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Old 02-15-2021, 05:36 PM   #1
Fletcher2323
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When everyone calls normal raises

Say youíre playing in a game where any 3x open gets called by 3-4 players.

You should....

1. Increase your raise size

2. Raise the normal size but raise a tighter range

3. Keep playing normally and just know that youíll have to give up a lot of multi-way flops where you donít hit, but know youíll win more when you do.

What do you think?
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Old 02-15-2021, 05:48 PM   #2
Playbig2000
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

What is your normal raise size, and what stakes do you play? A 3x raise in some stakes could just be a pot sweetener.

If 3x gets everyone to call, start with 4x or even 5x and add one bet for every limper (to an extent) and another one for being OOP.
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Old 02-15-2021, 05:48 PM   #3
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

Size up. I've never played in a LLSNL game where 3x was a good open size. It's usually 5-8x.
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Old 02-15-2021, 06:51 PM   #4
QuadJ
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

In general the solution is size up your raises and tighten you range a bit. How much to increase your raise size and how much to tighten your range is very situational. Stack sizes and how much your still getting called matter. Position factors into it in several ways. As your raise size goes up the reasons to limp behind also get better.

The extremes you run into at low stakes can really force you to adjust your play on the fly. I've run into 1/2 games where a raise to $5 would fold out limpers and I could play anything plausible from late position. I have also run into games where a raise to $20 would get multiple calls from people with $100 stacks and playing rock tight was the only way to go.
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Old 02-15-2021, 10:57 PM   #5
Fletcher2323
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

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Originally Posted by Playbig2000 View Post
What is your normal raise size, and what stakes do you play? A 3x raise in some stakes could just be a pot sweetener.

If 3x gets everyone to call, start with 4x or even 5x and add one bet for every limper (to an extent) and another one for being OOP.
Normally I do 3-5, not including adding a little for limpers. However I donít want to go much bigger because then Iím just playing badly like them. Thatís why I asked about just tightening up rather than continuing to go bigger and bigger.

I also wonder about point 3. Yeah, it sucks to 4x AK and see a four way flop and have to check-fold, but maybe the extra money you win when you do hit makes up for it?
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Old 02-15-2021, 11:16 PM   #6
Garick
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

If your range is ahead of their calling range, then you aren't playing just like them. You are getting more money in the pot ahead. And that is the fundamental goal of poker.

I played in a game where I would regularly open for 15x and get called by worse. Even though I was often check/folding, I printed money in that game.
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Old 02-17-2021, 03:14 PM   #7
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

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Originally Posted by Fletcher2323 View Post
Normally I do 3-5, not including adding a little for limpers. However I donít want to go much bigger because then Iím just playing badly like them. Thatís why I asked about just tightening up rather than continuing to go bigger and bigger.



I also wonder about point 3. Yeah, it sucks to 4x AK and see a four way flop and have to check-fold, but maybe the extra money you win when you do hit makes up for it?
Playing exploitable and playing bad are two different things.

Like say you started on 200 bb, you know someone is calling ATC before a flop for any price, and you have aces. What are you doing? Probably go all in because heís going to call you.

You should eliminate speculative hands from your raising range, call or overlimp them in position, and save your raises for your strong hands. And make those raises bigger. Play larger pots with larger hands


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Old 02-18-2021, 09:02 AM   #8
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletcher2323 View Post
Say youíre playing in a game where any 3x open gets called by 3-4 players.

You should....

1. Increase your raise size

2. Raise the normal size but raise a tighter range

3. Keep playing normally and just know that youíll have to give up a lot of multi-way flops where you donít hit, but know youíll win more when you do.

What do you think?
so in a 1-2 you open to $6?
don't think I've ever seen that?

10 is usually weak
12-15$ more the norm
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Old 02-18-2021, 11:03 AM   #9
Fletcher2323
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

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so in a 1-2 you open to $6?
don't think I've ever seen that?

10 is usually weak
12-15$ more the norm
I haven't done that, but I was watching a Jonathan Little instructional video a few weeks ago and he said, essentially, "just because everyone else is doing something wrong doesn't mean you have to." That's why I wondered if me raising to $15 "just because everyone else is" is a good reason.

Currently I'm playing in a pokerrrr group I play mostly in the 1-2 game. It plays a lot more like a live 1-2 than online. Depending who is at the table, the standard open is $6 to $10, even though those still get called plenty. Most hands have 3 to 5 people seeing the flop.
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Old 02-18-2021, 11:06 AM   #10
Garick
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

I like most of Jonathan Little's work, but he played like 100 hours of 1/2 in order to write his book, and IIRC (I may not) he did that in LA where the buy-in caps are tiny.

You don't raise large "because everyone else is doing it," but in some game conditions you want to for pure fat value.

For an in-depth discussion of this issue, see this thread. Some very good players agree with Little here, but it is mostly in order to be able to keep their opening range wide, which I don't advocate unless you have really dialed in reads, since 1/2 players' most common mistake is calling too much.
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Old 02-19-2021, 08:28 PM   #11
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

raise larger because they're calling wider, but dont overdo it because a big part of your value in live games comes from playing against dominated draws. Remember these guys play any two suited cards. 7 high flush is the nuts, losing to a better flush is just unlucky. I think 7xBB is about as big as I'd go to maintain some post flop playability. You start opening to $50 in a 1/2 game with AJhh and you will be lighting money on fire every time the board comes 622.

Or you could attempt to play grossly exploitable and just open to $50 with JJ+ and limp everything else. You'd be surprised how little people observe changes in your play, or how they'll be eager to get in pots with you after you limp just because you kept the price small.
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Old 02-19-2021, 11:51 PM   #12
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

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I like most of Jonathan Little's work, but he played like 100 hours of 1/2 in order to write his book, and IIRC (I may not) he did that in LA where the buy-in caps are tiny.

You don't raise large "because everyone else is doing it," but in some game conditions you want to for pure fat value.

For an in-depth discussion of this issue, see this thread. Some very good players agree with Little here, but it is mostly in order to be able to keep their opening range wide, which I don't advocate unless you have really dialed in reads, since 1/2 players' most common mistake is calling too much.

Yeah like a lot of players donít want to make raises to 15 at 1/2 because they want to play their 33 and 98s and stuff. When you make a big raise, the game changes and now youíre really just trying to make top pair or a big draw and commit your stack.

In these games you just have to nit it up from EP. youíre not getting folds so donít try. It balances out because in late position, you can still often play these speculative hands as an overlimp.

But if you have a premium hand, make it 15 on a 200 effective stack and get 5 callers, youíve basically won the hand already. Theyíll never be able to finagle postflop to beat you.


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Old 02-20-2021, 12:21 AM   #13
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

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In these games you just have to nit it up from EP. you’re not getting folds so don’t try. It balances out because in late position, you can still often play these speculative hands as an overlimp.
I think this is an area thats always worthy of discussion. IMO initiative is possibly the most important element in LLSNL, more than position. I absolutely will raise T9s utg. Your implied odds any time you make a big hands are nearly 100% to felt someone. As you just said, people dont fold. Position is almost irrelevant in the right games. A big reason for this is because live players cant hand read for ****. Their ranges are so bastardized that they just cant put you on raising 33 otb, A5s in the CO, or T9s utg. For the most part they probably arent even trying to put you on a hand, they're just trying to hit their 4 outer.

They play by limping 70% of everything and often having a crazy polarized opening range of AA and 74o. Their idea is to be tricky and mix things up. Raise pure air to show they dont always have AA. It's easier for them since both hands play themselves. They dont know how to use their position and range to play suited connectors as a raise.

So for those reasons I dont think you have to nit it up in EP at all. I wouldnt play my button range from EP. Make *some* adjustments but you dont have to just play TT+. 22+ is an open from all positions.
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Old 02-20-2021, 12:24 AM   #14
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

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I think this is an area thats always worthy of discussion. IMO initiative is possibly the most important element in LLSNL, more than position. I absolutely will raise T9s utg. Your implied odds any time you make a big hands are nearly 100% to felt someone. As you just said, people dont fold. Position is almost irrelevant in the right games. A big reason for this is because live players cant hand read for ****. Their ranges are so bastardized that they just cant put you on raising 33 otb, A5s in the CO, or T9s utg. It's not how they play. They play by limping 70% of everything and often having a crazy polarized opening range of AA and 74o. Their idea is to be tricky and mix things up. Raise pure air to show they dont always have AA. It's easier for them since both hands play themselves. They dont know how to use their position and range to play suited connectors as a raise.

So for those reasons I dont think you have to nit it up in EP at all. I wouldnt play my button range from EP. Make *some* adjustments but you dont have to just play TT+. 22+ is an open from all positions.

The problem is, big raises cut your own IO down. This is why a lot of good players donít like making big preflop raises: if youíre sticking in 7% of your stack pre with ten high to flop something 6 ways, youíre no different than the fish.

So the question becomes ďdoes it matter if I limp or raise small with 44, but mash it big with KK?Ē.


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Old 02-20-2021, 03:47 AM   #15
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

I agree 7% is pushing it in all but the most extreme scenarios. Thing is if you limp with 44 and hit a set it's going to be hard to get stacks in by the river.
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Old 02-20-2021, 05:32 AM   #16
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

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I agree 7% is pushing it in all but the most extreme scenarios. Thing is if you limp with 44 and hit a set it's going to be hard to get stacks in by the river.

Exactly. Hence the balancing act. Even a recreational player will notice if we up our raise from $7 to $15 for the most part, and while I donít expect them to adjust well, I do expect some form of adjustment. And from the POV of a skilled player, we often donít feel comfortable telegraphing so much information about our hand before the flop.


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Old 02-20-2021, 07:25 AM   #17
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

Totally on board with jdr here. Its a balancing act, a delicate one- especially if you log alot of hours with the same group of players.
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Old 02-20-2021, 06:46 PM   #18
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

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Totally on board with jdr here. Its a balancing act, a delicate one- especially if you log alot of hours with the same group of players.

And tbh when I go maximally exploitative, itís a mind f*** because you donít know if youíre opponents are aware or not.

I remember when avoidthe9to5 was posting a lot before idiots chased him off by being idiots and contrarians, he discussed levels of exploitation.

Like a minimally exploitative strategy isnít maximizing win rate in a vacuum, but our opponents will find it much harder to figure out what we are doing.

On the other hand, maximal exploitation will maximize win rate in a vacuum, but it can become wicked easy to figure out what it is we are doing.

I take a lot of issue when people advocate solely for the latter option. It basically assumes our opposition is drunk, pure degen or complete rubes that have no idea whatís going on. Fact is, around 1/2 of America wouldnít be able to handle a surprise $500 bill, meanwhile the people we are treating like morons can plop that down at a poker table, and reload if need be. These are very unlikely to be pure morons. So we do have to be careful with how we stretch our luck


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Old 02-20-2021, 07:09 PM   #19
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

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And tbh when I go maximally exploitative, it’s a mind f*** because you don’t know if you’re opponents are aware or not.

I remember when avoidthe9to5 was posting a lot before idiots chased him off by being idiots and contrarians, he discussed levels of exploitation.

Like a minimally exploitative strategy isn’t maximizing win rate in a vacuum, but our opponents will find it much harder to figure out what we are doing.

On the other hand, maximal exploitation will maximize win rate in a vacuum, but it can become wicked easy to figure out what it is we are doing.

I take a lot of issue when people advocate solely for the latter option. It basically assumes our opposition is drunk, pure degen or complete rubes that have no idea what’s going on. Fact is, around 1/2 of America wouldn’t be able to handle a surprise $500 bill, meanwhile the people we are treating like morons can plop that down at a poker table, and reload if need be. These are very unlikely to be pure morons. So we do have to be careful with how we stretch our luck


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Absolutely this, good points.

-Poker has also evolved through the years, its not the same as 10 years ago or even 3 or 5 years ago. What you could get away with 10 years ago without giving away too much, you simply cant do in 2021.

-Going crazy big with our opening sizes is likely hurting our entire range, and thus possibly our entire game. Its very easy to develope huge sizing tells and pretty easy patterns to counter if we start using different sizings for different types of hand strength.

-Like yeah, sure i can go freaking 10x or 12x when i have AK or pocket kings for fat value. But i dont have just those hands in my range of course, i want to be able to open alot of different hands for lots of obvious reasons, and i dont want to be forced going to 12x with 910s or A5s. Its just incredibly difficult to maintain a good solid game strategy and proper ranges/sizings when you start going down this rabbithole.
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Old 02-20-2021, 11:12 PM   #20
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

Obv, if you are opening to 12x, you aren't opening 9Ts or A5s. That is a strategy that, as I said, is only for use when your range is ahead of their calling range.

And while our opponents aren't morons, especially in the lowest level games they are flopaholics. I played in one small home game with the same group of about 25 players for three years where I pretty much only opened ATs+/AJo+ and 88+, and called with speculative hands when I thought I could see a cheap flop. If you asked the regs, they could almost all have correctly identified the strategy that I was playing. Yet they couldn't bring themselves to fold a pretty hand when I opened, because "I want to crack your big hand."

Obviously not all games are like that, but ones where "everyone calls normal raises" usually are. I'll believe that they're going to adjust when I see them adjust.

Which is not to say that I disagree that we need to balance how much we exploit, but I also think we need to stop assuming our Vs will adjust because "if I saw that ****, I'd adjust." We have a huge tendency to mirror-image, and Vs who aren't playing for the same reasons we are aren't going to react to information the same way we will, not because they don't notice it, or are stupid, but because of the thrill of the hunt, or because they assume that you'll go broke when they outflop your aces, or whatever.

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Old 02-21-2021, 09:17 AM   #21
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Re: When everyone calls normal raises

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Obv, if you are opening to 12x, you aren't opening 9Ts or A5s. That is a strategy that, as I said, is only for use when your range is ahead of their calling range.

And while our opponents aren't morons, especially in the lowest level games they are flopaholics. I played in one small home game with the same group of about 25 players for three years where I pretty much only opened ATs+/AJo+ and 88+, and called with speculative hands when I thought I could see a cheap flop. If you asked the regs, they could almost all have correctly identified the strategy that I was playing. Yet they couldn't bring themselves to fold a pretty hand when I opened, because "I want to crack your big hand."

Obviously not all games are like that, but ones where "everyone calls normal raises" usually are. I'll believe that they're going to adjust when I see them adjust.

Which is not to say that I disagree that we need to balance how much we exploit, but I also think we need to stop assuming our Vs will adjust because "if I saw that ****, I'd adjust." We have a huge tendency to mirror-image, and Vs who aren't playing for the same reasons we are aren't going to react to information the same way we will, not because they don't notice it, or are stupid, but because of the thrill of the hunt, or because they assume that you'll go broke when they outflop your aces, or whatever.

Sure, but then this strat is very rarely gonna be used be me for example- as i log the vast majority of my many hours with the same group of 20-30 players. And if i open 12X with KK, i am really forced to go 12x with 910s or A5s- unless i want to express huge sizingtells to the table. Even players that have been losing in poker for 10 years+ is starting to become aware of such sizingtells and slowly making more folds when players are displaying such patterns.

And if you really start going so big that you cant profitably open an adequate created openingrange because you have are handcuffing yourself with absurd big sizings, then that is also cutting into your total overall EV. I am talking about the EV for your whole game, the whole range- ALL the hands you want to play in order to execute your EV. So, if you handcuffs yourself with 10x or 12x sizings as an example, yeah sure you will win more money when you have your KK or AK, BUT you will also lose money/EV by not being able to properly play hands like 78s or 910s. So this EV got to be accounted for, and its hard to make it up just with your premium hands because you dont get those dealt enough unless you run superhot with card distribution.

In my opinion its better to keep your opening sizes consistant on such a level that you can profitably open/play a decently wide range, and let people get confused and set them up to make different kind of mistakes against your whole range. Let them get confused and give them lots of trouble to figure out what you are really doing like jdr also mentioned. Let them lose a bunch of money when you flop the joint with 78s, because people was putting you on an overpair when your isoraised 2 limpers. Let them 3 bet you pre with AQ and double you up when you have KK, because you are raising so much pre that they didnt believe you was strong this time.

Like yeah, if i once a year sits in a complete donkfest of a game with people drinking and vppping 9 out of 10 hands, sure i can nit it up and nutpeddle with huge sizings. But in most peoples everyday games, i dont think thats a strategy i would recommend.

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