Poker Jokers Forum
The Poker Joker Forum >> Poker Tips and Tricks >> Playing novices

Message started by Doc on Feb 24th, 2004, 11:53am

Title: Playing novices
Post by Doc on Feb 24th, 2004, 11:53am

PlaWhat is the best strategy for playing novices who play every hand and can't be bluffed out?

In the end the best cards always win and so it is all down to the luck of the deal: it seems that there is no way to make superior skill tell.

You can try playing very tight but that depends on getting your share of decent cards. What happens if the cards are poor? What can you do to give yourself an advantage?  

Title: Re: Playing novices
Post by Poker Gopher on Feb 24th, 2004, 3:18pm


I agree with you that novices are difficult to play because of the constant calling.  These players are often called calling stations because whatever the bet, you will be called and made an honest player.

However, I disagree that in a game of honest players it is a level playing field, where the person with the best cards wins.  

The better poker player should always win, even more so than in a dishonest game as the play will be much more predictable.

If we assume that two players receive exactly the same cards on the night and the same number of winning hands you could assume it will be a tie.  

However, it is the player with the best strategy, who has the best 'pot management' skills, who makes his poker hands pay most, who should win.  

It all comes down to a calculated approach to the size of your bet in any circumstance.

To summise, the skilled player wins more money on the same hands, not through luck, but because of a deliberate strategy.

If novices cannot be bluffed then dont even try, its like throwing your money away.  You are right to play tight.  

Your strategy should be based on probability and pot odds.  These two concepts are rarely applied in poker, as it takes a bit of effort, but in a novice game this type of knowledge will pay.  

I can recommend a book that goes into a bit more detail but for now this information may help.

Pot Odds vs Card odds

The ratio of the current size of the pot divided by the size of the next potential bet, from the point of view of the player about to make the bet.


The lower the pot odds facing a call, the more likely it is that folding will be the correct play
The higher the pot odds facing a call, the more likely it is that calling is the correct play

Pot odds are really just another way of looking at expectation. It compares the amount of money in the pot to the amount of money you would have put in to continue playing. It helps answer the eternal question in poker strategy: "Is it worth it to continue in this hand?"

To answer that, you always have to have a sense of card odds. Lets say the pot contains $100 and you need to put in $10 to continue playing. The pot odds are 10 - 1. If you have a better chance of winning than that, it's worth calling. When the card odds are better than the pot odds, it makes good poker strategy sense to get out. Have a 25-1 chance of getting that inside straight? Time to fold.

A bad online poker strategy is to play too many hands.

As part of your poker strategy, you can use the concept of pot odds to guide your bluffing. An occasional, not-too-costly "discovered bluff" (one that doesnt work) may also help you win bigger pots in later hands. Players may think you are a 'bluffer' and stay in when you actually do have a good hand.


Title: Re: Playing novices
Post by Doc on Feb 24th, 2004, 3:29pm

That's excellent, I will give it a go and report back. Many thanks.

Title: Re: Playing novices
Post by The Professor on Feb 24th, 2004, 6:32pm

First rule of poker
Never try and Bluff a beginner!!!

Title: Re: Playing novices
Post by transmat on Mar 2nd, 2004, 2:32pm

slanskys theory of poker details pot odds quite thoroughly although if youre not too bright (:)) it can be a struggle......

generally (assuming hold 'em is the game of choice) after the flop (where your decisions are generally made) your chances of drawing any given card are (roughly) as follows:

to draw any one particular card on ONE turn - 2.8%

to draw over TWO cards (ie turn and river still to come) - 3.8% per card (over 10 outs) or 4% (under 10)

in practical terms this means if youve 3 A's to make your hand and you decide to only stay in for the turn the chances of hitting it are  3 times 2.8= 8.4% or roughly 12 to 1 - if your pot odds are better than this bet, if not fold (or check)

alternativelly for a real draw, say open ended straight and four to the flush with two cards to come - 13 outs (count em if you want) as this is over ten you would multiply 13 by 3.8%, which is 49.4% - mear;y evens - if your pot odds are better than evens - get 'em in"!!!!!#

there is a wee bit more to it than this (obviously) - but there are plenty of books to explain

(breath out)

Title: Re: Playing novices
Post by soul on Mar 2nd, 2004, 7:27pm

i love playing against players who play every hand if you just play tight you'll find you will nearly always be in profit because novice players never notice that you are only playing the best hands especially online.

Title: Re: Playing novices
Post by Doc on Mar 3rd, 2004, 5:21pm

Yeah, it's a real pain though on those nights when you just keep getting bad cards.

Against good players, if you play tight for long enough, you generally get enough respect to bluff them off a big pot from time to time; even if your hand is worthless. So you have a chance to keep your chips up and pray for a change of luck.

Against novices when you try the same trick and stick it all in, they call anyway. Suddenly you find you're making the sandwiches!

Poker Jokers Forum » Powered by YaBB 2.1!
YaBB © 2000-2005. All Rights Reserved.