Originally Posted by leopepe
I have played micro Holdem NL tournaments and I was very satisfied with my play and earnings. It was until I have started to play PLO H/L. IMO, I do not play bad, but I lose almost always. I have started to look at PLO H/L as a grinding machine, but I can't stop playing it. Any advice?
1) The first thing you need to remember is that PLO-8 is a four card game. You need all four cards working before you enter a pot. The exception would be a free play out of the BB, or on the button for a steal. You might play a three card hand short handed, but never at a full table.
Because you're up against that many more card combinations, the equities run much closer than at NLHE. In NLHE, AA is an absolute monster, and usually a through ticket. In PLO-8, A,A, rag,rag is a trash hand that needs to be automucked. An overpair isn't gonna win very often at Omaha, and in PLO-8, you're frequently playing for half a pot with a near hopeless hand, and that's a double whammy. Because equities run so much closer, expect more coolers.
2) In PLO-8, there is no room for 7's, 8's, or 9's. A hand like (7,8,9,T-ds) is good in PLO. It's absolute trash in PLO-8. Even if you bink, you're binking for half a pot, as the cards that hit your hand put a low on the board. If there is no low, then that means you're playing idiot end straights, sub-nut flushes, or middle or even bottom sets, and those hands are a helluvalot
more vulnerable at any form of Omaha than they are at Hold 'Em. Sixes are useful only in that a six in your hand could win you half if someone has a wheel and you have a six-high.
3) Ideally, you'll flop the nuts with a redraw to nuttier nuts. Hands like top set with a wrap straight draw, a straight with a NFD, even if it's a backdoor job, Two pair with a nut flush -- these are the hands you're looking for. A nut straight on the flop with 2 diamonds when all you have are black cards is nothing to get excited about.
4) Play to scoop. You want hands that'll win both ends. The "Rockets" of PLO-8 would be ( Ah,2h,Ad,3d ) A hand like this has two potential NFD's, three way counterfeit protection, and a draw at the highest top set
6) Beware the one way hand. An acey-deucy with nothing to go along with it is dangerous, though you could go with it in very fishy games where players will play for low with hands like A3, 23, 34 that aren't hitting to the nuts. Otherwise, a naked A2 is dangerous since there are the disadvantages of playing for a half you may not get if there's another A2 out in the same deal. Even if you flop the nut low, you're risking getting counterfeited. If an ace or deuce rolls off, you don't have the nuts any more.
High hands like ( K,Q,J,T ) also have their problems. If you're suited, you're not drawing at the nuts. Also, everyone with low cards will hit the muck when the flop comes down with paints. High hands on no-low boards tend to win small pots unless you're battling with another player going for the high end as well.
7) Beware the frustration factor. It's nasty to run card dead at NLHE, but even then, you can always use your "nitty" image to steal with nothing. If you've gone 4,5,6 orbits and done nothing but fold, you can bang it UTG with a garbage hand and get respect. That doesn't happen at PLO-8, as someone will always have something, and fish can justify calling with some of the damnedest things.
You wait and wait and finally your get your ( Ah,2h,Ad,3d ). Yeay! Then the flop comes down black card, black card, black card and not an ace in sight. At best, you're left with a low draw that may not come in at all. You just have to bite that bullet and fold. C-bets don't get the respect they do at NLHE, especially when fish are in there. The main exception might be a flop like: Q,T,9 that has those trashy middle cards in it and no low. Even then, you can't count on it. Mr. Fish just might show up with an 8,7 and play it come Hell or high water.
Playing FoF at NLHE is fishy; at PLO-8 it's a necessity.
8) Position, position, position! It's even more critical at PLO-8. If there's 1.5BB out there, and you're UTG, the most you can raise it is 3.5BB. If you're in the back row, and four players limp, then you can bang it for 7.5BB to iso with your monster. You can also trail in with more marginal hands and get odds
. That's where you want to be playing the majority of your hands: from the back row, not up-front.