Omaha Poker Myths
Like all poker games, Omaha has its fair share of myths and misconceptions. Many of these originate from new players and relate to the degree of difficulty in making up a winning Omaha hand. However, when one looks at some of these poker myths in depth, it is easy to see that the reasoning behind them is flawed.
One of the most common Omaha poker myths is that it is significantly more difficult to win Omaha than a game of Texas Hold'em. This is based on the fact that a winning Omaha poker hand must consist of three community cards and two hole cards, whereas any combination of cards is permitted in Texas Hold'em. This rule does add a further challenging aspect to the game but when you consider the way in which a player makes a winning hand, you can see that the process is the same for both games.
Any astute player is hardly going to let luck and fate dictate the course of his game. Poker strategy is a vital ingredient in a poker win. Most often, making up a strong Omaha hand comes down to calculating your chances of winning. If you are smart and work at manipulating the pot in the early stages of the game, you can easily calculate your chances of collecting the money when you establish the number of outs you have. An out is a card that can potentially help you to make up a winning combination. If you translate this into a percentage and factor in the amount of cash in the pot, you can decide whether or not it is worthwhile remaining in a game based on the cards in hand.
Omaha is no more complex than other poker variations when you consider that it is a game of odds and probabilities. You have the same likelihood of winning the pot in Omaha poker as you do in a game of Texas Hold'em. Both games simply come down to the cards in hand.
Another common myth that many players think of when they consider playing Omaha poker is that one shouldn't raise before the flop. This is less than sound advice when you bear in mind that manipulating the pot before the flop takes place is the easiest time to do so. Omaha is about starting hands. The stronger your starting hand, the more you should encourage the players around you to contribute larger amounts to the pot before the flop.
Many players also approach an Omaha game with the misconception that bluffing is less important than it is in Texas Hold'em. Bluffing can be more difficult for players in Omaha but it is no less important, especially when you are playing against new or inexperienced poker players. Post-flop bluffing can help you win pots more frequently providing you have the necessary skills and a practised poker face.
Similarly, a myth that Aces never win a game is inaccurate. Most Omaha hands consist of an Ace but a player needs to play an Ace aggressively if he is going to win a game. This is true if he is playing regular Omaha or Omaha Hi Low, where Aces dominate a desirable poker hand. If a player with an Ace in hand loses, he is more likely to blame the Ace than his other cards. In reality however, the loss can be attributed to the other cards surrounding the Ace and the player's failure to use the Ace more wisely.
The best way to approach a game of Omaha poker is to be a myth breaker. Remember it is in the interest of your opponents for you to be put off your game. Study the basics, enhance your game with advanced poker strategy and leave the myths to less serious players.