards and see you have a QC 4C and KS. You strongest hand is a full house of 4H, 4D, 4C, 8C, 8H. Your opponent’s strongest hand contains three Jacks but no accompanying pair. You therefore win the game!
Where to play Seven Card Stud
Now you know the basic rules of Seven Card Stud, it’s time to find out where to play it. You can play Seven Card Stud online at Unibet by joining one of our card tables. Minimum stake limits mean you can join a game that suits you — so you’re not betting too high too soon!
Winning hands in poker
Even though you now know the rules of Seven Card Stud, it is always good to refresh your memory on which are the winning hands in any poker card game. There are 52 cards in a traditional deck, which are separated in four suits: Diamonds, Hearts, Clubs, Spades. Each suit has 13 cards — 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, Jack, Queen, King, Ace. The 2 is the lowest-ranked card, while the Ace is the highest. These rankings give meaning to hands you create when playing poker.
In many poker games the idea is to make the strongest hand you can from five cards. In Seven Card Stud, you have seven cards to choose from. That’s the same in Texas Hold’Em poker — the most popular game in casinos.
Other games, such as Five Card Stud, you will only ever have five cards to make up your strongest hand. However, you can exchange your cards at a certain point in this game.
Winning hands in poker are determined based on the odds of the hand being created. For example, a pair is the most common combination in a five-card hand, so it may well be beaten by stronger hands.
The combinations available in poker are as follows:
Poker Hands — what beats what?
High Card: The weakest hand, where you’re backing on a high card, such as an Ace or King, winning the game
Pair: Another weak hand in which you have two cards of the same numerical value. EXAMPLE: 8C, 8D, 7S, 4H, 3S
Two pairs: You have two sets of pairs in your hand of five cards: EXAMPLE: 8C, 8D, 7S, 7D, KD
Three of a Kind: The hands are starting to get stronger. This is where you have three cards of the same numerical value in your hand. EXAMPLE: 8C, 8D, 8S, KD, QC
Straight: You have five cards in consecutive numerical order from different suits. EXAMPLE: 8C, 9S, 10S, JD, QC
Flush: All five of your cards are from the same suit. EXAMPLE: 3H, 7H, 8H, 10H, AH
Full House: You have a Pair and a Three of a Kind together. EXAMPLE: 6S, 6H, 9C, 9S, 9D
Four of a Kind: You have all four cards of the same numerical value. EXAMPLE: QH, QD, QS, QC, 6S
Straight Flush: All five of your cards are in a straight AND a flush. EXAMPLE: 2D, 3D, 4D, 5D, 6D
Royal Flush: The best card you can have in poker but also the rarest. This is when the flush runs from 10 to Ace in the same suit. EXAMPLE: 10D, JD, QD, KD, AD
Now you know the strength of cards in poker, it’s time to check out the Seven Card Stud tables in our Unibet poker suite! We also have loads of further guides on poker betting strategies and the best way to bluff your way to the top.
Remember, poker is a fun game and can be enjoyed at a time that suits you. In most tournaments you can always walk away if you don’t feel your luck is in, while you can also test yourself on higher-stakes tables against more experienced players!