Human nature is a fascinating thing, and poker is full of it. Intuition, habit, how we perceive both ourselves and others, projection, interpretation, wishful thinking, caution and countless other thoughts/thought processes and emotions play their part (often collectively) at some point or other.
What makes the game so rich is that these factors can have such vastly different significance from one hand to the next, and it’s a constant battle – the more we become involved in a session – as we strive to zone in on the various aspects of table dynamics.
However, some potentially profitable situations are easier to recognise than others and, just as much as players try to be flexible, they can be predictable. One such scenario is the pot to which nobody wants to commit for one reason or another. Often this is simply because a player’s cards and the board don’t match up as per desired, at which point any interest in continuing (i.e. parting with any more chips) ends. Some people are almost transparently predictable in this regard, but it is such a common element of the game that this particular opportunity crops up time and time again in online poker, where it is not unusual for a table to get through 100 hands per hour.
Indeed it is the speed of the game (where the potential for volume can mean quantity is given as much priority as quality) that helps create these ‘abandoned’ pots as players keep their powder dry for the next, soon-to-come hand. This is where we come in. Not untypically, we might have missed the flop but be in the same boat as our opponent, or they might have a pair of 4s or 5s, for example, with a couple of overcards showing. It’s imperative to be in ‘thief’ mode at all times so that we don’t slip into the same automatic (negative) frame of mind, and are thus ready to round up whatever chips are going unclaimed. Unless the opposition has a specific reason to stay in the hunt for a modest pot, it’s time to act with a purposeful but not enormous bet which, most of the time, will suffice to scoop up those chips. Note that it is ‘natural’ for people to view these chips as heading elsewhere as soon as it becomes apparent that they have no realistic chance of taking down a pot based on the strength of their hand.
Good luck (stealing) at the tables!
Let us know your best steal – our favourite gets a free €4+1 Flush Royale ticket…
If you haven’t tried Blaze Poker yet, you’ve been missing out! The point behind this nifty format is the so-called ‘Quick Fold’ facility. Clicking on the Quick Fold button automatically folds your hand without waiting for the play to reach you, and then automatically sends you to a brand new table, with a new set of hole cards, and a new set of opponents. This means there’s no waiting for play to come around to you and, when you have a trash hand or simply don’t want any further involvement in a pot, you can get straight into a new hand immediately. Over the course of a typical session of poker, the Blaze version allows you to get the most out of your time.
Maximising your time at the tables means more hands per hour, and more hands per hour, of course (even without multi-tabling), means being able to fully take advantage of our excellent 30% Rakeback deal.
Add to this the fact that this format also helps maintain a higher level of solidity compared to the standard format where we tend to be less patient and thus a little looser than we’d like to admit, and Blaze Poker is a noteworthy alternative to the traditional online experience. Knowing that it’s possible to immediately start a new hand certainly makes it easier to get rid of bad habits!
Play on our Blaze Poker tables now and take advantage of the Blaze of Glory – we’re giving away €500 in cash prizes and an exclusive freeroll, every week! Check out the dedicated leaderboard that keeps track of the Redbacks you earn on Blaze tables from Monday to Sunday. If you manage to finish in the top 12 you’ll receive a share of €250, while simply making it on the leaderboard (minimum 100 Redbacks) is enough to earn free entry to our weekly €250 Blaze of Glory Freeroll.
Vegas, Baby! They say that what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, but not if you go there and win a WSOP event. That’s every poker fan’s dream, and you could be winging your way to this poker extravaganza courtesy of 32Red Poker thanks to our flexible choice of qualifying tournaments.
And these packages are well worth trying for – each includes entry to a $1000, $1111 or $1500 2014 WSOP event, plus 7 nights’ accommodation in the Palazzo Hotel in Las Vegas and spending money ($1500, $1389 and $1000 respectively).
To start with, there are three all-inclusive packages to be won in our exclusive Freerolls. The first takes place at 7pm UK time, Sunday 13th April and has a requirement of only 1000 raked hands in the 30 days prior to the tournament. WSOP Freeroll No2 will be held at 7pm UK time, Sunday 4th May (2000 raked hands requirement) and, finally, Sunday 25th May at 7pm UK time sees WSOP Freeroll No3 (3000 raked hands). Each tournament has 5000 starting chips and 15 minute blind levels.
Another route to the WSOP is offered via our online satellites, the quest starting with buy-ins as low as €4 + 0.40 for the 6-max Turbo rebuy. For details of our satellites see the poker lobby: Tournaments> Satellites> Live Events… good luck!
If you missed it before you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy its re-introduction to 32Red Poker because it’s here until the end of March.
The attraction of Blaze Poker is the Quick Fold facility. Clicking on the Quick Fold button automatically folds your hand – without waiting for the play to reach you – and immediately sends you to a brand new table, with a new set of hole cards, and a new set of opponents. Not having to wait for play to come around to you and, subsequently, for a hand to finish when you have too poor a holding to get involved, can make a considerable difference to a poker session in terms of time. And herein lies the beauty of Blaze Poker – Quick Fold allows you to simply get on with it and make the most of your time.
Moreover, this format also helps maintain a higher level of solidity because in a ‘normal’ game we tend to be less patient and thus a little looser than we’d like to admit – such a weakness is less likely when we know that we’re maximising our hands per hour and can trade in a trash hand for two new cards in a second or two. And more hands per hour, of course (even without multi-tabling), means being able to fully take advantage of our excellent 30% Rakeback deal.
As for the fun Blazing Cannon itself, simply win 20 raked hands and a video game opens in which you have a chance of winning up to €100! Fire a burning chip from a cannon into a house of cards – avoiding pesky birds and UFOs, and see if you’re in line for a cash prize. When the game ends you’re simply dealt back into your cash game.
Angus Dunnington (AngusD at the tables)
32Red Poker Ambassador
Poker is such a rich game that, depending on the specific format we’re playing, a successful approach is by no means guaranteed to have the same results in an ostensibly similar scenario.This is true, for example, when considering the No Limit cash game and tournament scenarios. The conventionally accepted tight-aggressive strategy might be well suited to No Limit cash games (albeit not the only worthy approach) but, in today’s modern tournament environment – particularly online – we’re going to struggle to do better than make a minor cash if we adhere to this style too strictly.
Apart from the fact that strong holdings, by definition, come around all too rarely in this context, when we are ‘fortunate’ enough to be dealt a premium hand there is, of course, no guarantee that we are going to be rewarded with any significant action. For one reason, we have hitherto been inactive, which is already a good indication to the opposition that we’re holding something when we suddenly get involved, so they are likely to avoid commitment. And thus the cycle could well continue as the blinds inexorably rise and our stack diminishes. To compound the problem, there inevitably comes a point as the tournament progresses at which our waiting, safety-first policy seriously puts our tournament survival in jeopardy, let alone the prospects of finishing among the top prizes.
It’s simply not possible to realistically expect any level of success with a pure tight-aggressive approach. Indeed it is imperative to loosen up and experience the liberating experience for ‘too’ tight players that is broadening our starting hand range and indulging in the occasional bit of such delights as speculation and even slow-playing, for instance. This – enjoyable – strategy can begin as early as the opening stages, when the low(est) blind levels afford us considerable flexibility to mix up our game. Note that this also gives us the advantage of being able to engineer a deceptive table image.
As the blinds increase the pressure on just about everyone it makes sense to step up a gear. Instead of being overly cautious the key is to put yourself in other players’ shoes and appreciate that much of the opposition is going to be afraid, and rather than join them it’s much more important to exploit them. The phrase ‘you can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs’ is particularly apt when it comes to NL Hold’em tournaments…
Good luck at the tables!
Angus Dunnington (AngusD at the tables)
32Red Poker Ambassador
There’s something for everyone:
Begin the week with our €50 Guaranteed Multiplicity Monday (8pm UK time), which is well worth being a regular fixture in your poker entertainment. Finish in the money in consecutive tournaments and earn the luxury of being able to multiply your latest winnings by the number of consecutive cashes! For example if you manage this three times you can triple your latest winnings. Read more
Jackpots are good. The word in itself already conjures up a bit of excitement, and the prospect of hitting a jackpot adds a bit of spice to the game, whether it’s for a Bad Beat (when a big hand ‘loses’ to a bigger hand) or for finding yourself with a Royal Flush, as is the case for 32Red’s fun Flush Royale tournament, where a whopping €1000 is waiting for anyone who manages to hit poker’s magical hand using both hole cards.
One such player who did this – and on New Year’s Eve, no less – is LuckyRacoon (yes – someone called Lucky saw good fortune come his way; funny old world). No doubt happy to see in the New Year by playing in the well structured, €250 Guaranteed tournament, LuckyRacoon was dealt Ad Qd, got jiggy with it and the flop came Ah Kd 9s. His opponent had K9 and thus hit two pair, and the poker gods sent through the ether the Jd on the turn and then what must have been a beautiful looking Td to complete the royal flush. And with it a welcome €1000 jackpot.
He had this to say: It was a great start to my 2014, when on New Years eve, i played the 32Red Flush Royale tournament, starting at 9pm, and gaining popularity, day, by day, including a few 32Red regs, and thanks to 1 regular (Juicy-puice) hitting Her 2 pair on the flop, helped me to see the river card, and very fortunately, i hit my royal flush, and in so doing, i had a nice little bonus of €1000. I bubbled the prize pool, but felt only fair to the rest of the players; can’t be too greedy
A big thanks goes out to Nick Diaz, and all at 32Red, for putting on great promotions, and i hope they all continue. You have now got one great big fan
For those looking to get their hands on the jackpot, the Flush Royale tournament is held every night at 9pm (UK time) and has a buy-in of €5+1, 1500 starting chips, 8-minute rebuys, €5 rebuys (1500 chips) and a €7.50 add-on (3000 chips).
Good luck at the tables!Luck
Our Achievements system, which is designed to help players have fun while they learn and develop their game and, ultimately, receive virtual badges as a reward, is getting bigger and better.
There are three new Achievements to aim for, each with a nice twist. The first, entitled Royal Treatment, is described thusly: ‘One must have one’s butler deliver poker’s highest possible hand to earn this badge!’ Clearly the ‘Royal Bank’ task for this quest for the badge means making a royal flush (in any game), and it is understandably classed as ‘hard’ in terms of difficulty. The ‘Royal Flogging’ badge (have you spotted the theme?) involves losing at showdown to a royal flush and is also a toughie…
But even more difficult, and thus a bigger feather for your proverbial poker cap, is the ‘Lady Fingers’ badge, for which you must lose with a full house against someone’s straight flush.
The beauty of the Achievements system is that there is something for everyone, with some of the tasks (and their various components) being easier than others. There’s no time limit within which badges must be won – you simply learn and earn at your own pace. Another advantage of Achievements is that the incentive for badges means exploring aspects of both the game itself and what 32Red Poker has to offer.
Note that Play Money poker fans can also take part in Achievements.
Good luck at the tables, and earn those badges!
Angus Dunnington (AngusD at the tables)
32Red Poker Ambassador
There’s no need to wait until Christmas Day for gifts because we’re giving away over €10,000 in the form of a €10 Cash Drop every ten minutes, from 9-15 December! The promotion will run exclusively on our fantastic 6-max Blaze Poker tables. The lucky recipients are notified and paid immediately, and there is the added bonus of everyone at the table being alerted to the fact that you’ve just become €10 richer (there’s nothing like a bit of old-fashioned green-eyed envy to induce in your opponents a dash of tilt).
If you haven’t tried out our Blaze Poker tables already, the beauty of this format is that clicking on the special ‘Quick Fold’ button automatically folds your hand (without waiting for the play to reach you) and immediately sends you through the ether to a new table with a new set of hole cards, and a new set of opponents. Whenever you’re dealt a two-card helping of rubbish or you don’t want to play a further part in a hand, simply Quick Fold and move on to pastures new.
Apart from having advantages in terms of helping you tighten up your game (or avoid being too loose) because impatience should no longer be an issue, Blaze Poker also gives players more hands per hour with which to make the most of our excellent 30% Rakeback deal. Multi-table, and the rewards are even greater, of course.
Meanwhile, getting involved in the Blaze Cash Drop also means you have a chance to be transported to our fun Blazing Cannon video game – win 20 raked hands and you earn a shot at a €100 prize. Once you’ve played the game you’re dealt back into your cash game. Click here to find out more.
Good luck at the Blaze Poker tables!
For lots of people Christmas might be no more than visiting relatives we’d rather avoid, politely eating brussels sprouts at awkward family dinners and a couple of weeks on a diet of turkey and aging mince pies. Add to this an annoying blizzard of Christmas-themed television (even the cinemas join in) and tinsel and decorations and loads of other Christmassy stuff as soon as you set foot out of the house, and the chance to enjoy some poker will be a welcome oasis of calm.
Luckily for you, 32Red Poker’s fun-filled 32 days of Poker is here. Running from December 1st until January 1st, the extended Xmas festivities have something for everyone, from value-added tournaments to bonuses and, of courses, presents in the form of Freerolls.
It’s a lovely load of baubles… simply click here to visit our special advent calendar, with 32 baubles decorating our 32Red tree. Behind each bauble a surprise awaits for each of the 32 days. On Thursday 5th December, for example, there’s a €5+€1 buy-in €100 added Flush Royale tournament at 9pm UK time (hit a royal flush and win the €1000 jackpot!), while on Day 20 you can receive 50 bonus chips just by logging on!
The Xmas season’s specials culminate in the Goodbye €2013 Freeroll tournament on 28-29th December (9pm UK time on both nights; play 2013 raked hands during December to qualify) followed by the Hello €2014 Freeroll on Wednesday 1st January (5pm UK time).
If Blaze poker is your thing, the Blazing Cannon game will also have a Xmas theme (from Monday 2nd December). To qualify for the Blazing Cannon feature simply win 20 raked hands on any €0.05/€0.10 or €0.25/€0.50 Blaze tables and the game will launch, complete with snow and Father Christmas, and a chance to win €100…
Good luck at the tables! Have fun, and keep checking out what Christmas goodies are coming your way during the 32 Days of Poker.