Ive allways noticed that people seem to play quite diffrently in cash games when compared to tourneys.
Im assuming were talking about low limit/buy in here.
In such low money cash games people actually seem to play even looser in cash games than they would in a freeroll. The "im the best" aspect of playing in a tourney makes people actually care more about winning and loosing than they do when there is real money
on the line. At least it does when its rather small amounts of money at a time.
I belive this is because when playing a tourney people are concentrating on winning the whole tournament rather than just this hand. When playing cash games weak players simply dont think beyond the current hand. This makes them even more impatient and likely to play stupidly.
So how is a whole table full of people playing poorly a bad thing. Well its not but it does require a whole different strategy. In low limit cash games I tend to throw all strategy out the window. It just doesnt work because people dont care wether or not they loose a couple bucks. Bluffing is pretty much useless for this reason as is stealing the blinds. Even in no limit games bluffing is a bad idea because the amount you have to bluff with to make it possible to work is simply not worth the prize.
So what you do is this. Play good hands and only raise to increase the pot size. Never raise thinking to push other players out of a pot. This does kind of leave you at the mercy of chance but fortunately all those bad players will be quite happy to pay you off every time your good hands hit. Unfortunately your simply going to loose more often to crazy hands where somebody picked up 2 pair after calling raises with 38 in the hole.
There are also some hands that are worthwhile in low limit cash games that simply arent in tourneys or higher limit games. Any suited ace is worth seeing a flop if you can get in cheap because if it hits for you its almost certainly hit for someone else because weak players love any suited card. Of course youve got the best possible flush so you get paid. On the other hand any pocket pairs lower than 10s are pretty much not worth playing. These hands really only have good odds
of winning if there are only 1 or 2 other people in the hand and that happens rarely in these kind of games.
The last thing to remember about cash games is that you need a very long view on them. Much longer in fact than tourneys. I think its impossible to tell how well your really doing in cash games with out 3-6 months worth of data and thats playing every day for 4 or more hours.
If you can figure out cash games they are the best way to build your bankroll. Tourneys are fun but its the cash games that you can actually make a living playing (not the low limit ones obviously).
Have fun and play well.