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Old 03-04-2013, 10:00 AM   #201
BlackRain
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

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Thank you for replying, I think it's really great, that you as the author take the time to actually write an in depth answer back. I think this absolutely awesome and it's very appreciated!

If I may ask one last question regarding this scenario, then I'm a bit unsure on how to proceed if I would not improve my hand on the turn? So after the turn, I would still have a pair of tens, and if he would bet the turn, should I then call his turn bet too or should I fold? Would you call villain down all the way to the river with a pair of tens because he is an aggressive type of player. Is that what you mean by deception value, that I should be assuming to be ahead of his range with my pair of tens and thus call his bets (depending on how big they are), because he is an aggressive type of player?

But anyways thank you for writing such an excellent book
This depends on a variety of factors including what the turn card is, any history that I may have with the opponent and sometimes his sizing. In general yes I will be calling the turn though. The river again will depend on a lot of the same variables. But in general yes I expect an aggressive player to often take two stabs at it. So if it comes two safe cards I will likely be calling both streets and expect to turn over the best hand a lot with MPTK.
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Old 03-04-2013, 11:43 AM   #202
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

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BTW, say hi to Fauxlivia for me!
Haha She says I should send you, her greetings :-P

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This depends on a variety of factors including what the turn card is, any history that I may have with the opponent and sometimes his sizing. In general yes I will be calling the turn though. The river again will depend on a lot of the same variables. But in general yes I expect an aggressive player to often take two stabs at it. So if it comes two safe cards I will likely be calling both streets and expect to turn over the best hand a lot with MPTK.

Ok, I think I got it now then Thank you for the fast reply
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Old 03-24-2013, 10:24 PM   #203
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

As a microstakes recreational grinder, after Dan Harrington's series (from where I learned good poker fundamentals), Crushing The Microstakes is THE book that made me a winning player at these levels.

If you're playing microstakes cash games, there's absolutely no better book than this one.

Practical, extremely objective, easy on the eyes and absolutely right on the mark if you're playing 2NL and 5NL.

On top of that, you still win extra benefits, like blackrain79's advice about your hands in his private forums.

It's a no brainer. Best investment you can make now.
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Old 06-09-2013, 07:07 PM   #204
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

After a year of less than 5k combined hands, I picked up Crushing the Microstakes & am re-reading it cover to cover... not only did it get me inspired to start playing a decent amount of hands, it really does reinforce the KISS method of winning at the microstakes.... A consistent, smart approach will provide winnings...

Small sample ftl, but my first 1000 hands after a long break and reading CTM I'm at 13bb/100
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Old 06-10-2013, 08:26 AM   #205
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

I've read this book and after a few chapters I didn't know how fast I needed to throw this book out of the window. It was negatively affecting my game.... Maybe helpful at 5nl max but even when I was playing at that level I found out that a different approach is better.
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Old 06-10-2013, 07:54 PM   #206
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And that approach is?
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Old 06-10-2013, 11:29 PM   #207
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

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I've read this book and after a few chapters I didn't know how fast I needed to throw this book out of the window. It was negatively affecting my game.... Maybe helpful at 5nl max but even when I was playing at that level I found out that a different approach is better.
Sorry that you feel this way. I certainly am in no way trying to claim that my approach is the only way to win at these stakes. However, I do let my results in the games discussed in the book speak for themselves. This is why they are on page 1. And the contents of the book represent my complete approach and strategy that contributed to those results. So I can have the utmost confidence in their efficacy.
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Old 06-11-2013, 10:47 AM   #208
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

Thanks again Nathan for this book, I see a seriously sharp rise in my graph every time I re-read it... Every time my graph starts going flat or down for more than 1 or 2k hands, I re-read the basics, go back to basics, and boom, 8+bb/100.
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Old 07-16-2013, 08:55 PM   #209
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

Two questions:

1) Would this be applicable to live games or mainly to online games?

2) I would much prefer this as a book. Is there a book available now or in the future?

Thanks!
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Old 07-17-2013, 01:00 AM   #210
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

Hi Mojo,

1) While the intended focus of the book is primarily on the NL2, NL5 and NL10 online games and there is a fair bit of HUD specific discussion as well I believe that it will certainly be beneficial to a low stakes live player as well. I don't play a ton live myself but I have heard your average 1/2 game described as similar to the online stakes discussed in my book again and again.

You might want to check out this review from earlier in this thread from a live player's perspective:

https://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/sh...7&postcount=26

2) My book is available as an eBook only and comes with three different formats (pdf, mobi and epub). These are readable or printable on any computer, notebook, kindle, iPad, tablet or smart phone. I have no plans to release it in the hardcover or paperback formats.
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Old 07-18-2013, 12:16 AM   #211
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

I posted on another thread, am new here, but intend to buy blackrain's book. Here's the deal: after watching part 1 of the video series I felt like - ok, maybe I'm wrong and the minimicro stakes ARE crushable for me. I even opened a table specific to author's advice.

For the table I opened, I made money almost immediately ($1.99). For the table I joined; it was full of regs, and I lost $.50. My raises were re-raised, my showdown's weren't successful, and they most definitely were not fish.

I do believe at the table I opened, they were.

So - I am going to continue the video series author created AND buy the book. I still believe I am more comfortable in jumping to 'slightly' higher stakes, but I love the video series the author created - very enlightening.
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Old 07-18-2013, 02:35 AM   #212
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

I do have a question tho that I forgot to ask in the above; I own a Kindle Fire and find that all the poker books I own on the Kindle don't show graphs/charts well, I practically have to get a microscope to see them.

Does blackrain's book show well in the Kindle or Kindle Fire? Do you see the graphs and charts well? If not, I'll purchase the paperback or ebook.

Thanks in advance for any thoughts.
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Old 07-18-2013, 11:31 AM   #213
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

What are blackrains micro win rates? Can't find them anywhere.
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Old 07-18-2013, 05:11 PM   #214
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

Thanks Blackrain for the reply!
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Old 07-18-2013, 06:51 PM   #215
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

Sounds like a book I should read.
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Old 07-18-2013, 10:38 PM   #216
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

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Originally Posted by TeeGee View Post
I posted on another thread, am new here, but intend to buy blackrain's book. Here's the deal: after watching part 1 of the video series I felt like - ok, maybe I'm wrong and the minimicro stakes ARE crushable for me. I even opened a table specific to author's advice.

For the table I opened, I made money almost immediately ($1.99). For the table I joined; it was full of regs, and I lost $.50. My raises were re-raised, my showdown's weren't successful, and they most definitely were not fish.

I do believe at the table I opened, they were.

So - I am going to continue the video series author created AND buy the book. I still believe I am more comfortable in jumping to 'slightly' higher stakes, but I love the video series the author created - very enlightening.
I think table selection is important these days even at the very lowest stakes. And since I still play these games from time to time and do just that I know that the kinds of ridiculous winrates that I have posted in the past are still clearly possible. If you want to 24 table and sit with regs all day you will probably not "crush" them anymore.

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What are blackrains micro win rates? Can't find them anywhere.
Page 1 of my book. Also listed here:

http://www.blackrain79.com/2011/05/b...-you-lose.html
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Old 07-30-2013, 11:30 AM   #217
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

Hi,

A Few Questions to BlackRain, If he still checks the thread.

It is obvious that generally players play much better now, even at 2NL than few years ago. Most of the people now days are regs, so I find it really hard to be able to suck out money of most of the villains using betting patterns written by your book.
Only thing that makes me on tilt is constantly earning 3 or 9 cents with QQ+ .
People generally at 2NL are so damn passive.

So my question to you is, do you think your technique from your book is still a very solid way to play 2NL at pokerstars? Or are there any major changes/adjustments you have made playing 2NL on stars today?
Also, are there any huge tips table selecting? So far I'm just using 25% VPIP and 25% players per pot filter on stars and trying to find out if the fish I meet aren't playing on any more tables.
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Old 07-31-2013, 04:01 AM   #218
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

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Hi,

A Few Questions to BlackRain, If he still checks the thread.

It is obvious that generally players play much better now, even at 2NL than few years ago. Most of the people now days are regs, so I find it really hard to be able to suck out money of most of the villains using betting patterns written by your book.
Only thing that makes me on tilt is constantly earning 3 or 9 cents with QQ+ .
People generally at 2NL are so damn passive.

So my question to you is, do you think your technique from your book is still a very solid way to play 2NL at pokerstars? Or are there any major changes/adjustments you have made playing 2NL on stars today?
Also, are there any huge tips table selecting? So far I'm just using 25% VPIP and 25% players per pot filter on stars and trying to find out if the fish I meet aren't playing on any more tables.
Hi zobenfeja,

Sure no problem. And yes I check this forum all the time to keep up with other new books being released. I am also subscribed to this thread in particular so I get an email immediately when anyone replies.

You are right, the games do continue to change. And they have even changed at NL2 and NL5 in the 1 year and 8 months since I released Crushing the Microstakes. And also, as anyone can probably guess by the size of this thread, a lot of people have read my book and implemented the strategies by now.

When I play these games now I don't use the kinds of crazy overbets pre and postflop that I recommend in the book nearly as much. Quite a few of the regs have probably read my book and so they know exactly what I am doing. And also, as you mentioned, the players who these strategies work best against, completely clueless fish, are more difficult to find.

With all of the above said, I do think that these games in particular are still ridiculously easy. People have been complaining about the games getting tougher on 2p2 and elsewhere for at least 5 years now. Have the games changed over the last 5-7 years for the worse? Absolutely. But there are still many people who play this game for a living or a solid side income so the bad players must still be around somewhere.

I am not saying that this is you but I find that many of the people who complain about the games are mass multi-tablers who have very lazy table selecting skills. I used to be one of them. It is a fact that in 2013 if you think you are going to jump on 24 tables or play 4 zoom games even with your VPIP filters in place you are going to be playing in a lot of bad games even at the very lowest stakes, NL2.

Table selecting now involves individual tagging of fish and not so much table averages anymore. And especially with the abundance of what I like to call "super nits" at the lowest stakes these days, these table averages have become almost meaningless. This is because all the 8 or 10% VPIP nits bring the average down so much that you don't even realize that there is a 45 VPIP whale sitting right there.

The strategies in my book still work against these whales (and always will) and there are still lots of them at NL2 for sure. They also work against the 25/7 types who I label SLP in the book. And they are clearly still everywhere even at much higher stakes. And while the proportion of regs is higher these days many of them are still extremely bad at NL2/NL5, don't know how to fold to 3bets at all and tilt very badly. So these strategies will still work against many of them as well.

The crazier overbetting strategies discussed in my book that were specific to NL2 have received by far the most attention because they were new (especially at the time) and nobody had ever really discussed them before in a book, training video etc. But these ideas really represent a small portion of the real substance of the book. The main idea behind the book is teaching the reader how to play a solid TAG game with high positional awareness and an exploitative approach to many of the bad players that you will still find at these limits, even in 2013.

I still play these games on a fairly regular basis which allows me to avoid talking out of my ass. I don't 24 table auto-pilot full ring anymore though. Most of the time I am starting tables, playing shorthanded and focusing heavily on table selection. I also am usually on no more than 8 regular tables at once (or 1 or 2 zoom) so that I have time to make higher quality more opponent specific decisions. My winrates are just as high as they have ever been. Online poker is not what it used to be in years gone by but there are still tons of bad players (including many of the regs at these stakes) and you just have to work a little bit harder for it.

I may make some updates to my book at some point to reflect some differences in the 2013 games but I hope this long winded reply helps answer some of your questions. Poker is always changing at all levels. And no piece of poker information is timeless. So you have to learn to make small adjustments on your own as I discussed near the end of the book. But I think the overall driving force behind my book is still fully applicable in today's games. The reader just needs to understand that certain adjustments will need to be made as the games change and this applies to all poker instructional materials, not just my book.

Last edited by BlackRain; 07-31-2013 at 04:20 AM.
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Old 07-31-2013, 08:30 AM   #219
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

Thanks for the insight BlackRain, really appreciate.

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Hi zobenfeja,
This is because all the 8 or 10% VPIP nits bring the average down so much that you don't even realize that there is a 45 VPIP whale sitting right there.
This really helped me realize a lot. No idea why I didn't think of it myself :P
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Old 08-25-2013, 05:14 AM   #220
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

Thoughts on how relevant this book is to Zoom poker?
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Old 08-26-2013, 04:56 AM   #221
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

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Thoughts on how relevant this book is to Zoom poker?
Hi RocknRollNerd,

This question has been brought up a few times in this thread and in a couple other threads not related to my book on this forum as well. The general consensus (and my opinion as well) is that there are not enough strategic differences between Zoom and the regular ring tables for it to be much of an issue. This is why, to my knowledge, no book has ever been written specifically about Zoom (or Rush) poker.
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Old 08-30-2013, 09:55 AM   #222
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

Thanks for the reply blackrain. I bought the book a few weeks back and feel like zoom players in general are a lot tighter than regular tables and a lot of these bet big tactics don't seem to work as well. How much zoom or rush experience have you had and do you notice a difference. Thanks again!
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Old 08-31-2013, 02:12 AM   #223
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

After having played a lot of Zoom now I agree that there is a difference. Zoom plays tighter overall as it is easier for regs to grind out a ton of hands. I would say that the games have changed a little bit (both Zoom and regular tables) even in the relatively short time since I released my book in late 2011. One of the biggest things is the usefulness of the "big bet tactics" as you call them. A lot of people have bought my book now and so they know exactly what a bet like that means. People were already beginning to finally catch on a bit before I wrote the book.

I still think these strategies make sense if you are seated at a classic NL2 circus table on a Friday night with a couple of huge whales splashing around. And this also goes for many low limit live games. But I think overall, a regular sized raise is probably higher EV now in your standard 2013 NL2 Zoom or regular table which may or may not have a whale and mostly consists of a bunch of nitty or TAG regs (many of whom have read my book) and a few SLP.
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Old 09-08-2013, 05:29 PM   #224
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

I'd like to see Nathan try Carbon 5NL and see what he thinks.
Totally different than P* or FTP IMHO................
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Old 09-09-2013, 12:29 AM   #225
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Re: Any reviews for Crushing the Microstakes?

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I'd like to see Nathan try Carbon 5NL and see what he thinks.
Totally different than P* or FTP IMHO................
Different in what ways? I have played a little bit on the Merge Network although not in quite awhile and at higher stakes. I didn't notice a huge difference in game quality.
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