In the game of seven card stud, there are five wagering rounds (not including the ante). First, the dealer deals two clockwise rounds giving each player a single card down during each round (known as hole cards) and one round with the card face up (aka “the door card”). Betting begins with the player with the highest ranking door card. This player may check (pass on wagering) or bet. If this player checks, each player clockwise is able to either check or bet when it’s their turn. If any player bets, each player clockwise may either Fold (forfeit their hand), call (equal to the wager that has been placed), or raise (increase the original wager). If any player raises a bet, each player thereafter will have the same opportunity to fold, call, or raise. The number of raises are predetermined at the beginning of the seven card stud game.
After the first round of betting is complete, the dealer deals another round of cards face up. The player with the highest hand showing face up is first to check or bet. Thereafter, the second round of betting is as per the first round. The third and fourth rounds are as per the second round. After the fourth round of betting, the dealer deals another round of cards face down. Betting is as per the second, third, and fourth rounds. After the fifth round of betting, comes “the showdown.” The showdown determines the winner of the pot. Five cards of the total seven cards are to be used for deciding the winning hand. If any time during play no one calls a bet, the bettor wins and doesn’t have to show his hand. (Don’t show other players your card even if you’ve already won, it gives away too much!)
Another variation of stud poker is Five Card Stud. Five Card Stud is the same as Seven Card Stud with the exception that only 5 cards are dealt to each player with the first and fifth cards dealt face down and the second, third, and fourth cards are dealt face up.