Open Face Chinese Poker (OFC) is a popular and refreshing variant of poker that has become popular in recent years and even been featured in major poker tournaments. It is a game of skill which can be played with 2-3 players with a standard 52 card deck.
Also known as Pineapple poker, in this poker game, players aim to make the best 13 card hand which they must arrange in three separate rows. For this, players need to make 3 unique hands that consist of a top hand of three cards, a middle hand of five cards and a bottom hand of five cards.
Unlike regular poker games that are played with chips, Pineapple OFC poker is a points-based game. It follows a predetermined Points system based on which players earn points for making certain hands in tune with the standard poker hand rankings. Open Face Pineapple Poker follows the same hand rankings as that of Texas Hold’em and Omaha poker.
The objective of Open Face Chinese Poker is to arrange 13 cards in three poker hands in a 5+5+3 pattern. You collect points for the three hands you make in each row and the player with the maximum number of points becomes the winner in OFC poker.
- The first hand has 3 cards and should be the weakest of all three. This is called the top row.
- The second hand has five cards and has to be better than the first hand. This is called the middle row.
- The third hand also has five cards and has to be better than both the first hand and the second hand. This is called the bottom row.
If the final 13 card hand does not follow these rules, you foul and lose points for all three rows. This is known as a Dead hand in OFC poker. In this game, players are distributed cards in a series of rounds which means Poker players do not get to see all their cards at once. Therefore, the probability of making a dead hand is high.
How to Play: Basic OFC Poker Rules
- A game of Open Face Chinese Poker is played between 2-3 players.
- A Dealer button is placed in front of the dealer. So, if there are three players, the action moves clockwise around the table starting from the player to the Dealer’s left.
- After a hand is complete, the dealer button moves one spot to the left just like in Hold’em and Omaha.
- In the first round, each player is dealt five cards face down.
- Players begin to build their hand using these five cards.
- After all players have set their first five cards, they take turns to draw 3 more cards. However, they must use only 2 cards to add to their hand and discard one face down.
- A total of 5 rounds are played in which players draw 3 cards at a time and use two of them to make their hand.
- This continues until all players have finished building their final 13 card hand.
How to Determine the Winner in OFC Poker?
Once all players have set their full hands, each player compares their hands in all three rows against their opponents’. Once the scores are tallied, the player with the highest number of points wins the game.
OFC Poker: Scoring System
Open Face Chinese poker follows a pre-set scoring system to determine the winner. Players earn regular points for each row they win as well as additional points for making certain hands.
Each row is worth one point. So, if you beat an opponent in two rows, you will win one point from your opponent. This means one point for the row you lose will be subtracted from the two points you won. If you win all three rows, you score a total of 6 points. This is called a Scoop. To put it clearly,
- If you win two rows and lose one, you get one point.
- If you win one row and lose two, you score minus 1 point.
- If you win all three rows, you earn 6 points (Scoop).
- If you lose all three rows, you lose 6 points.
A fixed number of hands are typically played in Pineapple poker games, after which the winner is determined, and scores are reset. Players can then choose to start a new game or end the same.
Additional OFC Poker Rules
Besides the basic points you earn for each row, you can earn bonus points for making certain high-ranking hands such as Flush or Four of a Kind in OFC poker. These are known as Royalty Points. Royalty Points are an important aspect of the game because they can improve your original score.
Royalty points are awarded based on the type of hand you make in each row regardless of whether you win or lose that row. The stronger your hand, the more Royalty points you earn.
For example, a Flush earns you 4 points in the bottom row and 8 points in the middle row. Likewise, Four of a Kind is worth 10 points in the bottom row and 20 points in the middle row. If you make multiple hands that earn you Royalty Points, the total number of Royalty Points is added to your original score.
Below are two separate charts that show the number of Royalty Points players can earn for each poker hand they make in the top, middle and bottom row.
|Hands||Bottom hand||Middle Hand|
|Trips||0 Points||2 Points|
|Straight||2 Points||4 Points|
|Flush||4 Points||8 Points|
|Full House||6 Points||12 Points|
|Four of a Kind||10 Points||20 Points|
|Straight Flush||15 Points||30 Points|
|Royal Flush||25 Points||50 Points|
|2s||0 Points||10 Points|
|3s||0 Points||11 Points|
|4s||0 Points||12 Points|
|5s||0 Points||13 Points|
|6s||1 Points||14 Points|
|7s||2 Points||15 Points|
|8s||3 Points||16 Points|
|9s||4 Points||17 Points|
|10s||5 Points||18 Points|
|Js||6 Points||19 Points|
|Qs||7 Points||20 Points|
|Ks||8 Points||21 Points|
|As||9 Points||22 Points|
Do note that if two players make an identical hand, their Royalty points will cancel each other out and only one point will be awarded to the player with the higher hand. For example, if two players make a Full House at the bottom row, the player with the higher Full House earns one point for the row. The Royalty Points you earn will be zero instead of 6 as per OFC poker rules.
Fantasyland of OFC Poker
Fantasyland is where you want to be! This is the most exciting part of the game that rewards you special perks. A player earns their place in Fantasyland when they manage to make Queens or better in the top row without committing a foul.
This means once the current round is complete; if you enter fantasyland, you receive all 14 cards face up at once in the next round. You are now allowed to choose your best 13 card hand and discard one.
To make matters worse for your opponents, they will be dealt their cards in the regular fashion (5+3+3+3+3) in five rounds without any chance to see any of your cards. Being in Fantasyland offers a significant advantage to players by allowing them to make high scoring hands. That’s because you have the advantage of seeing all your cards at once and arranging them into strong hands.
A player can qualify for Recurring Fantasyland for the following hands if they make Queens or better in the Top row or Quads or better in the bottom row without committing a foul. If they manage to make such a hand, they can play the next hand in Fantasyland as well. As per OFC poker rules, there is no limit to the number of recurring fantasyland hands. You can stay in fantasyland if you qualify with these hands.
That’s it. This is all there is to know about OFC poker and all aspects of the game. Go ahead, try this fun and exciting variation of poker today and test your OFC poker skills and make some money.