Short Deck In Poker

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Some Tips for Getting into Short Deck Poker This game is one of the hottest in the world right now, dominating high roller action with the likes of Triton series hosting huge games. Check out these introductory tips if you want to start crushing the games. Click to view the Post. The Short Deck Poker Rules Change all of your Odds with a Flush Draw In a full-deck NLHE game, your chances of flopping a flush draw with your suited hand is 11%, a chance that drops to 9.5% in the short deck game. Short-deck poker (also known as six-plus hold'em) is a new variation of traditional Texas hold'em that mostly follows the same rules albeit with a significant difference. Short-deck poker uses a.

Six Plus Hold’em (6+), also called Short Deck Poker, is a community card poker game based on Texas Hold’em. While most of the rules are the same, there are three main differences between the two. In 6+ Hold’em, the cards from deuces through fives are removed to make the total deck just 36 cards instead of the usual 52.

Another difference is that because there are fewer cards in the deck, the hand ranking change: a Flush beats a Full House, and in most variants of Short Deck, a Set (or Three-of-a-Kind) is ranked higher than a Straight. Aces are played as both high and low, they can be used as a five to make a low-end Straight A6789 or above a King to make a Straight of AKQJ10.

This makes the game a lot more action-packed as the cards are higher, and there are more playable hands. Equities run very close to each other so the luck factor increases, and naturally this attracts a lot of recreational players.

Short Deck Poker Online

Why You Should Learn Six Plus Hold’em

Over the past few months, the game has grown exponentially with both online and land-based operators offering this variant. It is available online on the iPoker Network which was one of the first international online poker networks to offer this variant. The network comprises of several rooms including bet365, William Hill, Titan Poker, Betfair, and several other rooms. Games are available at stakes starting from as low as 0.02/0.04 to all the way up to 0.50/1.

Americas Cardroom also recently added this game to its offering. In fact, it is the only site that is known to spread Short Deck online poker tournaments.

PokerStars, the world’s largest online poker site, is soon expected to launch Six Plus Hold’em as well.

As far as strategy is concerned, not many resources are available, and the perfect strategy is still being developed.

In our last article, we talked about hand rankings and explained briefly why a Flush is ranked higher than a Full House and why Straights happen more frequently. We also talked about the odds and probabilities and compared the odds of some of the hands between Short Deck and traditional Hold’em.

In this article, we’ll be talking about what hands you should be playing and some of the tips about Six Plus Hold’em that you must know.

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Selecting Your Starting Hands

Before we talk about the strategy, it is important to understand how the hand strengths of Six Plus Hold’em compare to regular Hold’em. Since the low cards are taken out, the likelihood of getting dealt premium hands increases not just for you but also for your opponents.

As mentioned in our previous article, the odds of getting dealt Aces is almost double in Six Plus Hold’em than it is in regular Hold’em. Also, hands like other pocket pairs and premium hands like AK will be dealt more often. Playing pocket pairs like Queens or Jacks can become a little tricky as you are more likely to run into Aces or Kings.

On the other hand, the value of pocket pairs increases a lot if you are playing on a site where sets are ranked higher than Straights. Unless the board is paired or there are three cards of the same suit, Sets are the nuts and they play very well as there is no way for your opponent to know if you have hit a Set, unlike a Straight which can be easily spotted on the board.

Suited hands are a lot stronger than non-suited hands as they are basically the nuts in this game, since Flushes beat Full Houses. In fact, any Ace-high suited hand is playable from most of the positions, as if you do hit a Flush, the majority of the times it will be the best hand. Hands like suited QJ, JT, T9 or even 87 do very well in this game. In fact, JT suited is a slight favorite versus AK offsuit and almost a coin flip versus suited AK.

However, hands like AQ, AJ, AT offsuit, which are considered strong in regular Hold’em, are not so strong in this game.

So basically the type of hands you would want to play are premium pocket pairs and those which can make Sets, Full Houses or Flushes.

Tips for Beginners

Now that you know what hands to play, here are a few basic tips that you must remember while playing 6+ Hold’em:

Know the rules

Needless to say, if you’re switching to 6+ from Texas Hold’em, you must know the hand rankings. Unlike Texas Hold’em, where Full Houses beat Flushes, in 6+ Hold’em Flushes are almost the nuts (unless your opponent hits Four-of-a-Kind or better). Also, in many Short Deck variants that are offered online, Trips (a.k.a Three-of-a-Kind) beat Straights.

Also, you must remember that Aces can also play as fives when making a low-end Straight. Lots of players playing Short Deck for the first time make a mistake by folding a Straight because they do not realize that they have hit a Straight.

Straights are very common

The reason why Straights are ranked lower than Trips is because Straights are easier to make. And the reason why Straights are easier to make is that there are fewer cards in the deck, which increases the probability of hitting a Straight.

In 6+ hold’em, the probability of hitting an open-ended Straight by the River is close to 48% (almost a 16% higher probability than in Texas Hold’em).

However, you must remember that if you are playing on a site where Sets beat Straights, then you are basically drawing dead if your opponent has a Set or Trips. If there are more players in the hand, folding a Straight is not a bad play as there is a good chance that at least one of your opponents may have hit a Set. So Straights need to be carefully played.

Play pocket pairs aggressively

Since a Set is stronger than a Straight in this variant, you should play pocket pairs more aggressively and not be afraid to call 3-bets with any pocket pair. The probability of hitting a set once a Flop is dealt is 18% compared to 12% in regular Hold’em. Once you hit a Set, try to maximize your profit by overbetting since your opponents won’t know that you have hit a Set. You need to only worry about paired boards (that can give your opponent a higher Full House or Quads) and suited boards (which can give your opponent a Flush). Even keeping this in mind, Sets will often get you paid off most of the time.

However, you must also keep in mind that your opponent has a higher chance of hitting Sets too, so try to avoid Set over a Set.

Flushes are hard to hit

Flushes might rank higher than Full Houses but that is because they are harder to hit. Unlike Texas hold’em, where you still have 9 outs to hit a Flush, in Six Plus Hold’em you only have 5 outs (which is close to 32% by the River).

However, that does not mean you should not be playing suited cards at all. In fact, the value of suited cards in Short Deck Hold’em is a lot higher. Any suited Ace is playable from most positions and once you hit a Flush, you are likely to get paid as you almost always have the nuts.

Don’t overplay big pairs

Although we advocated for playing big pairs aggressively preflop, in Six Plus Hold’em, top pair (or even an overpair) with top kicker does not have the same value as it has in regular Hold’em. Even if you are ahead on the Flop, it is very likely your opponent may improve his/her hand by the River. Hence it is advisable to not overplay one pair hands after the Flop. Going all-in on the Flop with a pocket pair should be avoided as should betting for value on the River with most one pair hands.

Those who follow the offline poker industry have noticed that this year the interest in Short Deck Hold'em, known as Six Plus Hold'em, began to grow exponentially. Basically, because of two very advertised events of the Triton Super High Roller Series. In its schedule, half of the tournaments were in fact played in this poker modality, and Jason Koon and Phil Ivey names emerged among the Asian players who won the Short Deck tournaments.

Online poker players can now play high stakes games of Short Deck Hold'em, but let's first study the rules and strategies.

Short Deck Hold'em history

Macau is known as the birthplace of 6+ Hold'em. The first information about it appeared in 2014. Quickly, the game became popular in Asia. The Short Deck Hold'em rules are simple and the tables offer more action compared to regular Texas Hold'em.


In 2015, Tom Dwan and Phil Ivey posted a video talking about Short Deck. 'Durrr' mentioned that he was bored of playing regular hold'em. After these comments, the term 6+ was now known in the West.

Some rooms added this variant to their lobbies, but only the iPoker network maintained it. Right now during peak time maybe 10 tables of 6+ Hold'em can be found in stakes from NL10 to NL100. But generally speaking, Short Deck Hold'em remained just as a purely Asian fun.

Short Deck Hold'em rules

There are three main differences between with Texas Hold'em (which is played with a 52-card deck):

  • The cards from 2 to 5 are removed from the deck, for a total of 36 cards in the game.
  • The hand ranking changes: set beats straight, and a flush is better than a full house.
  • The A can be used for any straight both as a low or high card (as a 5 for example)

Strategy for Short Deck Hold'em

Even though the game became popular about 4 years ago, there has been not much development of theory or strategy of Six Plus Hold'em. As a matter of fact, no support software has been released for it. Therefore, even regulars have to play 'old school style,' relying on general experience and knowledge of poker mathematics.

The basis for building a strategy for Short Deck Hold'em is keeping in mind that because there are fewer cards in the deck, many probabilities change with the same number of outs. One out equals 3%:

Tips for playing Short Deck Hold'em

  • No need to overplay top pair / top kicker - in Six Plus Hold'em the draws probability is significantly higher, so TPTK is actually not a very good hand here, especially in the last streets;
  • Be aggressive with strong projects - this as a result of the previous paragraph. Semi-bluffs with a strong draw are more effective in Short Deck. You either immediately win the pot, or you will find yourself playing with excellent odds of improving your hand;
  • Be careful with weak kickers - hands like top pair, two pairs and straight are not that strong in Short Deck. You should adjust your pre-flop ranges according to this. In comparison to traditional Texas Hold'em, you should be looking for 2 strong cards as kicker instead of one. That is if A8o is a good hand to raise pre-flop in a 52-card deck game, in Six Plus hold'em it's better to raise minimum with ATo;
  • Call 3-bets with any pocket pair - since a set is now stronger than a straight and the probability to get one in the flop is 18%, any pocket pair is reasonable to defend against a 3-bet;
  • Keep in mind the new hand rankings - play carefully with suited boards, and also straight draws. For example, if you have a set, you should only be afraid of flushes so straight draws must not concern you.

Odds table for Short Deck Hold'em

Where can I play high stakes Short Deck Hold'em games online?

Recently we added a new room that answers this question - PokerKing Asia. This new Asian poker application has Short Deck hold'em tables from $80 to $300. If you want to know more information about this room, please read our room review and FAQ.

We must mention that the action at the 6+ tables include very weak lineups. Is not common to see regular players at Short Deck, and in PokerKing Asia they are even rarer.

Any general questions about PokerKing Asia, please contact our team:

What Is Short Deck In Poker

Telegram @iamlonga or Skype: rodion_longa

To request a test account or gaming account, make a deposit or have more information - write to Juan:

Telegram @wpdspanish or Skype: live:wpd.spanish

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Short Deck Poker Online

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