6 Handed vs 9 Handed

CDNMAN 42

CDNMAN 42

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For quite some time I have been playing primarily 9 handed SitNGos and MTTs. and doing ok, however whenever I venture into 6 handed tourneys the results are not near as good. Is there a particular strategy difference recommended in 6 handed? I have heard that in the short table games the kicker isn't as important? Does this mean that opening hands and bets can be widened? Is playing tight in 6 handed recommended? Help:):):)
 
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Coinuss

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There is a difference between 6-max and 9-max. First, when we play 6 -max, we are more often in late position, and this encourages us to steal the blinds more often. At the same time, we need to defend the big blind wider because the BTN range is wider. If we play 6 players with a 9 player range, the blinds eat up our stack, which means we have to play with a wider range and play cautiously postflop. Secondly, I think there are 6 cards in the deck that have not been dealt and the draw is often closed.
Third, we have to play more aggressively than usual in order to win 6-handed.
 
nuttea

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For quite some time I have been playing primarily 9 handed SitNGos and MTTs. and doing ok, however whenever I venture into 6 handed tourneys the results are not near as good. Is there a particular strategy difference recommended in 6 handed? I have heard that in the short table games the kicker isn't as important? Does this mean that opening hands and bets can be widened? Is playing tight in 6 handed recommended? Help:):):)
In the early stages of a 6-hand SNG tournament, reducing the requirements for starting hands and playing them in a looser or more aggressive manner is important. Many hands that are considered dangerous in a full tournament, such as Broadway suited, A9 +, are raised in 6-max SNG. The danger of being dominated by an opponent with a higher kicker decreases as the number of players at the table decreases. Raising allows you to take control of the hand, and even if you and your opponent both miss, you will still benefit a lot. Raising also allows you to determine your opponents' hands, if they re-raise and do it quite often, you can fold before the flop.Position at the table also plays an important role. Playing more hands on the button and cut-off positions will give you a glimpse of your opponent's actions prior to your turn. This way you can get a lot of small pots when your opponent is in weak position.You will not only have to resort to stealing, but also remember to defend your own blinds, as many opponents will already be targeting your stack as a tidbit. If you guessed that your opponent is going to raise from the button, even though he has been constantly folding before, this is a great opportunity for stealing.
 
CDNMAN 42

CDNMAN 42

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6 Handed

Thanks for the suggestions, it confirms basically what I thought, play little looser and aggressive, steal more blinds and avoid passivity:):):)
 
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fundiver199

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I dont think, 6-max require a totally different strategy. But if you are a little to tight in general, that will definitely get punished more, since the blinds come around faster. Also the less players on the table, the wider range of hands you will have to play on average. So if you are not really comfortable postflop with marginal holdings, that will get punished more at 6-max.

There might also be some differences in player pool tendencies, which dont suit you so well. People playing 6-max might be a little loser and more aggressive in general. Even if they are recreational players, maybe they understand the dynamics better, because they have played more, and they are more minded for getting in there and battle with you.

With all this being said remember that variance is always a factor. You probably need a really big sample like 500 of each kind of SnG, before the true results become clear. So my advice is to continue to add more 6-max games to your mix, if you feel for it. Its definitely a good practice for MTTs as well, since a lot of money is lost or won in the battle between the final 5-6 players :)
 
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roberto51

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I had the same problem. I was not doing very well on six players and quit. I'm currently playing Sit & Go in DON format for 10 players and I'm doing very well.
 
Phoenix Wright

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I've tried both 9-handed and 6-max a bit. I perform similarly in both (prefer 9-handed slightly, but this is just personal preference). I never heard about kickers not as important in 6-max (I think they are just as important). In fact, I'd play almost identical ranges to a game with 9 players. Maybe slightly wider with 6 than 9, but virtually identical.

I think the biggest difference is probably that more orbits in the same amount of time means that your leaks could be amplified. Let us say that you do not defend your big blind well enough (how much or in what way could be a thread in itself). With 9 players, this isn't as significant as with 6 players because you'll be in the big blind more often with 6 players. Say we play a game with 200 hands. In a 9 player game we will have the big blind roughly 22 times, but in a 6 player game we will have the big blind 33 times!

This would massively amplify any big blind leaks you might have always had, but 9 player games didn't make as obvious. The way I look at it is that your play in the blinds needs to be more accurate than with 9 players and maybe even your play on the button (BTN) needs to be better because you will be in position more often with 6 players (also everything more often :D but in position is probably more significant).

The other seats matter little I think. I just treat them as CO, HJ, LJ (in addition to BTN, SB, BB). Maybe you could make an argument that LJ more plays like UTG in 9 player games, but I think most players (at least at lower levels) loosen up way too much in 6 max games. They treat them like Heads-up matches or something and play virtually everything preflop! More players blind stealing (partly because of more orbits and partly because of less players perceived) and getting out of line and I do fine playing my "regular style" I would for 9 player games and exploiting their obvious flaws.

To summarize my opinion, 6 player tables and 9 player tables should use similar ranges. Just be more aware of how to play well from the BTN and blinds because they come up more often with quicker orbits. We don't want to amplify our leaks there. Perhaps widen the range slightly if you like, but I wouldn't widen it nearly as much as some do!
 
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gryphon3005

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I certainly agree with all the previous comments about 6 handed play. One thing I would throw into the mix is focus. Playing 9 handed allows players to perhaps, develop a pattern of changing the pressure on the gas pedal. As their ranges narrow in the early positions they can relax a bit because they fold a lot more in these seats. And, since the blinds only come around every 9 hands they also don't get too concerned about the blinds until much later in an mtt. In 6 handed you can't let up. You must maintain a sharp focus on the game. The blinds come around faster for sure, but you'll find a lot of players have widened their ranges to the point that position doesn't matter nearly as much to them as in a 9 handed game. I think players who are somewhat new to 6 handed play can find themselves making some bad decisions because they feel rushed into doing something to counter the faster drain on their stack from the blinds coming around so fast. I think that feeling is partly due to the fact they are not accustomed to constant focus on the game.
 
Alizona

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9-handed tables is great for patient players. 6-handed tables is great for aggressive players.

As a patient player myself, it is no surprise to me that I have much better results at 9-max or 8-max compared to my results at 6-max tournaments. In fact, I try to avoid the 6-max'es if possible, altho if I deem one of them to be "good value" then I won't avoid it, I'll jump on in and play it... but I will certainly play slightly more aggro in them and that's never really been the strongest aspect of my game. Patience is my strongest asset in my humble opinion. For other players, its the exact opposite, and they excel at 6-max. You just have to know your own game and understand which format best suits it.
 
TeUnit

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The fewer players there are the more you need to open up your range.
 
franken222

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My experience has been the exact opposite, and I now look mostly for 6 handed tournaments.

For me, it helps my strategy, simply because there are only five other players to figure out, than 8. It lessens the number of unknowns.

When I play 6 handed, I find I can expand my pocket card range, as there won't be as many who will stay in the hand, simply because of the fewer players.

You can also target players more easily, because you're playing them more often. Again, it's easier to find out how 5 other players play, than it is 8.

However, having said that, you can make more money in 9-10 handed, because, the more that stay in, the bigger the pot.
 
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karl coakley

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In 6 handed games you really need 2 things to be successful.

You need to understand the math of poker and you need to understand the blinds move a lot faster.

TAG is less effective short handed. You simply don't have time to wait for a premium hand. The goal is to have live cards as much as possible.
 
theANMATOR

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For quite some time I have been playing primarily 9 handed SitNGos and MTTs. and doing ok, however whenever I venture into 6 handed tourneys the results are not near as good. Is there a particular strategy difference recommended in 6 handed? I have heard that in the short table games the kicker isn't as important? Does this mean that opening hands and bets can be widened? Is playing tight in 6 handed recommended? Help:):):)

For the reason you mentioned - playing lose - I find it sooper difficult to range opponent - therefore - I try to avoid 6 max games.
I'm much better playing full ring - as you said you are.
 
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pjokay

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Playing tight on a 6 seater means you are much more likely to get screwed over by the blinds and antes as you will be in a lot more blinds. Because there are less seats you have to adjust you starting hands bur only so much by adjusting the respective seat you in so your utg range in a seater would be mp for a 9 seater as the first three positions are gone but once you have discounted the first three seats the strategy should be the same.
 
mariale_1990

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I don't particularly like to play 6 handed tournaments a lot, but I have had to play them because as I play a lot of omaha h / l and there are a lot of tournaments of that type (at 888poker), I don't play every day, but from time to time, I think that in this type of tournament you play more aggressive, I think you can play tight but it depends on how often the blinds increase, and how many chips you have, I have also played some micro holdem tournaments and they always play aggressive, and I think that is one of the keys to advance in that tournament
 
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Gusborgs22

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I prefer 6 handed, you can play more hands, the range is wider :D
 
4e kogo1

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I prefer 6 max,so the game is much more dynamic and I feel the field, but in 9 max I advise you to play by hand,since the ranges of players are wide!
 
Ronaldo7

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I like 6 max more, i can play more hands so it is more fun!
 
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fundiver199

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Since this old thread has been reopened, its worth noting, that pokerstars have now completely removed 6-max SnGs from their international site. Thats quite a move and a sign of, how much SnGs are struggling in popularity. So for people playing on PokerStars the choise is now very simple. For die-hard fans of this format, they can still be found on 888 Poker :)
 
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Zirkzee

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You have to realize that you can expect a lot more action at shorthanded tables. This is simply because there are only a maximum of six people playing instead of ten. This does not save you from playing with weaker cards more often. Therefore, you have to be ready to be present at the table even with more marginal hands. While you usually don't have much to report from early position at a full-ring table, you can play significantly weaker hands at a short-handed table. You can't “hide” so well, you have to show that you are ready to attack the blinds at any time through aggressive play.
 
LFC_yllnwa

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I think the quantity and quality of the range should not depend on the number of players at the table). Switching to a tight game with a decrease in the number of players at the table is a mistake, because there are fewer players and you have the opportunity to see more hands for the game in the same period of time as in a normal 9max tournament. Not exact, but I think it is necessary to slightly increase the aggressiveness in the game and of course be more active at the table, but you should not put too much pressure on this. If you have a good experience of playing at the final tables in tournaments (or at very late stages, when the tables are not full), this will help you, because there is a bit of similarity with 6max in a large MTT :) These are personal observations:)
 
VikyGia

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Hello friend, if it is recommended to play 6 hands tight, since you have a better chance of winning, remember that it is also important to flirt, be patient and wait for the best opportunity.
 
nuttea

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For quite some time I have been playing primarily 9 handed SitNGos and MTTs. and doing ok, however whenever I venture into 6 handed tourneys the results are not near as good. Is there a particular strategy difference recommended in 6 handed? I have heard that in the short table games the kicker isn't as important? Does this mean that opening hands and bets can be widened? Is playing tight in 6 handed recommended? Help:):):)
All positions at 9-max tables are tighter than at 6-max! In particular, this applies to early positions. The average FR player will raise fewer hands from the same position as the average SH player. 2. 9-max play is more straightforward. Due to the less frequent blinds, 9-max players tend to wait for strong hands to 3-bet / 4-bet. 3. Lots of limps for 9-max! Many players are afraid to raise with medium hands, but they also don't want to fold, so they limp. Often the first limp will spawn a succession of subsequent limpsPlayers rarely defend the blinds at 9-handed. You can not narrow your ranges, but rather expand them by implementing FE on the perflop. But keep this in mind when evaluating your range postflop.therefore, playing 6 max is harder than 9 max
 
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