Monday, June 13, 2016

The usual dealer's choice getting a little dull?

Our weekly game has been running for about 15 years. We started with nickels, dimes and quarters in a dealers choice that was usually hold'em or stud. A lot has changed over the years. Some has been natural, like replacing change with chips. Like increasing chip values to 50 cents and a dollar. Like adding to our game repertoire. Like having the dealer ante 5 chips to eliminate the "somebodies always light" annoyance.

But some of the changes were by design and came after some group discussion. One crafted change was to introduce the mixed game deal. This is patterned after the old HORSE tournaments, where each time the game changed, it was dealt all the way around the table. In the mixed game approach you can get a little game rhythm going, a little more strategic in your thinking because you stay with a game variation a little while. We still play dealer's choice but alternate the format weekly, which keeps the regular get together fresher.

Another calculated change was to move from a flat bet structure to a spread limit. Now a player can bet or raise anywhere from 1-5 chips at anytime. It's hard to defend your hand, or build a pot strategically when all you can do is bet or raise a chip.

I out lined some of the game venues that I've found in neighborhood games at Poker Night Tonight

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Tonight, I'm a sub

It's a regular weekly game that has been running for years. Occasionally, they'll have a couple of regulars out for one reason or the other, and I'll get a call for the eighth seat.

I like the group, but the game, not so much. It's a flat chip structure. Each chip is a dollar. Buy-in is $30. You can bet or raise one chip. You don't so much play or protect a hand, as build the pot. All pots are split pots. Any Lo plays, A,2,3,4,6 is the nuts. At showdown you declare Hi or Lo or both ways.

Like any long standing group, there is little tolerance for suggestions, or change. So why do I go? It's a game! I do like, and get along well with, the players. Some have been friends for years. So, it's essentially social poker.

I try to win, but, the game is like a practise session where I can work on basics. Be observant, practise people and hand reading, work on my self control. I'm happy to be a sub. I'd probably be happy to b a regular.

It's poker, and it's in the neighborhood, what's not to like?