What is Big in Big Stack Strategy?

    • locotyson
      locotyson
      Bronze
      Joined: 07.01.2011 Posts: 20
      Hi,
      Of course, the stack is big.

      I read in the articles that SSS is less risky, you earn little money but you may loose only little money as well.

      But except the stack and the starting hands which are pretty the same, what does the SSS less risky knowing that there are more all in cases in SSS than in BSS?

      Regards,
      Loco Mehdi
  • 13 replies
    • NightFrostaSS
      NightFrostaSS
      Bronze
      Joined: 25.10.2008 Posts: 5,255
      SSS is BS
    • Meemawuk
      Meemawuk
      Bronze
      Joined: 27.05.2009 Posts: 758
      Most obviously, the amount you can lose in a hand is bigger, 100bb.

      Also, you are in more marginal situations where you have to play your hand post flop. Example: You have AA preflop guy open raises to 3BB, you 3-bet it to 9BB and he flats. Heads up to the flop. Flop comes QhJhTc. He checks, you C-bet 14BB, and he ships on you. Pot is now 123BB and you have 77BB left. When in SSS are you in a spot where you have an overpair and have a decision for 77BB when you might be drawing thin to dead? In summary, the decisions are bigger, and more expensive when you get them wrong.

      Obviously an oversimplified example but I hope it helps you understand?
    • locotyson
      locotyson
      Bronze
      Joined: 07.01.2011 Posts: 20
      Originally posted by NightFrostaSS
      SSS is BS
      So BSS would be SS?
    • NightFrostaSS
      NightFrostaSS
      Bronze
      Joined: 25.10.2008 Posts: 5,255
      I have no information on correlation between BSS and nazi Germany
    • locotyson
      locotyson
      Bronze
      Joined: 07.01.2011 Posts: 20
      Originally posted by Meemawuk

      Obviously an oversimplified example
      Obviously yes. Do you mean in SSS this hand would've finished earlier ? What would be the same hand in SSS?
    • XZaar
      XZaar
      Bronze
      Joined: 22.01.2010 Posts: 129
      Learn BSS its more fancy these days.
    • locotyson
      locotyson
      Bronze
      Joined: 07.01.2011 Posts: 20
      Originally posted by XZaar
      Learn BSS its more fancy these days.
      If I've asked what's the difference between a smile and a sarcasm what would you suggest?
    • NightFrostaSS
      NightFrostaSS
      Bronze
      Joined: 25.10.2008 Posts: 5,255
      in sss it's mainly about preflop in bss you get to make tought decisions on flop, turn and river, (more room for error = rewards more skilled players) so sss is kinda for lazy peaople who don't like to think much and are fine with playing for rakeback
    • Meemawuk
      Meemawuk
      Bronze
      Joined: 27.05.2009 Posts: 758
      In SSS it all ends up in the middle because you don't have to worry about putting in 77BB drawing dead. Say you play SSS with 20BB stack (though i'm not sure where you can do that anymore). After you 3-bet, almost half your stack is in the middle, and the pot is double what you have left. You will be all in here 100% of the time unless you have some kind of soul read. Your flop bet will be all-in for 11BB every single time because its the only thing you can do. Once it is in there, that is all you can lose. You are not putting a bigger stack and more BB at risk, in a marginal situation.
    • Bliausmas
      Bliausmas
      Bronze
      Joined: 11.03.2010 Posts: 741
      In BSS you have to think, in SSS you have to click.
    • locotyson
      locotyson
      Bronze
      Joined: 07.01.2011 Posts: 20
      Thank you all, I think I've got the picture indeed
    • phathustler
      phathustler
      Bronze
      Joined: 03.01.2011 Posts: 23
      The idea / advantages / disadvantages of playing as a shortstack are probably easiest to understand if you imagine it in extreme cases. Say you had a full stack but you just lost a big hand and are down to a 4bb stack, and for some reason you can't rebuy (this happens in tournaments all the time, for example, but this can be a cash game). How would you play best to make money now? Do you want to limp into hands preflop with 67s hoping to flop a flush? Or do you want to raise your K2o from UTG all in for 4bb? What is your flop play like in this situation? You're only ever already all in, or you checked the blind and are either folding or shoving.

      When you have a short stack, implied odds become irrelevant very quickly. You'll often be pot committed or all in before many cards come. Implied odds rely on getting money in after hitting when you're likely behind. How often do you want to be pot committed when you know you're behind? How are you going to get money in after if you don't have any more? Decisions are simpler: if you've got 40% equity, you can shove utilising your additional fold equity, but you can't call all in, because you're behind.

      In one sense it is less risky because no one else can used implied odds against you. No one with a straight draw can correctly call your all-in shove giving them 2 to 1 on the flop. If you've got more money behind and it isn't putting them or you all in, they can call with bad odds expecting to get more money from you later to make up for it. So, with a big stack, you can be ahead up until the river when the pot gets huge, and they hit their weird straight and stack you after. You'll still win and lose against people making bad calls with a short stack, but it'll be in tiny chunks, and the variance relative to your winnings is lower.

      It also becomes apparent why shortstacks are hard to exploit and annoying when you imagine the 4bb case. What is someone else going to do when you have 4bb and you raise all-in preflop. How do they alter their range, and should they? You're already done with the hand. You've announced that you think that your cards + fold equity put you ahead of everyone's calling range. You're forcing them to make a decision about what kinds of hands they should play (value vs implied odds). Should they call with implied odds e.g. 67s hands and hope someone else calls behind as well? If no one else does, they've given you just want you want with your K2o. If they drop their implied odds hands from their range and call with their value hands, then they're not raising their value hands, which is strange. If they just drop their implied odds hands and raise for value after you go all in, then they're definitely announcing that they have strictly value hands, probably pushing out some dominated hands they'd like to play against, and inflating the pot more than usual for them. Plus they might have something like QJ and end up heads up against you and are slightly behind even if you just have A2o.


      Strictly from a variance perspective, one $10 decision with 54% equity is going to see bigger swings relative to gains compared to five $2 decisions with 54% equity even though the same amount of money has been risked. You could easily lose one $10 all in with 54% equity, and be down $10. You could easily win it and bet up $10 as well. But, to go all in 5 times with $2 and be up or down $10 you'd have to win or lose all 5, which is unlikely.


      Anyway, short version: they play a smaller more straightforward game with less tricky situations and little to no implied odds aspect. Mathness: variance has to do with the square root of the number of samples, so having to play more to risk the same amount means variance is less of an issue.
    • Duane317
      Duane317
      Bronze
      Joined: 30.12.2007 Posts: 76
      Originally posted by phathustler
      Strictly from a variance perspective, one $10 decision with 54% equity is going to see bigger swings relative to gains compared to five $2 decisions with 54% equity even though the same amount of money has been risked. You could easily lose one $10 all in with 54% equity, and be down $10. You could easily win it and bet up $10 as well. But, to go all in 5 times with $2 and be up or down $10 you'd have to win or lose all 5, which is unlikely.


      Anyway, short version: they play a smaller more straightforward game with less tricky situations and little to no implied odds aspect. Mathness: variance has to do with the square root of the number of samples, so having to play more to risk the same amount means variance is less of an issue.
      Just to elaborate on the subject, I think there's a difference. BSS players do not go all-in with 54% equity. They usually do it postflop, when they're at a major advantage. For instance, a set vs TPTK (almost drawing dead). In SSS, the case is usually as such. They do go all-in preflop or at the flop with coin flips.

      Given this, it might not be as simple as this. Personally, I think BSS has less variance even if it says otherwise in most articles. :)