How to Play Poker Online
So you want to play poker online, huh? Well, you’ve come to the right place. But before you dive into just any online poker web site and begin gambling, you might want to get a little insight into what you can expect from the seemingly infinite number of poker rooms out there in cyber space. After all, no two are alike and the difference between an average venue and a leading one can translate into hundreds, even thousands of dollars.
Patience is a virtue (and a winning strategy)
What really sets poker – online or off – apart from most other betting games is the human element. For example, while luck will always be an integral part of winning at poker, so is bluffing. Thus, poker players must observe the other players’ moves and use these clues to their advantage.
When you play poker online, you don’t actually know who your opponents are and they don’t know you. Instead you’re all reduced to little computer-generated characters seated at a cyber card table. These other folks you’re playing against can be anybody and from virtually anywhere on the planet, thanks to the World Wide Web. However, these animated characters are often difficult to read with respect to bluffing and other telling actions, or inactions. For instance, suppose during a hand it appears as though one of the players is taking an awfully long time to make his or her decisions. Of course, this could be merely because that person is just plain slow. Or the player has an incredibly slow computer and/or a not-so-cutting-edge Internet service provider (ISP). Thus it’s always a safer bet to exercise patience when you play poker online.
To focus or not to focus
Some people play poker online while engaging in other activities at the same time. This is hardly unusual given that most people who play online poker do so from their own homes where distractions are commonplace. Also, because online poker players do not actually see one another, picking up on physical tells or getting a psychological read on them during a hand is almost impossible. But in the end, of course, what sort of hand you have is clearly more important than anything you may ‘assume’ about your opponents. A bad hand – for instance – should simply be folded and not played.
Some who play poker online believe you’re better off when there are more distractions around like music playing or even watching TV during game play. The idea behind this is that you are less likely to become too emotionally involved in your hand and therefore more inclined to fold any clearly weak hands.