Omaha Hi/Lo, or also known as Omaha 8 or better, is the second form of poker that comprises HORSE. Omaha 8 is a split pot poker game, meaning at the end of the hand, the pot may be split. It is a much different poker game then No Limit Hold Em, in fact many No Limit Hold Em players say their worst poker game is Omaha 8. Every hand of Omaha 8 has a best high hand and hands may also have a low hand. If there was a qualifying low hand, the high hand and the low hand would split the pot.
If the same player had both the best high hand and the best low hand, he would “scoop” the whole pot. A low hand is any hand with 5 cards that rank 8 or low, without a card being duplicated. The best low hand is a-2-3-4-5, which is known as a wheel. In Omaha 8, every player is dealt 4 cards. The hand then plays out exactly like No Limit Hold Em. The only different then between Omaha 8 and No Limit Hold Em is that in Omaha 8, players MUST use 2 cards to make their best high hand and must use 2 cards to make a low hand. In other words, if a player has A-2-2-3 on a board of 10-J-Q-K-2, the player does not have a straight because he cannot use 2 cards to make a straight. Instead, his best high hand would be a set of 2′s, since he would use 2 2′s from his hand.
How to play
The goal of Omaha 8 is to play hands that can win both the low half of the pot and the high half of the pot. Imagine a board of 5-4-3-K-Q with no 3 cards of the same suit, what would be the best possible hand? A-2-6-7 would be the best. The A-2 would be used to make the best low hand, and the 6-7 would be used to make the best high hand.
Good starting hands in Omaha 8 include hands like A-A-2-3 and A-2-3-4 or A-A-K-2. The common strategy is to pick hands that are aiming towards the low half and accidentally win the high half as well. For example, if a player plays a hand like A-K-Q-J, there is no way he can win the low half of the pot, if there is one. It is impossible. But if he plays a hand like A-3-5-7, he may hit a lucky flop like 2-4-6 and have the best high hand and low hand.