For starters, while seven cards are dealt, each player forms his final hand with only five cards. He’s allowed to discard two. Secondly, each player has three cards dealt face down, and four dealt face up. Everyone can see most of your hand, but no one knows exactly what you have.
That’s where bluffing comes in. Seven Card Stud is the ultimate bluff game. When you check your hole cards (the first two face-down cards you’re dealt), make sure you’re wearing your poker face, and wearing it well. Those two cards, and your immediate reaction, will make you or break you in the four rounds of betting that follow.
The betting is done after each face-up card is dealt. That’s why the hole cards are so important. The final card in a hand of Seven Card Stud is the river. It’s dealt face down, and it can be completely irrelevant, or a last golden chance. You can decide, and that’s the beauty of the game.