My family is Italian and play a version they call "French Poker" with a short deck. The rules are as follows:
- 5 Card draw.
- Pot limit.
- Only 4 players can play - you must have 4, no more, no less.
- All cards from 6 and below are taken out of the deck. (If you have 5 people, you can make an exception and just take out from 5 and below but the true game is usually only played with 4 people).
- You must have at least a pair of Jacks or better to open the betting after the cards are dealt. If you need to discard a card from your opening qualifier then you can put it aside b/c you will be asked to show your opening hand if everyone folds to you. If you cannot show your opening hand and cannot prove you had at least a pair of Jacks or better then you forfeit the hand and pay the pot.
- A flush beats a full house.
- The Ace can go below the 7 for the fool's str8.
- In the case 2 players have flushes in identical numerical order then the stronger suit wins in the following order: Hearts, Diamonds, Clubs, Spades.
- A royal flush is beaten by the lowest possible str8 flush. Example: A str8 flush of 7,8,9,T,J of any suit will beat a royal flush of any suit.
- The middle str8 flush beats the lowest str8 flush.
- The Royal Flush beats the middle str8 flush.
The neat thing about this game is that there is no "unbeatable hand".