Poker is normally played with the highest-ranked hand winning in the showdown. But there are also some versions of poker games wherein the pot is split in the showdown. The player with the highest hand (High) wins one half, the player with the lowest hand (Low) wins the other. This form of poker is played as Seven Card Stud High-Low Poker and Omaha High-Low Poker. The highest hand is determined, as usual, according to the ranking of the hands, starting with the Royal Flush as the highest combination.
For the determination of the low there is an important restriction: A low is only accepted when a player has five cards lower than the nine, whereby the ace is counted as one for the low. (But the ace is still the highest card for the high; it holds a dual position). A straight with eight high or lower can so be the high, just a straight, or the low, namely eight high. This is an important difference to plain low games, where straights are not accepted as low. If no player has five cards lower than nine in the showdown, then there is no low and the high wins the whole pot.
Betting rounds in Omaha Hi/Lo are the same as in Omaha Hi, in Seven Card Stud Hi/Lo they are the same as in Seven Card Stud. The only difference is in the showdown. Seven Card Stud Hi/Lo and Omaha Hi/Lo are mostly played as limit games, but they can also be pot limit games.
A few important tips:
1. If there are not at least three cards eight or lower on the board in Omaha Hi/Lo, a low is not possible.
2. In Omaha, you can use the same hole cards for the high and the low.
3. If the amount of the pot is uneven, the high hand gets the extra chip every time.
Here are two examples of how the ranking of the Low works:
A player has A-2-3-4-9: This is not a low
One player has A-2-3-4-8, another has 3-4-5-6-7: The second player wins, because his 7 is lower than the 8.