Speech play: Is it worth practicing it?

Luckysheaven

Luckysheaven

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I'm a pretty experienced live-player. I see a lot of people trying speech play, and I'm not gonna lie most of the time I see it backfire. I typically let my opponents do all the talking that way I give 0 information.

However, I've considered starting a little bit of speech play so my question is threefold:

How should I experiment with my speech?

How do I know when I'm starting to be successful at it?

Is it even worth investing time into learning?
 
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smallfrie

smallfrie

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I would say that you are going to give away more than you are going to get.
 
Luckysheaven

Luckysheaven

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I would say that you are going to give away more than you are going to get.

In my original post I agree completely. I'm wondering if anyone has experience with speech play or knows some basic tips from books or w.e

It's a fairly new tactic a lot of players are learning and improving on. Even Daniel Negreanu has said that speech play is for advanced players only, but that it definitely gives him an edge on the newer players. Talk them up, get them warmed up to conversation, then hint at stuff and get small pieces of information-> which might lead to giving tells.
 
teepack

teepack

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I think this whole concept of using speech play to get information is utter nonsense. I watched all the wsop broadcasts this year before the November 9, including the antics of Will Kassouf, and he did not once get any useful information from any of the players he was involved in a hand with. He did a good job of annoying his tablemates, but he never got any information. He may have gotten some people to tilt, but that's totally different than "getting information."
 
Luckysheaven

Luckysheaven

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On the contrary I think he wouldn't be doing that speech play unless he got some sort of information... I mean it can't be mere coincidence how deep he ran.

But I'm not even talking about that level of speech play... watching some high level players like esfandiari, negreanu, and phil ivey they all use some sort of speech play. It might not work at very high limits, but in the limits i play in where people are drinking, talking all the time, it could be very profitable.

I never go up against WSOP-class players (to my knowledge anyways). I'm up against pretty average-joe guys playing 1/2$ limits you know? I never really want to go pro as a poker player, but I'd love to make more money and up my game :3

I think you guys are being overly skeptical of speech play. It seems obvious that you can get information from it... you get information in tons of other ways. Even online speech play can be pretty nice.

If I can make just 1 speech play that ends up fairly profitable (say, 100$-200$) then I think it's worth investing at least a couple hours into researching.
 
CriesuaID

CriesuaID

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I play more than one table at a time, so it's tricky to keep up with the tables and write at the same time.

But I always answer when someone talks to me.

I'm talking about online poker, obviously.
 
K

ksidrew

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IMO its not worth the effort. If people want to blab off to you during a hand, thats great. I would minimally engage them and use all the free information they are giving me against them.
 
Luckysheaven

Luckysheaven

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I play more than one table at a time, so it's tricky to keep up with the tables and write at the same time.

But I always answer when someone talks to me.

I'm talking about online Poker, obviously.

I've had some nice chats with people online as well, and when they tell me to fold if I have some marginal hand I usually fold. Most of the time they show the nuts.

IMO its not worth the effort. If people want to blab off to you during a hand, thats great. I would minimally engage them and use all the free information they are giving me against them.

That's speech play! Even small things like agreeing, or building rapport, asking about their job... what school they went to etc. All things that can result in good information. Even hearing someone's voice the first time can be useful. You can tell when people are stressed when they talk if you've heard them multiple times. You can't exactly do that if they sit there quietly.

I'm trying to take the minimalist approach. Less is more. I'm not talking Kassouf-level. That's just way too much and I'd be annoyed of myself too.
 
teepack

teepack

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Y'all are way overestimating the ability to glean information from speech play or anything else. I was in a WSOP circuit event recently and noticed a guy at my table whose hands were shaking when he picked up his chips to bet. That is supposed to be a sign that he has a monster hand. Sure enough he shows a full house on the river. So I get in a hand with him a few minutes later and see his hands shaking when he bets the turn. I fold thinking he has a big hand. Then a few hands later I see his hands shaking again when he is betting. I soon realized his hands shook on every bet he ever made and every call. It was a Seniors Event and he was just an old dude whose hands shook.

If you really think you can tell differences in people's tones of voice and then accurately interpret those changes then you should be racking up at the tables. Most people know to not say or do anything after they bet.
 
Nintendo

Nintendo

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Silence is best way to go unless your using speech play on a lower level simple minded player. But I have seen many times bluffs get called due to the horrible table talk from the individual who obviously wanted the opposing player to fold.
 
Luckysheaven

Luckysheaven

Enthusiast
Thanks guys for kind of shutting me down. I think I overestimated its impact.

I think I'll just work on my poker face, keeping calm, and pinpointing down my physical moves. Moving my chips the same everytime, keeping my betsizes consistent, and not giving reads are probably more important for me than learning how to use speech to gleen information. If anything I need to master NOT giving information before I master GETTING information.

Thanks boys.

Maybe in 5 years I'll come back to this topic. My number one focus should just be getting my bankroll up through basics.
 
teepack

teepack

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Thanks guys for kind of shutting me down. I think I overestimated its impact.

I think I'll just work on my poker face, keeping calm, and pinpointing down my physical moves. Moving my chips the same everytime, keeping my betsizes consistent, and not giving reads are probably more important for me than learning how to use speech to gleen information. If anything I need to master NOT giving information before I master GETTING information.

Thanks boys.

Maybe in 5 years I'll come back to this topic. My number one focus should just be getting my bankroll up through basics.

Learn not to give out any info, then practice giving out false tells.
 
smallfrie

smallfrie

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Thanks guys for kind of shutting me down. I think I overestimated its impact.

I think I'll just work on my poker face, keeping calm, and pinpointing down my physical moves. Moving my chips the same everytime, keeping my betsizes consistent, and not giving reads are probably more important for me than learning how to use speech to gleen information. If anything I need to master NOT giving information before I master GETTING information.

Thanks boys.

Maybe in 5 years I'll come back to this topic. My number one focus should just be getting my bankroll up through basics.
Don't shut down learning as many tells as possible, but just stay silent, and when you get somebody engaging in "speech play" you are going to have the upper hand at least at information gain loss.
 
M

marakhovskii

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Professionals always say that you have a very good language for the game ))))
 
quick

quick

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Y'all are way overestimating the ability to glean information from speech play or anything else. I was in a WSOP circuit event recently and noticed a guy at my table whose hands were shaking when he picked up his chips to bet. That is supposed to be a sign that he has a monster hand. Sure enough he shows a full house on the river. So I get in a hand with him a few minutes later and see his hands shaking when he bets the turn. I fold thinking he has a big hand. Then a few hands later I see his hands shaking again when he is betting. I soon realized his hands shook on every bet he ever made and every call. It was a Seniors Event and he was just an old dude whose hands shook.

If you really think you can tell differences in people's tones of voice and then accurately interpret those changes then you should be racking up at the tables. Most people know to not say or do anything after they bet.

This is generally correct. I have some health conditions that sometimes make my hand grip/steadiness weak and also sometimes my voice cracks or I cough too much or fidget too much. I'm also nearly done my doctoral training to eventually become a clinical psychologist. These factors combined mean that I learned real quick I could use these "false" tells to my advantage even without trying.

That said, I definitely understand there are certain ways to train people to
"read" movements, facial expressions, eye movement, patterns of speech. I do some of it in my work just at a basic level to gauge emotion like agitation. But at same time that takes training and skill well beyond what I have let alone what most people will ever even get a glimpse of in their daily lives. Sure some of these are unconscious and can't be "faked" but some definitely can be exaggerated, faked, or used against the other player.


This isn't official advice or counsel from my training of course. Rather just my own experiences and how they play out at the poker table.

I had a guy announce to the table a while back that my betting in a big hand was a "nervous bet he had to call." I had the guy crushed and he sucked out on me but I made a note whenever I see him, to make sure I look nervous. :)

Generally though you want to be giving away as little info as possible with a good poker face. Cliche but works.
 
C

Chemist

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It will probably give more information away than gain any benefit.
Usually it is better to say nothing,
and avoid eye contact or any movement.
 
wagon596

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I don't speak much when I play live at all, it doesn't make a difference if I'm in a hand or not. "Call" or "All In" pretty much sums up my vocabulary at the poker table.
 
antonis32123

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I would prefer not to speak at all , not to give any tells . I can very easy give info unfortunately to other players . If I paid attention and he was an a***hole I would easily go on tilt and byebye money, so , for sure , it's better to be silent , watch the opponents' play style , plan your strategy/game . Only yes , no , I don't know for answers if asked sth :)
 
olfabiolo

olfabiolo

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good evening
I do not like it much, and I do not like it when I make an action at the table, the villain folds and he asks, if I fold you show or what you had that hour I folded, I think poker is a game of unknown.
 
T

Tsyphon

Rising Star
I play mostly live games, and some of my friends I regularly play with will say "Oh man, if we're playing like this I need to raise, don't want to play too cheap" any time they have a decent hand, or "How much do you have left?" usually to intimidate. If your opponents make patterns of play, you just take notes. I've called hold cards on some of these guys many many times after the flop based on betting and their speech, both profitably and to avoid loss.

Playing with the same people you really can pick up tells, but then again, tells are not 100% and I wouldn't bet my whole tourney or a massive amount of money away on one.
 
P

Pessoa

Enthusiast
well i often start it, what i try to do is get in the mind of my opponent, so i fire often some cheat shots after a hand, but you need the control of your self so you can play without any effect on your game
 
Z

ZingyT

Rock Star
i would think the only "worthwhile" speechplay would be to tilt your opponent. The only way I see of doing this would involve gloating over wins and generally being annoying as hell at the table (take a look at Kassouf)

I doubt a good player will give much away with a reply and things like your tone or word choice may give away more then you get.
 
Neko67

Neko67

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I think this whole concept of using speech play to get information is utter nonsense. I watched all the WSOP broadcasts this year before the November 9, including the antics of Will Kassouf, and he did not once get any useful information from any of the players he was involved in a hand with. He did a good job of annoying his tablemates, but he never got any information. He may have gotten some people to tilt, but that's totally different than "getting information."
9 high like a boss :p
 
eberetta1

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I don't do much talking at the table. I like watching Daniel Negreanu play. He does a lot of talking. When he has a strong hand, he gets a lot more quiet. So if I saw him clam up in a game, I would know not to push too hard that hand cause he is probably holding a monster.
 
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