Poker Strategy: Tips from the Casino World
Poker players often put a great deal of effort into separating other forms of betting from poker. Whether it's casino games, such as blackjack and roulette, sports betting, slots or bingo, savvy poker players will realise (and take time to explain to those that don't) that poker is a game on its own.
While this is certainly true for the most part, it isn't completely accurate. In fact, to simply say that poker is different from all betting activities can be potentially harmful for your success rate. Indeed, because poker is a game of unknown variables, the more information you can glean from various sources to bolster your arsenal, the better.
Subtle Ways to Bolster Your Poker Arsenal
Indeed, when you log into an online gaming platform such as 32Red, you need to have a wide array of skills when you play poker or, indeed, any game where your money is at risk. With this in mind, we've put together a collection of poker tips based on strategies commonly discussed in casino and sports betting circles:
When it comes to playing online pokies, the aim of the game is simple, ante-up, hit spin and wait for the prizes to roll in. Although there are some variables you can control, such as the number of active win lines, the coin size and your overall bet size, the main flow of each game is automated. Because of these facts there is very little you can do to influence the outcome of each session.
Fortunately, however, there are some skills you can use in the online pokies arena and these skills can then be transferred to the poker table. The first skill to note is that in order to unlock pokie jackpots and bonuses, you need to bet the max for your stake. This means opening every win line and putting the bet to the max (but not the coin size).
Doing this will give you the best chance of unlocking in-game rewards when you play slots, but it can also be applied when you're betting on all streets at the poker table. Once you decide to play a hand, you need to make sure that you make strong bets on all streets (pre-flop, flop, turn and river). Adopting this strategy will put your opponent on the back foot and make it more likely you'll win the pot.
Another casino game that can improve your poker skills is blackjack. Anyone who has heard about the MIT blackjack team or watched the Hollywood blockbuster 21 will know that you can gain an edge at the table by counting cards. Although some casino bosses will try to tell you that card counting is cheating, the simple fact is that it isn't. In a nutshell, blackjack simply involves counting the number of high and low cards as they are dealt in order to ascertain the dynamics of the deck.
For example, if you're able to count cards and work out that there is a high concentration of tens left in the dealer's shoe, you can then up your bets. Following a similar path to this, poker players can use their knowledge of cards to decipher what their opponent is holding. By comparing their own cards to the cards on the board, you can begin to get an idea of the cards your opponent has.
Although you don't have to count the cards as they are dealt, you can count players’ bets and note the cards dealt in order to ascertain the table dynamics. Once you can work out that your opponent's cards are weak, you can up your bets. Like the blackjack player, you shouldn't be concerned with what your opponent may do, you simply have to know that the cards are in your favour and a bet will win the pot.
Sports Betting Solutions
The final area of the betting world that's ripe for picking when it comes to poker skills is sports betting. The most important skill a professional sports bettor must possess when they speculate is stats and the analysis of said stats. Looking at a competitor's or team's stats, assessing their opposition's credentials, noting how many fixtures are taking place on a given day and the current league standings are all questions the canny sports bettor will ask and want answers to before they ante-up.
Similarly, this is something you should be doing at the poker table. Before you sit down you should look at each opponent, the table settings (stakes, format, poker variant) and the money in play before you start firing out bets. Indeed, if the conditions aren't conducive to success, i.e. there are too many strong players or big stacks etc, then you shouldn't ante-up.
A professional sports bettor wouldn't pick The Adelaide Crows to beat the Sydney Swans in the AFL if the stats said otherwise. Similarly, if you know you're a loose aggressive player, it doesn't make sense to sit down in a cash game where half the table also have loose aggressive stats (you'd want to play against tight aggressive players). Therefore, if you really want to up your EV in poker, you need to choose your battles carefully.
Betting, regardless of the form it takes, takes discipline, analysis and skill. Poker may be different from many other games. However, as we've shown, there is a lot you can learn from other disciplines if you take some time to look past your preconceptions.