Playing poker on the internet can be a lot of fun, not to mention rewarding. However, if you are more used to playing in a bricks casino, or if you have actually never played anywhere but in the living room with a group of buddies, an online casino might be something of a shock.
Some of the differences between live casinos and thus located online are fundamental, even expected. Some of them may seem like bad poker etiquette, but it is simply an expected online behavior.
Think about it this way: people often act different on the internet in general. They may not change an enormous amount from the way they are in their day to day lives, but people are more daring online. They do things they may not otherwise do.
The same is true about players in online casinos. Understanding some of the traits can actually help you win. For example, players online are prone to calling you more than they would if you were playing in a bricks casino. Because people feel braver and more confident behind an anonymous screen, players are also more apt to argue, squabble, and even talk smack to their fellow players.
Smack talking and frequently calling are not the only differences between bricks casinos and online casinos. Quite often, the seemingly smallest differences are actually the largest.
On the internet, whether you are playing poker, Blackjack, roulette, or anything else, you typically are not going to know whether you are playing with Steve or Bob or Bill. Online monikers are necessary, screen names, nicknames, et cetera. The good players have them and the bad players do as well. BluffMaster. King-of-Hold-Em. RunnerRunnerMaster. In some ways, screen names are another way of talking smack. They are designed, sometimes, to intimidate other players.
That is why, no matter what, you really cannot pay attention to the screen names you see in an online poker room. Just because someone claims to be a master at bluffing means he or she really is. Strange names abound and most of them are quite deceptive. Disregard them. Focus on the player, not the players screen name.
As we briefly saw in the first post in this series, people who play in casinos based on the internet are typically prone to calling much more often than the players in bricks casinos. This can and will get frustrating for most of you at one time or another. Depending on the way you yourself play the game, it will be more frustrating for some than for others. There is, unfortunately, no way to take all of the frustration out of this unfortunate aspect. However, the good news is that there are some things you can do to defend yourself against it.
Now, to be completely honest, there is no real way to actually defend yourself, as a player, against other players who call too often. You have to realize that nothing you do is likely to change the players with this habit.
What you can do is be a good player yourself. You may get rivered or drawn on much more often than you would like, but that does not mean you are playing wrong. It definitely doesn’t mean you should pick up the habit. What you should do is punish them when you can, solely with the way you play.
One thing you need to learn how to do when playing poker on the internet in an online casino is how to spot tells. In a bricks and mortar casino, of course, this is far, far easier. Many online players believe that they do not give away any tells; similarly, a lot of online players also believe that they will not be able to spot an opponents tells. Neither of these things are true.
You may not be able to see your opponents faces, but you can judge their actions. For instance, pay attention to how quickly or slowly the other players bet. How long does it take them? A fast bet is generally indicative of a strong hand, while a player who is slower to bet is likely judging how well they can bluff a not so great hand.
All right, card sharks, we have officially come to the end. Here we will chronicle the fifth and final key difference you will observe when playing poker in an online casino. You see, there are some things you need to be careful about when you are playing on the internet, especially as it applies to the games you choose to play and the rooms you choose to frequent.
The most common mistake online players make is going to low limit games and trying to be sly and tricky. Dont do that! Most of the time, it is not really worth the effort. $3/6 games, $5/10 games do not waste your tricks and strategies on such low limits.
You can typically, rightfully assume that the players in these games are new or at least amateur. You do not need to get too smart with them, you do not need to bluff with them. Save your real skills for the big boys.