Open Face Chinese Poker, more commonly referred to as OFC, is a variant of Chinese Poker. However, the game has so incredibly surpassed Chinese Poker in popularity that, these days, it’s the only variant you’ll see in online casinos.
If you want to know more about the game that’s been taking over the world, CoinPoker is the place to be. We’ll not only show you what the game is all about and how to play but also give you the inside scoop on why you should be playing on CoinPoker.
What Is OFC Poker?
Open Face Chinese poker is a variant that evolved from regular or “closed” Chinese poker but has surpassed it as the more popular variant. It’s a similar scenario to how No-Limit Hold’Em evolved from and surpassed Limit Hold’Em.
However, unlike Texas Hold’Em, OFC lacks traditional betting rounds or scoring systems. While it still utilizes regular poker hand scorings, OFC and Hold’Em (or any other variant) don’t have much in common.
How to Play OFC Poker
Traditionally played with two to four players, OFC utilizes a standard, 52-card deck. However, instead of receiving only a couple of cards, each player will initially receive five cards at once, which they have to set up face up. Then, they’ll receive one card per turn, face down, until they have a 13-card hand.
Once all cards have been dealt, players have to arrange them into three hands or rows: top, middle, and bottom. During this time of dealing and setting hands, OFC poker doesn’t allow betting or raising.
Instead, players are competing for points, which are received (or deducted) based on how well each row compares to their opponent’s. That is to say, once all three hands are set, players will compare them to see who comes out on top.
As we mentioned earlier, OFC doesn’t use the traditional betting structure but a points system instead. In this game, the winner is the player with the most points at the end of the game.
While the scoring and bonus systems might feel extensive, they’re actually pretty straightforward. Winning two out of three hands entitles you to one point or +1. Winning all three hands is called a scoop, and you would receive +6 points. However, miss-setting your cards or fouling can cause you to lose six points.
So as you can see, the regular scoring rules are straightforward as they’re usually +/- 1 or +/- 6. The one exception you’ll see is in the case when two players tie on the same row. In that scenario, depending on who’s won the other two rows, players can get +/- 2 or zero.
If the point system ended there, OFC would be an incredibly easy game to pick up. And while it’s not too difficult, there’s still a matter of learning OFC royalties and scoring bonuses.
OFC Poker Royalties and Scoring Bonuses
The two most common scoring bonuses are the Scoop, which is +6, and Fouling, which is -6.
Poker royalties and scoring bonuses in OFC came about as a way to encourage and reward players who want to take chances. That’s why the game rewards good hands in every row with different bonus points.
To receive bonus points, you have to make a qualifying hand, and it doesn’t matter if it lost or won.
For the bottom hand, the royalties go as follows:
- Straight +2
- Flush +4
- Full House +6
- Four of a Kind +10
- Straight Flush +15
- Royal Flush +25
For the middle hand, the royalties go as follows:
- Pair +2
- Straight +4
- Flush +8
- Full House +12
- Four of a Kind +20
- Straight Flush +30
- Royal Flush +50
For the top hand, the royalties go as follows:
- Pair of Sixes +1
- Pair of Sevens +2
- Pair of Eights +3
- Pair of Nines +4
- Pair of Tens +5
- Pair of Jacks +6
- Pair of Queens +7
- Pair of Kings +8
- Pair of Aces +9
Now, given that the Three of a Kind is the absolute best hand you can get in the top row, OFC will once again reward you for it. So the royalty points for Three of a Kind in the top hand are as follows:
- Trip Deuces +10
- Trip Threes +11
- Trip Fours +12
- Trip Fives +13
- Trip Sixes +14
- Trip Sevens +15
- Trip Eights +16
- Trip Nines +17
- Trip Tens +18
- Trip Jacks +19
- Trip Queens +20
- Trip Kings +21
- Trip Aces +22
All of the bonuses, no matter the overall result of the row, are paid out during comparison. Another thing to keep in mind is that royalty points can actually cancel each other out. For example, if you and another player hit a pair of eights in the top hand, you would cancel each other out and both receive zero.
Playing in Fantasyland
One of the reasons so many players get into OFC poker is for the possibility to play in Fantasyland. Since it’s an optional rule, players have to agree on it before the game starts.
For players to get into Fantasyland, they’ll need their front hand to be a pair of Queens or better. With a pair of Queens (or better) in hand and no foul in sight, the player’s next hand will be in Fantasyland.
Once a player is in Fantasyland, the button doesn’t move until they leave it and other players can’t quit out of hand when someone’s in there.
But what is the significance of Fantasyland and why do players fight so hard to get there?
Well, the player who’s in Fantasyland gets all 13 of their cards dealt to them at once and they can set their hand any way they want, leaving nothing to chance. What’s more, until everyone at the table completes their hands, the player in Fantasyland doesn’t have to expose their hands.
Since being in Fantasyland comes with huge advantages, staying there is much tougher than getting there. So to stay in Fantasyland, you have to make Four of a Kind or better on the bottom row, which can include a Royal Flush or Straight Flush. The middle row has to be a Full House or better, while the top row needs to be Three of a Kind.
To Sum Up: OFC Poker
OFC Poker is a game full of twists and turns, and all we can say is that it’s slowly but surely taking over the world. Once you know the basics of setting your hand, and with a few strategies in toe, you’ll be well on your way to playing like the pros.
And if you want to sharpen up your skills with real players of varying skills and strategies, download CoinPoker. Our lobbies are full of exciting players, high thrills, and much more. Join the community and start your poker journey today!