Which Poker Cash Game?

January 1, 2011

When talking about online poker cash games and rakeback then a lot of poker strategy articles do not provide enough information  . There are three types of cash games  and here is a pretty foolproof explanation:

  1. Fixed Limit – Bets can be raised by predefined amounts  . Lets say  you are playing at $1/$2 blind limit. Big blind is mostly twice the size of the small blind, some poker rooms have cash games with equal blinds  . You can raise before the flop, on the flop, on the turn and on the river. As a rule online poker rooms and land based casinos have limited raising in fixed limit up to four times. For example: Player A, Player B (small blind $1) and Player C (Big blind $2). Player A can fold, call the big blind or raise by one big blind to $2. Lets presume he raises to $2. Player B can fold, call $1,5 (as he posted small blind of $0,5 already) or re-raise to $3. He calls. Player C can fold, call $2 or re-raise to $3, he raises. Now the starting bet is already Edit this text $3 which player A or player B can raise only once to $4. Player A raises and player B and C can only call. It is possible to do this  until the river. On the Turn and on the River they can raise up to $8 so four times by $2. The kind of situations when all players re-raise each other come up rarely.
  2. Pot Limit – You can bet only as much as the pot is. Some poker rooms allow the bet of POT + Big Blind + Small Blind. Here we use the traditional Pot Limit betting rule of Big Blind + Pot. For example: Player A, B and C with the same blind setup. Player A can fold, call or raise up to $2,5 ($1,5 is in the pot + Big Blind 1$), he raises. Player B can fold, call or raise, he calls $2,5. Player C can fold, call or re-raise to $7 – $1,5 + $1 + $2,5 + $2. If you want to bet the maximum then you just say POT in a live game. Situations where many players do this after each other do not happen very often . Mostly only when you are dealing with absolute amateurs or when one player has KK, second has AA and third has AK. larger Pot Limit hands mostly end up with players being all-in .
  3. No-Limit. You can raise up to the sum of money which you have brought to the table. This is pretty much self explanatory and does not need much explanation. If player A raises to $4 then player B can re-raise all-in if he wants. Mostly when people re-raise others they tend to keep it around 3 times the previous raise, $12 for this example, or more if people have called player a raise. If two players have called the $4 raise then it would be best re-raise to $18 or $20 if you want to be against only one or two opposers. If your opponent has more money then you do then not to worry, you can still play and go all-in. For example: If two opponents have $200 each and you have $100 and you are all-in then there will be a side pot of $300 dollars which is meant for you if you win the hand.

But what is the care for online poker rooms to manage games  ? Every poker room takes a certain fee called rake from every cash game pot . The amount depends on the limit but rake can be from 1 cent up to 5 dollars. At the limit we just used for examples the maximum rake can be $3 per pot. If you are all-in with one opponent then it means that the pot is $400 if you both have $200 stacks and the rake is $3. Online poker rooms offer the chance to get some of those fees back, a certain percentage . For example 30% Opoker rakeback deal. Some poker rooms even go higher and offer up to 40% with Tower gaming rake back. So, if you play regularly then you get into that kind of pots very often . What if you rake $4,000 per month and get 40% of it back? That’s $1,600!

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