Its typical ama-esque ranting, but you need to read this. No cliffnotes.
Party Poker, 50NL, and the state of things
Okay so we are all talking about Party, about downswings and about how its so terrible that poker is so hard now. I need to jump in here because not only do I believe that Party 50nl is one of the most insanely profitable games of poker on the entire internet, but I feel like people aren't taking themselves and their games seriously.
Those of us (including me) who were fortunate enough to experience Party pre-apocalypse were given a truly remarkable gift - endless, drooling morons who just threw their money at you with no idea what the hell they were doing, just trying to be the next Moneymaker. We all embraced the joy that was Party and those who had the skill and the BR to play high (EM2, lolo, KKF, bld etc) made a total killing.
So now, the games are different. I wont say harder, because I don't believe that the games are any less profitable than they were pre-UIEGA, but they are different. It takes more to win. I guess in that sense that they are harder... but what I am getting at is that you don't have to be a very good player to beat the games. What is necessary is that you can't suck as much as you used to be able to. You can't make huge errors and have it not matter anymore, you have to play a good, solid game.
What people don't realise is that Party pre-apoc was not even poker. It was sorta like a mixture between Blackjack, Roulette and Craps, and somehow there were cards on the table for some reason. People weren't playing because it was poker, they were just playing because they wanted to play something. So of COURSE it was [censored] easy. How can it be difficult to beat someone that couldn't read the board?
Well unfortunately chappies, now people actually know how to play. They wont c/c down with T high anymore just because it was suited, they actually understand how poker works. Does that make them good players? NO! Most micro players still make horrific mistakes both pre and postflop and are easily exploited.
If you are finding the games tough now, there is a very good chance that you need to work on your game. You cant just close your eyes and click randomly and have money fall into your lap like you used to. Now, you have to play poker. Complaining that the games got harder isn't correct - what you should be complaining about is that people actually learnt the rules. Its like playing tennis against a dude with his legs tied together, then complaning because he unties himself and starts running around and kicking your ass. Now the playing field is level, and you actually have to outplay your opponents.
If you want to earn money playing a game of skill but you aren't willing to better yourself to obtain a greater edge over your opponents, then go rob a [censored] bank because now, its a game of "the best man shall win". If you expect to make money without doing a shred of work to better your own ability and learn how to outplay your opponents then you deserve to never win. You just can't play like [censored] and make money anymore, period.
Bozzer mentioned that I was running bad in June. This is totally true - over the last few thousand hands I am down about 10bi at 50nl. Now you may say to yourself, meh, variance, AA < KK a couple times, whatever. But you are so [censored] deluded if you think you can have a 10bi+ ds at 50nl and play every hand perfect. NO WAY. I promised myself that I was going to figure out what the hell was wrong with my game, and I have - the results are amazing.
Countless errors. Preflop. Postflop. Combo-street errors. Bet size errors. Read errors. Aggression errors. I realised that I didn't even bother to count my outs anymore. Id just be like "meh, looks like I can push" and be done with it. No attempts to calculate EV at the table. Sloppy play, poor decisions. Of my 10bi, Id say about 5-6 were genuine bad beats. The rest was garbage, tilt, whatever. Spew. Total spew.
People, myself included, just do not think about their games. They just "do" like robots. I see people raise so many hands preflop because Tien told them to or "being aggressive is good" or whatever, wihtout any consideration for table dynamics, opponent characteristics, willingness to fold cbets et-freaking-cetera. People just don't THINK for themselves. Then they misapply concepts that regs have posted in the sticky about and go on 17bi downswings. Well guys the regs came to those conclusions themselves. They write those posts because that is what their experience has taught them. If you just go "durr raise 18% preflop" and do not consider how this fits into your game as a whole... well [censored] yeah, youre gonna lose a LOT of money.
Ive started a new DB and Ive committed myself to becoming a student of the game. My genesis has led to my total shock at how I used to play. I have been studying hands relentlessly, thinking over different permutations both from the perspectives of my villains and my own. Its totally fascinating the insight you will gain into this beautiful game if you take the time to think.
So instead of saying "wow I'm leaving Party the games are so tough, i'll lose money without RB", maybe you should say "there's a huge chance that I suck. I should look into that" and start trying to play in such a way that you don't need rb to turn a nice profit. I was sick when Trig said that he was on a 17bi ds and people were consoling him as if it were just variance. Trig, you have massive holes in your game and you were probably never a good player. Nobody who is a winning player below NL25 should ever, ever be going on a 17bi ds and I don't give a [censored] if you have some fancy mathematical model to prove its possible. You need to work on yourself and we are here to help you, but I'll be [censored] if I'm gonna sit here and tell you its all okay. Sorry to pick on you Trig but its the perfect example of what I am talking about - people just writing it off to variance, to "meh", to "yeah standard".
I have played about 2k hands on my new db and am running at 13/100 at 50nl, including being stacked to a 3 outer and having my AA cracked to 57o. Most of my profit has come from pots that I would not normally have contested and my vpip/pfr/agg stats are completely different to what they were before, particularly street by street. I can see that now I understand poker and I understand what it takes to win. It doesn't matter how good the Party regs are because I am better. If they improve still, then I'll study them harder and find other ways to [censored] with them.
I've renewed my committment to this game, and I will work as hard as I have to in order to win. Will you?
Quote: I realised that I didn't even bother to count my outs anymore. Id just be like "meh, looks like I can push" and be done with it. No attempts to calculate EV at the table. Sloppy play, poor decisions.
This is very good, I recently lost around 8-9 buyins at NL25. I had stopped reading this forum, and wasn't playing the same game that allowed me to go from NL5 -> NL10 -> NL25 and almost to NL50. I realize that if you ever stop learning, you immediately start falling behind. I'm not kidding, because the game is ever changing, even if it is slow change, and the winning players have to change right along with it to stay winners. If you ever stop studying or learning, you immediately start going backwards.