How much thought goes into placing a bet in poker? How thoroughly do you analyze every scenario as you enjoy your poker no deposit bonuses?
Developing your online poker skills requires a lot of effort and a stellar ability to understand your opponent. Apart from thinking of his own hand, the player has to consider a plethora of other possibilities. But since there are so many different aspects to consider, only seasoned players are able to reach the highest level of thinking in a stressful situation.
But the good news is that any dedicated player can develop those analytic abilities, thus mastering the art of playing online poker. To achieve that goal, you have to understand the multiple levels of thinking in poker and incorporate them into your game plan.
Level 0: No Thinking
That is where all newbie players start. When you’re still not familiar with all the ins and outs of the game, there is no way for you to concentrate on anything other than surviving. Players on this level usually make hasty decisions and pray their move will yield positive results.
Level 1: What Cards Do I Have?
To reach this level, you need a basic understanding of the rules and the ranking of different hands. Once you have this knowledge in your arsenal, you can start developing your strategy. Most beginners don’t have enough experience to consider anything other than their own cards, but we all have to start somewhere.
Level 2: What Cards Do My Opponents Have?
Most recreational players stop at this thinking level. They have enough knowledge to assume what kind of cards their opponents have, and that’s enough in low-stake games. However, they still don’t have enough experience to get into the math or psychology behind poker.
Level 3: What Do They Think I Have?
While understanding what kind of cards your opponent has is useful, getting into is head is priceless. Once you pay attention to what kind of impression you make, and what that makes the others think, you can take your gameplay to a new level. You’ll be able to bluff your way out of challenging situations and become a better player.
Level 4: What Do They Think I Think They Have?
If you’ve reached level 3, congrats! But don’t get too excited yet. While you can develop the ability to understand your opponent’s thoughts, so can they. So here’s when things get a bit more complicated.
On this level, even if you know exactly what goes through your opponent’s mind, you have to keep it under wraps. To better control the outcome of the game, you have to make sure the other players think you’re clueless. Make them believe you have no idea what kind of hand they have, and you’ll increase your chances of winning.
Level 5: What Do They Think I Think They Think I Have?
Ok, so this level might sound like the beginning of a joke, but it is exactly the opposite. Not many players reach this level of thinking, and with good reason. Only if you’re playing against other pros, who are known for using mind tricks, you’ll need to think deeper and deeper.
That is where you ask the most crucial questions: who’s deceiving who? Do they think I’m trying to play mind games, therefore making countermoves? Should I use reverse psychology to get what I want? Or should I play it safe and let the others lose the game by overthinking things? If you reach this thinking level, you can know one thing: you’ve made it to the big leagues.
Online poker requires a lot more than an understanding of the rules, as you have to go through a specific thinking process in your journey to become a poker pro. What thinking level are you at right now?