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Playing poker online is both easier and harder than in real life. Easier because you don't have to keep a poker face and don't have to guard you cards. Harder because you can't see the other players and gauge their hand.
When you are new to Poker, having an effective playing strategy for yourself means the difference between losing sometimes, and losing often.
The first playing tip for the successful poker player is to be conservative.
There are two types of poker players, tight and loose. A loose player plays almost casually, bets with unsure hands and will lose more often. A tight player knows their hands, knows when to bet and when to fold. That's the kind of player you want to be.
Knowing when to switch from tight and conservative to aggressive is something that comes with experience. There will be times when the hand is good enough to bet heavy and gamble. This is where you as a player will grow, and make money when you get it right.
Knowing when to fold is an essential skill. Once you have experience, set a minimum hand that you will play with. If your hand doesn't meet it, fold and wait until the next one.
If you are holding a dubious hand, weigh the ante or the bet against the pot. If there are only a couple of rounds left and it won't cost much to stay in, but the pot is reasonably full, consider staying in. Spending a few Euros to stay in a round with a pot with a couple of hundred in it, is worth the risk.
Know the odds. Knowing them will make a real difference to your game. Don't count cards, but just keep your eyes open and know what's likely to be where. The different games will have different odds, so learn them and learn them well.
In our next article in this series for Poker beginners, we will address the odds and how to assess them.
Wishing you a lot of luck and loads of fun!
Footnote: Photo by ianhickman on Flickr
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