5 Realities Players Should Know About Online Poker
For those that transition from live poker to online poker, the transition can be a bit of a culture shock Poker players that don’t understand the differences between the two games will often abandon online poker because they think that it is “rigged” or unrealistic.
Today, we will give you 5 realties of online poker to help make the transition easier. Once you change your mindset about the game, you can start improving your overall win rate.
Variance is Much Higher
We constantly talk about variance in poker, but what many live players fail to consider is that online poker is going to be higher variance. Just look at the speed of the game. Where you may play 30 to 40 hands in a live game, you may play 65 to 80 hands in online cash games.
Next, remember that players are able to play multiple tables at once. Each table adds a multiplier to your variance over time. It is next to impossible to multi-table live poker effectively but online players do so with ease. However, this is at a cost of the higher overall variance.
The Number of Games is Mind-Blowing
Think about your average live poker room. How many games are running at once? On average you will see five to 10 games running at many card rooms. Large poker rooms will have dozens of games, but they still pale in comparison to the average online poker sites.
Look at PokerStars, partypoker, or 888poker. They have hundreds of cash games and dozens of poker tournaments running at any one time. Games are being formed and broken left and right.
Then there are the different variants of poker. You don’t just have Texas Hold’em and Omaha. There’s also Omaha Hi-Lo, Seven Card Stud, Stud Hi-Lo, and even mixed games you can play. Odds are you will never experience as many different games in a live card room as you will at the average online poker site.
Games Play Much Larger Than The Stakes Indicate
If you sit down to the average $1-$2 NL Hold’em game in a live poker room, how much do you expect to win on an average winning session? Most players would say $100 to $200. What stakes do you have to play online to win $100 in a session?
Would you believe you could play as low as .05 – .10 to win that much? There are even .01 – .02 games where some people go on crazy runs to win a couple of hundred bucks. Online poker games tend to play a lot larger at lower stakes than you’d expect. A $1-$2 NL game online would be about a $10 – $20 game in live casinos.
There are some people that grind out a living at lower stakes online because the games are so good. At the same time, there are many that donate loads of cash in the micros because they don’t realize how big the games play.
The Games Are Tougher Online
If you spend enough time in a live poker room, you know who the good players are. You know who the fish are. The number of good players versus the number of bad players is much lower than in online poker. While poker, in general, is tougher than at the start of the poker boom, the level of competition in online poker is much higher.
For many, online poker is the only option they have to play poker. As such, they grow their game in that environment and may have as much experience as a live poker player can get in three lifetimes. You have to be at another level to be able to move up to even middle stakes for online poker. In live poker, there are many middle-stakes players that couldn’t beat the micros.
Yes – Cheating Still Happens Online
We won’t BS you and tell you that cheating is not possible at online poker. It is. However, keep in mind what we constitute as cheating. It is true that online poker bots are nowhere near the problem they used to be. That part is good.
However, there are still plenty of people out there that take part in various forms of collusion for online poker. They may have someone sitting with them and giving them advice on how to play. They could be sharing their screen with a team of people guiding them through their play.
With that said, most of the significant cheating scams are not happening at lower stakes. They are usually happening at higher stakes or in poker tournaments. However, don’t believe anyone that tells you that cheating doesn’t still happen in online poker.