Mixed poker games have been around for a long time, although
it’s only relatively recent that they have become popular
online. Before Internet poker was around, when the game was
mostly played in casinos and poker rooms as well as private
homes, a format known as dealer’s choice was very common.
In this format, whichever player was the dealer could decide
what game would be played. This choice would then be played for
either one hand or one orbit of the table. Once completed, the
next player to be dealer would then choose the game. There would
usually be agreement about exactly which games could be played,
but a wide variety would typically be included.
Mixed poker games helped keep things more interesting and
helped to even things out against those players who were highly
skilled at one particular game. For whatever reason, however,
Texas Hold’em became the game of choice and started to dominate
the poker scene. Mixed games have made a comeback,
and they have started to regain popularity.
On this page we provide details of the mixed game format most
commonly played online, which is H.O.R.S.E. We also look at a
few other well-known formats and list the best poker sites for
playing mixed games.
H.O.R.S.E. is probably the best-known mixed game poker
format. It has been featured at the WSOP (World Series of Poker)
since 2002 and can be played at a number of leading poker sites.
The name H.O.R.S.E. is an acronym made up of the first letter of
the five different games played in this format: Hold’em, Omaha
Hi/Lo, Razz, Seven Card Stud, and Eight-Or-Better.
The way it works is really quite simple. The first hand of
the game is played using Texas Hold’em and the game switches in
each subsequent hand. Texas is followed by Omaha Hi/Lo, which is
then followed by Razz and the Seven Card Stud. A hand of
Eight-Or-Better is played before another hand of Texas starts
the cycle again.
H.O.R.S.E is typically played using a fixed limit betting
structure, and can be played in cash game and tournament
Other Mixed Games
There are loads of other mixed game formats: some of the most
Omaha High/Low Mixed
10 Game Mix
8 Game Mix
For many of these games, the format is fairly easy to work
out by looking at the letters contained in the acronym. H.O.S.E.
is just like H.O.R.S.E. but without Razz, while H.O.E excludes
Razz and Seven Card Stud. H.O. is just Texas and Omaha Hi/Lo.
H.A. is pot limit Texas Hold’em and pot limit Omaha.
Hold’em mixed is fixed limit Texas and no limit Texas; Omaha
High/Low mixed is fixed limit Omaha and pot limit Omaha Hi/Lo. A
relatively new format, 10 Game Mix features limit Texas,
limit Stud Hi/Lo, pot limit Omaha, limit 2-7 Triple Draw, Limit
Razz, no limit Hold’em, limit Omaha Hi/Lo, Limit Stud Hi, no
limit 2-7 single draw, and limit Badugi.
The final format listed above, 8 game mix, features 2-7
Triple Draw, Texas, Omaha Hi-Lo, Razz, Seven Card Stud, and
Seven Card Stud Hi/Lo all using fixed limit, plus no limit Texas
and pot limit Omaha. As you can imagine, playing formats where
both the games and the betting structure change can be somewhat
difficult, but there a lot of players who really enjoy them.
Mixed game formats can be great fun to play. They are good
for developing skills in a variety of games, and can help
prevent boredom from playing a single game all the time. You
obviously need to be familiar with the rules of each component
game and to be able to cope with switching from one game to the
next. However, if you can play the format well, there’s plenty of
money to be made.
Best Mixed Game Poker Sites
Many of the leading online poker sites offer
H.O.R.S.E., and a lot offer a number of other formats as well. If
you prefer giving these a try, we suggest looking at the
following: currently the best poker sites for playing mixed
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