About this Guide
What Is a Poker Bankroll?
How Much do I Need?
When Do I Move Up In Limits?
When Do I Move Down?
Types of Poker
Pot Limit/No Limit
Single Table Tournaments (STT)
Multi Table Tournaments (MTT)
Full vs. Shorthanded (6-max)
What Should I Play?
Reviewing your Own Hands
Starting Hands Chart
Other Pages of Interest
Texas Hold'em Starting Hands
The game of Texas Hold 'em is very complex. So complex, in fact, that it's borderline impossible to state what the correct poker strategy for any given situation is. There are so many variables involved in the decision making, not the least of which is the opposition, that giving hard advice is... Well... Hard.
Nonetheless, there are guidelines to be had, especially when it comes to preflop play. Preflop, the amount of variables are kept to a minimum, and here, it's basically a matter of playing the cards you're dealt. If you're just starting out as a Hold 'em player, playing decently correctly preflop will probably keep you afloat, if not even a winning player. At the very lowest limits, your opposition will play so poorly that you have an almost insurmountable advantage just by playing tightly preflop. Use that advantage to accumulate a bankroll, while simultaneously practising your game, and learning to understand why your preflop play should look the way it does. But until then, follow the chart below. It recommends a very tight preflop play, and while not ideal, this is a pretty fast way to achieve profit at the lowest limits.
For a more specific article on preflop play (which may help you understand why the chart looks the way it does), see the > preflop concepts article.
The notation below works this way: For pairs, when it says "JJ" that effectively means all pairs higher than jacks. And when it says AJs for "suited", that includes also AQs and AKs, etc.
Early position (the first three seats to the left of the big blind):
Middle position (seats 4-6 to the left of the big blind):
Late position (the cut-off and the button):
A big thank you to ChuckTs for making a graphical chart!