Tips for Winning at OFC Poker and Other Variants
Watch Your Bluffing
There is a time to bluff and a time to be honest. In online poker, these times are easy to tell apart. If you’re playing in the free-rolls and the small stake games, then don’t bluff, because you will be called. There are a lot of gamblers in these games, what poker players like to call “fish”, and there is no telling how they will react. Some will call a bluff just to gamble, some will call a bluff because they have no idea what is going on.
However, if you’re playing in the higher stakes against better players, ones who know the game, then you should bluff. Providing you do it right, they will very rarely take their chances and unless you bluff all of the time (and therefore tell them what you’re doing) they’ll believe you.
Never Show Your Cards
This applies to all games of poker and at all times. You want to keep the players around the table guessing, and if you show your cards after a hand, then they’ll understand how you played that hand and will get an idea how you might play it again in the future. Poker tournaments are long and you could be playing with the same people for hours, so that hand, and hands like it, will come again.
There is one exception to this rule, but it doesn’t apply to all games.
The exception to the rule discussed above comes when playing Heads-up games of Hold’em. It can also apply to Badugi and draw games, but less so for Omaha, OFC and others. Basically, if you are playing a very tight player who calls nothing and folds at every turn, leaving you very little opportunity to take his chips, then you should try and bluff him (a tight player will probably fold when faced with a big bluff) and then show him that bluff. This is basically a way of needling him, poking him, aggravating him. Many players get annoyed in this situation and even if they don’t start loosening up (which most will do) then at the very least they will call future hands, thinking you’re bluffing and not wanting to be humiliated again. There is also a number of players who will immediately try to get back at you, bluffing big and then showing you, so be suspicious if they suddenly bet big on the very next hand.
Patience is a Virtue
There are two traits that all successful poker players have: patience, and the ability to stay calm at all times. Lose your calm and you’ll make frustrated or even vengeful bets, and these rarely work in your favor. Lose your patience and the same will happen, but you’ll also lose your focus. If you can’t sit in the same spot, playing the same game for hours on end, you’re not going to make it as a poker player.