Updated: Dec 30th, 2020

Badugi Poker

Discover Badugi, the exciting online poker game where the lowest unique four-card hand wins. You can now play Badugi poker at top poker sites in the US. Try the game for free or make a deposit and play cash games and tournaments. You can even claim a welcome bonus when you open your account!

Best Badugi Poker Sites

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Every online gambler deserves a safe and fair place to play. Our mission at Gambling.com is to create a safe online environment for players through free, impartial and independent reviews of the best online gambling companies in the US so that you can play with confidence and security. All ratings and reviews are made independently of the operator by our team of gaming experts and with every company being fully licensed to operate in the US they can be trusted to offer fair play. We accept compensation from the companies advertised on this page and this may affect the brand positioning. We endeavour to continuously update this list so we can bring you the most current sites and the best available offers but we cannot review every site in the market.

How We Pick the Best Badugi Poker Sites

Badugi poker games are available at safe, legal online poker sites in the United States. Enjoy secure games that don’t crash and make fast deposits direct from your checking account. Here’s what the Gambling.com team look for when selecting the best Badugi poker sites:

Choice of games: Badugi poker isn’t available everywhere in the US. That’s why we check the game offerings at all legal poker rooms to find you a place to play.

Range of stakes and limits: The beauty of online poker sites is the breadth of betting limits. Learn the rules at the freeplay tables or enter a freeroll and win a share of a guaranteed prizepool. And if you like high-stakes action, the best Badugi poker sites will spread cash games to suit your budget.

Bonuses & promotions: You should be able to claim a bonus when you play a Badugi game online. Earn loyalty points and claim rewards, or opt in to a poker deal where you can claim rakeback.

Customer support: Top Badugi poker rooms should offer 24-hour customer service via live chat, email and phone. Preferably, poker players should have all three options available where they live.

What is Badugi?

Badugi poker is a lowball game that is similar to draw poker variant 2-7 Triple Draw. You receive four cards at the start of a hand. You must place bets and exchange cards in order to form the best four-card hand possible.

You can play Badugi poker online at some gambling sites in the United States. It’s usually played as a cash game with strict blind limits. However, the best Badugi poker sites will also spread tournaments.

How to Play Badugi Poker

It’s easy for any poker player get started playing Badugi online. But before you hit the tables, you’ll need to open a poker account with one of our top-rated rooms.

Remember, you can sign up to a legal US poker site anywhere in the country. However, to play in a real-money Badugi game, you must log in while physically located in the state where the site is regulated. Plus, you must be 21 or over to join any US poker site.

1. Select a Badugi poker site

First, click on the exclusive links on this page where you can sign up to a fully legal poker room in your state.

2. Install the software

Next, download the desktop client or mobile app. Make sure you have the correct system requirements when installing software.

3. Create your account

To create your account, you will need to come up with a unique username and password. You’ll also have to provide some personal information, such as name and address, email address and date of birth. You’ll also need your Social Security number.

4. Verify your email address

Click on the link sent to your inbox. Your registration is now activated and you’re free to make your first deposit.

5. Make a deposit

To make a deposit, visit the cashier and select your preferred payment option. You can also enter a promo code to claim a bonus. Remember that if it’s your first deposit, you may have to provide a scan of a recent photo ID. Just supply a scan of your US driver’s license or passport and you’re good to go.

Here’s Where You Can Legally Play Badugi Poker Online

The best Badugi poker sites are now available in several US states. To play, you’ll have to be located within these state borders when you log in to your account. Poker rooms use sensitive geolocation tools to confirm your location.

New Jersey: If you’re looking for the largest regulated poker market in America, look no further than the wealth of New Jersey poker sites. Try Badugi poker cash games or tournaments in Atlantic City, Newark or anywhere within the state.

Delaware: The tiny state of Delaware has one of the oldest regulated online poker markets. However, Delaware gamblers can now play poker against players in other regulated states as part of an interstate compact.

Pennsylvania: Pennsylvania has had legalized poker sites since 2019. The market is small but the world’s largest poker room, PokerStars, has a PA site. Better still, PokerStars is one of the leading Badugi poker sites in the world.

Nevada: Nevada was one of the first US states to legalize poker. The home of the World Series of Poker has a limited range of online Badugi poker sites, but it does share player pools with New Jersey and Delaware.

Michigan: Michigan legalized most forms of online gambling in 2019, including poker. The first legal MI poker sites are yet to hit the web. However, you should be able to play Badugi poker online at some point in 2021.

West Virginia: West Virginia joined the club with a raft of online gambling laws in 2019. The first online Badugi poker sites are likely to start launching some time in 2021.

Basic Rules to Play Badugi Poker

You can learn to play Badugi poker online in a few minutes. Plus, the best poker sites let you try games for free so you can learn Badugi rules with no risk.

Essentially, Badugi is a lowball game where the aim is to make the best, or lowest, four-card hand made up of different ranked cards with different suits. The strongest hand, therefore, is 4-3-2-A of four unique suits.

Badugi poker is also easy to learn if you’ve played a draw poker game such as 2-7 Lowball or 5-card Draw.

Posting Blinds: As in Texas Hold'em, a Badugi hand starts with blinds. These are enforced bets placed by the two players sitting to the left of the dealer. The “big blind” is worth double the “small blind.”

Deal: Every player receives four cards as a starting hand. The “under the gun” player to the left of the big blind starts the action. They can call the bet, raise or fold. There may be limits on how much you can raise, so check the type of game you’re playing.

First Draw: After the first betting round has finished, every player has the option to change their cards. Click on the cards you want to get rid of. They will be replaced with other cards from the deck. You can choose to “stand pat” and exchange no cards.

Betting: There is now a second betting round, followed by a second discard and draw. The small blind starts the betting and has the option of “checking” and placing no bet.

Second Draw: There is a second round of discards, followed by another round of betting.

Final draw: There is a final draw of cards followed by a final betting round.

Showdown: All players left in compare hands. The best hand takes the entire pot.

Understanding Badugi Hand Rankings

The aim of Badugi poker games is to get the best four card Badugi you can. That is, the lowest four cards of different suits and ranks. Therefore, the best hand in Badugi is 4-3-2-A of different suits. The ace is always a low card, while straights are ignored.

Not every hand of Badugi poker ends in a four card Badugi. Often, players will have a three-card hand, or even a two-card hand at best. Some examples:

One-card hand

These are the worst hands in a game of Badugi poker online. They may contain four cards of the same suit or rank. For example:

Two-card hand

These hands contain two unique ranks or suits. For example:

Three-card hands

These hands contain three unique suits or ranks. For example:

Badugi (four-card hand)

A Badugi is the best hand to get. It contains four cards of different ranks and different suits. The lower the cards, the better. The best Badugi is therefore 4-3-2-A of different suits. For example:

Badugi Poker Betting Options

Badugi poker typically offers one of three betting options. These can be limit, no limit or pot limit game variations. The betting options in this game are the same as that of Hold'em or Omaha Poker: fold, bet, call, raise and check:

Limit

Players can place four bets in limit Badugi: bet, raise, re-raise and cap. In a $2/$4 Badugi table, the big blind would be $2, and small blind would be $1. Like in some other poker games, the raises in the first two rounds of Badugi would be by $2 and the last two rounds would be $4.

No Limit

The minimum bet in no limit Badugi would be equivalent to the big blind, as long as there have been no bets earlier in the round. Otherwise, the minimum betting amount would be equal to the current bet amount. The minimum raise should be equal to the big blind.

For example in the $2/$4 game, where the big blind is $2 and small blind is $1, the raise has to be at least $4. There is no maximum limit in raises, which means you can even go "all-in," which is to bet your all of your money, if you want.

Pot Limit

Betting options in pot limit Badugi are similar to those in no limit Badugi. Unlike no limit games, the maximum raise is capped to the pot value in pot-limit Badugi.

Badugi Poker Betting Strategy for Beginners

Badugi is an easy game to understand if you’ve played lowball and draw games. The most important thing in Badugi strategy is to remember is that you have several draws to try and improve your hand. However, if you are miles away from forming a three-card hand or four-card Badugi, it’s worth throwing the hand away.

Remember, you don’t have to have a four-card low hand to win. You can pick up pots with a three-card hand if your opponent also has a three-card hand.

Look at how many draws your opponent is making. Are they standing pat straight away? That could be a sign of strength.

Or do they draw three cards on the last draw phase? If so, they may have paired or accidentally formed a poor hand. Your marginal hand may be good enough to continue with.

Finally, consider position. Just as in Texas Hold’em, by going last you have an awful lot of information on your opponents. Be aggressive if a lot of your opponents have discarded cards and make them pay for their speculative draws.

Remember, Badugi poker is a game of knowing which cards to keep and which to discard. Play for free online first and get used to the gameplay before committing your bankroll.

Contributors

Contributors

Hi, I'm Bill Ordine

"A longtime reporter and editor who began writing on casinos and gaming shortly after Atlantic City’s first gambling halls opened, Bill covered the world Series of Poker and wrote a syndicated column on travel to casino destinations for a decade."

Interests
  • Online poker
  • Gambling industry
  • Casinos

Reviewer since May 2020

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