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In draw poker played for high and pai gow poker, the bug is considered to be an ace, unless it can be used as a missing card to complete a straight or a flush, in which case it becomes the highest card which can complete the hand.
- K-K-Joker-5-2 is a pair of kings with an ace kicker.
- A-A-Joker-9-4 is three aces.
- A♥ J♥ 8♥ 3♥ Joker is a flush, ace-king high, the bug becoming the K♥, even if another player holds the "real" K♥.
- 7-6-5-4-Joker is an eight-high straight, the bug becoming an eight rather than a three since both complete the straight but the eight is higher.
- J♣ 10♣ 8♣ 7♣ Joker is a straight flush, jack high, the bug becoming the 9♣.
In California lowball, the bug is the lowest unpaired card in a hand. For example in 8-6-4-3 plus the bug, the bug becomes an ace; in A-2-3-5 plus the bug, the bug becomes a four.
Holding the bug greatly increases the power of certain drawing hands. For example, playing for high, a natural four-straight such as Q-J-10-9 drawing one has nine outs to complete the hand, any king or eight or the bug. By contrast a four-straight including the bug can have as many as sixteen outs to complete the straight - Q-J-10-Joker can catch any ace, king, nine, or eight.