Texas Hold’em and Pot Limit Omaha (PLO) are the popular variants of the skilled based game of poker that is played worldwide. However, what’s interesting is every country has it’s own adaptation of various card games and thus was born Open Face Chinese poker, colloquially know as Open Face Chinese or OFC poker.
Like the name indicates, OFC is an exciting variant of Chinese poker; a game considered to be beginner friendly as you only need to have a basic knowledge of poker hand rankings to get started! The game is said to have originated in Finland when the world made a century leap.
Open Face Chinese poker is then said to have spread its wings to Russia and it was professional poker player Alex Kravchenko who introduced the high-stakes poker community to this new and exciting poker variant.
Must Read: ENDBOSS – INDIAN POKER HISTORY IN THE MAKING
The card game spread like wildfire and made its way into the United States in 2012. In 2014, the first-ever World Championship of OFC poker took center stage and crowned Jennifer Shahade and Mikal Blomlie the winners of its Higher Roller and Main Event respectively.
The Game- OFC Poker Rules
- Played with two or three players
- Players are dealt five cards, to begin with and one new card in the turns to follow until they all receive 13 cards each.
- Each player must use the cards in the following format:
- 3 cards in the Top hand
- 5 cards in the Middle hand
- 5 cards in the Bottom hand
- Game play occurs clockwise and the player to the left of the dealer begins.
- Hand strengths to remember: Bottom Hand ³ Middle hand ³ Top hand
- One of primary OFC poker rules, the strength of each hand is determined by poker hand rankings.
- The middle and bottom hand need the best five-card poker hand i.e A straight and upwards.
- While the top hand requires the best three-card hand i.e A set, a pair, or a high card. Therefore, the best top hand will be a set of aces.
Understanding fouling under OFC Poker Rules
Just like in a game of Indian Rummy, certain hands combinations are not allowed and are considered void ab initio. Similarly in a game of OFC poker, for your hand to be qualified and not forfeited, your Bottom Hand ³ Middle hand ³ Top hand should be in the correct order. On failing to fulfil this basic OFC poker rule, the hand is not legal and is considered a foul.
- Is to accumulate points by winning more hands/rows. To win a row, your hand ranking needs to be higher than your opponents in the same row.
- Collect royalties on premium hands (without fouling)
- Fantasyland is every OFC player’s objective. A player is awarded a special bonus if their first hand has a queen pair or higher and also doesn’t foul the rest of the rows.
- A fantasyland bonus gives you a major advantage in the next round since you will receive all 13 cards in one go, while the remaining players play out their hands in the regular fashion.
- Receiving all 13 cards in one go certainly gives you a solid picture and helps you arrange and rearrange your cards in the best combination possible.
So what makes the game so different from other card games?
The game structure is more open
The structure of the game is definitely not as complex as a game of Hold’em or PLO. Actions are fairly simple and require you to just to arrange your cards. There’s no need to think of folding, raising or calling hands.
The game challenges you to be creative with your hand combinations yet strategic at once
Of all the variants of poker, a game of OFC poker probably gives you maximum flexibility to be creative giving your imagination the fun it needs when you want a break from all the serious poker. While it’s all fun and games, we are not taking away the strategy involved to be successful.
A game you can duel off with friends
Since it’s just 3 players per table, you can always get your friends to play on the same table. Want to enjoy a fun game of OFC with friends? Just share your table ID and have them join right in!
Engaging throughout since you play every hand
Unlike a game of Hold’em or Omaha, a player remains involved throughout a game of Open Face Chinese poker. Since there’s no option to ‘fold’ your hand and you have to play every turn, there’s a fun rhythm to it as the game keeps you engaged in every hand. No snoozes.
Also Read: What Are The Odds In Online Poker
Available at multiple stakes
A game of real money OFC comes tailor made for your bankroll allowing you to play at a stake level that’s comfortable. Choose from a variety of games.
So, dive right into PokerBaazi and explore this exciting poker variant while you have some nail biting battles with your friends as you try and outwit them!