While the rules for online poker and live poker might be the same, there are many other differences between playing behind your screen and playing at a casino table.
The Different Forms of Online Poker
There are many types of online poker games available: Real money games, play money games, Video Poker, online table game poker and online Novelty games.
OLG.ca has a variety of Video Poker, table game poker and poker themed Novelty games for players to enjoy. These games can be played with either play money and real money, giving you the chance to practice your game before using any funds from your account. Think of it as a driving range for your poker game, helping you get familiar with how the games are played before you step onto the real money tables.
There are two main variations of online poker: tournaments and cash games. Every chip in a cash game has an exact dollar value, and the amounts needed to play per round (i.e. the “blinds”) stay the same as you play. Cash games also give you the flexibility to come and go as you please. You can typically play cash games heads up against just one other opponent or up to 9 other players.
Tournaments are different. Let’s say you buy into a $5-dollar tournament. Each player is provided an equal number of tournament chips, and your goal is to win all of them and be the last player standing. These games tend to take more time and don’t offer the same flexibility as cash games, so choose your game type based on how much time you have to play.
How Online Is Different from Live Poker
Speed: When you go to a casino and play live poker, you might see a hand get dealt every couple of minutes. Once you take a seat at an online poker table, you could be seeing as many as 60 hands an hour. Whatever the number, it’s typically a lot more than the average amount of hands you’ll see at a live casino game. It’s important to be mindful of the potential increase in pace, and how that will affect the amount of money you are spending.
Avatars Not People: One of live poker’s defining characteristics is the ability to stare across the table and gain information by sizing up your opponents’ reactions and expressions. And of course, just sharing some friendly banter while you play. Many online poker games use a chat box to engage others at the table, but since you are playing against an avatar, you won’t be able to see your opponent’s “tells” to pick up additional information. Some say that takes away from the game, but many players prefer online since they don’t have to worry as much about bluffing and having other players size them up.
Poker Knowledge: The more hands you see, the more decisions you’ll need to make. There are lots of free tools available when playing online, to help you gain more knowledge about the game and improve your play. Hand ranking charts can be easily downloaded and printed, and none of your opponents will know that you’re using one. You can also use play money games to practice and sharpen up your game. The more you know, the better you’ll be able to decide when it’s time to hold’em, and time to fold’em.
Up the ante and read all about the basics of poker here!