PCA 2013: Set your hand for the first Open-Face Chinese poker tournament

The PokerStars Caribbean Adventure is going to host the first ever Open-Face Chinese poker tournament this January. If you've been following the Twitter accounts of the likes of Team PokerStars Pros Jason Mercier and Daniel Negreanu or high stakes players Shaun Deeb and Scott Seiver you'll have heard about the new after-hours craze. Considering PokerStars has been at the forefront of innovation in the poker world for the last decade or so it wasn't going to take long for the PCA to stake its claim for the inaugural Open-Face Chinese tournament.

Check the PCA Schedule here and you'll see Event #41 on 7 January.

13:00 Open Face Chinese - "Re-Entry" - 30 Minute Levels - 15 Second Shot Clock $2,000 + $150


Negreanu is surely a shoe-in to play the first Open-Face tourney

It's going to be a humdinger. You know a lot of those big name players that arrive on 5 December for the Super High Roller? You can expect a lot of them to dive into this one, too. Why? Well, probably for some the reasons that Mercier spells out here.

The PCA team are still tweaking the structure now and have been liaising with the European Players Council about the event, which the PokerStars Blog has been told has been given good feedback. Reading between the lines, they're stoked about it.

If you're new to Open-Face Chinese poker we've included the rules below and if you think learning those are hard enough, imagine trying to work out how to live blog the event when the entire deck is in play each hand...

The rules of Open-Face Chinese poker

The aim is to arrange your 13 cards into three poker hands - two of five cards and one of three cards - which will beat the corresponding poker hands made by the other players.

Players, cards, stakes and deal
There are four players, each playing for themselves. A standard 52 card pack is used.

Before playing it is necessary to agree on a stake. Below I will describe the payments in terms of units; one unit can be worth whatever the players agree in advance - $1, $10, $100, etc.

A Button is used and all players play in turn.

The cards are shuffled, cut and each player is dealt 5 cards face down.

Arrangement of cards
First position now sets her first five cards into her bottom, middle and top hands, building towards a strong 13-card Chinese poker hand. You may place any number of your starting five into any of the three hands. After first position sets her initial five, second position does so, until all players have set initial five.

Each player is dealt one more card face down. Each player, in turn, now looks at their card and sets it into their bottom, middle, or top hand. This is repeated until all players have 13 total cards and a completed Chinese Poker hand.

Standard Chinese rules apply, bottom > middle > top otherwise you foul your hand.

Once you set a card into one of your three hands, it cannot be moved.

X | X | X
X | X | X | X | X
X | X | X | X | X

Showdown and scoring

1) Headshot Scoring System (most common)
Beat: 1
Scoop: 6
Foul: 6 to each player

Royalties for bottom hand:

Straight: +2
Flush: + 4
Full House: +6
Quads: +10
Straight Flush: +15
Royal Flush: +25

Royalties for middle hand: (double the bottom hand royalties)

Straight: +4
Flush: + 8
Full House: +12
Quads: +20
Straight Flush: +30
Royal Flush: +50

Royalties for top hand:

66 +1
77 +2
88 +3
99 +4
TT +5
JJ +6
QQ +7
KK +8
AA +9
222 +10
333 +11
444 +12
555 +13
666 +14
777 +15
888 +16
999 +17
TTT +18
JJJ +19
QQQ +20
KKK +21
AAA +22

is a staff writer for the PokerStars Blog.

Rick Dacey
@PokerStars in PokerStars news