The basic concept of Stud Poker games is that each poker player has a certain number of cards face-down and a certain number face-up. The face-down cards (or “cards in the hole”) are cards that only each player can see. The face-up cards, however, are the ones that all players at the table can see in each other player’s hand. In typical seven-card stud, each player by the end of the game has three cards face-down that nobody can see, and four cards face-up that the whole table to see. In typical five-card stud, each player has one card face-down and four cards face-up by the end of the game.
Stud games are normally played with either five or seven cards. In typical Seven Card Stud, as mentioned above, the cards in each player’s hand end up being two face-down, four face-up, and one face-down. In typical Five Card Stud, the cards in each player’s hand end up being one face-down, and four face-up. Of course, variations are endless.
It is rare that the dealer calls a wild card flat-out. “Kings are wild”, for example, would mean that if a player is dealt a King face-up, everybody can see it and be discouraged by it. Stipulations are almost always involved. For example, “Kings are wild if you get one dealt face-down” or otherwise said, “Kings are wild in the hole”. Common exceptions are Kings and Little Ones and Follow the Queen. Other stipulations could involve a player’s lowest card dealt face-down is wild, in which case if a player’s lowest card in the hole is a Three, and he also has a Three among his face-up cards, both Threes are wild. Again, it is best when a player’s wild cards require that they be face-down. That way, nobody knows who has a wild card in their hand until all is said and done.
High / Low:
This is very common in Stud games. At the end of a High/Low game, the pot is split between the player with the best hand at the table and the player with the worst hand. This is a feature that can be added to just about any Stud game, in addition to a game’s other rules. It encourages more players to stay in the game longer, although the pot gets split two ways. Players also have the option of calling “pig”, that is presenting two different five card hands with their seven cards to attempt to win both High and Low. A player calling “pig” must have both the High and the Low or wins nothing; if, for example, a player wins the Low, but not the High, then that player wins nothing and the next best Low hand wins that half of the pot. The player who calls “pig” and wins both wins the entire pot.