The Rules Of Four of a kind in Poker

The Rules Of Four of a kind in Poker

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When it comes to poker the importance of the best possible poker hand can never be emphasized enough. Now, since we are talking about good poker hands, how in the world can we not talk about four of a kind, which is also known as quad poker. Commonly regarded as the second-best poker hand, the importance of quads in poker or four of a kind can be gauged from the fact that quad poker is generally regarded as an unbeatable hand in Texas Holdem. Now, in this post, we have covered the meaning of quads in poker, rules of four of a kind in poker along with odds of flopping quads, and the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem.

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What Does Four Of A Kind Poker Mean?

Four of a kind is a type of poker hand that consists of four cards all of which belong to the same rank. Since poker hands are generally made of 5 cards in the majority of poker variants, a quad poker or four of a kind in poker generally consists of four of a kind cards along with a kicker. Vital to this, when it comes to quads in poker, a hand containing four of a kind Aces i.e. (Aces of Diamonds, Aces of hearts, Aces of spades, Aces of clubs) is the best quad poker hand by poker standards. Though, some other examples of four of a kind in poker include:

Quads in poker hand consisting of 2 of hearts, 2 of spades, 2 of diamonds, and 2 of clubs

Quads in poker hand consisting of King of hearts, King of spades, King of diamonds, and King of clubs It is imperative to understand here that to make quads in poker or four of a kind, you do not always need a pair of something for starting hands. You can also make four of a kind in poker if suppose you have been dealt Queen and 10 and the flop comes as Queen-Queen-Queen. Here, by using the 3 community cards and 1 hole card you can successfully make quad poker Queens.

Basics Of The Game

  • This game is for four or more players (best for six to eight players).
  • A 52 cards pack devoid of jokers will be used for the game.
  • Ace is always ranked high, above the king.
  • The ante is a fixed stake paid by all players to the pot before the deal.
  • Check’ implies that you have decided to let your current stake in the pot stand as it is. This stake will be equal to all the other player's stakes.
  • A ‘Bet’ or ‘Raise’ implies that you wish to add an extra stake to the pot. A minimum and maximum bet or a raise will be determined in advance.
  • Call’ implies that you wish to put enough money into the pot to make your stake equal to the highest amount contributed by any other player.‘Fold’ implies that you wish to drop out of the play for that deal and abandon the amount that you have already contributed to the pot.

Rules Of Four Of a Kind

Four of a kind in poker to say the least is definitely a rarity by all poker standards. Rightly so, when it comes to quads in poker or four of a kind, there are only 624 possible quad poker hand combinations and 156 distinct ranks of four of a kind in a 52-card standard deck. Moving on, akin to other poker hands, the quad poker or four of a kind in poker hand ranking is also governed using 2 standard rules both of which we have detailed below.

Suits are irrelevant in four of a kind

Suits are practically irrelevant when it comes to quad poker hand ranking, instead when it comes to four of a kind in poker, the rank or the denomination holds utmost importance. For instance, a quad poker hand consisting of Jack of hearts, Jack of clubs, Jack of spades and Jack of diamonds would most likely beat any lower ranked quad poker hand such as four of a kind Tens, 9s or 8s.

Tie Breaking in four of a kind

As unlikely as it may sound, but sometimes in a game of poker, two players end up holding a four of a kind or quads in poker. Here, as per standard quad poker rules, the winner is determined based on who amongst the two players holds the higher ranked quads in poker or four of a kind hand. For instance, if in a game of Texas Holdem:

Player 1 holds – King of Diamonds and King of Spades

Player 2 holds – 5 of clubs and 5 of spades

The board is – King of hearts, King of clubs. 5 of diamonds, 5 of hearts, 2 of spades

As you must have noticed, both the players have successfully completed their quad poker or four of a kind in poker hands. But, here Player 1 will effectively be declared the winner because he holds a hand of quad poker Kings, which is definitely superior to a hand of quad poker 5s. It is imperative to remember here that the kicker does come into play generally. However, it does come into play when showing a hand of quads in poker or four of a kind, which can make it a common hand for the players still at the table. For instance, in a game of Texas Holdem:

Player 1 holds – King of hearts and King of Diamonds

Player 2 holds – Ace of spades and 8 of clubs

The board – Queen of hearts, Queen of diamonds, Queen of spades, 6 of spades, Queen of clubs In the above example, after the river card has been dealt, the board has completed a four of a kind in poker. Now, here the kicker card will be used to determine the winner. The player 1 will likely use one of his kings as a quad poker kicker while player 2 will use the quad poker Ace as the kicker. Since, an Ace ranks higher than a King in this game, player 2 will win this hand.

How To Play Four Of A Kind In Poker

Initial Betting and Deals:

  • The game begins with each player placing the agreed ante into the pot.
  • The cards are then shuffled and cut, and each player is dealt one card. The card must be dealt face up.
  • All these cards must be of different ranks, in the absence of which, the duplicate card or cards and all remaining cards are re-shuffled.
  • A fresh card is dealt with all the remaining players until each player is holding a different card.
  • It is after this that the first round of betting begins.
  • The player holding the highest card begins this round and can choose to either check or bet. If he or she chooses not to and no one has made a bet yet, then other players have the option of checking or betting.
  • After a bet is made then the remaining players can either call the bet or raise the bet or fold.
  • The betting round continues until everyone has checked or until the last bet or raise has been called by all players who have not folded their hands.
  • The betting round ends as soon as the stakes of all players who have not folded are equal.
  • Please note that in this game there is an outer limit of three raises per betting round. The only option after exhaustion of these three raises is to either call or fold

Continuation of The Game and Winning:

  • The dealer is then tasked with turning cards from the top of the undealt deck, one after the other.
  • The minute the turned card matches a card held by a player, then the card is given to the player that holds the matching card.
  • Each time a player gains an additional card, the highest hand commences a new round of betting, as outlined before.
  • In case the card does not match the card of any of the players, then it is cast away to the discard pile and the card on the top of the undealt deck is turned face-up and the game proceeds in the same fashion.
  • Please remember that the players who have folded no longer receive any cards as they are out of that game.
  • The deal finds its end when a player has collected "Four of a Kind".
  • The High hand and low hand (player holding the least number of cards on the table) on the table divide the pot amongst themselves.
  • If it is not possible to do so, the odd amount will go to the high hand player i.e. the player holding the four of a kind.
  • In the case of a tie, the lower cards share the low half of a pot.
  • The only time you have a sure win (from the angle of a low hand) is when you hold the lowest triple when everyone has three matching cards.

Odds Of Four Of A Kind In Texas Hold'em

We believe that you have got a fair idea about the basic meaning of quads in poker or four of a kind, along with the common rules that govern four of a kind hand ranking. Let’s move forward and discuss the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem and the odds of flopping quads. But before delving into calculating the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem let us take a brief look at what are the basic rules of Texas Holdem.

So, in a game of Texas Holdem each player is initially dealt two cards face down otherwise known as hole cards. Thereafter, 5 community cards are dealt – 3 on the flop round, 1 on the turn round and the last one on the river round which are shared by all the players. The players are thereafter expected to make the best 5-card hand combination using the two-hole cards and 5 community cards. Moving forward in our discussion about the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem, let us now talk about the odds of flopping quads.

Odds of flopping quads

Unfortunately, the odds of flopping quads or a four of a kind in poker are extremely miniscule. To put it numerically, the odds of flopping quads or four of a kind in poker usually comes down to only 0.02%. So, if you did end up flopping quads or four of a kind in poker then you can be rest assured of having a high chance of winning your hand. However, with odds of flopping quads being 0.02% it is more of a wishful thinking. Relative to this, what do you think are the odds of flopping quads or better in poker?

Well, the odds of flopping quads with any starting hands generally comes down to = 0.03%

This in simple terms means in a game of Texas Holdem, you will roughly be flopping quads or better only once every 3,333 flops, provided you have been dealt random starting hands.

But what are the odds of flopping quads or better if a player has already been dealt a pocket pair? Here, pocket pair implies two cards both of which have the same ranking.

The odds of flopping quads or better with a pocket pair generally comes down to = 0.24%

To put it into context, you can expect flopping quads or better only once every 13,332 hands are played.

Odds of four of a kind in Texas Hold'em on later streets

Having learnt the odds of flopping quads or four of a kind in poker like the odds of flopping quads or better with any starting hands and the odds of flopping quads with a pocket pair, let us discuss the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem on the later streets.

To begin with, the most common way to draw four of a kind in poker is when a player is already holding the three of a kind on the current street. Why? Because in a standard deck of 52 cards, there are only 4 cards of each rank. So if you hold a three of a kind all you need is 1 card to make quads in poker. So, let us now calculate the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem by assuming you already hold a three of a kind.

The odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem on the turn = 1/47 = 0.021 or 2.12%

The odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem on the river = 1/46 = 0.02 or 2.17%

Now, to calculate the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem on the turn or river rounds, we will calculate the probability of not hitting the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem and subtract them by 100.

Probability of not hitting the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem on the turn= 46/47

Probability of not hitting the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem on the river = 45/46

So, the odds of not hitting four of a kind or quads in poker on the turn or river rounds = 46/47*45/46 = 0.978*0.978 = 0.956 or 95.6%

Finally, the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem by the river round = 100 – 95.6 = 4.4%So, as you can see, the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem even when holding a three of a kind are only 4.4%. Likewise, using the above calculation when we calculate the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem in turn round when the player is holding only 1 ranked card from the flop round, it usually comes down to 2.12%.

Quad Poker Strategy

Having known the odds of flopping quads and the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem, now you must be wondering how you can potentially use quads in poker as a part of your poker strategy. Well, to begin with four of a kind in poker is generally considered a fairly decent hand by poker standards. But then the four of a kind can be defeated in an event when another player is holding a superior hand such as a Royal Flush or a straight Flush. Vital to this, before playing four of a kind in poker understand the relative strength of your own four of a kind based on the odds of flopping quads and the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem.

For instance – if you have been dealt quad poker Aces then you are in an extremely strong position and henceforth you must play your quads in poker hand as aggressively as possible. However, if you have been dealt a low strength quad poker or four of a kind in poker hand consisting of 9s or lower, then you must tread carefully. Precisely because there is a high chance that someone else might be holding a stronger four of a kind or another better hand than you.

Conclusion

To conclude, hitting quads in poker or four of a kind generally indicates you are looking good for a win but then four of a kind in poker or the hand of quads in poker is also a minefield unto itself. Therefore, to win, you must play your quad poker hand as strategically as possible, and that too only after adequately considering the odds of flopping quads and the odds of four of a kind in Texas Holdem. As a bonus tip, when playing quads in poker or four of a kind, always keep a close eye on the community cards been dealt and note how other players have so far responded to your bets and raise.

Overall, Four of a kind is an interesting poker variant that traces its roots to the late 1950s when William Moore introduced it to his family back in New York. There is no reason why you should not play this low-stake, high-energy game with your loved ones over this weekend. Don’t deprive them of their dose of weekend fun! To do the same, just register on the GetMega app and start practicing the four of a kind poker hand daily.

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