The effectiveness of 'Hollywood' poker plays

Phoenix Wright

Phoenix Wright

Feb 18, 2020
Total posts
Nice. I think every poker player has seen some "Hollywooding" at the tables before and probably just a matter of time before you begin Hollywooding yourself if you haven't already. Some ruses are far more elaborate than others (and some are painfully obvious to see through), but this only works on the right type of player in the right spot.

Problem with acting like this is two-fold:

1) You might "trick" yourself. You might be "bluffing" with the best hand for example; likewise, they might be putting on an act with you too!

2) Some players simply won't budge. Usually a fish who is unobservant and only playing their own two cards. Try to bluff a calling station by betting and watch them call regardless of the odds they got! Acting won't work on them either - they aren't even watching you - they just play their exact hole cards. Plenty of other ways you can pick up chips from them (simple value betting etc.).

I'm not claiming that these silly mind games don't have their place in poker: I think they do. What I will assert is that Hollywooding is WAY LESS important than many think it is. Perhaps with seasoned pros at the high stakes it works, but they have acting, tells, reverse tells and so much more - for most of us, this will barely work (or only work to a certain extent). Of course, some "acts" work better against bad players (because it is so obvious to any regular player what is going on), but this is a much more in-depth topic :D