Why is Omaha almost always played pot limit? (1 Viewer)

naked_eskimo

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A few players in my online group are coming around to enjoying Omaha. They insist on playing it NL preflop and on all streets. I floated the idea of switching to PLO, but no one seems interested. This got me to wondering why Omaha seems to be almost always played pot limit.

I read a few vague-ish comments online about the equities being much closer in Omaha, thus it is played pot limit to avoid preflop shove fests. Is that the basic reasoning behind it?
 

Coyote

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Omaha is an extremely volatile game, producing more than one powerful hands (on each hand) and possibly very close in rank to each other. Flopping something "good" is not adequate; your hand should be capable of re-drawing to something higher.

Pot Limit is meant to be a brake, but it's very inefficient as such. In fact, out of laziness, people may anyway bet "the pot" instead of something lower than that.

It's a bloody game that should be avoided at all costs between socially related people.:)
 

abby99

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A few players in my online group are coming around to enjoying Omaha. They insist on playing it NL preflop and on all streets. I floated the idea of switching to PLO, but no one seems interested. This got me to wondering why Omaha seems to be almost always played pot limit.

I read a few vague-ish comments online about the equities being much closer in Omaha, thus it is played pot limit to avoid preflop shove fests. Is that the basic reasoning behind it?
That's my understanding, too, but I have no idea whether it's accurate. As for NLO, I wonder whether it's because some people don't know how or don't want to calculate pot-size bets and raises.
 

Thomacetti

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Omaha is an extremely volatile game, producing more than one powerful hands (on each hand) and possibly very close in rank to each other. Flopping something "good" is not adequate; your hand should be capable of re-drawing to something higher.

Pot Limit is meant to be a brake, but it's very inefficient as such. In fact, out of laziness, people may anyway bet "the pot" instead of something lower than that.

It's a bloody game that should be avoided at all costs between socially related people.:)

I have action junkies at my table and they deal 3 NL Omaha every orbit :)
 

naked_eskimo

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I agree, re: the hassle of calculating pot sized bets, but this is online and the pot sized bet button looms large and easy. Given that, I have pointed out the pre-sized betting buttons to my players countless times and many of them insist on typing the amount rather than just use the button.

I can see not caring for the buttons in NLHE if you want to craft the perfect bet sizes, but in PLO, that pot sized bet button would help greatly.
 

detroitdad

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Omaha is an extremely volatile game, producing more than one powerful hands (on each hand) and possibly very close in rank to each other. Flopping something "good" is not adequate; your hand should be capable of re-drawing to something higher.

Pot Limit is meant to be a brake, but it's very inefficient as such. In fact, out of laziness, people may anyway bet "the pot" instead of something lower than that.

It's a bloody game that should be avoided at all costs between socially related people.:)

I think I disagree with this entire post. Well, other than lazy players betting pot
 

naked_eskimo

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We used to include 3 card omaha in our dealers choice for our home games. Since we've been playing online, and poker mavens does not offer 3 card omaha, it's been 4 card. I prefer that much more to 3 card omaha. Is 3 card omaha even a thing outside of home games? (or possibly only played by people in the home game I play in)

We also did 3 or 4 card pineapple. Crazy stuff.
 
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chrismurda

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The majority of our poker nights consist 90% of no limit Omaha hi/lo for the last 10+ years. It’s the same group of guys that we’ve been playing with since 2002. The action makes our .50-.50 game very entertaining.
 

detroitdad

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We used to include 3 card omaha in our dealers choice for our home games. Since we've been playing online, and poker mavens does not offer 3 card omaha, it's been 4 card. I prefer that much more to 3 card omaha. Is 3 card omaha even a thing outside of home games?

We also did 3 or 4 card pineapple. Crazy stuff.

Come too a meet up. You'll see crazy!
 

Highli99

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I’ve developed a love for the nuances of Omaha. The home game played online has shifted to round by round HE and Omaha and it’s my new favorite format. When I play live again that will be my preferred format unless circus games are possible.
 

ChaosRock

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IMO, to give more action to the game.

Equities run a lot closer pre-flop and even on the flop in Omaha compared to HE. Limiting the bet to pot makes the required equity to call no more than 33% (2:1 when calling a pot bet). Since many combo draws vs made hands have more equity than that, it is hard to price them out. So more contested pots.

That's MY theory anyways, LOL!!!
 

naked_eskimo

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I am discovering that I really enjoy omaha. It wasn't often used in a dealers choice, and when it was, it was a 3 card variation that I'm sure might be some bastardized version that only exists in the home game that I play.

I find myself tighter preflop with Omaha vs NLHE. I tend to be the tightest guy at the table anyway, with a vpip of about 45% on average while most others are around 70% on average. I find that I get fewer "good" starting hands in Omaha. Hands that have nut potential and redraw at the same time. As such, I tend to play even fewer hands than NLHE in some sessions. I get ribbed by the other guys for folding so much pre with them saying stuff like "how can you fold so much when you have four cards?"
 

Coyote

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I could live with 3-card Omaha. It already offers half (3 instead of 6) useable hole card combinations.

I like much more the more frugal Tight Pineapple or Cuckoo-bird Hold'em, where you have to discard the 3d hole card upon seeing the flop, and the remaining two hole cards are both obligatory to use.
 

Anthony Martino

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I wouldn't want to play NL Omaha or 3 card Omaha

I prefer pot limit and 5 card when possible (creates more action)

Pot limit "usually" prevents people from pushing everyone out before seeing a flop, which is pretty crucial for your hand as far as equities go.

You aren't going to get a slamdunk 80/20 spot preflop like Aces vs Kings in hold em, as hand strengths run closer together (although I have gotten it in preflop with 70% equity headsup and 50% equity 3-ways many times)

The players who prefer NL may feel that way since they come from a hold em background, so they don't want to be handcuffed by the pot size
 

Coyote

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I wouldn't want to play NL Omaha or 3 card Omaha

I prefer pot limit and 5 card when possible (creates more action)

Pot limit "usually" prevents people from pushing everyone out before seeing a flop, which is pretty crucial for your hand as far as equities go.

You aren't going to get a slamdunk 80/20 spot preflop like Aces vs Kings in hold em, as hand strengths run closer together (although I have gotten it in preflop with 70% equity headsup and 50% equity 3-ways many times)

The players who prefer NL may feel that way since they come from a hold em background, so they don't want to be handcuffed by the pot size
The (or a) question is, would you play this game against loved ones? :)
If yes, at which stakes?
 

DoubleEagle

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My group plays all Omaha variants as no limit. Why? Mostly because they feel keeping track of the pot is cumbersome and it slows down the game. We have tried it and everyone complains. Sure, a lot of it is they don’t understand it and are too lazy to track the pot size. Pre-flop betting is usually fairly passive. Post-flop betting much more aggressive.

By contrast, we play nightly on my Mavens site with a mix of PL games. No problems or complaints with that. Works well.
 

upNdown

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The majority of our poker nights consist 90% of no limit Omaha hi/lo for the last 10+ years. It’s the same group of guys that we’ve been playing with since 2002. The action makes our .50-.50 game very entertaining.
hi/lo is a very different game, and I'm fine with playing that NL.
 

warma

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What about fixed limit?
 

Anthony Martino

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What about fixed limit?

Fixed limit Omaha is usually played as Omaha hi/lo 8 or better in my experience. Most of the high-only games are spread as pot-limit, at least in poker rooms in my area.

Before Covid we had a fixed limit 40/80 27-game mix which included Big O, double board omaha, etc. But it hasn't returned to the room yet, and I'd probably stick with PLO anyway since there are a lot of draw games in the mix (Badugi, 2-7 Triple Draw, Drawmaha, Badacey, Baducey, etc) which have higher variance, and my expectation is higher in the PLO games as the ratio of droolers to competent players is much higher.
 

pltrgyst

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I get bored to tears by constant "pot" bets, so I once held a PLO game during which you had to state your bet amount -- no "pot" allowed. Each player received ten special challenge chips. To prevent sharpies just naming a huge bet and the dealer having to waste time counting the pot, anyone could challenge the bet amount with one of their challenge chips. If the amount bet turned out to be more than the pot, the bet became an automatic check, and the bettor had to pay the challenger $20. If not, the challenger had to pay the bettor $20.

I enjoyed that game....PLO without the "pot" copout. :cool
 

BarrieJ3

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I get bored to tears by constant "pot" bets, so I once held a PLO game during which you had to state your bet amount -- no "pot" allowed. Each player received ten special challenge chips. To prevent sharpies just naming a huge bet and the dealer having to waste time counting the pot, anyone could challenge the bet amount with one of their challenge chips. If the amount bet turned out to be more than the pot, the bet became an automatic check, and the bettor had to pay the challenger $20. If not, the challenger had to pay the bettor $20.

I enjoyed that game....PLO without the "pot" copout. :cool
I like this a lot, as I come from a different gaming background so variations and house rules I dig.

On the other hand, (and I've played such little poker), my favorite part is headsup and I get to have a yelling match of Pot Po Po Po Po Po Po Po Pot. As long as it's not against @k9dr, in which case I might as well head over to make myself another drink.
 

Coyote

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A matter of perspective. Reread @Coyote's posts. Friendships are a relationship that ruins Omaha.
I guess it can work both ways:D
PLO (and many other, even more volatile games) could be fun if played at stakes much lower than "normal" games. If you like that kind of fun, that is.
 

naked_eskimo

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We ran a small (4 handed) ring game of NLO last night. I did pretty well. Made just under $500 in a .50/$1 game. I did read through most of Pot-Limit Omaha Poker by Jeff Hwang over the last couple of days. He advocates a super tight approach. He even recommends never chasing king high flushes or low ends of straights. Not sure I agree on the king high flush part, but been burned a few times on the sucker end of the straight in Omaha.

I had to lay down a flopped set twice last night. It's a tricky game and I don't think some of my new NLO enthusiasts are making the proper adjustments. One of the players had a vpip of 100% for the whole night. Now it was only 4 handed, but still...

Enjoying Omaha so far.
 
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