At one time 5-card stud was the most popular poker game being dealt. It was started in New Orleans and moved up the Mississippi on the steamboats and moved out west with the gold rush and the end of the Civil War. The game is rather simple to play and does entail some bluffing, as the hand possibilities are easy to read. It is played with one card dealt face down and four cards dealt face up. The betting starts after the first two cards are dealt and continues after each of the other three are dealt. This game is the game that is played in the movie Cincinnati Kid.
Now days the online casinos offer it less and less. Some Live casinos will still set a table on certain days or on special days. The game is becoming harder to find and many new players to poker have never played the game. The best starting hand is a pair of Aces or any other high pair. Pairs of higher value do have a tendency to hold up in this game. Three of a kind is a monster hand and any hand bigger than that would be a super monster. Five-card draw poker replaced this game in popularity, as it allowed more betting and more gambling as each player got to see more cards to make a hand. Lack of betting possibilities is what helped to kill off 5-card stud. Seven-card stud finally replaced both in most card rooms and this game is still one of the casino favorites.
There is a romance about 5-card stud and it was favored in the movies for a long time as it is relatively easy to understand and follow the action as a hand is played out.
Five-card stud is a fine game for learning to play poker and hand values. The lack of complications makes it an easy game to quickly learn and play. The other feature of this stud game is the art of the bluff. Bluffing is part of poker and stud is a game that a good bluffer will do well at against other players at the table. If you do not have a pair at the end of the five cards it is very hard to call a large bet with just an ace high. Four cards to a flush showing is tough to call without a pair.