Freeroll: The Black Hole in the Poker World

Claudiunm

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There are places in the Universe where all the laws of physics crumble. In these places, no rule is absolute. Nothing works as it should The light cannot escape. Time becomes an anomaly and gravity goes beyond its own rules. These places are the Black Holes. Endless source of films, books and scientific theories!

Similar to Black Holes, in the world of Poker there is a place where all laws are crumbling. Where all the rules are reduced to dust. The name of these places is Freeroll. No traditional poker rules work right there! Nobody respects your bet raises. Theey pay your bets with anything in hand and a 27o is enough to go All in against you. Like gravity in a Black Hole, the variance in a freeroll is overwhelming. The feeling is like being in a madhouse full of maniacs.

I make a reservation only for the freerolls here at CardsChat where almost everyone plays as if they were at a tournament table with paid buy-in.

Well friends, what strategy do you use when you venture into freerolls with 5000 players fighting each?
 
CheezeWiz

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Great Analogy...

There are places in the Universe where all the laws of physics crumble. In these places, no rule is absolute. Nothing works as it should The light cannot escape. Time becomes an anomaly and gravity goes beyond its own rules. These places are the Black Holes. Endless source of films, books and scientific theories!

Similar to Black Holes, in the world of Poker there is a place where all laws are crumbling. Where all the rules are reduced to dust. The name of these places is Freeroll. No traditional poker rules work right there! Nobody respects your bet raises. Theey pay your bets with anything in hand and a 27o is enough to go All in against you. Like gravity in a Black Hole, the variance in a freeroll is overwhelming. The feeling is like being in a madhouse full of maniacs.

I make a reservation only for the Freerolls here at CardsChat where almost everyone plays as if they were at a tournament table with paid buy-in.

Well friends, what strategy do you use when you venture into freerolls with 5000 players fighting each?

I really enjoyed this post! Thank you, Claudiunm. Very well written, accurate, clever and made me chuckle.

I would just say, be aware of the game you are participating in, what you are going to be up against and adjust expectations accordingly. Have a game plan going in for how you intend to play, and if you stick to the plan and it does not shake-out, no big deal.

First 1/3 of game will, of course, be like Donkey Kong on Steroids. bluffing is not a consideration. Perhaps be willing to accept some risky opportunities to hop into big pots with say small pairs or suited connectors. If you go out, not much time lost, and you can move on to more meaningful games. If you win, now you have some chips and you can play more "normal", but do not expect others to.

Middle 1/3 of game starts to calm down a little bit and if you can maintain above average chipstack, you can play mostly normal. There is a chance a bluff may hold-up at this point. If you drop below average chip stack, it is time to start looking to take a chance again.

Final 1/3 of game most of the really crazy players are gone and it plays out more like a real game.

Lastly, just remember, there is a reason why it feels like you are in a madhouse full of maniacs... You Are! Oh well, it could be worse you could have gotten sucked into a blackhole... or perhaps you did.

Best of Luck At the Poker Tables All,

CheezeWiz
 
akgross

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The reality of playing a freeroll is like a meat grinder, where everything is ground into minced meat. I try to play by card and suit and always look at my opponent, namely which country he is from.))
 
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fundiver199

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First of all I dont understand, why people get upset about bad beats in freerolls. So someone went all in with 72o after just 5 minutes, you called with AKo, and he "sucked out on you". But so what, you paid nothing to enter, and when you bust quickly, at least you did not spend a lot of your time figthing 2.000 other players for a 200$ price pool. So my main tip for freerolls is, dont take it so serious!

But apart from that there are strategies for beeting very loose opponents, who "call with anything" both post and pre. And since you also find these players in paid tournaments, just less and less as the tournament fee goes up, you need to know how to play against them. And for that freerolls can be a good training ground. Its not rocket science and can basically be boiled down to the following:

1) Use large bet sizes for value
2) Widen your value range
3) Dont bluff

Just play solid poker and keep your calm. As someone wrote in another post recently, if you open A9s to 3BB from MP, and now BTN moves all in for 150BB in the first hand of the tournament, then just fold and let him have it. Or let someone else call and try to get a quick dubble. Let the worst goofballs bust each other and dont get involved in preflop all-in spots, until blinds have gone up, or you have a really premium hand.
 
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Qrise

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This does not always happen, especially if there is a good amount of prize money in freerolls, then basically everyone plays it the way they play for money. Slowly leisurely

but if there are 3000 people for 100 dollars, then of course many do not try very hard to play it carefully in a tournament with such small prize money
 
0546474

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Even a black hole has its own rules, and if these rules differ from the rules that we are used to, this does not mean that they do not exist !!! Yes, because of the chaos that happens in freerolls, the probability of winning is small, but I think that with the right actions we can still increase it !!!
 
ADRI7HO

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There are places in the Universe where all the laws of physics crumble. In these places, no rule is absolute. Nothing works as it should The light cannot escape. Time becomes an anomaly and gravity goes beyond its own rules. These places are the Black Holes. Endless source of films, books and scientific theories!

Similar to Black Holes, in the world of Poker there is a place where all laws are crumbling. Where all the rules are reduced to dust. The name of these places is Freeroll. No traditional poker rules work right there! Nobody respects your bet raises. Theey pay your bets with anything in hand and a 27o is enough to go All in against you. Like gravity in a Black Hole, the variance in a freeroll is overwhelming. The feeling is like being in a madhouse full of maniacs.

I make a reservation only for the Freerolls here at CardsChat where almost everyone plays as if they were at a tournament table with paid buy-in.

Well friends, what strategy do you use when you venture into freerolls with 5000 players fighting each?

You summarized this very well.

It was nice writing. :)
 
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fefibecerra

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Hahaha very nice analogy. I feel the same way, people going all in with 27o and making a full house. It's just too weird, that's why I prefer CC freerolls.
 
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fundiver199

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Hahaha very nice analogy. I feel the same way, people going all in with 27o and making a full house. It's just too weird, that's why I prefer CC freerolls.

One of the reasons why, people often feel this way, is because, they dont understand, how close equities actually run preflop, as long as the weaker hand is not dominated. For instance 72o has 32,44% equity against AKo on average. A bit more or less depending on the suits. So in rough terms the "maniac", who goes all in preflop with 72o, will beat your AKo 1 out of 3 times. So its actually not that weird or unusual. Its just, that people emotially feel, their AKo should win 100% of the time, because the other guy should not have played his 72o :)
 
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fefibecerra

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One of the reasons why, people often feel this way, is because, they dont understand, how close equities actually run preflop, as long as the weaker hand is not dominated. For instance 72o has 32,44% equity against AKo on average. A bit more or less depending on the suits. So in rough terms the "maniac", who goes all in preflop with 72o, will beat your AKo 1 out of 3 times. So its actually not that weird or unusual. Its just, that people emotially feel, their AKo should win 100% of the time, because the other guy should not have played his 72o :)


Very true, but still frustrating because of the last sentence you said.
 
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fundiver199

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Very true, but still frustrating because of the last sentence you said.

A lot of people hate variance, and this is why, they dont like to be in games with loose and wild players. And loose play does indeed increase variance. Mostly for the loose player himself, but also for other players at the table. If 72o is played correctly, it will actually lose nearly 100% of the time to AK, because usually AK raise preflop, and 72o fold.

When people make incorrect calls, they will win more often, because they get to realise more of their true equity in the hand. And the flip side to that is, their opponents will lose more often. They will "get sucked out on". However when the bad hand still lose, which it does most of the time, it will be a bigger pot. So if your goal is profit, there is nothing better than to be in a very loose game.

Especially with freerolls the issue is often, that people are playing for fun, and when they bust early, because some maniac gets lucky against them, it ruins the fun. And unlike in normal tournaments, you can not reenter in a freeroll. When you are out, you are out, and maybe you need to wait a day or week for the next one.

However here we need to remember, that "what you pay is what you get". With a freeroll you pay nothing, so you can expect nothing. So if you want a better playing experience, then just dig out your credit card and pay, like you would for most other activities. This also gives you the chance to win some slightly more interesting prices than those, you find in most freerolls ;)
 
MoCoSolo

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People generally are not playing freerolls to make serious money. Some use it as a challenge, others just use it to do fun, stupid things and enjoy the thrill of sucking out on tight players. It's just darn right funny. But, like others said, either play super tight early on or don't break a sweat on a freeroll.

On that note, I don't know if anyone posted today's $2k Thanksgiving freeroll at SB. People were ITM within 1.5 hours (with roughly 2k players), which is straight out ridonkulous.
 
Claudiunm

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Thank you all for your comments!
I know freerolls are crazy and I have been raising money here on CardsChat. But in other freerolls where the field has more than 4000 people it is different. I have tested several different strategies to see which one gives the most results and used the post to ask which ones you use.
In addition, the text was to really relax.
Strong hug to all!
 
A

andrezito38

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man this text was very good.
and that’s really freeroll.
a black hole !!!
in my opinion is that as in life poker is adaptation.
push / fold and nothing else, the rest is a matter of chance
thanks gl !!!
 
Alekxandrovi3

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Freerolls, like small bins, are almost always played by those who do not have the means to play better. Why is it so easy to guess.
 
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I believe it is the classic , you get out what you put in.

I take most free rolls seriously and did from the get go when learning with play chips. I tracked my progress. My attitude is if you do not take play money MTTS and free rolls seriously, what makes you think you will genuinely take higher stakes seriously?

Develop best practice out of the box and stick with it. I have enjoyed the rough and tumble, confronting the obvious stupid plays and figure if you can navigate those waters successfully, you can navigate others.
 
ivanlt18

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5k players on a freeroll? Just sit and watch them tear themselves to pieces. The less hands I play, the further I end up. Provided I'm playing carefully and wisely those few hands.
 
jcxmendes

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this freeroll I play selected as a hand, playing in position and hoping for luck to smile at me, because the game only starts when it's in the final part!:joyman::joyman::joyman:
 
ninjareal

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hi all , I think some great advice has already been posted, I would have said the same, maybe the only thing I can add is not get the money in preflop unless of course AA KK QQ etc, see more flops with premium hands (or even mid range) and play hard from the flop onwards, perhaps also take a few cheap chances early on, and of course position position position, try to find out who maniacs are and let me them bluff into you, once they're pot commited then 3bet shove, should work for most freerolls , now if I could only take my own advice :p
.
see you all at the tables , and please fold whenever I raise kkkkkkkkk
 
Adi8877

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Sometimes, the freerolls can make me more upset, angry, than buyin tourneys, but have to acknowledge, everybody play it with different background, purpose...
I always play it for building bankroll for micro tourneys, so annoying the 27o and similar hands winnig against my top pair, but in the end it pays out there too, maybe later than earlier but i always get the result...

Have no strategy, or anything like this, as it is always depends on the actual table, players, if there are 2-3 allin machine, i must play that one, too, if it is full with limping machines, i have to play differently again, if it is full with sitouts, and just 3-4 players are in, again different, if most of them the 'normal' again different, and that can happen in any phase almost....
 
rock0001

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for all the reasons you've mentioned you have to adapt your poker style and start playing more tight on loose tables and vice versa. the reality is that when players dont risk any of their own money they will be more willing to take more risks so plays like bluffs or 3 bet light specially at early stages might not be as effective as it could be in high or medium buy in tournaments. try to wait for a good hand and take advantage of loose player who will call you with almost every hand... middle and specially late freeroll stages are quite similar to other tournaments so the most important thing is to survive the early stages with a decent stack.
 
Roller

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Freeolls with a large player pool seldom resemble anything that's similar to actual MTT's. If your playing them simple play solid poker and best of luck at the tables.
 
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