Two Plus Two Publishing LLC Two Plus Two Publishing LLC
 

Go Back   Two Plus Two Poker Forums > >

Notices

Micro-Small Stakes Limit Discussions about micro-small stakes Texas Hold'em (all stakes up to around 15/30)

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 02-20-2017, 08:31 PM   #1
MNOWAX
old hand
 
MNOWAX's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Phelps, NY
Posts: 1,229
2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

How I crushed 2/4 Live Limit Hold’em
Or
How I wasted years of my life making $3.41 an hour.


Why am I making this?

Multiple reasons. Since 2014, I walked away from poker as I started a brand new full time job. I didn’t have the hours that I could dedicate to my game, and frankly life got in the way. It happens sometimes. One of the side effects was also stepping away from 2+2. In 2017, I’ve make it a goal of mine to work my way back to where I was before and make a living supplementing my income as I was doing. I’ve re-entered playing, and I’m rekindling old friendships and creating new ones, and I hope to continue as the year progresses. One of the other goals I have is to be involved with the 2+2 community again. I figure I owe it to the community, and at least give my thoughts on a game that frankly isn’t around anymore, at least not in the form I played.

Also, before I continue with this guide, a bunch of things that need to be said. I know there will be a lot of people reading this and saying the sample size is too small, or that it’s a losing strategy. This strategy worked for me when I was playing the most, over a decade to a decade and a half ago. Would these strats work in other games, or the same game now? I highly doubt it. Also the rake is significantly higher on a normal 2/4 Live Limit game these days. Recently a poker room opened near me that offers 2/4 limit with a rake of 10% up to $5, PLUS $2 for BBJ! That game is just simply unbeatable long term. Also, a lot of my strategies involve certain conditions for even sitting in a game – where other poker games it’s a nice bonus to be sitting in to a particular game, my strategies DEPEND on it, and there are multiple times where you have to rack up ( as I had to do over the years) when the tide shifts. Lastly, most of the stuff I say is common sense, or seem like trivial stuff, but once again, because we are dealing in a very thin margin for making profits, it made all the difference, and made or broke my earnings.

Lastly, My win rate for this time frame was $1120 over the course of 328 hours of live poker play. This translates to $3.41 an hour – less than one big bet, and certainly less than a minimum wage job back in that time frame. The point wasn’t ever to make a ton of money. This supplemented my income, and extra money is extra money, but this wasn't a replacement ( nor should it have been) for a job. All the information here was backed up by my research and may or may not have a bias on it. I appreciate all the responses on this.

Before Walking to the Table

When I started working on this strategy, I had ran simulations and did a lot of number crunching on the specific game I was trying to beat. The casino in question was Turning Stone. They offered a 10% rake up to $4. Even back then that was considered a high rake for that game, and most people who were any good didn’t play it. I figured there had to be a way to beat it consistently. These strategies worked for kind of rake structure. Other games with similar rake structures might work, but you have to have similar players at the table. Do not even bother trying these tactics if it isn’t the smallest limit game running, you’ll be eaten alive by players that have any experience at all. You’re hunting for 0 Level players and you won’t find them at anything less than the smallest game running.

Also, you must be playing at a full table for this strategy to work. Playing even a bit shorthanded will eat into your (once again very thin) winrate. A blind or two extra every hour hurts significantly. You want to see as many hands as you can for free.

Third,watch for people at the table that don’t seem to want to be there. These are usually the people that sat in this game only because a no limit game was full. These people are MONEY. They are only playing to pass the time and have no idea what they are doing, or they think NL game strats work for Limit. They call super light, and play highly exploitable hands. Additionally, if you are doing your job well, you can get them into the jovial mood of the game that you want to portray and perhaps stay a while.

The Four Golden Rules

Here are the four keys that I used when I was “crushing” these games.

#1 You want to bloat any pot you’re in to make the rake cap be trivial. It sounds dumb to say it, but once again margins are slim on a game like this. Any $10 above $40 is rake free and is ESSENTIAL to making money with this strategy.

#2 Every hand you play is a drawing hand. If you are playing a hand, expect it to get to the river. And expect that a fair amount of the time, you will lose.

#3 As soon as the game goes shorthanded, you run into a player capable of seeing through what you are doing, you feel like you hate life, etc YOU RACK UP IMMEDIATELY. I’ll have a full list of reasons to rack up later as well. This can mean 15 minutes into your play time or 15 hours. Thin winrates make this essential once again.

#4 You must keep everyone happy at the table and keep the mood light and airy. The more people are pissed, the more they want to be aggressive, and the more they will change their style to your detriment. Root for people when not in pots, take their side when you’re in a pot with them, and otherwise be joking and jovial. When they are happy, they are more wiling to do things that help you win.

The Strategy and differences to other games

The thought process I had with this game revolves around a saying about super low limit games in general – the concept of “No Foldem Holdem”. In 2/4 games that I’ve played around the country that thought process is alive and well. It’s quite common to take a flop with 6 people in a 2/4 limit game. So we need to adjust our normal game to fit these thoughts. I believe that with the following adjustments you can be profitable.

Tendencies at 2/4 Limit:

• Pots are almost always multiway to the flop. No one folds preflop unless there hand is truly garbage and even then it’s rare. This is still true (albeit to a lesser extent ) when facing two bets cold, so you will frequently see a four to six player pot go to the flop with $20+ already in it on a raised pot.

• On the turn and especially the river, people will bet or call, but RARELY raise. If they do, you had better be drawing to or already have the nuts. The bulk of these players are Level 0 loose passive with a bit of a twist, because they will bet and raise on the flop or pre-flop with much more ease but shut down when the "BIG Bet rounds" come up.

• Unless players have a busted trash draw, they will go to showdown with you when facing a bet. Exceptions to this usually are when you were heads up from the beginning and have shown immediate and constant strength.

• These players are not looking for tells, nor are they hiding them. They will also easily telegraph what kind of hand they are playing right to you if you watch.

• People have a tendency to react really favorably to the mood at the table, much more than at other games, and especially at higher stakes / NL. This is a super low limit game, you can’t lose THAT much in the course of a hand in their minds, and people are there to have fun. We take advantage of that to make our meager earnings.

How we use this to our advantage in the game:

• Big pairs go down a bit in value. Mainly because ( as I’ve said before ) every hand is now a drawing hand. You’re drawing to a set when you play pairs, and there’s a fair chance you will be beat with your one pair hands that make it to the river.

• Broadway Suited Connectors and Ax suited go up in value. Paradoxically, frequently pots will be also won when everyone misses their draw and you pull a pot with your pair of 10s when people think their king high is still good.

• BET. If you’re in a hand, then you are betting, raising or (rarely) folding. There are exceptions to this, as always, but you should always be coming in for a raise pre-flop, betting the flop, turn, and river nearly 100% of the time you have a hand you have chosen to play.

• Another departure from conventional NL logic is that you want to be OUT of position as much as possible. You want to be the first to act on every street in this strategy. If we have a hand or a draw, we need to be shoving money into that pot, and showing strength as quickly as possible.

• When we are out of position, we take the lead on every pot we enter. Since we are playing with a bunch of loose passives that will only raise on a monster hand on the turn or river, they might as well be playing with their hands face up betting this way.

• Don’t be afraid to fold on the river, especially when facing a raise out of nowhere. 2/4 limit has a reputation for not being able to get a person out of a pot, so when a villain is raising you, especially after you’ve bet, they are doing it for value 99.9% of the time, not for bluffing.

• Pot control is essential. You need to be able to bloat the pot above that magical rake cap as much as possible while trying to win a hand. The more you win on top of that cap, the more your hourly will be. Winning 10 $40 pots is $360 profit, winning 5 $80 pots is $380 profit.

• Play will be higher variance than normal NLHE in that you’ll be going to showdown with a multitude of hands that normally you wouldn’t be. You’ll also win more often than not because you’ve committed to betting all the way down and have backed into a pair that is good against someone that looks you up with A7 high, because “Hey that pot is huge and it only costs me $4 and I might win!”.

We need to end the night if…

• The mood has turned competitive, especially against you. This seems obvious, but people play differently if they feel that you are winning and will gun for you. YOU DO NOT WANT THAT. Your job ( as I’ve always felt) is to make a pleasant time for everyone at the table and make sure they enjoy their time spending money at this particular table. You make it hostile, you’ve - A: failed that mission and B: painted a big ole target on yourself one you won’t be able to remove and will cost you money.

• The Table becomes shorthanded at all. 8 players for more than a round or two is too much. It really matters, I know it sounds strange, but once again it’s thin margins we are exploiting for money.

• If we are getting check raised a couple of times on the river with a marginal hand against us, we need to rack up because someone has spotted our strategy and we need to walk away.

• The dreaded Hoodie Sunglasses guy. This is never good for you because he helps to cause one of three things listed above. Anyone who is there to play well will eat you alive with this strategy and will punish your betting. It's just easier to rack up.

• For some reason it becomes not the lowest limit game spread. This rarely happens, but if you are plying 3/6 with a nice rake and a 2/4 opens up, you need to be at that 2/4 game to continue this strategy, because we are looking for casual players.

• You’re going to get burned many times at showdown when someone wakes up with a hand. If tilt affects you, walk away when you feel like it will make you deviate from this strategy.

• You can’t have at least 10 big bets on the table. You need to be able to bloat the pots as much as possible, and no money behind prevents that.

Final Thoughts

As time progresses through this strategy, people tend to have more fun because the pots get big, and big pots create more people willing to call to get a piece of it. And big pots mean overcoming the rake. People will start to be willing to call 2 big bets cold on the turn to try and hit their big card, people will call down with just king high to try and win, and you make money because you’ve cultivated this culture and now are exploiting it with your hand choices.

Once I got this basic strategy locked down, I was able to open up my suited connectors I was willing to raise with, and make more decisions based on mood of the table and board texture. I was able to experiment with triple barrel bluffing with more success, but it usually wasn’t worth doing since the pots that you did pick up by doing so weren’t big enough.

There are some points in the game you can get people to put blind money in the pot for no reason if you perpetuate the fun atmosphere that you are cultivating. If they aren’t laughing, smiling, joking and generally happy even though they are losing, then you’re not doing a good enough job. What is the motivation that casual people play poker? They want to have a good time. Our job as professional players is to give them that good time they are looking for. And I consider that a general advice on playing professionally in my opinion.

I thank you all for reading this and I welcome any questions, comments criticisms and concerns. I will be more available on here, as well as other places.

Mike "Sleazy" Nowak
MNOWAX
MNOWAX is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2017, 08:56 PM   #2
Jon_locke
Pooh-Bah
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 4,076
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

Why not just work a little extra and save up enough to play $4-$8 (like a few months at McDonald for instance)? Then the rake won't matter as much
Jon_locke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2017, 09:07 PM   #3
MNOWAX
old hand
 
MNOWAX's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Phelps, NY
Posts: 1,229
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon_locke View Post
Why not just work a little extra and save up enough to play $4-$8 (like a few months at McDonald for instance)? Then the rake won't matter as much
One of the reasons why was because there was no other limit games that ran in my area back then. It was 2/4 or you played no limit. Even now a days, it's rare to see a red chip game run in TS or local casinos in Upstate NY, unless it is a wacky H/L mix game.
MNOWAX is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2017, 02:34 PM   #4
chief
newbie
 
chief's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 37
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

Wouldn't personally play it but I think the mistakes that people make at these limits more than compensate for the rake.
chief is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-22-2017, 12:25 AM   #5
DougL
Too helpful for this post
 
DougL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Boulder, CO
Posts: 21,017
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

If your choices are 2/4 LHE and 1/2 NL, the NL game can be beaten with the rake you mentioned. If you enjoy the LHE more, playing it is fine...

You have some fundamental misunderstandings about LHE
Quote:
• Big pairs go down a bit in value. Mainly because ( as I’ve said before ) every hand is now a drawing hand. You’re drawing to a set when you play pairs, and there’s a fair chance you will be beat with your one pair hands that make it to the river.
Your overpairs are hugely profitable. Of course they don't win most of the time. If it is 6 ways to the river and you win 1/3 of the time, the hand is wildly profitable.
Quote:
• Another departure from conventional NL logic is that you want to be OUT of position as much as possible. You want to be the first to act on every street in this strategy. If we have a hand or a draw, we need to be shoving money into that pot, and showing strength as quickly as possible.
This is completely incorrect. While it is true that position is more valuable in big bet games, being OOP isn't an advantage. You're pushing some version of being first to bluff. However, you're in a game where the best hand is almost always going to make it to showdown. Showing strength is worthless because your opponents aren't hero folding. If you wanted to fix one thing in your LHE game, get rid of this idea. You want position. You can play more hands in position than out of it.
Quote:
Play will be higher variance than normal NLHE in that you’ll be going to showdown with a multitude of hands that normally you wouldn’t be. You’ll also win more often than not because you’ve committed to betting all the way down and have backed into a pair that is good against someone that looks you up with A7 high
You're going for thin value in LHE more often. It isn't about high variance style. It is about playing correctly.

You say quit when
Quote:
The Table becomes shorthanded at all. 8 players for more than a round or two is too much. It really matters, I know it sounds strange, but once again it’s thin margins we are exploiting for money.
The rake you're paying in BB is an abomination. You're not an experienced shorthanded player and playing a bit of a formulaic game. Still, shorthanded is profitable poker and is worth learning to play. Quitting as soon as the table goes from 9 to 8 isn't great poker advice.
Quote:
For some reason it becomes not the lowest limit game spread. This rarely happens, but if you are plying 3/6 with a nice rake and a 2/4 opens up, you need to be at that 2/4 game to continue this strategy, because we are looking for casual players.
For anyone who wants to beat rake, they need to play higher. 20/40 is about the lowest limit you could find a real pro, so any lower limit will be full of mostly recreational players. Playing 4/8 for effectively half the rake would be a wonder, and the players couldn't be much better.

Nice writeup and sounds like you had a fun/winning experience at 2/4. That's huge. Beating this rake isn't a small accomplishment.
DougL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-22-2017, 01:45 AM   #6
faxanadu
journeyman
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 224
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

When I started playing limit the games near (2 hours away) were 3/6/12 and i think it was a $5 cap or $4+1. It eventually went to 4/8.

I would say at best there were 1 ... maaaybe 2 quality players at the table. The rest being completely clueless. I can't say that it has really changed that much all the way up to 10/20.

When it came to the 3/6/12 and 4/8 games ... i just crushed them. I had numerous $1000+ weekends, tons of $200-$600 weekends, and the occasionally -$200/300 (was my loss cap) driving home Saturday morning at 2am weekends.

IMO, the thing that really boosted the win rate a lot in that game was getting thin value, saving thin value (making good folds), and properly juicing the pot ... most players won't fold once they've already committed one bet.

Regarding those thin bets. After sitting at the table for 4 hours straight it became obvious what certain peoples mannerisms meant. A lot of those guys would handle their cards in a specific way when they're ready to toss it in the muck. I tried really hard to figure out the mannerisms of the people to my direct left and right. I stole so many pots from those people, got so many extra bets from them, and saved so many bets. That was the my favorite part. I felt like the cookie monster.
faxanadu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-22-2017, 10:23 PM   #7
Poogs
Pooh-Bah
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 4,413
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

im certainly no expert but that seems like a whole bunch of bad advice and a misunderstanding of poker and where the money comes from in general
Poogs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2017, 12:32 PM   #8
rodeo
veteran
 
rodeo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: i'll tell you when i get there
Posts: 3,009
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

If we can't agree on strategy, the thing we most certainly do agree on is table demeanor. For me, the big takeaway from this post is everything you say about how we should act and treat our opponents at the table. You are 100% correct that professional players should strive to create a fun, playful environment and appear not to take the game too seriously. We want the players at our table to be able to relax and have a good time and leave having had a positive experience wanting to come back and repeat the fun times they had. Kudos to you, OP, for having a far better understanding of this than most. Cheers.
rodeo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2017, 01:53 PM   #9
callipygian
slowrolled by tpiranha!
 
callipygian's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: but I don't know which
Posts: 17,691
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

Recreational players should strive to create a fun, playful environment where people have a good time and leave having a positive experience, too.

It also works pretty well away from the poker table too.
callipygian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2017, 04:00 PM   #10
Brad Childress
adept
 
Brad Childress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Shaker Heights, OH
Posts: 1,129
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

Today, somebody whipped a handful of blue chips at a dealer. Someone else said he would kill the dealer.

I piled on because a) dealers aren't really human and b) I wanted these recreational players to enjoy themselves.
Brad Childress is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2017, 04:14 PM   #11
Jon_locke
Pooh-Bah
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 4,076
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

I think Doug made some really good points and just want to add that when you play smaller and have tiny hourly it's actually much bigger if you are learning skill set to beat bigger games later. One problem with this strategy is it may work for super soft hi raked games but if you move up to 611, 8-16. 20-40 you never learned how to play poker.

It's basically the same argument for how to play 4-8 that me, Doug and cali will frequently make.
Jon_locke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2017, 04:44 PM   #12
Ducky Medwick
centurion
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 122
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

Quote:
Originally Posted by callipygian View Post
Recreational players should strive to create a fun, playful environment where people have a good time and leave having a positive experience, too.

It also works pretty well away from the poker table too.
Very true. Sadly, it took me several decades to realize this (the part about it working pretty well away from the poker table too).
Ducky Medwick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2017, 08:15 PM   #13
leavesofliberty
Pooh-Bah
 
leavesofliberty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: atlas shrieked
Posts: 4,795
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

There's nothing wrong with working at McDonald's and then having a roll to play $6-$12 where the rake doesn't punish you. In fact, EV you're a fool not to do it, unless you feel like you need the practice, and the practice is worth long-term EV. I am not a fan of jamming indiscriminately pre just because of the rake monster, though I do understand the rake is horrible.
leavesofliberty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2017, 08:17 PM   #14
leavesofliberty
Pooh-Bah
 
leavesofliberty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: atlas shrieked
Posts: 4,795
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rodeo View Post
If we can't agree on strategy, the thing we most certainly do agree on is table demeanor. For me, the big takeaway from this post is everything you say about how we should act and treat our opponents at the table. You are 100% correct that professional players should strive to create a fun, playful environment and appear not to take the game too seriously. We want the players at our table to be able to relax and have a good time and leave having had a positive experience wanting to come back and repeat the fun times they had. Kudos to you, OP, for having a far better understanding of this than most. Cheers.
Definitely, I found that to be the best part of the whole OP. There are many pros who simply try to be an invisible man, and aren't unpleasant, which I think is OK.
leavesofliberty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2017, 11:27 PM   #15
rodeo
veteran
 
rodeo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: i'll tell you when i get there
Posts: 3,009
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brad Childress View Post
Today, somebody whipped a handful of blue chips at a dealer. Someone else said he would kill the dealer.

I piled on because a) dealers aren't really human and b) I wanted these recreational players to enjoy themselves.


Lol
rodeo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2017, 09:19 AM   #16
avoidthe9to5
[x] 9to5 avoided
 
avoidthe9to5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Always in the Lab/Coaching/Grinding
Posts: 1,648
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

gold star for op. xD enjoyed the post
avoidthe9to5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2017, 10:31 AM   #17
jdr0317
Pooh-Bah
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 5,126
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brad Childress View Post
Today, somebody whipped a handful of blue chips at a dealer. Someone else said he would kill the dealer.

I piled on because a) dealers aren't really human and b) I wanted these recreational players to enjoy themselves.
A great philosopher in my game once said "I never blame the player. I always blame...the f***ing deala"
jdr0317 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2017, 07:22 PM   #18
Brad Childress
adept
 
Brad Childress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Shaker Heights, OH
Posts: 1,129
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

It's frustrating with some people because they say the machine shuffles blah blah blah, failing to recognize that the dealer cuts and that is the last action before you get your hand.
Brad Childress is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2017, 08:10 PM   #19
Nepeeme2008
stranger
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 2
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

Mnowax, I loved your post and appreciate the time you obviously put into it.
Quickly three points. one, I've come to the conclusion that it's not worth it to play 2/4 Two, I find some of the other comments quite amusing. They obviously either never played limit (or simply 2/4) or are inexperienced at poker in general.Three, I'm not a proffesionall but have been playing poker for 20 years.
For me your points were illuminating. Now, after reading your post, why I quit limit and the mistakes I was making make more sense to me.
I first started playing limit when I opened an internet poker site account and decided limit would be the safer rout to build a roll since my deposit was so small and I didn't want to risk everything on one session.
I started to become a steady winner and got hooked on limit. This was around 2007. The reason why I was so successful, in retrospect, was because every one was playing limit like regular poker and I simply employed a tight aggressive strategy. Opponents would call down with second pair and the like and I would simply take them to value town all day long. No such thing as slow playing in limit, you have a hand, you bet it.
Then, after some years of switching to nl and nl tournaments, I decided to try start playing 2 4 at the casino.I initially had some success than three sessions in a row, I started leaving a loser of about 50, 200 and 200.
Now I realize what I was doing wrong. I was playing my pocket Aces to the river against multiple opponents out of stubbornness, tilt, knowing that they can't be any good any more. The old method was outdated. Players were calling down with draws, two pair and better. No longer was I getting value for top top but from weaker players but rather was getting trapped by people I was calling, to my self, fish and donkeys.
Limit with a multi caller table is very much like a plo game. The more people in the pot, the stronger your holding has to be. In poker, you have to adapt to the table, not the other way around.
Nepeeme2008 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2017, 03:29 PM   #20
DougL
Too helpful for this post
 
DougL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Boulder, CO
Posts: 21,017
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nepeeme2008 View Post
Limit with a multi caller table is very much like a plo game. The more people in the pot, the stronger your holding has to be. In poker, you have to adapt to the table, not the other way around.
Missing value is a crime. If it is five ways to the river and you bet your overpair and get called by everyone (because, no-fold'em), you win 30% of the time and you print money. It isn't like a PLO game because there are only 2 cards and you aren't betting full pot on the river. Sure the average winning hand gets bigger as more people see the river. Most beginning players are too loose and too passive, so they miss value bets constantly. Therefore, advising them to be careful betting makes them play worse. Their opponents are going to overcall with weak hands, so value betting is great. Value cutting yourself isn't expensive like it would be in PLO or deep NL.
Quote:
I initially had some success then three sessions in a row, I started leaving a loser of about 50, 200 and 200.
You're playing a game that's likely unbeatable due to rake. The results of three sessions mean not much. It could be that you were making incorrect value bets. It could be you got unlucky in 2-3 big pots. If you played online, you know you're drawing conclusions from maybe a few hundred hands or fewer.
Quote:
Three, I'm not a proffesionall but have been playing poker for 20 years.
As a fun game, pick out 3 high stakes pros who make their living playing full time who posted in this thread. hint, I hardly play any more. You could go the other way and point out the ideas that you think are clearly wrong, and see if you can avoid the geniuses.
DougL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2017, 10:37 PM   #21
Nepeeme2008
stranger
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 2
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

DougL. Thanks for the solid feedback.
Your'e right, sample size is much too small.
I still feel though that my overall experience paired with what Mnowax wrote can only bring me to the conclusion that limit isn't profitable enough anymore.
To clarify about the plo reference. I used it to stress that in plo , because of the four cards, to have a winning hand, as I think all of us know, you need a much stronger hand in most cases as compared to holdem. Of course, there is a huge difference in money between the two games. That was used as an example to stress how in holdem, which I would think everyone knows, in most cases, the more people in the pot, the stronger a hand you usually need to win that pot.
Nepeeme2008 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 09:25 PM   #22
MNOWAX
old hand
 
MNOWAX's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Phelps, NY
Posts: 1,229
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

First of all thank you for all the thoughtful responses. I really enjoy all the discussion that has been brought up and I want to preface all of this with that this was a tactic used in a very particular place and time frame, and as I said in the OP, I'm not sure if it would ever work again in a game. My responses will be in red.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DougL View Post
If your choices are 2/4 LHE and 1/2 NL, the NL game can be beaten with the rake you mentioned. If you enjoy the LHE more, playing it is fine...
I 100% agree with this. The LHE portion was what i was referring to in this particular guide.
You have some fundamental misunderstandings about LHE
Your overpairs are hugely profitable. Of course they don't win most of the time. If it is 6 ways to the river and you win 1/3 of the time, the hand is wildly profitable.

That was the issue when I first started this tactic. They weren't losing as that high of a rate. If you were winning on the river with a single pair when you first sat down it was because people miss their draw. This is certainly a fundamental mistake in a high degree of games i agree, but the math that i had didn't back that up.

This is completely incorrect. While it is true that position is more valuable in big bet games, being OOP isn't an advantage. You're pushing some version of being first to bluff. However, you're in a game where the best hand is almost always going to make it to showdown. Showing strength is worthless because your opponents aren't hero folding. If you wanted to fix one thing in your LHE game, get rid of this idea. You want position. You can play more hands in position than out of it.

Showing strength works more than anything with a pleasant demenor at the table. I'm shocked how many times they would fold better hands to be because of the old "I'll let you have it" thought process. I once again agree that in any other game this is crappy advice, but for the whole tactic described here, strangely it worked for me. Does that make it even good advice in general? I don't think so.

You're going for thin value in LHE more often. It isn't about high variance style. It is about playing correctly.

From a math perspective you are absolutely correct. Why I call it high variance was because of the rake and dumping money into the pot on draws and such to over come the rake.


The rake you're paying in BB is an abomination. You're not an experienced shorthanded player and playing a bit of a formulaic game. Still, shorthanded is profitable poker and is worth learning to play. Quitting as soon as the table goes from 9 to 8 isn't great poker advice.

Again, I agree with this statement. This was the tactic i used while doing this, however and I must include it with the write up. Looking back I feel like i could have still been profitable going short handed on these games, but the nit I am, stuck to the strategy that was working for me at the time.

For anyone who wants to beat rake, they need to play higher. 20/40 is about the lowest limit you could find a real pro, so any lower limit will be full of mostly recreational players. Playing 4/8 for effectively half the rake would be a wonder, and the players couldn't be much better.

YES. The issue is LHE was dying even back then, so it was either 2/4 or 15/30 and higher at TS. So that's why i worked on this tactic in the first place.

Nice writeup and sounds like you had a fun/winning experience at 2/4. That's huge. Beating this rake isn't a small accomplishment.
I appreciate the time you took to comb through this, and give advice as well. Since then I do still play LHE, but I do my best to work at higher levels and play NLHE as well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by faxanadu View Post
When I started playing limit the games near (2 hours away) were 3/6/12 and i think it was a $5 cap or $4+1. It eventually went to 4/8.

I would say at best there were 1 ... maaaybe 2 quality players at the table. The rest being completely clueless. I can't say that it has really changed that much all the way up to 10/20.

When it came to the 3/6/12 and 4/8 games ... i just crushed them. I had numerous $1000+ weekends, tons of $200-$600 weekends, and the occasionally -$200/300 (was my loss cap) driving home Saturday morning at 2am weekends.

IMO, the thing that really boosted the win rate a lot in that game was getting thin value, saving thin value (making good folds), and properly juicing the pot ... most players won't fold once they've already committed one bet.

Regarding those thin bets. After sitting at the table for 4 hours straight it became obvious what certain peoples mannerisms meant. A lot of those guys would handle their cards in a specific way when they're ready to toss it in the muck. I tried really hard to figure out the mannerisms of the people to my direct left and right. I stole so many pots from those people, got so many extra bets from them, and saved so many bets. That was the my favorite part. I felt like the cookie monster.
This is a great read as well, thank you for sharing! The mannerisms are easy to spot in the lower limit games and are great to be able to pick off.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Poogs View Post
im certainly no expert but that seems like a whole bunch of bad advice and a misunderstanding of poker and where the money comes from in general
I'm interested to hear what specific things you'd like to talk about.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rodeo View Post
If we can't agree on strategy, the thing we most certainly do agree on is table demeanor. For me, the big takeaway from this post is everything you say about how we should act and treat our opponents at the table. You are 100% correct that professional players should strive to create a fun, playful environment and appear not to take the game too seriously. We want the players at our table to be able to relax and have a good time and leave having had a positive experience wanting to come back and repeat the fun times they had. Kudos to you, OP, for having a far better understanding of this than most. Cheers.
Thank you! It's so deeply overlooked in all games that I see, even now. So many more people are just hooding up, sunglassing on, and ignoring everything else. Angry players are the worst players.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon_locke View Post
I think Doug made some really good points and just want to add that when you play smaller and have tiny hourly it's actually much bigger if you are learning skill set to beat bigger games later. One problem with this strategy is it may work for super soft hi raked games but if you move up to 611, 8-16. 20-40 you never learned how to play poker.

It's basically the same argument for how to play 4-8 that me, Doug and cali will frequently make.
I do understand what you are talking about here, and I think if there were bigger games to play, I would have gravitated towards playing a more solid style suited to all levels of play if there were more opportunities to move up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by leavesofliberty View Post
There's nothing wrong with working at McDonald's and then having a roll to play $6-$12 where the rake doesn't punish you. In fact, EV you're a fool not to do it, unless you feel like you need the practice, and the practice is worth long-term EV. I am not a fan of jamming indiscriminately pre just because of the rake monster, though I do understand the rake is horrible.
Nits gonna nit. :-P I always had some type of alternative revenue stream coming in to be fair and the McDonalds crack was more to the inside joke that runs around here about hourly winnings. You are right though in all seriousness, sometimes its jsut better to roll up with a shoot job then start at higher limits. I like to think I would have too, if there was one.

Quote:
Originally Posted by leavesofliberty View Post
Definitely, I found that to be the best part of the whole OP. There are many pros who simply try to be an invisible man, and aren't unpleasant, which I think is OK.
I still believe that the more pleasant you are at the table the best it is for all. I appreciate the compliment!

Quote:
Originally Posted by avoidthe9to5 View Post
gold star for op. xD enjoyed the post
Thank you! I'm glad you enjoyed it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nepeeme2008 View Post
Mnowax, I loved your post and appreciate the time you obviously put into it.
Quickly three points. one, I've come to the conclusion that it's not worth it to play 2/4.

Certainly not at rake being 5+2!

Two, I find some of the other comments quite amusing. They obviously either never played limit (or simply 2/4) or are inexperienced at poker in general.

I think that its an understanding that 2/4 is a different animal than most due to the interesting dynamic at the table. See :Supreme Donkey Crushers

Three, I'm not a proffesionall but have been playing poker for 20 years.
For me your points were illuminating. Now, after reading your post, why I quit limit and the mistakes I was making make more sense to me.
I first started playing limit when I opened an internet poker site account and decided limit would be the safer rout to build a roll since my deposit was so small and I didn't want to risk everything on one session.
I started to become a steady winner and got hooked on limit. This was around 2007. The reason why I was so successful, in retrospect, was because every one was playing limit like regular poker and I simply employed a tight aggressive strategy. Opponents would call down with second pair and the like and I would simply take them to value town all day long. No such thing as slow playing in limit, you have a hand, you bet it.
Then, after some years of switching to nl and nl tournaments, I decided to try start playing 2 4 at the casino.I initially had some success than three sessions in a row, I started leaving a loser of about 50, 200 and 200.
Now I realize what I was doing wrong. I was playing my pocket Aces to the river against multiple opponents out of stubbornness, tilt, knowing that they can't be any good any more. The old method was outdated. Players were calling down with draws, two pair and better. No longer was I getting value for top top but from weaker players but rather was getting trapped by people I was calling, to my self, fish and donkeys.
Limit with a multi caller table is very much like a plo game. The more people in the pot, the stronger your holding has to be. In poker, you have to adapt to the table, not the other way around.
It's a small sample size but I feel that you are bringing more interesting conversation here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DougL View Post
Missing value is a crime. If it is five ways to the river and you bet your overpair and get called by everyone (because, no-fold'em), you win 30% of the time and you print money. It isn't like a PLO game because there are only 2 cards and you aren't betting full pot on the river. Sure the average winning hand gets bigger as more people see the river. Most beginning players are too loose and too passive, so they miss value bets constantly. Therefore, advising them to be careful betting makes them play worse. Their opponents are going to overcall with weak hands, so value betting is great. Value cutting yourself isn't expensive like it would be in PLO or deep NL.

I'm going to defend my thought process here by saying that in most of these games you may have 5-6 to the flop, more than likely you had less than four to the river, and a good portion of the time only one caller to showdown. A good portion (75% or more) of the time you were getting called down by a better hand. I agree that losing value is a criminal offense and should be avoided at any cost. I never said that this was a perfect strategy, and if I were to modify it I would love to re work the numbers in this area to see if I could have made more money there. I'm sure you were referring to Nepeeme though.

You're playing a game that's likely unbeatable due to rake. The results of three sessions mean not much. It could be that you were making incorrect value bets. It could be you got unlucky in 2-3 big pots. If you played online, you know you're drawing conclusions from maybe a few hundred hands or fewer.

I put in 328 hours at the time for me. I agree with the online statement to a degree, anyone would have seen way more hands online than live. The sample size is just too small to draw any conclusions from it.

As a fun game, pick out 3 high stakes pros who make their living playing full time who posted in this thread. hint, I hardly play any more. You could go the other way and point out the ideas that you think are clearly wrong, and see if you can avoid the geniuses.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nepeeme2008 View Post
DougL. Thanks for the solid feedback.
Your'e right, sample size is much too small.
I still feel though that my overall experience paired with what Mnowax wrote can only bring me to the conclusion that limit isn't profitable enough anymore.
To clarify about the plo reference. I used it to stress that in plo , because of the four cards, to have a winning hand, as I think all of us know, you need a much stronger hand in most cases as compared to holdem. Of course, there is a huge difference in money between the two games. That was used as an example to stress how in holdem, which I would think everyone knows, in most cases, the more people in the pot, the stronger a hand you usually need to win that pot.
LOWER limit isn't profitable live IMO, at least not with the rake structures out there and such. The best bet is to go higher and listen to the pros ITT and use a more solid approach to the game.
MNOWAX is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-10-2017, 09:09 PM   #23
DougL
Too helpful for this post
 
DougL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Boulder, CO
Posts: 21,017
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MNOWAX View Post
LOWER limit isn't profitable live IMO, at least not with the rake structures out there and such. The best bet is to go higher and listen to the pros ITT and use a more solid approach to the game.
When many of the mid-stakes players you see around here started out, rake was $3. 4/8 was often the smallest game you could find. One person I can think of moved up from 2/4 into high stakes (Captain R). Most of us started around 4/8 or 6/12, got lucky, moved up, and maybe learned to play a little poker in the lower mid-stakes, say 15/30. We were all certainly terrible, but hopefully a little less terrible than our opponents. Rungood was part of the move up into higher stakes.
Quote:
so it was either 2/4 or 15/30 and higher at TS
Don't know anything about TS, but 15/30 is actually a really good limit. Is it a 2/3 blinds game? $5 chips are really comfortable for blackjack players, so it is a friendly game for them to try. If you could run up a few buyins (maybe 1/2 NL?), that should be a great game. It is just a little to small for real pros. Structure should be good. Happy memories of the old Bellagio 15/30.
DougL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-11-2017, 04:43 PM   #24
MNOWAX
old hand
 
MNOWAX's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Phelps, NY
Posts: 1,229
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DougL View Post
When many of the mid-stakes players you see around here started out, rake was $3. 4/8 was often the smallest game you could find. One person I can think of moved up from 2/4 into high stakes (Captain R). Most of us started around 4/8 or 6/12, got lucky, moved up, and maybe learned to play a little poker in the lower mid-stakes, say 15/30. We were all certainly terrible, but hopefully a little less terrible than our opponents. Rungood was part of the move up into higher stakes.
Don't know anything about TS, but 15/30 is actually a really good limit. Is it a 2/3 blinds game? $5 chips are really comfortable for blackjack players, so it is a friendly game for them to try. If you could run up a few buyins (maybe 1/2 NL?), that should be a great game. It is just a little to small for real pros. Structure should be good. Happy memories of the old Bellagio 15/30.
The TS game was 5/10/15 IIRC, but it was a long time ago and I didn't study that limit at the time. nowadays its 20/40 and then 1/2 and 2/5 no limit games.

This was so many years ago, I've certainly felt like I've learned so much over the years of playing. My game has been way better now because of all the effort of learning. I take it you are a Vegas player? I would kill for that pool or players ( and DAT RAKE THO ).
MNOWAX is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-11-2017, 05:05 PM   #25
DougL
Too helpful for this post
 
DougL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Boulder, CO
Posts: 21,017
Re: 2/4 Live Limit: How I wasted my life making less than McDonalds.

I'm in Colorado. 30/60 with a 50/100 kill and 50/100 are the only games other than 4/8 limit. $5+$2 rake. The 4/8 is unbeatable. The bigger games are sometimes wild. We also have 1/2/100 and 2/5/100 spread limit. However, Small Stakes Limit posters have been known to get together in Vegas during WSOP, so I've played a decent bit of Vegas poker.
DougL is offline   Reply With Quote

Reply
      

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 12:33 PM.


Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Optimisation provided by DragonByte SEO v2.0.33 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Copyright © 2008-2010, Two Plus Two Interactive
 
 
Poker Players - Streaming Live Online