How to Get Started In Online Poker
Widely regarded as the online poker game of choice, online Texas Hold'em has been snow-balling in popularity. At any hour of the day, thousands of people are playing online Texas Hold'em. If you are considering joining them, here are a few points on the experience.
Face to Face vs. Online Texas Hold'em
A background of playing live Texas hold'em may have you wondering just how much different the game is online. The answer to this question is that the rules of the game remain the same, but your environment and tactical weapons have changed.
You will no longer have to hope that your fellow players' schedules won't interfere with "poker night" or that the attendance will be favorable at the local pub poker game. Now you can log on at any hour and start playing poker almost immediately.
Tactically, while your tools have changed, the new replacements are in many ways superior. Not being able to view your opponents means that physical tells are unavailable. You can learn your opponents' tells online by paying attention to their betting speed and patterns. There are also the added advantages of knowing your opponents tournament stats and using poker calculation software to help you make decisions.
New to Texas Hold'em
If you have not played Texas Hold'em in the past, you may notice that it is a different animal than five-card-stud and other poker variations you might have played around the kitchen table. Online Texas hold'em is a community poker game, meaning that there are "community cards" on the board that everybody uses.
Interesting aspects such as this should be reviewed prior to play. If at all possible, you should get advice from someone who has some experience playing Texas Hold'em (preferably online). It is advisable that you look into the poker calculation software currently available to aid you.
It's also a good idea to study poker literature, which is found in every bookstore nowadays, and read all poker articles you can find on the Net. In doing so, you can learn the best strategy from other people's mistakes rather than paying for every bad decision with money from your poker bankroll.
Poker Stars and Full Tilt Poker are two examples of large sites that provide free-play or poker freeroll tables for you to practice on. After you begin to feel more comfortable, move on up to low stakes tables, and progress as you like.
Refining Texas Hold'em
Starting a new competitive pursuit rarely grants immediate victory, but time and practice hone the skills and lead to success. The only true teacher of Internet Texas Hold'em is experience, as the more situations you observe the wiser a player you become. So keep playing and just watch yourself improve.
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