Moving up the limits

    • M3lchior
      M3lchior
      Bronze
      Joined: 02.06.2011 Posts: 27
      Hello guys,

      I've just recently moved from SNG's to short-handed FL (I've been playing a lot of FL back some time ago, so I'm no new to the game) and having huge profits.

      I've started with approximately 60$ (that I got from SNGs) at 0.05/0.10 and with 13.55bb/100 over 3500 hands I decided to move up. I've then read about how the 500bb shorthanded rule is too tight and after 600 hands at 0.10/0.20 with 9.68bb/100 decided to move up to 0.25/0.50 (with br of just about 120$ or something)

      There I'm currently having 8.12bb/100 on 2500 hands and have amassed 167$ bankroll so far. From what I recall, this is a rather very big winrate for FL - I'd just like to know how accurate could it be ? I know 2500 hands is nowhere near the sample size (100k is needed from what I've read), but I'd love to know if - maybe with 5k or 10k hands for that matter would be enough to guesstimate - maybe with +-2bb/100 or something imprecision. And also, should I continue moving up or just try to stay where I am to get a better feeling of the game ?

      Also, is there some "breaking point" at which players get conceivably stronger ? I feel that the players are *a bit* stronger, but I still feel like having a strong edge - there's an awful lot of weak TAGS (very weak post flop), weak LAGS (just pushing everything and not knowing where to fold - 40/30+) and even more CSs(40/4 or the like) and clueless fishes (VPIP 60-80 sometimes).

      Lastly I'm playing rather TAGgish than LAGgish - with 26/22/11 - the last stat being 3-bet. WTSD 38, Agg 2.35. And I'm having a strong downward redline - is this normal for FL TAG ? My net winnings are 81$, with 65$ non-sd loss (meaning a 146$ showdown winnings). Is this too bad or normal? Is there something stat-wise wrong with me ? :)

      It could be due to me playing fit or fold vs. CS/fishes/maniacs and capping preflop with A10+, 99+, which means i often fold on the flop when I don't fit, but more than make up for it when I do (of course i tend to calldown against 80VPIP+ even if i don't hit on HU and such - or even bet, but I'm not really calling or betting a 4-handed capped pot 99 vs 10AK flop :D whatever stats the guys have). Can't really bluff a fish outta pot on FL :) It's just the redline looks pretty bad - I don't know. I'm pretty confident in my play now, but always looking to squeeze some more value out of it :)

      Thank you very much for any feedback.
  • 37 replies
    • taavi1337
      taavi1337
      Bronze
      Joined: 29.05.2009 Posts: 2,920
      Hi! Yes, if you feel your edge you probably have it. Just make sure you pay attention and improve all the time, you'll be fine :)

      Stats are nice, all FL players I know have very negative non-SD winnings, it is just how this game is.

      Move up when you feel like it. It's good to play in your comfort zone but it is also good to practice courage.

      Your sample sizes are very small but 7BB/100 for 3k hands probably means that you know quite well what you're doing :f_biggrin:

      All the best and good luck!
    • Boomer2k10
      Boomer2k10
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      Joined: 22.09.2010 Posts: 2,551
      First of all regarding winrate you have to differentitate between bb (Big Blind) and BB (Big Bet)

      Secondly, 3k hands shows absolutely nothing regarding winrate, that winrate will be determined pretty much exclusively by short term variance, not saying you're not playing fine but it's not a sample size to take anything into account on

      Regarding how many hands you need to consider a winrate accurate:

      For a 120k hand sample size there's a 95% chance you're accurate to within 1BB/100 or 2bb/100, for 10k hands your winrate will be within 3.5BB/100 or 7bb/100 with a 95% accuracy and considering even at micros 2BB/100 is a very solid winrate you can see the issue.

      (In fact over a 2.5k sample with a 4BB/100 winrate it's actually still more than possible you're a breakeven/losing player, this is if you use the variance equation but I'm skeptical of it's accuracy after such a low number of hands, however I'm obviously not saying that's the case, it's more than likely you can beat microstakes well)

      Red-Line is FLHE 6-max is irrelevant, it only becomes a thing in super-short handed games. You will see many HUHU pros who do have positive red lines but in 6-max it's just not possible, especially at micros where multiway pots increase. Not saying that it's not possible to mitigate your redline but it's just not a thing to be worried (it being negative) about in ring games

      I would say there are multiple breaking points, at 0.5/1 the games on Stars at least do get noticeably tougher than the 0.25/0.5 range.

      Also never think it's impossible to push a fish out of a pot, sure they might call flop and turn way more than they should but consequently they'll overfold the river, obviously folding pairs is something that should be rarely done in FL so they won't do it but additionally their river range is weakened by them underfolding flop and turn so you just adjust your bluffing frequenices accordingly, taking into account it'll probably take a 3-barrell usually.

      That said you've had a great start and congratulations on your progress, look forward to hearding more about it

      Personally I'd say once you have a $300 roll, start taking some shots at 0.5/1 and see how you feel, you'll always have 500BB for 0.25/0.5 if a 50BB shot doesn't go well it doesn't do well. If you want to wait until $350 for a 100BB shot that's fine too.

      btw 500bb for a roll s way too small, in FL we deal in Big Bets (BB) not Big Blinds (bb). 300BB/600bb swings in LHE are common even for winning players, if a LHE players hasn't been though 1-2 of them in a 100k sample he's been running hotter than the sun.
    • M3lchior
      M3lchior
      Bronze
      Joined: 02.06.2011 Posts: 27
      Thanks a lot guys ! Boomer, tough post, but all the more useful :)

      First yeah the BB vs bb is pretty confusing.

      Second - could you direct me to some of the variance equations ? It would be nice to be able to calculate the precision by myself.

      Very nice observation about the "3-barrel bluffs" - still I've seen a lot of CS guys calling river with ace-high (my top one is a guy calling my overpair of QQ on J52 8 3 with 107o - seriously what was he thinking ? That I was bluffing with 7 high ? - mind you 7 high and 9 high were the only possible hands he had beat). AFAIK it seems that going to river with any pair seems viable, but pushing to fold gets profitable only with good reads (against semi-sane opponents). As I tend to table-select and find fishes with stats like VPIP 60+, they seldom tend to fold to anything so I'm just playing fit or fold most of the time.

      About the roll - I was using a 300BB roll ofc, not 300bb/500bb as a rule, so it wasn't "that" small. I used a smaller BR for "peeking" at 0.25/0.50, because I felt like beating it.

      UPDATE ON MY CURRENT PROGRESS

      Just played another 1600hands at 0.25/0.50, making it 8k hands total and 4k hands at 0.25/0.50. The session started by a -30$ run (60BB) for the first 500 hands (I lost with a set of jacks to set of queens, with queens to kings, with AA to 106 twopair river, AA to 76o twopair river in a row. Wow :) - a while after that pocket 33 to Q3 on capped Q73 flop, with Q on river - I had a bad feeling so I just called the reraise on river). I stayed focused though and after finishing 1600 hands I ended up +45$ - meaning I was 5BB/100 that session. That gives me 4.6BB/100 over 4k on 0.25/0.50 and 5.05BB/100 over 8k overall. Starting to feel confident.

      Also it helped a lot pointing out that the usual "very good winrate" is 3BB/100 not 3bb/100. I was really feeling something was very wrong having triple the very good winrate, but having 1.5x may be ok - maybe with a bit of a short term luck.

      The 100BB shot sounds like a good idea, I'll probably go with this one. Still having a small sample and not sure if it's not all some sort of luck - but it doesn't seem to be.

      Thanks a lot on the posts, much appreciated !
    • Avataren
      Avataren
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      Joined: 28.04.2010 Posts: 1,621
      unless you have at least 30k hands you shouldn't think about what winrate you have.
    • taavi1337
      taavi1337
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      Joined: 29.05.2009 Posts: 2,920
      but what if you don't count the hands?
    • Boomer2k10
      Boomer2k10
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      Joined: 22.09.2010 Posts: 2,551
      Originally posted by taavi1337
      but what if you don't count the hands?
      Then you wouldn't know your winrate because you wouldn't know how many hands you'd played
    • Avataren
      Avataren
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      Joined: 28.04.2010 Posts: 1,621
      Originally posted by Boomer2k10
      Originally posted by taavi1337
      but what if you don't count the hands?
      Then you wouldn't know your winrate because you wouldn't know how many hands you'd played
      touche
    • taavi1337
      taavi1337
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      Joined: 29.05.2009 Posts: 2,920
      you can never KNOW your winrate, you can only feel it
    • Avataren
      Avataren
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      Joined: 28.04.2010 Posts: 1,621
      search your feelings jeff fa fa .. I am your father Luke
    • M3lchior
      M3lchior
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      Joined: 02.06.2011 Posts: 27
      What if I go up the limits too fast to actually amass 30k hands at a single limit ! Would I never know my winrate then ? :) I suppose I'll stick with the "If you feel edge you have it" and "Adhere BR managmenent and all will be fine". Or at least I hope so. A sick bad run and a good one again today. Shorthanded really needs some guts to take the swings.

      Just one hilarious thing - I was insulted to be a "breakeven nit" by a 35/30 guy. When I suggested that my current winrate is about 4BB/100 and as far as the games with me go, he has -34bb/100 over 700 hands, he said that he has played several million of hands on this limit and has not seen anyone below 30 VPIP to be profitable. Million hands ? Holy spoiler batman. Maybe he is stuck there for a reason.

      Any thoughts on the profitable VPIP though ? I'm varying 24-26. Maybe more aggression/looseness is needed on higher limits ? Definitely not loosening up on this limit - I'm fitorfolding without specific reads for good value.

      Also I would appreciate some suggestions on bb defense articles - apart from the PS one. Definitely having a leak there, bb is the only position that I'm lossy from. I'm hugely profitable from everywhere else. Seems I was able to even fix the EP leak I had.

      I tried to defend my blinds more, but it only ended up by being even more lossy :D Looks like it's more of an art than I thought it to.
    • Boomer2k10
      Boomer2k10
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      Joined: 22.09.2010 Posts: 2,551
      I very much doubt that somone who plays a 27/20-style game well would have any trouble beating 0.25/0.50 with good game selection

      However what some of these guys fail to comprehend is that sometimes really good players who win, don't stay at micros for long so they get very skewed reads on who's good or not

      Yes, most of the 25/17 style players will suck and probably breakeven long term becasue they're playing basically off SSHE's chart and have no idea how to play postflop so yes, they'll breakeven long term most of the time but making an assumption about someone based on their VPIP/PFR is pretty stupid.

      If you're profitable from the SB you're running hot, long term everyone loses money from the SB and BB for the simple reason you have to put money into the pot no matter what your hand is and add to the fact you're out of position

      There's no point aiming for stats, that's just botting and it has the same typ eof caps on your ability as playing off a chart, you don't learn how to adapt and truly thing about the game and when you come up against players who don't fall into your gamplan then there's a problem.
    • Avataren
      Avataren
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      Joined: 28.04.2010 Posts: 1,621
      ive seen a 20/16 guy at 25/50c be slightly above breakeven profitable. Its not about your stats for the most part its how much value you get for your good hands and how little you lose with your bad hands that determine if you are a winning player. that guy you talked to i have an idea on who that is and he is a tilty bad player. he may be a little winner but not above 2BB/100 ..
    • M3lchior
      M3lchior
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      Joined: 02.06.2011 Posts: 27
      The reason I'm profitable in SB is (imho) that most of the players are even worse in blind defence then me. I have the largest profits from SB when VPIP but very small totally (not surprising). It might be a hot run but let's hope not :)

      As for the BB - so it is normal to be losing there ? I thought it's possible to have green numbers. And how "losing" is good there ? Obviously anything profitable when VPIP is better than nothing, but what are some good stats there.

      As to the BB defense furthemore - I've not been able to find reasonable BB defense reraise stats. I have something like 15%. Too tight ? Folded to steal 50% sounds about reasonable. Still I'm hugely losing in the BB. I'll try to pay more attention to my opponents stealing range/position.

      And - of course I tend to not play to have some stats and by pure ORC. As I said, when I enter a new table, I play rather tight and then adapt to each player. Still stats can be telling about leaks and overall gameplay style that could be fixed. They *do* have value - if interpreted with care and not blindly followed - as does ORC, but then as does every poker advice.

      Also wondering - is there a stat in HEM/PT that says what is the PFR/VPIP for the whole limit ? (as averaged by all the hands of other players that it keeps track of) It could be interesting to compare - presumably the higher the limits get the less VPIP and more PFR.

      *by tight I mean I play slightly tighter than the charts and fitorfold for tpwk+/good draw+ - it doesn't really mean I'm waiting for aces.
    • Boomer2k10
      Boomer2k10
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      Joined: 22.09.2010 Posts: 2,551
      Seriously, you will not be profitable from the Small Blind long term unless you completely run like god

      Losing money from those positions is fine because what you're actually looking to do is lose less than the value of the SB and BB (so less that 50BB/100 in the BB and 20-25BB/100 in the SB, becasue that's what you'd lose if you simply folded every hand)

      Given your total sample is under 10k hands I'd say you have about 2k hands at SB, again an irrelevant number. You should not be fixated on your winrate from these positions.

      If you've got an advantage that's good but it's very dangerous to over-estimate your advantage over such a small period.

      Personally, over my recent most 10k hands I'm breakeven from UTG and losing more from the SB than BB which is ludicrous. That doesn't mean I'm playing the wrong hands or anything like that, it basically means in the 600 hands I've played UTG in that period I have run poorly with my strong hands:

      (i.e. 99+, ATo+ are losing hands, except for QQ)

      And since all those hands are SD bound for those most part unless the board comes disastrously I therefore have godawful SD figures.

      So individual positions over these sorts of smaples just aren't anything you can get invested in because more often than not you'll get false positive or even false negative information
    • JLeitmotiv
      JLeitmotiv
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      Joined: 02.01.2009 Posts: 756
      OK, M3lchior please let me come in with my calculator and let you know your real numbers in 0.25/0.50 (I'll put the usual 3SD to get 95% confidence intervals)

      global WR:

      4.6 +/- 8.82

      per position:
      (Let's guess your winrate is 4.6 from every position, I hope you get the idea of the uncertainty you have nevertheless)

      4.6 +/- 21.09


      Don't get me wrong, we all like enthusiastic players here, but you don't wanna fly that high and then you'll start bumping your head when you hit your first downswing. The best players in the world could have had runs of 1k hands at -7BB/100. I'm not saying you are a pathetic poker player, or anything like that (I don't even know how you play! All I know are numbers).
    • Avataren
      Avataren
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      Joined: 28.04.2010 Posts: 1,621
      Originally posted by M3lchior
      The reason I'm profitable in SB is (imho) that most of the players are even worse in blind defence then me. I have the largest profits from SB when VPIP but very small totally (not surprising). It might be a hot run but let's hope not :)

      As for the BB - so it is normal to be losing there ? I thought it's possible to have green numbers. And how "losing" is good there ? Obviously anything profitable when VPIP is better than nothing, but what are some good stats there.

      As to the BB defense furthemore - I've not been able to find reasonable BB defense reraise stats. I have something like 15%. Too tight ? Folded to steal 50% sounds about reasonable. Still I'm hugely losing in the BB. I'll try to pay more attention to my opponents stealing range/position.

      And - of course I tend to not play to have some stats and by pure ORC. As I said, when I enter a new table, I play rather tight and then adapt to each player. Still stats can be telling about leaks and overall gameplay style that could be fixed. They *do* have value - if interpreted with care and not blindly followed - as does ORC, but then as does every poker advice.

      Also wondering - is there a stat in HEM/PT that says what is the PFR/VPIP for the whole limit ? (as averaged by all the hands of other players that it keeps track of) It could be interesting to compare - presumably the higher the limits get the less VPIP and more PFR.

      *by tight I mean I play slightly tighter than the charts and fitorfold for tpwk+/good draw+ - it doesn't really mean I'm waiting for aces.
      just to make it clear for you.. Long term you will have losing stats in BB and SB.. I dont care whether you are profitable in SB atm.. you are just running godly. after 20k you will have red numbers in SB and BB and theres nothing you can do about it. and please be aware that doesn't make you a bad poker player. The best in the world (In my opinion is TPirahna) he have red numbers in BB and SB.. Its just a mathematically inevitability..

      :) can i ask if you have skype and would like to talk ? ill add you as a friend on here and you can pm me or i pm you if you want ..
    • M3lchior
      M3lchior
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      Joined: 02.06.2011 Posts: 27
      Very happy with the replies guys - and cool you've come in with the calculators. It only helps :)

      As to the SB - I'm already unprofitable there, so the math kicked in :) Again - isn't it possible that you *could* be profitable in 0.50/0.25 because the SB is smaller ? Ok, ok I get it, you can't. But anyway - nobody has shared yet any numbers on *how much* losing is good there. I suppose that since I don't have a reasonable positional sample it doesn't matter anyway, correct ?

      To update my winrate - I had a loooong breakeven period (3k or so) - but I'd say it was mostly due to the fact that I was overmultitabling (2-3 is more than enough for me and I played 5) and playing through the night. In other words like an idiot. A lesson learned there though :)

      It could also be ... normal.

      Currently 5.5bb or 2.75BB/100 over 10K - mind you those are just from the 0.25/0.50. Total is 7.5bb/100 over 15k. Hopefully getting a bit closer to a reasonable sample (though as you guys pointed out - not position wise). I still think my real winrate is a bit higher than this, but I may definitely be wrong.

      As to the skype-thing why not :) Not sure how friends functions work here, but I'll give it a try. EDIT: Huhu, just tried it. Hope it worked - definitely the strangest friends interface I've ever seen.
    • JLeitmotiv
      JLeitmotiv
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      Joined: 02.01.2009 Posts: 756
      M3lchior, you are extremely optimistic about your winrates. I know that this is too touch to say and to hear, but we've all been there. beating the rake in .25/.50 is quite good already for starters. you should be happy, yes, about your upswing. but always keep in mind this is an upswing. I tell you this, because we've all suffered it in the flesh.

      Just to be clear, your winrate WASN'T 4.6BB/100 and your winrate ISN'T 2.75 BB/100.

      your winrate is, then and now, any on the following graph (in percent) (MY GOD I HATE EXCEL):



      and, as you can see, the shape of that curve has changed a lot between those hands. i don't like being the bad, mr know-it-all, bad news guy. and, of course, it's likely that's your TRUE winrate (and we all hope it is indeed!). but you need to take a look at the big picture here. it isn't a number what we are talking about.

      BTW, to be kinda confident you are a winning player, you'd need the probability at 0 to be ~2-3%. until then, just keep the good, focused play.

      and if 3k is a looooooooong breakeven streak... man, welcome to the jungle :D :D

    • M3lchior
      M3lchior
      Bronze
      Joined: 02.06.2011 Posts: 27
      That's a bell curve and percentages ? Nice picture.

      I don't wanna get overly confident and then crushed, I simply find it hard to believe that I'm on an upswing. Given the amount of bad players - and I usually sit at players with 2+ guys with VPIP 70+ who call to river with third pairs or fold if they don't improve I just find it hard to believe to be b/e or the like.

      There are people doing awesome moves like cc 3-bet and c/f flop. Is there even a hand you can do this with ? A hand you can do this with 3-times out of 5 ?

      Just ... *sigh* ... look. All of the posts looked pretty civil (I noticed i hit some red herrink by saying im winning from sb - sorry guys - I just DONT KNOW) but saying YOURE ON AN UPSWING ADMIT IT is just like ... give me a break. I'll gladly admit it after 10k hands in which I'm B/E or losing or just winning less. But as much as I can't be sure I'm winning, you can't be sure I'm losing, b/e or whatever else. The confidence interval works both ways.

      And I'm not saying "my winrate was and is" - yes I spell it that way, but heck, I started this thread to ask you. I just put the numbers from hem here and ask.

      And I hate GNR.
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