Maniacs in SNG format

    • fiveshuffle
      fiveshuffle
      Bronze
      Joined: 25.11.2007 Posts: 13
      So I was playing a live 10-person SNG locally to me and literally EVERY other person seemed to be clueless.

      Now in theory this should be great for anyone with an ounce of poker knowledge to be involved in (I'd guess...) but I just ended up confusing myself and was looking for considered advice were I to find myself in a similar place in the future.

      Any raise of any sort, from any player, would see at least 4 or 5 to the flop still every time. Similarly this would continue through the Turn and often river as well. FFS one bloke called bets all the way with 74os without even hitting a pair....... and won because the other guy had 64os

      How do you play against this? Even super-TAG isn't a great help with even AA not favourite to the field with that many players seeing the flop, you literally can't even place where you are in a hand short of having the nuts (I won't even bore you with the beat that I went out in in the end lol)

      Suggestions for some sort of strategy welcome :)
  • 17 replies
    • mikeymoo
      mikeymoo
      Bronze
      Joined: 17.11.2007 Posts: 80
      My opinion:

      I try to squeeze value out of everyone, and never bluff.

      It's very boring, and incredibly frustrating, but seems to work. When you sense strength, just fold. It doesn't matter if they know they have good cards or if they are oblivious to the 4-flush on board. Just toss it if you don't have a good read.

      Uh... win lots of coinflips. Win all your 60/40s. Essentially, get lucky.

      I would tend to think that a game like this would make a player go through mad swings, even if played "optimally"?

      Just remember, in a game like this, DAI. Don't assume intelligence. Go with your gut.

      Wait for some other replies, I'm not really a tournament player at all.
    • mishh06
      mishh06
      Bronze
      Joined: 14.10.2007 Posts: 126
      My advice would be to play a tight aggressive game. Raise pre with good holdings and don't be afraid to get it all in with TPTK. Also agree with the guy above, don't bluff vs people who have no idea.
    • Unam
      Unam
      Moderator
      Moderator
      Joined: 17.08.2006 Posts: 8,999
      Straight forward valuepoker.
      That is my style in these kind of luckshots.
      Never Bluff, don't play marginal hands and bet like a maniac when you hit, never slowplay good hands.
    • brett1985
      brett1985
      Bronze
      Joined: 27.10.2007 Posts: 33
      Fold everything but Premium Hands Early on and let them knock each other out.

      Don't bluff.

      Charge them more to see a flop raising 8 or more bb if 4 or 5 people tend to call raises pf.

      And if you get to a stage where you are less than 10bb look for opportunities to go all in. They will call with weaker holdings.
    • LairdMJ
      LairdMJ
      Bronze
      Joined: 22.11.2007 Posts: 4
      Play Titan Beginners SNG, seems there is nothing but maniacs.
      (Few exceptions, me included ....)

      Fold in the early stages.
      Yes, fold. AKs, KK, AA, fold if you cant isolate the field down to 1 or 2 players max.
      No point trying to raise sombody out of the pot preflop if your AA cant hold up against 3 or 4 players. (which it wont most of the time)

      And dont forget, only the 1st players call is a mistake, the 4th players call is almost correct, given the pot odds.

      If you get to sneak in on the button and flop a monster (nut flush, full house), take one or two clowns out. Usually no big deal, many of them think their "all in " was a value bet or yours a bluff.

      Keep an intact stack till the scond or third blind level.
      They take care of each other.
      By that time the field thinned out, most chips are with the nerd with the biggest balls, not the biggest brain.

      Let them make their 2BB raises as they stumble clueless through the high blind stage, avoid bluffs and play mercilessly with good hands. You get called.

      Be aware of fush draws. Anyone having one will go all in and call an all in with any two suited cards if a flush is possible.
      (One guy explained to me, 25% chance on the turn, 25 on the river = 50%. Sounds almost logical, right?)

      Once the blinds are higher it is much easier to outplay your opponent because they are more intimdated by "raise 600" then by "raise 60" even though ist the same: 3BB

      SNG´s with maniacs are won in the end, not the beginning.

      Swings are high but so are the profits.

      mj
    • chenny8888
      chenny8888
      Bronze
      Joined: 03.10.2007 Posts: 19,324
      rofl at folding KK, AA, QQ, AKs.. just raise bigger than usual (20BB if necessary) with your better hands.. but yes, play tighter than usual.
    • helemaalnicks
      helemaalnicks
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.09.2007 Posts: 7,195
      lol, you would almost think LairdMJ is one of those live s&g donkeys.
    • LairdMJ
      LairdMJ
      Bronze
      Joined: 22.11.2007 Posts: 4
      In my maybe donkey opinion:

      We are not talking standard SNG strategy but playing maniacS.
      = more than one maniac.

      So:
      1st hand in the SNG,
      plr 2 raises, plr 3 reraises all in & 4 calls.
      Sounds familliar?
      Still want to call with AA?

      Disregard their hands, because they dont matter: who wins?
      Definitly all other players.

      I can do the math on gaining chips if you take out 2 plrs with AA and yes you get payed off highly.
      If you win.

      By the way, how many early chipleaders win the tournament?

      A 20BB raise as suggested playing with maniacs (plural!!!) often does not do the trick because they want to get involved.

      You heard the reasoning: He raised, and the other guy called so I knew they had high cards so I called with 67s because I saw Gus Hansen play that hand once. And it was suited!

      Hands like AKs or KK vs. 67s & AJs you are somwhere between 30 - 50% to win against 3 players.
      Worse against 4.
      or 5, as fiveshuffle posted.
      Run it through the odds calculator.

      You want to call that: fine!
      And in a cash game: much easier call.
      In a SNG:
      In the early stages I am not taking a risk that high (with people I can outplay later) to support the others players to finish in the money.

      Playing maniacs in the first stages the chips often do not end up with the best player, rather with the one who won the "mine is bigger than yours - competition".
      And a fool and his money are soon parted.

      To fiveshuffles original question:
      Dont play the game on their terms.
      Get them on the 3rd or 4th blind level when they busted each other out and the field is smaller.

      mj
    • helemaalnicks
      helemaalnicks
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.09.2007 Posts: 7,195
      1st hand in the SNG,
      plr 2 raises, plr 3 reraises all in & 4 calls.
      Sounds familliar?
      Still want to call with AA?


      yes

      Hands like AKs or KK vs. 67s & AJs you are somwhere between 30 - 50% to win


      even in the worse case scenario you have more then 50% chance to win, against:
      6 7
      A K
      Q Q

      So what is the problem, you HAVE to call, because it's -ev to fold. Don't tell people to fold AA plz, because it is nonsense, and terrible play.

      By the way, how many early chipleaders win the tournament?


      enough, plz don't use these psychological arguments on us, this is s&g, not wsop.

      In the early stages I am not taking a risk that high (with people I can outplay later) to support the others players to finish in the money. Get them on the 3rd or 4th blind level when they busted each other out and the field is smaller.


      you clearly never played a s&GO before, since you can't outplay people once your M is lower then 10, especially maniacs. So your edge lies in the early stages, not in the latter stages in a s&g vs. maniacs.
    • LairdMJ
      LairdMJ
      Bronze
      Joined: 22.11.2007 Posts: 4
      I agree with most of it, especially in a "normal" SNG.
      How could I not?

      It is mathematically correct.

      And of course: Why play maniac SNG´s at all if there are others?

      I did it deliberatly to practice because had to play a live SNG of the maniac kind.
      The fact that I won in the end because I outplayed the chipleader heads up does not automatically mean I am right.
      But it also means that this approach is not altogether wrong either.
      And that I actually played at least 1 SNG.
      (ROI 12% with Titan, overall average 10% for roundabout 1000 SNGs, depending on the buy in. Could be better, could be worse.)

      And I dont play these maniac SNGs too often, they drive me crazy and are frustrating.

      If you played some SNGs as you seem to have you know the type of player.
      Big stack because he doubled ro tripled up early with J9o, involved in every hand, raises over raises with trash, sometimes lucky, often outplayed.
      That type rarly wins.

      Then you are also familiar with the increase of equity if players go all in.
      It increases for all remaining players.
      (Why do you check a hand down with another player if a small stack is all in rather than try to open a side pot and push him out of it? Equity rises with one player out, so you cooperate with the opponent.)

      So if 3 or more players are all in first hand I do not have to call.
      Even if I can expect 4:1 or 5:1 for the money.
      My equitiy will increase no matter who wins the hand even if I decide to fold.

      With a mixture on the table of LAPs & LPPs and maybe to round it up some first timers who havent found the fold button yet I find the regular straightforward TAP approach difficult.

      If YOU have to call, call.
      There is no hand I wouldn´t lay down.
      (Though honestly I dont always do.)

      I am not telling people to fold AA.
      At least not on a regular basis.

      Of course chipleaders win tournaments.
      Why shouldn´t they?

      In the given example, the maniac SNG very often it is not the best player to be chipleader after the first 2-3 hands.

      So taking Harringtons M-Concept into consideration lets also consider his concept of playing the opposite of the table.
      I just have to adapt to the type of opponents I am playing.

      If the table is maniac with many people eager to go all in over a pot of nothing compared to their stacks, why join?
      (Yes, -EV if you fold. Besides you can bore your friends to death with bad beat & suckout stories or the idea that winning was easier if the others only played better and respected your raises more.)

      Selcetive agression means I pick my spot.
      If you want to pick yours early with AA, fine.
      Mathematical correct play.
      (KK, AKs already changes that math.)
      Still, your hand, however strong preflop only needs to get busted once for you to be out and that likelyhood increases with the number of opponent ready to push.

      Wether or not you want psychology out of it: I at times I prefer to let people run into their own agression and deal with the leftovers.

      I understood your approach.
      Yes, if others make mistakes in the long run you gain.
      If the list of people ready to make these mistakes is endless you have a very long run.

      It is smart not to play maniac SNG´s.
      If you decide to do so (for whatever reasons) you have to adapt to that kind of play.
      The rules are different, the fish bite and the even nibble at you.

      I still state my oppinion, wether or not you think its donkey play.
      The idea behind is to be able to play all kinds of opponents and have more than one strategy to fall back onto.
      I prefer a solid table with decent players.
      I dont always find it, though....
    • helemaalnicks
      helemaalnicks
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.09.2007 Posts: 7,195
      Why play maniac SNG´s at all if there are others?


      because they are better! :) It's easier to play at the start, because you can simply choose to play QQ KK and AA, and in a +ev-way.

      Mathematical correct play.

      The fact that I won in the end because I outplayed the chipleader heads up does not automatically mean I am right.


      I only play turbo's, even live.

      (check a hand down with another player if a small stack is all in)


      I ALWAYS do this...

      except when i don't feel like it

      :D
      Besides you can bore your friends to death with bad beat & suckout stories or the idea that winning was easier if the others only played better and respected your raises more.


      I play 10 tables 15+1$ turbo, i take sick variance on the chin.

      I prefer a solid table with decent players.


      This makes no sense to me. I prefer donkeys over regulars any day, in any format.
    • chenny8888
      chenny8888
      Bronze
      Joined: 03.10.2007 Posts: 19,324
      seriously if it's +$EV mathematically, do it...

      with KK and AKs if i see 3-4 people all-in in front of me, of course i don't call..

      but with KK if 2 people all-in in front of me, i call.

      AA is always a call
    • DoigteurFou
      DoigteurFou
      Bronze
      Joined: 16.08.2007 Posts: 1,528
      If they are maniacs and allways pay, raise and all, you want to get the best hands. Against that kind of players, i think we have the bests implied odds ever, so:

      -play your TAG play with only the best hands.
      -play EVERY hands that can be played for implied odds, and as cheap as possible. I found myself even playing some 53s when there are a lot of people in (almost everytime).
      -play all your pocket pairs as cheap as possible
      -never bluff, and never slowplay.
      -fold the hands you're not sure to be ahead. (sometimes you have to fold top pairs), this is because this kind of players can bet a lot, so don't take risks if not necessary. In every spot you should be able to stack someone, so if you wait for the next one this should not be a problem.
      -i don't know about semibluffs on the flop... I did it the last time i played with maniacs, and it was not that bad, since you can bet bigger when you hit (the pot is bigger), and often there are a lot of people calling, giving you good odds, finaly. On the other hand, a semibluff will almost never get someone to fold his hand. I play these semibluffs much more like "semivalue" bets than bluff. I'd like what you guys think about this point, since i don't know where to stand.

      It's very boring to play, but this is a good exercice to learn discipline, i felt. But remember you will most of the time lose to bad beats, since you should be ahead almost everytime ("almost" because you have to remember that bad players can also have good hands). Don't come without your guts or you'll turn crazy!

      Correct me where i would be wrong :o)
      Good luck at the tables
    • chenny8888
      chenny8888
      Bronze
      Joined: 03.10.2007 Posts: 19,324
      yeah that's my preferred way of playing vs maniacs as well, but it's not considered TAG by any stretch of the imagination.

      another ++++++++++++EV way is playing SSS and doing very tight/more aggressive.
    • AaronJello
      AaronJello
      Bronze
      Joined: 26.02.2008 Posts: 12
      Really helpful advice guys, Im playin at the $1 SNGs still (movin up soon tho), although Im sure it's the same at $2 lol.

      Last table I was at was pretty crazy, one guy went all in a good 25% of the time, getting lucky with hands like 68s 9T and any face... I folded AJs to him even just cuz he was such a loose cannon, turned out he took everyones chip and i found myself ITM with him and another guy, he had 10 000 , me 2000 , and a next player 3000, LOL me and the other guy demolished him by pickin our moments, he lost all his chips to me in the end with K2o, it was awesome :D

      I agree that the maniacs are great to play, you just gotta suck it up and take the bad beats, my KK s have lost 3x today, but w/e, im still up $10 woot
    • chenny8888
      chenny8888
      Bronze
      Joined: 03.10.2007 Posts: 19,324
      good fold with AJs early on btw.

      even if he shoving on average hands like K2o, it's still -$EV to get it in with AJs...
    • purplefizz
      purplefizz
      Bronze
      Joined: 12.03.2008 Posts: 4,508
      i'm really rewarded lately for folding my AJs UTG. first tourn all-in the guy with 3-5os won vs QQ. second tourn, folded MY AJs UTG again, 2 guys go all-in again, AA won vs AJ (other guy didnt fold his :P )
      wow i really love folding my AJs now esp OOP :D