December 5, 2023

Let’s say you are an old nit like me and you are comfortable playing your basic TAG 먹튀폴리스사이game. Or let’s say you are a young up and coming superstar and you answer every question with more aggression. Of let’s just say that you have found a style of play that works for you and you have decided that you are sticking with it.

First of all let me congratulate you. In poker, as in life, it is extremely important to discover your true nature and try to act accordingly. I’ll take this a step further and say that it is also important to regularly re-evaluate what you are doing and modify your self assessment as you see fit. A far greater man than I said that an unexamined life is not worth living.

Now that the warm and fuzzy time for patting ourselves on the back is over, it’s time for the big but. No, my mother-in-law didn’t just come into the room. I’m talking about a huge general exception to the “be true to your inner nature” philosophy. Sometimes you have to force yourself to play at least a little differently than normal.

In the old days, when dinosaurs ruled the earth, and cards were carved on to stone tablets, early cavemen poker players could play the same way every time and nearly nobody would notice. With the advent of the modern era this has radically changed. As recently as twenty years ago, more observant players began taking advantage of those of us who were too consistent by making plays designed to have us make mistakes based on our nature. They knew we would respond to a given move in a certain way and that let those observant few run over us.

Fast forward a bunch more years to Internet play and this situation has gotten even worse. Now, we not only have a few players with notebooks to contend with, but more and more opponents armed with technology. As if instant notes on the screen wasn’t bad enough, some enterprising computer savvy programmers have developed software that will log and note other players’ tendencies on their own. Some of these programs can even keep track of multiple players and do it while the program’s user isn’t even at the same table with them.

So what can we do to fight back? More than ever it is essential for the smart poker player to mix up his game. Even if you have to grit your teeth and hold your nose to do it, you have to try to play against your nature every so often.

Why is this so important? In an old book, David Sklansky once wrote that the goal of proper play is to play as if you knew what cards your opponent was holding. These programs give their users an edge that let’s them play against us closer to that ideal. The best way to take away that edge is to randomize our play a bit.

If you are normally aggressive, and one who would never open without a raise, force yourself to limp once in a while. If you prefer to see the flop before making any serious moves unless you hold aces, get it all in sometimes with kings or queens or even just big slick. And even if you are sure that these and other moves that may go against your normal play style are completely incorrect, make them anyway. Not every time of course, but do make them. The added bit of unpredictability is worth much more than the slightly negative expected value.

One more thing that should be mentioned here is that there is also another way to fight back. Take the old saying to heart, “When you can’t beat them, join them”. Jump into the water and start using one of these programs yourself and learn how to take advantage of that new information. We happen to have a resident expert here at RPT by the name of Fox who can guide you in your learning. But either way, don’t just do nothing and expect to win. Fight back and stay ahead of the game.