NoMercy OFC Crash Course: 3 Tips to Master Pineapple

NoMercy OFC Crash Course: 3 Tips to Master Pineapple

Open Face Chinese, nicknamed OFC, is a poker variation that will definitely grow into you! It is a relatively young game, still in evolution, and very much appreciated by some of the most of the famous poker players and high rollers.

The beauty of the game is that there is no folding option, so you play every hand and you are always in action! The goal is to access Fantasyland, and OFC comes in multiple variations including Pineapple, Progressive, Deuce-to-Seven or Turbo. 

Below are a few important tips that will help you navigate your way through OFC Pineapple, the most popular version of the game.

OFC Pineapple Tip #1

You have to know the value of all bonuses by heart, in order to be a successful OFC Pineapple player. 

You’ll often have to make quick choices in Fantasyland, and this knowledge will help you make the best decisions. Fortunately, there are some useful tricks to rapidly learn the value of all OFC royalties.

Frequent bonuses for the bottom row include 2 points for a straight, 4 points for a flush, and 6 points for a full house. The trick is to remember these by heart and then to multiply those numbers by two to know your bonuses on the middle line.

This means 4 points for a straight, 8 points for a Flush, and 12 points for a Full House. On top of these bonuses in the middle, you will get a bonus of 2 points for making trips.

Less frequent bonuses for the bottom line are 10 points for quads, 15 points for a straight flush, and 25 points for a royal straight flush. These royalties are not as recurrent as straights or flushes, but if you start to become a passionate OFC player, you will soon know these by heart as well.

Here again, you multiply those numbers by two to know your bonuses for the middle row. Be aware that quads on the bottom line will allow you to stay in Fantasyland, but it will NOT get you to Fantasyland. Only QQ or better on top row can do that in classic Pineapple.

As for the top row, bonuses start at 1 point for a pair of sixes, 2 points for a pair of sevens, and so on, up to a maximum bonus of 22 for trip Aces.

Here are two simple tricks to quickly count your bonuses for the top line:

  1. Concerning a Pair, you simply subtract the number 5 from the numerical value of your hand. For example, a pair of 10, minus 5, will get you 5 points.
  2. Concerning a Set, you simply add the number 8 to the numerical value of your hand. For example, a set of 10, plus 8, will get you 18 points.

In all cases, these numerical values are used for the following hands:

  • Jacks = 11
  • Queens = 12
  • Kings = 13
  • Aces = 14

Another subtlety of the game is that when two players have the same hand, let’s say a Flush in the back, one will win 1 point for the line with the highest flush, but both will accumulate 4 points for the royalties, no matter who wins the line.

OFC Pineapple Tip #2

You have to understand how the game is played.

OFC rules come with a lot of specifics. For example, the game is not played per individual hand, but per complete round, which is also called a “set“. The game uses a button to determine each player’s position, and the player left of the button acts first during each hand.

The play continues clockwise until all players have acted, and every player needs to get the button once in order to complete a set. Remember that the button does not move during Fantasyland, because it is part of the preceding hand, so as long as a player is in Fantasyland, the button doesn’t change position.

Consequently, a complete set with three players can last much longer than three hands!

OFC Pineapple Tip #3

You have to know how the points are calculated.

A player’s score is calculated sequentially, starting from the left of the button. The first player counts his points against the player next to him clockwise, and then with up the player on the button. The remaining two players then count their points together.

This order is super important because just like in No-Limit Hold’em, a player cannot win more than he has in front of him. However, in OFC, his stack is updated after each calculation.

For example:

If player A has only 2 points and is first to score against player B which results in a 10-point win, he will only receive 2 points. However, he will be up to 4 points available to win against Player C, for a maximum total of 8 points. If a player loses all his points, he is considered all-in, and he will have to wait for the end of the set in order to start a new cash game.

Meet me at the OFC tables on CoinPoker to practice your skills and enjoy the action and the Fantasy ride!

– Isabelle “No Mercy” Mercier
OFC “Progressive” World Champion 

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