I think I finally found out a good strategy to beat micros

I

ilostmysoul

Rock Star
Joined
Feb 1, 2015
Total posts
228
I know maybe some people are facepalming, no idea. But today, for the first time, I played NL5. I'm a NL2 player and usually always end up with the same amount of money I started, so a few weeks ago I decided to stop playing cash, withdrew all my money, and going freerolls and satellites for a while.

And today I decided to approach the game with a new mindset. Deposited 20€ and went to NL5 for the first time. This time I paid full attention to game during my session (I'm usually watching videos, studying, whatever, and only playing when the window comes on).

My "old" strategy included trying to outsmart players, trying to figure out their ranges from zero, figuring them out, trying to bluff them, etc.

"New" strategy: I'm just calling out top-pair good kicker, and I'm folding it if the pot gets big, he overbets, or I'm multi-way and there is a lot of action. I'm not raising anybody if I have less than two pair. Unless I have solid reads.

And oh man. This worked. Perfectly. Soon enough I had reads on everybody. I knew the guy who wouldn't fold a bottom pair. I knew the guy you could shove to river if you had two pair because he would call a shove with as little as K-high. I knew the guy who would bet 1/2 every street with a draw and then bet big river if he hit, bet ridiculously small if he didn't. I knew the guy who would donk bet top pair and 2 pair but would check a strong flush and a set on the flop. Now I could deviate from my little strategy at will and be comfortable.

From someone who would consider himself lucky if he got 1BB in a 2 hour session, I got 5BBs in a 2 hour session today. I have to withdraw all my money because I kinda need it and I do not have the bankroll to play NL5. There was a hand there I probably would lose most of the time: I had trips with J kicker, he had trips with 8, but I had tons of reads on him for calling with a medium pair. I would shove here with a top pair and sucking out to trips if needed. Probably lucky that didn't happen. I didn't suck out on anybody or made any dubious play I can think of, every time I put money in the pot I was a winner.

I did get sucked out too. AA. We go on to 5-bet. 5-bet!!! At this point I'm expecting QQ+, maybe TT because this is micros. Nop. T8s. Got a straight on the Turn. Laughed at me on the chat. Few hands later (I was sitting with 200+BBs at this point, got down to the original 100BB) I have JJ on a 935 flop. I bet, he shove-raises after marvelous reads on hands like the above. Clear call. He had A3. I laughed back at him. I know I shouldn't have but eh.

So yea. Right now I'm seeing the game as really not that hard if you are paying attention. I think this strategy of just being conservative and patient, waiting for good hands until you have a read, etc. really works out. May not be the best out there, because there was a dude on my table sitting on almost 1000BBs and I had a lot of reads on him being super aggressive and making calls and bets I wouldn't consider making, but well... I'm happy with my results. Maybe I just had a good run, I don't know.

First time I actually paid attention to the game, and first time I learned how much variance even cash games have. Even bad players get lucky. The guy who called every bottom pair will have a FH sometimes. The guy who calls to the end with an ace will show up with a flush. And you'll be beaten because you're betting and calling him with almost anything. Except this time they actually do have that good hand in their range. This didn't happen to me today, but I watched a few hands where it would have if I joined was in them.

Also, this game really is exhausting if you are actually considering what your opponents could have, what they did before, how likely it is this is the same line or a new one. Gee. I would be able to play for 5 hours in a row sometimes when I was reading and the window popped up once in a while and I all had to do was click a button. Right now I'm not capable of opening a table for a few hours.

Anyway. What do you guys think? Good way to approach things?

Thanks for reading, happy 2020!!!
 
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V

vittopio

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I am very pleased with your success! My profit was also hurt by the loss of concentration! But I want to warn you-- to play nl 5 with 20 euros even if you are a poker god and beat this limit the direct path to ruin!
 
I

ilostmysoul

Rock Star
Joined
Feb 1, 2015
Total posts
228
I am very pleased with your success! My profit was also hurt by the loss of concentration! But I want to warn you-- to play nl 5 with 20 euros even if you are a poker god and beat this limit the direct path to ruin!


First of all, on the post I kinda mixed up the terms "BB" as in big blind, and BI as in buy-in. I won 5 Buy-Ins. The other guy at the table had 1000BBs, so 10BIs, 50€.

You're right. But I feel the boredom at NL2 is too much to stand. You feel like you're not earning or losing anything so it's not exciting and you feel like it isn't worth it to pay attention. I think that's one of the things that would hurt my game. I would play for 1 hour and actually doing well but then I would look at my stack and I would have 3€ instead of 2€ and I would get frustrated and get results-oriented and start dumping chips, making hero calls, looking for big pots, etc.

At least in NL5 even a medium-sized pot will be 5x the medium sized pots at NL2 in average. You go from 10 cents to 50 cents. Still not much but it's not so boring.

That said, I'm going to avoid playing at NL5 for a while until I have the bankroll for it. I never realized how much variance there is because sometimes you do have to make a call, and you know most of the time against that player that is a good call, but now it isn't and that sucks. Not counting the times you get sucked out as well. If that AA .vs. T8s happened when I only had my original 100BBs I'd be getting out of comfort zone. I was lucky I had 200+ so I still had enough to be comfortable, managed to keep calm, and did what I consider a good call. I'm not going back to 2NL again though. I'd rather only play daily freerolls than going NL2.

Thanks for answering. Happy new year :D
 
Poker_Mike

Poker_Mike

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I know maybe some people are facepalming, no idea. But today, for the first time, I played NL5. I'm a NL2 player and usually always end up with the same amount of money I started, so a few weeks ago I decided to stop playing cash, withdrew all my money, and going freerolls and satellites for a while.

And today I decided to approach the game with a new mindset. Deposited 20€ and went to NL5 for the first time. This time I paid full attention to game during my session (I'm usually watching videos, studying, whatever, and only playing when the window comes on).

My "old" strategy included trying to outsmart players, trying to figure out their ranges from zero, figuring them out, trying to bluff them, etc.

"New" strategy: I'm just calling out top-pair good kicker, and I'm folding it if the pot gets big, he overbets, or I'm multi-way and there is a lot of action. I'm not raising anybody if I have less than two pair. Unless I have solid reads.

And oh man. This worked. Perfectly. Soon enough I had reads on everybody. I knew the guy who wouldn't fold a bottom pair. I knew the guy you could shove to river if you had two pair because he would call a shove with as little as K-high. I knew the guy who would bet 1/2 every street with a draw and then bet big river if he hit, bet ridiculously small if he didn't. I knew the guy who would donk bet top pair and 2 pair but would check a strong flush and a set on the flop. Now I could deviate from my little strategy at will and be comfortable.

From someone who would consider himself lucky if he got 1BB in a 2 hour session, I got 5BBs in a 2 hour session today. I have to withdraw all my money because I kinda need it and I do not have the bankroll to play NL5. There was a hand there I probably would lose most of the time: I had trips with J kicker, he had trips with 8, but I had tons of reads on him for calling with a medium pair. I would shove here with a top pair and sucking out to trips if needed. Probably lucky that didn't happen. I didn't suck out on anybody or made any dubious play I can think of, every time I put money in the pot I was a winner.

I did get sucked out too. AA. We go on to 5-bet. 5-bet!!! At this point I'm expecting QQ+, maybe TT because this is micros. Nop. T8s. Got a straight on the Turn. Laughed at me on the chat. Few hands later (I was sitting with 200+BBs at this point, got down to the original 100BB) I have JJ on a 935 flop. I bet, he shove-raises after marvelous reads on hands like the above. Clear call. He had A3. I laughed back at him. I know I shouldn't have but eh.

So yea. Right now I'm seeing the game as really not that hard if you are paying attention. I think this strategy of just being conservative and patient, waiting for good hands until you have a read, etc. really works out. May not be the best out there, because there was a dude on my table sitting on almost 1000BBs and I had a lot of reads on him being super aggressive and making calls and bets I wouldn't consider making, but well... I'm happy with my results. Maybe I just had a good run, I don't know.

First time I actually paid attention to the game, and first time I learned how much variance even cash games have. Even bad players get lucky. The guy who called every bottom pair will have a FH sometimes. The guy who calls to the end with an ace will show up with a flush. And you'll be beaten because you're betting and calling him with almost anything. Except this time they actually do have that good hand in their range. This didn't happen to me today, but I watched a few hands where it would have if I joined was in them.

Also, this game really is exhausting if you are actually considering what your opponents could have, what they did before, how likely it is this is the same line or a new one. Gee. I would be able to play for 5 hours in a row sometimes when I was reading and the window popped up once in a while and I all had to do was click a button. Right now I'm not capable of opening a table for a few hours.

Anyway. What do you guys think? Good way to approach things?

Thanks for reading, happy 2020!!!


I am amused and happy for you about how tickled you seem to be over this approach.

I think you can see the light about how this usually works and is usually profitable.

If you stay with this strategy then you will become a much much better player and then you can work on altering the strategy if needed.

But why change something that works?

You will take some bad beats and you may have some losing days. But don't let those inevitabilities alter your flight plan.

Good luck !
 
M

maxi_j

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Joined
May 6, 2019
Total posts
230
It`s a good direction.



You should have better bankroll management.
 
P

Pokerlydokerly

Rising Star
Joined
Apr 22, 2019
Total posts
7
Congrats mate, feels good to be winning doesn't it!
Kind of like how I used to bluff too much and outsmart players, along with having too loose of a preflop range. I was a consistently losing player. Once I took it back to basics, played ABC poker and only roughly the top 20-25% of preflop hands I've been profitable for ages and dug myself out of the hole I was in.


It really is true with micro stakes that you shouldn't bother trying anything clever against most players (unless you have a read on the opponent and think they are a thinking player, then you can get away with bluffing sometimes). A lot of the clever theory stuff only works against people who also know that stuff!

Also like you say, paying attention and finding people's tendencies to exploit is very useful.
 
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