Poker has been and always will be a game of chance. This means it is not 100% skill based and a degree of luck does have to occur to come out on top. That being said each player will have their own style of play but many are similar in the basic form. The one thing that is different between good players, bad players and those just downright horrible is how they understand or read the opponent they are up against.
The main way to figure out any players preferred style of play is to watch how tight or lose they play and whether they tends to play aggressively or lean more towards a passive style of play. Determining if a player is tight comes down to the volume of hands they play. Those players who a lot of hands are not defined as tight players and those who play fewer hands are. Defining aggressive players is based on how they bet when in a hand – do they bet out a large percentage of their chips or do they tend to bet a smaller amount. The more any one player bets will define them as a aggressive or non-aggressive player.
In order to improve at the game of poker you will need to learn this type of information quickly about each player you are facing at a table. As players tend to come and go at a pretty good rate with online poker your ability to read players and gather as much information as you can in a short period of time will have a large impact on your ability to remain profitable while playing. You will need to bear in mind that there are players online that tend to think the best strategy is to go to a table and be very aggressive with the purpose of taking down as many pots as possible. They tend to believe this is a better strategy to play by versus seeing hands through and looking to claim a larger pot – they usually are happy with smaller pots and will leave tables after a short time of playing.
The tighter player will be there for the long haul. They are more interested in playing the game using correct strategy that focuses on building their bankrolls over time versus looking for a fast few pots and then run off to another table to attempt to repeat the process. The tight player is the player you need to watch more carefully as when they play a hand they often have a strong hand and are favored to win. If you are in a hand with tight players they often will make value bets in order to increase their potential payoff. They understand that most players’ online fail to recognize playing styles and hope to lead you into a chase when they are confident that they will win.
It is important to change up playing styles if you are playing at a table for any period of time. This means you need to learn the different styles of play and master each style so that you are able to benefit from switching it up per say and hopefully confusing those who thought they understood you style of play. Remember, you are being watched just as you are watching so change strategy regularly.