Fri. Sep 22nd, 2023


Poker has evolved over the years, giving rise to various exciting variations of the classic game. One such variation is Short-Deck Poker, also known as Six-Plus Hold’em, which has gained immense popularity in recent times. Short-Deck Poker is played with a reduced deck, removing the deuces through fives, leaving a deck with only 36 cards. This alteration significantly impacts hand strength and alters the dynamics of the game. In this blog, we will explore how to evaluate hand strength in Short-Deck Poker and understand the unique hand rankings that come with this variant.

The Impact of Short-Deck Poker

The removal of low cards in Short-Deck Poker has a profound impact on hand strength. Players are more likely to make strong hands compared to traditional Texas Hold’em, and as a result, aggressive play and strategic thinking become even more crucial.

Hand Strength Rankings

In Short-Deck Poker, the hand rankings are adjusted to reflect the increased likelihood of making premium hands. The hand rankings are as follows (from highest to lowest):

  1. Royal Flush: A, K, Q, J, 10, all of the same suit.
  2. Straight Flush: Five consecutive cards of the same suit.
  3. Four of a Kind: Four cards of the same rank (e.g., A-A-A-A-x).
  4. Flush: Any five cards of the same suit, not in sequence.
  5. Full House: Three cards of one rank and two cards of another rank (e.g., A-A-A-K-K).
  6. Three of a Kind: Three cards of the same rank.
  7. Straight: Five consecutive cards of any suit.
  8. Two Pair: Two cards of one rank and two cards of another rank.
  9. One Pair: Two cards of the same rank.
  10. High Card: The highest card in your hand if no other hand is made.

It is evident that the hand rankings have been adjusted to favor higher ranking hands, making strong combinations more prevalent.

Key Strategies for Evaluating Hand Strength

  • Play Premium Hands Aggressively: With the increased chances of making strong hands, premium starting hands like high pairs and big cards of the same suit become more valuable. It’s essential to play these hands aggressively and raise pre-flop to build the pot.
  • Understand Drawing Odds: With more potent hands available, drawing becomes more enticing in Short-Deck Poker. Understanding drawing odds and potential outs is crucial for making informed decisions.
  • Positional Awareness: As in any poker variant, position plays a vital role in Short-Deck Poker. Being in a later position allows you to see your opponents’ actions before making your decision, giving you a strategic advantage.
  • Beware of Flush Draws: Flush draws become more prevalent in Short-Deck Poker due to the reduced deck. If you have a vulnerable hand and notice multiple players chasing a flush, consider folding to avoid unnecessary risks.
  • Adaptation: Players transitioning from traditional poker to Short-Deck Poker should be prepared to adjust their strategies. The increased frequency of strong hands may require more caution, as players are more likely to have powerful holdings.

Download Poker App & Poker Hand Ranking

To start your Short-Deck Poker journey, you can download our Poker app, which offers an intuitive interface and various poker variants, including Short-Deck Poker.

Before you jump into the action, make sure to familiarize yourself with the unique hand rankings in Short-Deck Poker. Understanding the revised hierarchy of hands will be crucial for your success in the game.


Short-Deck Poker is an exhilarating variant that brings a refreshing twist to traditional poker. The altered hand rankings and increased likelihood of strong hands add a new layer of excitement and strategic depth to the game. By recognizing the impact of the reduced deck and adjusting your gameplay accordingly, you can enjoy success at the Short-Deck Poker tables.

So, why wait? Download our Poker app now and start exploring the thrill of Short-Deck Poker with its unique hand rankings. May the cards be in your favor!


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