Contrarian perspective: I think live poker takes more skill than online poker

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turnupthebb

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Everyone says live poker is easier than online poker. It's true but I think the reason is different than what others say.

I think it actually takes more skill to play live poker. But if that's the case then why do they struggle when going to play online??

The reason is to become really successful online you have to become an incredibly great player because you have to play against many players who are cheating. They use bots, solvers, charts etc to tell them how to play or at least guide their decisions. So you have to be so incredibly good at poker so you can compete against cheaters and then you have to find the fish and exploit them. Or you have to become a cheater as well and use these software which aren't allowed. And most players choose to cheat, otherwise the online games wouldn't be so difficult if it just was a few cheaters.

That's why live poker actually takes more skill because you don't have all these software to help you when you play live. You have to actually be a great player. Playing straightforward poker is not that easy, that's why so many players are bad at live poker and you often end up playing very deep stacked at live poker as well which is very difficult and even online that's something which isn't solved like 100bb stack size is. It's very common to have 300-600bb effective stack size live poker. That means a lot of pressure which can cause you to make wrong decisions out of fear and uncomfortability playing 500bb pots, does a tough reg really dare to make a 300bb river bluff? Will you really try to call that big bet and bluff catch? So much money! Do you even have a bankroll to play this pot? maybe you had the bankroll for buying in for 200bb but maybe not after you doubled up and now you are in a 500bb pot which is not so uncommon.

That's why I prefer live poker because live poker you use your real skill against other players real skill. No softwares to help tell you what to do. And that makes it easier than online poker because live uses players real skill, not software aided skill.
 
pentazepam

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I don't know about more skills per se but different skills.

But the fact that online poker is almost dead over 100NL makes LIVE Cash games the only form of poker left if you want to earn real money as a professional poker player or have it as a side income.

And you are correct about the fact that RTS, RTA, and Bots are extremely common and have been for several years now.

Online poker is just a social game for fun for me now. I can also play chess against a computer online but would not bet money on it.
 
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bababooey

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I always remember the online pros back in the day transfering over to live poker and then agreeing that live poker takes additional skills.

With online poker players have learned the fundamentals and best plays using math and all the additional software but this has then moved into the live game. The real skill is to remember all this information and apply it to the live game.

There are some things which are the same such as patterns, bet sizing, timing etc but then to be able to look your opponent in the eye to get a read is what I find great about live poker. Obviously this is a skill which can immensely increase your win rate and what live pros are good at.
 
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Additional skills versus more skills, two very different things. I guess it is harder to use solvers live without being obvious, so there is that.
 
Gallarado777

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If you know how to play online poker you will also be good at playing in a live tournament, the rules are the same cards, too, just in live poker, you need to get used to people and watch their reactions and don't show your pressure and just play regular poker like you play at home in an online tournament and that's it
 
Chebchoub

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Of course, live poker is not quite the same as online poker, as it depends on a lot of patience and some body language skills.
 
MK_

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I'm not buying the logic.. most players aren't cheating online, also cheating is probably far more common live than you think, why? cuz some people are cheats lol.. online is harder because it's more difficult to get a read on someone you can't see. Doesn't automaticaly mean they're cheating 😎👍
 
thedarkman

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I absolutely agree. Online poker requires more luck.
As a lifelong contrarian, I dissent. Live poker means you can play one table. Anyone can play 3 tables on-line without any effort. There are also more time constraints. The two are entirely different and you can't really compare them.
 
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Max Defensor

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I would say the average online player is better than the average live player.
 
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Yea I have to hard disagree.

Average online player is going to better than your average in person only player.

By numbers / practice alone.
 
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Of course, live poker requires more skill than online poker you plus the willingness to think about live poker now is a terror and there's that pressure from the opponent too right
 
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You are basically saying, that everyone, who win in online poker, is cheating. And that is plainly false. All in all there is probably just as much cheating in live poker, its just a different kind of cheating. The real reason, why live players often struggle online, is because, online players get to play many more hands, so they tend to learn the basics of the game much faster.

Online poker is also available with less geographic limitations, which mean, that you get to play with people from large parts of the world rather than just your local area. And importantly you get to play with people from low-mid income areas, who can actually make a living playing fairly low stakes. So you have full time professional players online at much lower stakes, than you do live. Unless its a geo-limited site, and even then you compete with players from an entire country or state rather than just your local city.

But of course there are also things, that are more difficult in live poker. You mention playing with deep stacks, and that is definitely more common live. You also have to manually keep track of the pot size and the effective stack size, and you need to avoid giving away live tells. But even so its a fact, that great online players usually do well in live poker after a short period of adjustment, while the opposite is often not the case.
 
Luvepoker

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Both online and live take skill to beat them. Each has their own skill set but a good winning player online should be able to adjust to live and visa versa.

As for only way to win is to cheat online, you are wrong and there are several members here on CardsChat that are winning players. Also, many people play on sites where HUD are not available to help them. While yes there is a possibility to cheat online using tools to help, most players don't have or use those tools and to be honest you don't have much time to set up and run a program to cheat as Easly as you make it sound.

Now what I have found is good players online usually do even better when they go out in the live felt. I have played in both with success. Now if you want the truth, the only time I know I was being cheated was in a bigger tournament series. in a bigger time, Las Vegas, casino and it was known, and nothing done about it. While I prefer live, online is OK to play in my opinion. Its it perfect? No but not every winning player is a cheat.
 
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fundiver199

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Also, many people play on sites where HUD are not available to help them.
And using a tracker / HUD is not cheating, if the site allows it. If someone dont want to, thats up to them. Just as its up to them, if they dont spend time studying and improving by watching training videos or working off-session with solvers. Which of course live players can also do, and all high stakes pros surely do.
While yes there is a possibility to cheat online using tools to help, most players don't have or use those tools and to be honest you don't have much time to set up and run a program to cheat as Easly as you make it sound.
Exactly. The big buzz word these day is RTA or real time assistance. Using software like solvers while playing and not just for off session study. But while its theoretically possible to have a solver running on a different computer to avoid detection by the poker client, if you have to make inputs manually, you might run out of time bank, before you make your decision. Certainly this would not be feasible while multitabling, which most regs do. So I think, its pretty much only a concern at high stakes, where sometimes maybe only a single table is running anyway. Or where people are willing to invest in more advanced systems to cheat.
 
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turnupthebb

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You are basically saying, that everyone, who win in online poker, is cheating. And that is plainly false. All in all there is probably just as much cheating in live poker, its just a different kind of cheating. The real reason, why live players often struggle online, is because, online players get to play many more hands, so they tend to learn the basics of the game much faster.

Online poker is also available with less geographic limitations, which mean, that you get to play with people from large parts of the world rather than just your local area. And importantly you get to play with people from low-mid income areas, who can actually make a living playing fairly low stakes. So you have full time professional players online at much lower stakes, than you do live. Unless its a geo-limited site, and even then you compete with players from an entire country or state rather than just your local city.

But of course there are also things, that are more difficult in live poker. You mention playing with deep stacks, and that is definitely more common live. You also have to manually keep track of the pot size and the effective stack size, and you need to avoid giving away live tells. But even so its a fact, that great online players usually do well in live poker after a short period of adjustment, while the opposite is often not the case.
you say that as a fact or do you mean that as your opinion?
If its a fact do you have proof? otherwise it's not a fact.

Also keep in mind that people who cheat will not admit they are cheating. They will tell people that they don't cheat.

Just think about how popular it is with preflop range charts. Most of the big poker educational sites sell them, 500-1000 plus preflop ranges. That's cheating if you use them while playing but its of course meant to be used while playing because no one can memorize 1000 charts.

RTA is very easy access, anyone can use RTA. And the hardcore cheaters have much more advanced RTA tools.

Many poker sites make it against rules to use a HUD but most players use one anyway. There are often hand converters who make it possible.

In my experience there is an incredibly large amount of cheating.
 
Dmitriy_rus7

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Everyone says live poker is easier than online poker. It's true but I think the reason is different than what others say.

I think it actually takes more skill to play live poker. But if that's the case then why do they struggle when going to play online??

The reason is to become really successful online you have to become an incredibly great player because you have to play against many players who are cheating. They use bots, solvers, charts etc to tell them how to play or at least guide their decisions. So you have to be so incredibly good at poker so you can compete against cheaters and then you have to find the fish and exploit them. Or you have to become a cheater as well and use these software which aren't allowed. And most players choose to cheat, otherwise the online games wouldn't be so difficult if it just was a few cheaters.

That's why live poker actually takes more skill because you don't have all these software to help you when you play live. You have to actually be a great player. Playing straightforward poker is not that easy, that's why so many players are bad at live poker and you often end up playing very deep stacked at live poker as well which is very difficult and even online that's something which isn't solved like 100bb stack size is. It's very common to have 300-600bb effective stack size live poker. That means a lot of pressure which can cause you to make wrong decisions out of fear and uncomfortability playing 500bb pots, does a tough reg really dare to make a 300bb river bluff? Will you really try to call that big bet and bluff catch? So much money! Do you even have a bankroll to play this pot? maybe you had the bankroll for buying in for 200bb but maybe not after you doubled up and now you are in a 500bb pot which is not so uncommon.

That's why I prefer live poker because live poker you use your real skill against other players real skill. No softwares to help tell you what to do. And that makes it easier than online poker because live uses players real skill, not software aided skill.
I absolutely agree.
 
lukecoulson

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100% agree with that one. Purely from working out the maths real—time as opposed to just seeing BB stack online takes my attention away occasionally
 
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And using a tracker / HUD is not cheating, if the site allows it. If someone dont want to, thats up to them. Just as its up to them, if they dont spend time studying and improving by watching training videos or working off-session with solvers. Which of course live players can also do, and all high stakes pros surely do.

Exactly. The big buzz word these day is RTA or real time assistance. Using software like solvers while playing and not just for off session study. But while its theoretically possible to have a solver running on a different computer to avoid detection by the poker client, if you have to make inputs manually, you might run out of time bank, before you make your decision. Certainly this would not be feasible while multitabling, which most regs do. So I think, its pretty much only a concern at high stakes, where sometimes maybe only a single table is running anyway. Or where people are willing to invest in more advanced systems to cheat.

Exactly this. Your average low stakes grinder is not running RTA. Even those prepared to cheat probably realise it's better to play more tables than play a GTO strategy using a solver. After all it takes time to run the RTA that could otherwise be used to play more tables.

Also the edge gained is minimal at these stakes is small as balance and playing unexploitably is not so important and really its about finding the fish and taking their money.

As you say at high stakes it is a real risk though.

As to the original question, it doesnt take more skill just a different skill set. For equivalent stakes live is undoubtedly a lot easier as there are more weak players.
 
hilary antonik filho

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Online: lots of tournaments, more ease, better conditions.
Live, one at most two tournaments (it will depend a lot on your available time) plus patience, emotional control, being observant of everyone present, among other items.
In my preference review, Live 65%, online 35%
 
TeUnit

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Live is much more complex with live tells, but the player base is generally weaker at the same stakes.

There are good reasons Daniel and both Phils do better live, they are great at reading people.
 
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fundiver199

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Exactly this. Your average low stakes grinder is not running RTA. Even those prepared to cheat probably realise it's better to play more tables than play a GTO strategy using a solver. After all it takes time to run the RTA that could otherwise be used to play more tables. Also the edge gained is minimal at these stakes is small as balance and playing unexploitably is not so important and really its about finding the fish and taking their money.
The average low stakes grinder might play 5.000-10.000 hands every day. This gets boring pretty quickly, so using a computer program AKA "bot" to make decisions and carry out actions for you would be a huge help. It would also allow you to put in even more volume, maybe playing on several different sites simultaneously to avoid suspicion and thereby increase your profit, as long as the bot is beating the games. So for sure there is a big incentive to use bots in low stakes games, if you can avoid detection.

RTA however is the exact opposite, since it increase your workload rather than reduce it. So the incentive to use RTA is only there, when volume does not matter, and when making perfect decisions against very good opponents is nessesary to even beat the games. I sometimes watch replays of Sunday Million final tables on pokerstars in the client. And from time to time someone goes into the tank in a way, which makes me think, that maybe they are using some sort of RTA.

Last example was 7-8 handed, and UGT opened K9s. A player two seats to his left jammed for around 15BB, it folded to UTG, and now the decision was on him. In a regular MTT this would be a pretty trivial fold, since K9s is near the bottom of our UTG opening range 7-8 handed. Sunday Million however has become a PKO, which mean, you are supposed to call wider, when you can win a bounty. Even so it only took me like 5 seconds to decide, that if it was me, I would fold. The bounty was only average, and calling and losing would cost him like 35-40% of his chips, which would make his position significantly worse.

The player however went into the tank and took like a full minute before finally folding. Its possible, he just really wanted to think it through to be sure to not make a mistake on a final table, which might be his biggest ever. But in a minute its also possible to plug everyones stack size and bounty into ICMizer and calculate the Nash calling range to confirm, that K9s is indeed a fold. And I kind of suspect, that maybe something like that is, what was going on. But even if that was the case, is it really that important? A player can only do this a few times before using up his time bank, and I was able to make the same decision in 5 seconds without using RTA.
 
dreamer13

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Playing from home comes with the risk of distractions such as household chores, phone notifications, and others. To maintain focus, players must set aside a dedicated playing space, eliminate potential distractions, and exercise self-discipline. Treating online poker sessions with the same seriousness as live games can help mitigate this problem.
 
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online poker is a joke....its a program......they program it to do what they it to do.....

every single site has been busted for cheating and people still think its legit and random
 
Goggelheimer

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I have never played live, but I think the skill set/discipline needed is much wider than in online poker.

1. Reading people skill is much more needed than reading the board (that is second nature for online players)

2. Hiding your emotional state that others can't get a read on you (poker face and other body language tells).
Most people are not good at this because of our social nature, but it is f. e. trainable that you don't show any motion when you show at your pocket aces.
 
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