What is Open-Face Chinese Poker? It’s the fastest-growing card game in the world of millions of poker players! Learn the rules and strategy from the first World Championship of Open-Face Chinese Poker Isabelle “No Mercy” Mercier. Then, join the fun packed with the thrills and challenges of this unique and exciting poker game.
Play Every Hand! Discover the Open-Face Chinese Poker
You can often hear the question – What is Open-Face Chinese poker? The simplest way to explain it is that it’s more exciting than Texas Hold ’em. Don’t frown just yet, because, within the game, you can find everything you love about poker — cards, intellectual challenge, risks, rewards, and, of course, the money. And while you must fold most of your hands in Texas Hold ’em, in Open-Face Chinese poker, you get to play every single one!
“In Open-Face Chinese we get to play every hand! It’s the beauty of the game, always in action!” – Isabelle Mercier
What is Open-Face Chinese Poker?
Open-Face Chinese poker, often called OFC, is a variant of closed-face or regular Chinese poker. OFC poker has become so popular in the US over the past decade that it has surpassed standard Chinese poker. As people often compare Hold ’em to other poker variants, Open-Face Chinese poker does not have betting rounds. However, its similarity is that it uses the standard poker hand rankings.
Because of the differences, including that OFC does not use chips or betting traditionally, it’s often deemed not a poker game. Instead, it uses a scoring system expressed in points.
Like in many poker games, OFC uses a standard deck of 52 cards, and the dealer hands them out to players. But, because each player gets 13 cards, it is played with a maximum of four players at a time. Each player will arrange hands into three separate rows:
- the top
- the middle
- the bottom
The middle and bottom hands are made of five cards, and the top one is out of three cards. By the end of the game, each player’s hand is compared to its counterpart from the opponent. So, your top hand will be compared to your opponent’s top hand, and so on. Ultimately, the player may win or lose points, depending on the ranking of all three hands.
How Does Open-Face Chinese Poker Work?
The primary objective of Open-Face Chinese poker is to make a qualifying hand. If we look at the rules, the top hand must be the weakest ranking of the three, the middle row has to be better than the top row, and the bottom row has to be the highest ranking.
Players arrange hands one card at a time, which often means the hands don’t always qualify. In other words, the bottom hand is stronger than the middle hand. As a result, it’s automatically marked as foul. Yes, that is the term. Each hand that fails to qualify is fouled and loses six points. There is no fine, but the score will always be zero, which means they will win even if your opponent has weaker hands.
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Open-Face Chinese Poker Gameplay – Aiming for the Fantasyland
If you look at regular Chinese poker, the dealer hands over all 13 cards to each player face down. Thus, players do not expose their cards until the final round.
In contrast, in OFC poker, the dealer hands over five cards in the first round, one card at a time, and all the following. Players arrange the hands on the table face up, hence the name, Open-Face Chinese poker.
The game starts with the player to the left of the dealer button, which serves only to mark the clockwise progress of the game at the table. The button moves around the table after each round. The only exception is when a player enters Fantasyland. This means you have to reach a score for it. For instance, it requires two queens and higher on top, four of a kind, and better on the bottom.
After the cards are dealt, the next player has to wait for the first to place all five cards on the table face up. Upon setting the cards into rows, they cannot be changed, which means however the player chooses to place the cards, they will stay as the final move.
From there, each player is dealt one card, and they have to place it on the table. After the last card is placed on the table, the hands are compared to determine the winner based on the score.
In conclusion, OFC poker is a fun, exciting, and complex game worth exploring. Unlike other poker variants in OFC, you get to play every hand! While at it, you sharpen your skills and perceive poker entirely differently.
Try Open-Face Chinese poker online and discover a new and exciting poker version!