Poker is a game of skill, and every decision you make is about maximizing your Expected Value or EV for short. The word “EV” will undoubtedly be used throughout this article and you will be seen in two ways. A player can have +EV, which is positive Expected Value or – EV, that is negative Expected Value. Poker is not gambling and the following explains why.
Most gambling games have a poor EV for you, and a positive EV (5.49% in this instance) for the casino. In the short run you could win, but in the long run, if you played typical gambling games 1000 times, the casino would always end up winning by about 5.49%. As you can see these kind of gambling games come in favor of the house. Poker pits you against other players and not the house. In a full ring game (9 players) or shorthanded game (6 players), the goal is to make the best EV decisions against the many other players playing worse (making -EV decisions) than you.
A simple example would be in the event that you were dealt KK prior to the flop came (preflop), which everyone understands is a great hand preflop. This hand has a high possiblity to win against all other hands preflop. If you played and raised “all in” with this particular hand against a new player who played and called every all in, you would have a huge advantage as you’ll be a favorite every time, rendering it a +EV decision. This is an exaggerated example and playing one hand wouldn’t normally be the smartest idea. What you would do is play say the top 20% of hands because against a person who plays maybe 70% of their hands, you again, will be making a +EV decision each time you play with him. It’s likely your starting hands will have a lot higher probability to win. That is just scraping the surface, and there is an EV attached to every decision and every situation. Many internet poker sites provide starting hand charts for beginners to use, which would be the simplest way to enhance your EV.
In addition, there’s always variance and in the short term weaker players could easily get lucky, but that’s also what attracts them to come back and keep playing. Over time, a good player who makes +EV decisions will always end up a winner. This is the reason poker isn’t gambling but a casino game of skill and understanding how to exploit your opponent’s mistakes.
Could it be safe to play online poker?
Absolutely, some sites have over 50,000 people playing at once. Major sites like Full Tilt Poker run advertisements on the TV and the web and so are even listed on the currency markets. They enable you to play poker online for free or real cash. Any negative publicity would affect their business so these sites often provide the best customer service. Maintaining your password secure can be your responsibility and if you do that, your money will undoubtedly be safe. Online poker sites have no incentive to cheat when dealing hands given that they desire to be extremely fair so you continue steadily to play, that allows them to earn their income by means of “rake.” This can be a very small percent of the pot (usually less than 1%). In poker, you’re playing against the other players, and not the home.
Obviously if the poker site seems shady, you haven’t heard of it, they don’t really advertise on TV or the web and there aren’t members playing on a regular basis – you wouldn’t be depositing your cash there!!! With that said, a lot of the major poker sites are very safe and reputable.
What are the best internet poker rooms?
There are three major sites for playing internet poker. Full Tilt Poker, Pokerstars and Party Poker have plenty of traffic, play money tables, plenty of freeroll tournaments and have very good customer support. If you are a beginner you need to play at Full Tilt Poker or Pokerstars when you start. Other sites like Party Poker call you up once you sign up and require some form of id verification to activate your account. Some individuals may such as this extra security, and may certainly go that route. Full Tilt Poker and Pokerstars usually do not require this. Overall, all three sites are incredibly safe and popular.
Many sites state “Deposit and get another $600!” Do they really double your deposit amount after depositing?
That depends on the site. Some sites offer you a really small portion (around 10%) of your deposit instantly, but that is rare. What typically happens is you deposit $600, and after you accumulate a certain amount of player points, they will provide you with the full $600. This is to ensure depositing players may also be active. With link garenaqq as for example Full Tilt Poker these points are achieved very quickly.
Online sites will publish poker bonus codes which should be entered upon account creation. After that, the amount you earn depends on the time you spend playing and the stakes you play at. When a player reaches 400NL limit, this means 2 to 4 dollar blinds and have an excellent percent of wins, they can make up to 5K a month. This is of course in the event that you treat playing just like a job and dedicate a long time each day to playing. Ultimately job freedom and the lure of easy money that is only a click away, is what draws so many people to online poker.