While the basic rules of Poker are easy enough to understand, there are loads of tactics and guidelines to learn if you want to become a competitive player. Online poker is no different and has a few nuances that differ from live poker that you should know.

These are the pros’ top tips for new players.

Get Your Practice at The Micro Stakes

The term “micro stakes” in online poker refers to 1cent/2cent blind games (2NL) and up to 25cent/50cent blind games (50NL). This may be an unpopular opinion, but for new players who are struggling to win games, it’s a good idea to learn to beat the worse players in lower stake games first.

Play Tight and Aggressive

A big rookie mistake is being over-eager to play and playing hands just to be in the game. This will lead to you bleeding your bankroll on poor hands for no reason. A better approach is to be picky about which hands you play, and when you have a good hand preflop, play it aggressively. A Tight-Aggressive play style has the best winning odds in the long run, no matter what your skill level is.

Fold if You’re Unsure

Many new players will stay in a hand just because they’ve already put money in the pot. Pro players know that no amount of money is going to improve a bad hand, and that calling too often in the wrong situation will end in losses and label you a “calling station”. If you know you’re beaten, or you feel unsure, fold. Even if you have a good hand and you think you’re going to lose anyway, fold and note down your cards. At the end, work out whether it was the right decision and learn from it.

Don’t Bluff for No Reason

Beginners often try to bluff just to see what happens, and usually it ends in embarrassment. Rather play it straight than try bluffing just for the sake of it. Bluffs are situational and only work against certain players. For instance, never try to bluff a “calling station” because they’ll always respond in the same way.

 Semi-Bluffing

Base your decision on whether to bluff on your hand. A semi-bluff is a bluff on a hand that has the potential to improve post-flop, such as flush and straight draws. It’s like a backup plan in case someone calls your bluff.

Attack When Players Show Weakness

No player is going to keep checking on a good hand that could call on multiple bets, so when they do, it’s a good sign that they have a weak hand (checking on the flop and the turn is an obvious giveaway). These players are likely to fold when challenged with multiple bets, because they know not to bluff with nothing. This is, however, the one time you can and should try a pure bluff if not a semi-bluff to take advantage of their weakness and push them to fold.

That’s It

Use these tips to gain the upper hand and boost your odds when playing at https://onlinepokiesnz.co.nz/nzd-casinos/!