What Is Particularly Important When Playing Poker In A Real Casino
Most beginners today make their first experiences playing poker on the Internet and later decide to participate in a live poker tournament. Since there are many differences to consider between online poker and the live poker game, we have put together a short guide for you that explains what is particularly important when playing poker in a real casino.
The advantages and disadvantages of live tournaments over online tournaments
You have an easier read of the opponents, as you can observe their tells, i.e. their behaviour, gestures and facial expressions
They can send signals and thereby create pressure on the counterparts
The game is slower and you have more time to think, consider and calculate
You can be more easily seen through by your opponents if you betray yourself through obvious behaviours
You can get pressured and nervous yourself watching everyone at the table
You cannot use utilities and odds calculators
Online, a computer algorithm ensures that the chips are neatly sorted and represented by nice graphics and numbers. In live poker, there is no one to sort your chips, count them and tell you what your budget is. So you should separate your chips neatly into stacks and always keep track of them so that you can make the right play.
If you keep order, you will be able to make calls, bets and raises more easily and quickly and not hold up the game unnecessarily.
Hands-on the Internet go much faster because things like shuffling cards, organizing and counting chips, and other procedures are automated by the computer. In live poker, however, a human takes over these tasks, so everything takes a little longer. Additionally, there are more distractions for the players at the live table and so a round of play usually takes much more time than in the online poker room.
A hand in live poker can last up to 10 minutes or even longer. In the online version, you play about four times as many hands in the same amount of time.
Betting chips is a point where many new live players make mistakes. Online, “betting” just means clicking a button, whereas in live play you have to count out your raised size and play all your chips over the betting line.
You should also make sure that betting chips must be done in one fluid motion. Separate bets where you reach back to the stack are called a “string bet” and are prohibited in most casinos.
Watch the action
In live poker, there is no beep to let you know that it’s your turn. You certainly don’t want to be the player who holds up the game because you didn’t realize it was your turn, do you? Therefore, you should be attentive and act immediately when it’s your turn.
The same applies to the forced bets in the game: you should play them without being asked by the dealer, so as not to slow down the game unnecessarily, since blinds and ants are your responsibility.
It is your responsibility to keep track of your cards. So be careful that the dealer doesn’t accidentally collect your hand along with the dead cards. A chip or card protector can help to make it clear to the dealer that you are still in the game.
You should also keep in mind that in live poker players are sitting right next to you. Accordingly, under no circumstances should you allow insight into your cards and distribute free information.
We won’t go into depth about poker tells at this point, but you should keep in mind that there is other information available to you that you can use to make decisions about your opponent’s strengths and weaknesses when you are sitting directly across from them.
Mastering this skill can take years, but there are many good books on the subject, such as Mike Caro’s “Book of Poker Tells”. This and others give you insight into the material and what to look for in tells.
The only way to learn the intricacies of playing live poker is to jump right into the game. Live poker offers a completely different experience than gambling on sites on the Internet and only through live poker experience and a lot of willingness to learn can you also become a good live player.
Live Poker Tournament Strategies
Live tournaments also require you to think about buy-in levels, blind structure, and tournament modes. Since live poker is slower than online poker and thus you can play fewer hands per hour, the variance increases. This results in more conservative bankroll management that you need to adapt. When playing a live tournament, you should have 100 times the buy-in as your bankroll to easily cushion the swings that come up.