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New to Crush Live Poker?

When should a beginner take it to the casino?

RT Posts: 2Subscriber
Hey Guys,

So I'm fairly new to poker and am looking for advice on when/how to start playing live poker instead of online.

My question is when do you guys think I should start taking trips to the casino? I've been playing a few hours of online poker each day as well as trying to learn as much as possible (books, podcasts, articles, etc...) and although it's exhilarating and fun I've been thinking about heading to the casino and play a live game in person, but also don't want to get shat on. So when do you think it's time to get to the casino? wait till at least breaking even in most of the online games or winning? after x time? or just jump in and start playing in the poker room, trial by fire style?

Also, I'm going through the curriculum's here on CLP but if you guys have any other resources you think are worth checking out I'm all ears.

Thanks for any advice on getting started!


  • BartBart Posts: 5,819AdministratorLeadPro
    Hop in as soon as possible dude and stick to 15-25-35 like its the holy grail. Proper capped poker is going to be boring as hell but you need to get comfortable and gain the confidence that you are gonna be better than 95% of your opponents if you use the tools learned on this site.

  • ThehammahThehammah Posts: 7,085Subscriber
    I would add .. Dont expect to win right away.. Play in the smallest NL game at your casino that you feel comfortable in .. ie dont worry about beating the rake. You will have an adjustment to all the live stuff we all take for granted..

    Like using these weird things called chips, making sure you act in turn.. all of the live game rules. I bet this takes you a couple of weeks.

    Then move up to the smallest $5 blind game. assuming you have the bankroll. And play very very tight. dont make moves.. just get a feel for your players. You might be tempted to playing against the fish you see but live play is very different and theres a good chance your moves will go over the heads of the other players .. So just play straight forward til you build a good basis for all the regs in your local room.

    I would play this way for a while. maybe a month or so. It will also teach you discipline as live poker is SOOOOO much SLOWER. that online you will have time to adjust to this and recognize how you need to handle yourself given the long hours of no hands.. etc..

    good luck.

    by 1Bart
  • RecreationalRogerRecreationalRoger Posts: 756Subscriber
    And consider buying in light, even maybe the for the minimum the first time. The min in the 1-2 game at Parx is $60, max is $300. Consider buying in for $60 and treat it like you have 5 bullets. That way if you hit a cooler, or just feel overwhelmed and end up doing something donkish, you don't stack off 2 or 3 max buyins and never come back. I did that when I first started at both 1-2 and 2-5. Your first time at a live no-limit game in a casino is scary as shit. Like Wendy said, you have to learn how to touch cards, chips, not go out of turn, tip the dealer, tip the waitress, find the bathroom, how to order food, figure out how to position yourself and your cards and your chips and your water without getting in anyone's way...

    And like Bart said, no time like the present, and if you stick to his 15-25-35 rule (and one more, AXs is for stacking off the caller, not the raiser - that's saved me a lot of money), you shouldn't get into too much trouble. And leave the FPS at home for a while at least.

    Also, on the hands you're not in, try to identify the mistakes other people make, that helps too. Nothing like watching people call $20 raises from OMCs with PPs and $160 in their stacks all night to make you feel good about yourself.

    Lastly, pick up a book called Beat the Donks. Its primarily about playing 1-2. Very practical book. Helps to read hands and get used to the dollar amounts you'll be playing for (I'm assuming you're not playing 1-2 online). The book even quotes Barts 15-25-35 philosophy (it might have been 10-20-30 at the time the book was written). Probably the best book out there for someone in your situation. Skip Sklansky and Harrington et. al. for a while.
  • pocketzeroes Posts: 174Subscriber
    edited December 2015
    If you sit down at a 1/2 table, and just play a sound TAG style: wait for hands pre, set your raise sizes maybe slightly higher than table average to isolate a bit more, and bet with respect to pot size (don't make weird small bets like you'll see everyone else doing) - well most 1/2 games are really pretty easy to beat. Expect to see people show up with weird stuff. Just bet/bet/bet with a value hand. Don't try to bluff much post until you're sure that your bets are getting respect, you know you're not up against a station, and it's a really good spot.

    I'm not sure I agree with buying in short, but make sure you can afford to lose a full buyin or two. Nobody can win every session.

    Also, keep an eye out for people who haven't raised once in two hours and finally are for their first time. There are 1/2 players who will limp everything except for QQ-AA. There are some who will even limp/call AA pre. Don't try to make sense of their play.

    As you become more experienced, you can slowly start adding hands preflop, reduce your sizing a little bit (get comfortable with large multiway situations), find some creative lines in good spots, etc. But start off with the basics and you'll be a +EV player easily.
  • Oback2 Posts: 194Subscriber
    If you've gone through the curriculum and have already played some online you're most likely better than the average player at 1/2 already. I wouldn't recommend buying in short since raise seizes are typically 5-6x
  • FuzzypupFuzzypup Posts: 2,298Subscriber
    Variance live is very different than online. Each online table you play is twice the number of hands in a live game. You can be card dead for hours live. While online you don't even notice if you are multi tabling. Be prepared NOT to win @ 1/2 or 1/1/2 due to the rake/drop depending how it is. Now add in short stacks in the game.

    At my casino the drop is $7 and many players buy in for $50 @ the 1/2. Even I can't beat that. But the quality of players at the 1/2 is a mind boggling idiocy of reverse logic. So be prepared to be silently saying a lot of WTFs.

    The 3/5 at my casino is quite different than the 1/2.... most still play very bad. The largest difference I see is bet sizing tells. At 1/2 their bet size, more times than 3/5, doesn't reveal the strength of their hand. I have seen players bet 1/6th the pot with bottom set on a double draw board because they were scared someone had a bigger set. Or a clown limp reraise all in this huge amount with 66 just because he thought my raise with exactly AK.

    Each casino is different. So I strongly suggest you keep notes on patterns of the general population. At times Bart's advise has to be modified to where I play. I also play in different casinos and they play differently themselves.

    Point being use all the tools, videos, and books as a base foundation where to start. It is not the 10 commandments. Do your homework and think outside the box. Analyze situations, hands, and players. Realize their style and play.

    It is quite rare to have an answer in poker that applies 100% of the time.
  • pocketzeroes Posts: 174Subscriber
    Another point... When you first start playing live, and really a good thing to do in general, *pay attention*. Watch each player as action is on them. Notice how they place their bets, what denominations they grab, how much they bet with relation to the pot, how quickly they bet, call, or check, their facial expressions, anything they say, etc. Study everyone. Don't try to analyze it necessarily, let your subconscious do that.

    When I first started playing live, my best sessions were when I was super focused like this, just watching everybody, and I kind've just let my subconscious do the rest. And I would just always feel like I knew the perfect size to bet to get called and when they would fold. If you're really in the zone, sometimes listening to your gut is better than trying to work out a math puzzle with combinations and ranges... These days I tend to be more on autopilot when I play, and people aren't such tellboxes like they used to be. But still, remembering to focus will really help your game.
  • RT Posts: 2Subscriber
    Thanks for the insight everyone!

    Looks like there's a bit of a learning curve and getting used to live play but sounds like if I stick to the basics and stay patient I should make out all right. Gonna give it a go tonight or tomorrow.
  • pocketzeroes Posts: 174Subscriber
    One last tidbit... I'd recommend sitting directly across from the dealer your first time. That way it will be easier to see most action at the table, and also so it's easier for the dealer to instruct you if you've made any mistakes or have any questions. If you sit directly next to the dealer, your cards can get accidentally mucked more easily (you "protect" your cards by placing a chip on them). If those seats are filled, ask for a "seat change button" after you sit down. This will give you priority in terms of moving if you want to, and you can take someone else's seat when they leave.
  • FreeLunch Posts: 1,308Pro
    I hate tournaments, but daily low price ones are not a bad place to start if you just want to get used to the chips, action, flow etc. Then when you feel comfortable you can drop into cash. If the room is small and you might want to do this so the cash guys dont pick up that you are new or nervous and you can get the experience you want at a known price.
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