Poker combinations: what are combos for in online poker?

Surely more than once, during the broadcasting of a poker game on TV or in the course of a game on a platform you did not know before, you have seen the expression "combo". Far from what it may seem, "combo" refers to the combination of cards that you have been dealt and with which you will have to try to form the best hand together with the community cards.

A combo in poker can be considered a synonym for "hand", since it refers to the combination of poker cards that a player has been dealt to play. However, it is a term that accepts more meanings and can have some nuances depending on the context of the player and the circumstances of the game.

Combo in poker: what is it and what is its function?

We understand by "poker combinations" those mixtures of cards that have been assigned to a player to play poker. It is also called "hand", a term that can also refer either to the cards that the player has in his possession (own cards) or to the project that he has managed to bind (the combination of own and community cards that he has used to beat the opponents in the showdown, for example).

As a general rule, combos in poker refer to the player's hand. It is, therefore, an expression that does not imply the accumulation of chips, points or any other element, as it can happen in other card games.

In spin poker games, where multipliers can be used, the word "combo" can appear to refer to the sum of the winnings of the game together with the additional incentives added as a consequence of the application of such multiplier.

In short, we can say that a poker combination can have one meaning or another depending on the context, the type of game and the circumstances of the round at the time the expression appears.

Poker combinations you should know

If we take the original meaning of poker combinations and focus on the mix of cards that the player uses to form the best hand, then we have to talk about hierarchies and card combinations that can lead the player to victory.

Both in a Texas Hold'em or Omaha game, we must take into account the order from highest to lowest of these poker combos according to their value:

  • Royal Flush.
  • A K Q J 10
  • Straight Flush.
  • 8 7 6 5 4
  • Four of a kind.
  • 7 7 7ª 7 3
  • Full-house.
  • 8 8 8ª 5 5ª
  • Flush.
  • K 10 8 3 2
  • Straight.
  • 10 9 8 7 6
  • Three of a kind.
  • 10ª 10 10 6 3
  • Two pair.
  • 9 9ª 4 4 2
  • Pair.
  • K K 9 5ª 3
  • High card.
  • Q 9ª 8 5ª 4

"Poker combos" in their most playful sense

The word "combo" is often used to refer to the union of one element with another. It is a pejorative term that comes from "combination" and that in poker is usually used to refer to the combination of cards.

However, it is also often used as an indication that additional elements have been added to your payoff to multiply it. This is quite common in Sit & Go games, frantic rounds where a few players fight for a bounty to which a random multiplier may be added to increase the prize.

On those occasions, we talk about other poker combos. It is necessary to differentiate a "combo" of hand from a "combo" of reward. Hence the importance of paying attention, especially when extracting written information, to the context and circumstances of the game.

Poker combinations: their importance at the strategic level

In poker, combos are fundamental in any self-respecting strategy. Knowing how to count them, define them and use them to penetrate our opponent is essential to make the right decisions in the game.

To extract the maximum possible information, it is necessary to have made a preliminary observation of the player and to have tried to analyze the game of our opponent. It is important to have an approximate idea of the options he has and the way he approaches the game in each turn. This allows us to open our own range of combos to try to elucidate what kind of cards he may have and how he can use them, something vital for our strategy.

It is also important to talk about blockers, both preflop and postflop. Here, we understand by poker combos the combinations of cards that the opponents may have, taking into account that the preflop game is very opaque, but we know that the cards we have are not going to be repeated.

This data can be used for our calculation of odds and outs postflop, where we can determine how many blockers can be on the table. Let us understand by blocker that card that has come out or that is going to come out and that cannot be used for any strategic forecast.

The blockers have a direct relationship with the calculation of outs, which can allow us to deduce which cards are still to come out and what are the probabilities of being able to finish our project. Normally, in postflop play there are more combos as there are fewer blockers. Something that can become more complex when talking about suited combos (or suited cards), where the suits are fundamental.

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