2012. november 15., csütörtök

Odds Oracling

Honestly, I have some kind of a bizarre feeling in me for coding macros in Odds Oracle. Since there is little action this time of day, I put together some (=67) Stud hi range macros, so I feel satisfied with my work today, and just after figuring out some steal/resteal range macros, my 3rd street ranges will be complete, and I will be able to use Odds Oracle to Stud hi as I can use Combonator for Holdem. I'm a bit of a weirdo, I know...

Anyway, I want to play a game. If you can figure out what the 'translation' stands for (after the 'more' button), and tell me in one term, I'll send you my macros.:)

2012. november 14., szerda

End of an era, start of a new one

Yep, yesterday I left PokerStrategy as a coach and freelancer. Had my time there, and it definitely was a worthy experience, but I think it's time to move on. I'd love to say that it wasn't an easy decision, but all in all it was. I applied for English LHE coach position, but "they have enough content and coaches at the moment", therefore I'm not needed. Well, their loss IMO. For the Hungarian part it's a bit more complicated than that, and since it's all fresh, I should probably not write anything about it until I clear up my head and have the kind of second, more thought through perception on it.

Also, I've been kind of fed up with LHE lately. For one, the action is either seldom or bad. Maybe not on my main limits, but on higher limits definitely. And I'm not that type of player that will conservatively stick to his main game, or whatever, meaning I don't want to try and rakebackwhore myself to higher stakes, or anything like that. I'm just not motivated by it, I just burn out way too fast and tilt my ass off if money has to be my main motivation. That's why I'm never gonna be rich, but whatever. And although I can see that most of the 'regulars' are straight up awful in todays midstakes games, it - for some reason - doesn't give me the satisfaction I need to play poker without being hugely results-oriented or focused on money. I'm not sure why that is, and in the near future I have to and will think about it a lot, but with all the changes coming to my poker (and possibly real) life, I'm gonna have to review my whole perspective of the game.

After deciding that I'm gonna leave PS (about 3-4 weeks ago) I decided that with FTP coming back, I'm gonna focus on the non-mainstream games, first of all the 7 'other' games in the 10game (7.5 counting that PLO is still an interesting game and worthy to learn IMO). For one, better highstakes games are running in mixed and 'other' games, so the perspective is kind of better for a wannabe highstakes player I think, but also I believe if it comes to that, I can easily get myself to the level to jump back into LHE if needed. However, currently I see little chance of that in the upcoming future. For anyone interested, I still offer coaching for LHE, I feel I know the game well enough, that being a bit out of practice wouldn't affect me that much, and at least 1/10 of the hands I play will still be in LHE.:) Also, it's the method that counts, not the result, and I think I'm more than familiar with the methods.

So just a few words on the present. Since I have little experience learning multiple games at once, and kind of didn't know where to start, I thought it might be the best to accelerate the process by hiring a coach. If you have enough money when you start a new game (especially with very limited learning material available), I'd definitely suggest you to hire a coach to start off and form your learning curve. Of course, for most of the beginner players that's unaffordable, and so they have to stick to the somewhat awful education out there.

So my choice was one of the best ever mixed players I know of, CeeGee. (If you don't know him, check out his Triple Stud series on DC, and his vids on CR - super mega awesomeness!) Honestly, I was very lucky I found him playing on FTP at HU tables, cause I couldn't find any contact info on the internet. He's a great guy, and has such a deep understanding of the games, I really admire it.

Ok, so that's it for now, I'll definitely post more often and a bit more strategy in the future.

2012. szeptember 5., szerda

Tax poker and chinese stud...

If you would know me pretty well, you could figure that Toma was here. I don't think I've ever thought of new games or game variants when he was not around, but when he is, I think we're just brainfarting. We start to play standard 10game, that gets boring (well it doesn't, just becomes monotone) after a while, and then we move on to idiotic games. Here's tonight's new games:

1) Tax poker
I think we kind of proved that this game doesn't make sense game theory-wise, but still, it's pretty fun to figure out why, and also tells you a lot about the game I think. So here we go: you play standard HU limit hold'em, however you cannot see your cards, unless you pay the other guy 1/xth BB (that can depend on the structure etc, we did it with 1/4 BB, but that's too big). When you pay the amount (before every action of yours, you have the possibility to do so, even on the river), you can both watch your hole cards, and the game goes on as usual. However, until then you have to play face down.
Pop-quiz: what is the problem with this game? What is the optimal strategy for the IP and OOP player.
Real question: how could you modify the rules so that it would be a game with real strategy? Can you even change this idea into a real game? And how small the 'tax' should be so that the optimal strategy for 'large tax' wouldn't apply anymore.

2) Chinese stud
If you know Chinese poker, you may find a lot of similarities here, however it's a bit more complicated, and a lot more fun IMO. You and your opponent get 9 cards each face down, and 3 cards each face-up. Now you have to divide your 9 cards into 3 groups with 3 cards in each, matching them with a door-card. If you did it both, you have to name, which pile is for which of the 3 stud games (all 3 has to be assigned to different games), and then you just deal out the rest, better cards by the rule of the game win.
Question: how could you maybe improve this game? Would it be more fun, if for example you deal just 6 cards first, create the starting hands, and deal the 3 river cards face-down after all the other cards being dealt, then you can again assign those cards? I think it would be more skill, less fun, but not necessarily.

3) Double-game
It is a pretty strange idea, and since we didn't play a lot of hands, I'm not sure if it's good. The main element of the game, is that you and your opponent(s) get 2 different starting hands in two different games, but in the same hand (of course the structure must be similar, possibly flop-games only). Also the board cards are shared. In every decision you have the following opportunites: make an action with both of your hands (e.g. raising both, or calling with both), you can make an action with one hand, and fold the other, or fold both. If you fold one hand, but not the other, half of the current pot is your opponent's, other half is still up for grabs.

I'm not sure if it was really understandable, but let's assume a game, where we mix LHE and LO8 at 20/40 limits. Same structure, so it's applicable (we couldn't do it with LHE and PLO for example, because of the different structure). You both get dealt a holdem and an omaha hand. SB has the following options: folds (BB winds 20+10), folds either the holdem or the O8 hand, but calls or raises with the other, then BB gets half the pot (10+5 for the folded half), and they continue playing the other game on 10/20 limit. And obviously he can call or raise both hands together (but he cannot call with one and raise with the other, cause that would be like playing 2 tables LDO). Let's say SB raises.
Then the BB has the option to fold both, fold either the O8 or the LHE hand and continue with the other, or call/raise/3bet with both hands. The same applies postflop.

Variant1: you could make the rule that folding only works together and you cannot fold individually, but that kind of simplifies the game into a general split-pot game with very complex hand ranges.
Variant2: the game format is maybe not that good in games where folding is a big part of preflop strategy, for example PLHE/PLO, so there you could enforce the rule that the folding works together preflop, but you can fold individually later (or maybe just on turn and river or stg).

Playing NLHE/NLO8 in this game would be awesome IMO. Basically playing a split pot game in a split pot game. Yo dawg would approve.

Anyway, that's the rambling for today, I think you'll find these enjoyable, and probably can try it out with someone, I think all these games are really cool (except for the tax holdem, cause it's easily solvable).

2012. augusztus 28., kedd

Shame of poker education #3 - Game Theory Wisdom?

Poker education found a new buzzword for itself - just in the last week I heard it 3 times in videos and stuff: game theory-wise. (Not sure about the grammar tho.) Since jungleman's awesome (see one of the later editions of shame...) video about game theory, more and more people started to build this into their game. Also, since that video we can safely say, that most bigbet players have absolutely no fucking clue what game theory (optimal play) means, and misunderstand the concept.

Just an example: if you flop top set on a board, where it is the nuts (at least in your range) I'm quite sure game theoratically check/calling as a slowplay is awful, unless you for some reason decide to a) never have a cbetting range and b) never have a c/r-ing range (against a 1/4 potbet), which seems awfully wrong to me in a NL game with a potbet left on a wet board. I'm pretty sure since it's the nuts it has to be part of a polarized range that needs to be played in an agressive manner so that we could get the max from his bluffcatchers. Although I'm not a bigbet-GTO-expert I strongly believe that it is the case. (Also the main reason "it's not good game theory-wise" is that there is just a small part of his range that can call our check/raise.)

So please, if you're not sure what it means (or you think you're sure and you're an overconfident idiot - you know who I'm talking about), don't use game theory-wise. Cheers.

2012. augusztus 26., vasárnap

First Live Experience - 8game MTT

It has come to this. I played live. I mean it never was my goal or dream or anything, to be honest, I kind of didn't (and can honestly say don't) like the live aspects of the game. The tells and slow hands and boring waiting time and stuff - that's just not for me. However this was the first ever Hungarian 8game open, and given that mixed games are not ever played live here, I decided to give it a go.

Despite my presumptions, I really enjoyed myself, it was a pretty new experience in poker, and I'll definitely go again - if there will be more. The dealers were as good as someone can be who deals stud games and triple draw first ever - sometimes there were small mistakes, but only(?) 2 really big fuckups. Thinking about it, in ~100 hands it's not that few, but whatever. (Once there was a 5-10 minute 'break' because the 7th card in stud was dealt face up mistakenly, and not even the floor could tell what is the appropriate decision here, and once in the bigbet games we played in the limit blind structure for a few hands.)

The tables were ultra-soft, I've only seen 3-4 players who seemed competent (or at least tight and not that passive) in most games, however I felt even they were a bit too passive and nitty sometimes. I came ~14th from 24, however given that I had at least 4 pretty huge coolers, 1 pretty huge MTT-cooler, and also was card-dead in my favorite games, it's a pretty good result IMO. I could have played better, but I feel I still played my A game (but not A++ as I should've) mostly, despite getting tired at the end.

From here on I'll tell some interesting hands, these were the most interesting hands, and some other interesting stuff. So if you don't care, that's it, don't read on.

I can't really remember any interesting hands in the first few orbits, I once coolered a guy in O8 with nut hi (no low) in a ~12BB pot, and coolered the same guy in 2 hands after that. There was a hand in stud where the highest card out there was 5 (I thin the board read 333455).

1st hand: Stud hi, I can't remember the board, but for some reason I completed 55s3s in MP or something, and I didn't doubt my play there, so the board was probably really raggy (I think I had a 2, 6 and the bring in 2 behind me). The very loose-passive guy calls with the 6 door, everyone else folds.

He gets a Q, I get the 6s. X-B-C. I get the Ts, guy gets a J (his board is pretty much rainbow. He checks, I bet, he tanks a bit, and calls. Turn is irrelevant on both boards, he checks, I bet, he calls (at this point there may be a reason to just check back, but given his tanking on the turn led me to believe that I can make him fold a better pair on the river if I bet constantly). River is a 6 giving me two pairs, he checks I check back hoping to be good against one pair, he tables Broadway... nice hand sir.

2nd hand, NL: I pick up TT in MP, raise it up to 3x I think, BB calls, who seems to be a NL  player (also pretty angry at me, since I overnutted him in 2 hands in O8). Flop is A97r, I cbet half pot, he calls, turn is blank, check-check, river is a 6 of purple horseshoes, he bets out ~3/5 pot. I folded, but I'm absolutely not sure about it. It was probably easier than I thought at the time, but still.

3rd hand: PLO, I pick up AA73 single suited in the CO, pot it up (still 50-60bb effective), the same very loose player coldcalls from the small blind. Flop is Q96dd, I have a BDFD, I cbet around 3/5 pot, he calls. Turn is the Kd, he checks, I check. (I know it's the best barrel card, not against him, not in a million years.) So turn goes x-x. River is the Ad. He checks. At this point I think I have the best hand a lot, but can't see anything to get value from - not even from this guy, but I considered betting still. I think my check was fine here, but a little reassuring would feel good.

Next hand: PLO, I pick up AK32ds in MP, raise it up, CO 3bets (he was a bit passive so far, but I know he's not awful), folds back to me, and I'm pretty sure this call sucks, but given that we would have an SPR of about 3 after the call, and I believed he's competent enough to 3bet a lot more than AAxx I decided to call - in retrospect I hate it a bit esp. OOP. Board is QT9 rainbow, I have a backdoor. I checks, he disgustedly checks. Turn is a low blank giving the flushdraw. I bet 2/3 pot and take it down. Sorry guys that I lied I had two pair, I just wanted to abuse your nittiness.:)

Next orbit I had 2 interesting LHE hands that are not yet to reveal, I may use them as video footage.

Next hand in O8: I get dealt 8653ds in the BB,  there are 2 or 3 limps, BU raises. I shrug and call. Everybody calls around. Flop is some 55Tss, don't have a flushdraw, but have a pretty strong hand. BU bets out, I raise, loose-passive bro coldcalls two, folds to BU, who makes it 3bets. Ok then, I'm probably beat or in pretty bad shape, I call. Turn is an 8 giving me the effective nuts, I mean A2TT and A3TT, A2T5, A3T5 beats me, but that's all, BU bets I raise, bro folds, BU 3bets, I cap. River is an A... Fucking hell... worst card in the deck, I check, he bets, I call, tables TT with something. Mike L would've folded, and I wouldn't blame him for it.

Honestly, I can't remember any more interesting hands till I've been moved to my next table. We were just finishing up the PLO round at my table, when I had to move - to a table where the end of stud8 was played. Well, fuck, NL and PLO again, how I love that.

First hand at the table, I get dealt rolled-up fucking 8s, with 3 low cards and an A behind. Everybody folds. Second hand, I get dealt A4A, take it down on 5th with 2pair+3low.

2 hands later I pick up AQo in MP, I raise it up, chatty, but not that awful (probably live) player coldcalls, BU, who is an older guy minsqueezes with ~12k left (bb is .8k at this point). I smell nuts, but still 4bet so that I could fold to the shove of the CO and call the BU. CO folds that he admits is a worse A, and BU puts it in with 65s. Flop is QQx, guy walks out.

Next hand: PLO - I pot the BU with AQTTds, SB (chatty meh-player) coldcalls, BB folds. Flop is KQ3r, he hesitates, plays with his chips, but checks, I check back. Turn is the 2 of the 4th suit, he checks, I check back. River is the A, he bets pot. I had no fucking clue what he had, JTxx must bet the turn there to rep, maybe KJTx? Maybe AKxx? (I'm not sure he wouldn't bet that on the turn.) Anyway, given his flop tanking and river pot I should've folded, but fishy me calls, slowrolls me with JT9x... Well, fuck you sir.

New guys come to the table, the first table broke. There is a really cool older guy sitting next to me, I double him up in TD with a 6 draw, vs his flop pat, folding the river getting ~30:1 with a pair of sixes. Doubled him up again in LHE raising KTs from the CO, he 3bets SB, Txxx getting it in vs JJ. Nice hand.

We got to the first hand of O8, when I was asked to move back to my original table, where, surprise surprise, we play fucking stud8. I mean we played my 2 favourite games, okay, but playing NL and PLO (my 2 worse games) 3x in 2 rotation is just straight-up annoying.

So stud8, where I made a really debatable play, complete third with KTK, A behind me 2bets, LP bro calls, I call. Guy gets perfect 4, I get brick, bro gets a brick. A4 bets out, bro folds, I call. 5th gives him a 6, and pairs my T up. At this point, honestly, I feel I would fold HU probably, but given the dead money in the pot (and also the ante structure was awfully high, 500 at 3.6k bigbet), I decided to herocalldown him. 6th is brick brick, bet-call. 7th is brick for me, he bets, I throw up and call. He tables aces up no low, having 3 pairs with A64 in the whole. I'll never know if he sucked out on the river, or had it the whole time, doesn't matter.

I'm left with 19bb to the first hand of NLHE, where I pick up TT in the SB, BU (competent, nitty maybe?) asks me how much I have, and minraises the BU. I 3bet - and I leveled myself into not shoving here, because after his question I could resteal pretty wide (at least that's what I thought), so I 3bet to around 8bb. I mean if he knows I'm competent, it doesn't really matter, but I'm not sure he knew. BB cold4bets, I have to call, KK > TT. Bye-bye.

So basically this is the short summary of the 5 hours I played, it was pretty good experience, and even though after writing this review I feel I played quite bad, I still am sure I had a huge edge on the field.

And for Hungarian LHE players, be on the lookout for a short vid on 3 interesting LHE hands that happened and haven't been discussed here (and all 3 I fucked up pretty well).

If you got this far, you're awesome.:)

2012. augusztus 10., péntek

The shame of poker education #2

Today's shame is gonna be from the same site as the last one, but it's just so difficult to find shameful stuff nowadays, cause poker education is so great... ok... I stop...

So same type of pop quiz, question is: you're playing live in the Bellagio 5/T with a 52k bankroll. There are 4 huge fish at the table. 2 of their friend come, and create a new 25/50 table. There are 2 seats left there. Do you want to join them, or stay at the table?

I mean first of all, what the fuck? Am I such a degenerate gambler, that I either have to play with 10 BI for a certain limit or stay at a reg-infested table? Why can't I just stand the fuck up and go look for another good (preferably FL or draw :P) table? Okay, let's assume that's not an option.

The official answer says it's close, but you probably should probably take a shot with 10 BIs (which live is probably should count for less, since the games are usually deep, or will get deep soon). I mean I don't even know what to say, this is just so obviously one of the worst advice I've ever seen... Poker is dead IMO.