Table Selecting

    • nitaidean
      nitaidean
      Bronze
      Joined: 15.05.2010 Posts: 60
      So I've been getting into multitabling SNG's of late, I recently upped stakes from the $2.25 to $6.50 9 player SNG's on fulltilt. And I noticed something... the games are incredibly regged up! I realized I was having a difficult time beating the stake, because more often than not, more than half the people at the table are multitabling regulars, who are naturally playing more or less correctly, making it difficult for me to exploit them.

      For these SNG's to be profitable, I've found, you really NEED there to be a majority of donks/fish spewing their chips away early on and kicking themselves out - and then playing badly in the push/fold stages. If a bunch of regs are just playing ICM against themselves, wheres the profit here?? Except for fulltilt, that is...

      SO.... my solution was to begin table selecting! I started labeling all multitablers and "good" players, and make a point in not joining a table if I recognize 3 or more regs seated there. It seems to be helping my winrate...

      Does anyone else do this?? Am I the only one that found this necessary? Because I see countless regs freely joining tables that are already 75% multitablers. Maybe some of them learned how to outplay the other regs at this stake, but I've found it rather difficult.
  • 15 replies
    • savage1981
      savage1981
      Bronze
      Joined: 31.05.2010 Posts: 945
      Hey there! I'm playing on FT as well, but just moved up from $6.50s to $12s. I personally think you're exagerating the amount of regs at the table on your limit. Although, I guess we might be playing at different times.

      Obviously, the less regs you have at the table the better. I wouldn't sit at the table with 4 other regs either. So you're doing the right thing by marking the good players and trying to avoid them, because as you rightly noticed it has quite a big impact on your ROI.
    • elhh82
      elhh82
      Bronze
      Joined: 03.09.2008 Posts: 6,838
      most of the regs at $6.50 are quite bad.
    • pzhon
      pzhon
      Bronze
      Joined: 17.06.2010 Posts: 1,151
      Originally posted by elhh82
      most of the regs at $6.50 are quite bad.
      There are many degrees of bad, but it is a good point that almost all regs are playing in an exploitable fashion. Some are more vulnerable than others to being outplayed.

      Really good regs notice if you try to exploit them, even if they are playing 25 tables. When I first saw Sippin_Criss, I thought I could exploit him in ways that I used against most of the $16 regs on PokerStars, but he almost immediately countered. Since he pumps so much money out the games he plays, I simply avoided him after that, except for a little heads-up play for fun. Some good players have advanced HUDs which let them see how you have been playing, and some have good memories.

      That you can exploit a reg does not make him a better source of profit than a casual player would be in that seat.

      The average return in each tournament is for each player to lose the rake. With a 10% rake, that is an ROI of -9.1%, or a total loss of 82% of a buy-in for the table. If 9 players with an ROI of 10% play each other, they will still average an ROI of -9.1%, and so on average, they will be disappointed by 19.1% compared with their usual ROI. This does not mean each will be disappointed by the same amount. Someone who gets his 10% ROI playing against better players will tend to do better than someone who is not used to playing against good players. Nevertheless, most of the solid winners would become big losers by playing in that game.

      An exercise you might try is to use Sharkscope to look up everyone who played in one of your past tournaments. (Some poker sites prohibit the use of Sharkscope while you are playing, so use one you played earlier.) Try to use an advanced search to filter to STTs only, since MTT ROIs can be much different. If the average ROI is worse than losing the rake, then your table selection is good. If you have an ROI of 5%, and so do 4 regs in your tournament, then you need the last 4 players to have an average ROI of -27% or worse for your table selection to be good.
    • LgWz
      LgWz
      Black
      Joined: 26.05.2007 Posts: 7,641
      I only start registering when I see games are at least a little beatable.

      Eventually even at $16's I find myself in ridiculous games with 6+ multitablers. On $27's and $38's it's always reg filled, so I play mostly on good traffic hours and still constantly checking the lobby, if it gets too bad I just unreg.

      Table selecting is a pretty good skill to have :)

      off-topic: phzon you still play $16's nowadays?
    • pzhon
      pzhon
      Bronze
      Joined: 17.06.2010 Posts: 1,151
      Originally posted by pzhon
      If the average ROI is worse than losing the rake, then your table selection is good.
      Hmm, I think this wasn't accurate as I stated it. Good (or at least above average) table selection should mean that your opponents average losing the rake or more, not that the average of everyone including you is worse than losing the rake. If you are a winning player, your opponents should be disappointed on average to play you, while you are not necessarily disappointed to play them.

      If you have an ROI of 5%, and so do 4 regs in your tournament, then you need the last 4 players to have an average ROI of -27% or worse for your table selection to be good.
      The correct calculation is that the last 4 players should have ROIs of -23% or worse to balance out the 4 regs. Otherwise your table selection is worse than average. Here are the values for 9-player SNGs with a 10% rake.

      # of 5% ROI regs, avg ROI of others for average game selection
      0, -9%
      1, -11%
      2, -14%
      3, -18%
      4, -23%
      5, -33%
      6, -51%
      7, -108%
    • nitaidean
      nitaidean
      Bronze
      Joined: 15.05.2010 Posts: 60
      Hmm... ok, then please share with me: how does one properly exploit a reg who is playing ultra tight in the beginning and then push/fold/steal in the later stages?

      Resteal from him wider than usual on the bubble or near the bubble, because you know he's calling tight? Or steal from him wider because you know he's folding a lot more than fish are? I would say "just use your stats on him", but most regs on these games have quite similar stats, so I don't get any real info there...

      If someone could give hypothetical examples of cases where you can exploit the fact that a player is a reg, where you couldn't do the same against a fish...?
    • LgWz
      LgWz
      Black
      Joined: 26.05.2007 Posts: 7,641
      It depends a lot on the situation, but just think how they play. A simple example is people who blindly limp/call pocket pairs for set value at early stage. You can isolate them much lighter and take the pot with a cbet/fold basically all the time (until - and if - they adjust) if you miss.
    • pzhon
      pzhon
      Bronze
      Joined: 17.06.2010 Posts: 1,151
      Many regs make some plays which are appropriate against some players, but not against all.

      LgWz points out that some regs have a limping range which is highly weighted toward pocket pairs being played for set value alone, and that it is easy to punish such limps while not paying them off when they hit.

      Many regs defend their blinds very tightly because they play against passive players who do not steal the blinds much. They give a preflop raise too much credit, particularly a raise in late position or from the small blind. I will raise a wide range against them, sometimes ATC. If they play many tournaments against me, they will see that I steal more than is usual, but not how often I am stealing against them, since my steals against their blinds are mixed with my steals against other players who overdefend rather than underdefend the blinds.

      They count on having a lot of folding equity when they shove from the SB, button, and UTG when they have short stacks. I call against their wide ranges, often with hands which would not be correct against the Nash equilibrium pushing ranges, but which have enough equity against an ATC or top 80% range. Many regs do not understand the difference between a 7 bb push from the small blind when they cover the big blind versus not, and they do not adjust their ranges enough.

      I count on regs making fewer incorrect calls near the bubble, although many have the weakness that they automatically call when getting 2:1 chip odds even when they are risk-averse and know they are way behind the pusher's range.
    • hacacare
      hacacare
      Bronze
      Joined: 01.04.2009 Posts: 2,939
      Originally posted by nitaidean
      Does anyone else do this?? Am I the only one that found this necessary?
      Sometimes it seems that most regs just register blindly to any sng that comes, not being concerned about other regs. It is not unusual at happy hours on FT that 6-7 multitablers are sitting on a single table. Probably they think they can play profitably these sngs, good for them. Anyway, if you are patient, you can wait a few minutes to find a better table. It takes some time, and needs extra attention, but since it affects your ROI, it is worth caring about it even if you massively multitable.
    • juno82
      juno82
      Bronze
      Joined: 14.07.2010 Posts: 16
      I used to 20table 16sngturbo on stars, and i never bothered to table select. I registered for 20 tourneys being the first one in every one, but there are to many regs on stars in my opinion to bother table select.
    • nitaidean
      nitaidean
      Bronze
      Joined: 15.05.2010 Posts: 60
      So your strategy was to just learn to outplay the regs?
    • JoaoWR
      JoaoWR
      Bronze
      Joined: 02.03.2008 Posts: 234
      Originally posted by pzhon
      Originally posted by pzhon
      If the average ROI is worse than losing the rake, then your table selection is good.
      Hmm, I think this wasn't accurate as I stated it. Good (or at least above average) table selection should mean that your opponents average losing the rake or more, not that the average of everyone including you is worse than losing the rake. If you are a winning player, your opponents should be disappointed on average to play you, while you are not necessarily disappointed to play them.
      I don't know if I'm alone with this, but I found this quite interesting, haven't thought about this yet. In fact I had to reclassify the other regular players I play SH sng with.

      Originally I just looked at their graph at topshark. OK, they have already lost a ton of money at the tables, I don't have to avoid them -> green label. But now I understand that it is not enough if they have a ROI between -rake% and 0% from my point of view so now they have yellow label meaning breaking even. On the other hand they might have a small negative ROI against random fish but against me they are going to have a significantly worse ROI and they are going to avoid me :s_cool: at least as long as they don't go broke. (These players must have like 120% RB.)

      Other players seem to be winning (red label), but thankfully they appear to have some nice leaks waiting to be exploited. Also the sample size is very low, some bad plays may work for a while until everyone finds out or they just run good.


      Anyway I just wanted to say thanks for enlightening me.

      Any more priceless tips?
    • hacacare
      hacacare
      Bronze
      Joined: 01.04.2009 Posts: 2,939
      I wonder if these guys are playing for profit here, or they're just having fun :s_ugly:

    • yankomania
      yankomania
      Bronze
      Joined: 07.10.2010 Posts: 123
      Originally posted by hacacare
      I wonder if these guys are playing for profit here, or they're just having fun :s_ugly:

      LOL ! :D I think 4fun :D
    • stevegold87
      stevegold87
      Bronze
      Joined: 18.06.2009 Posts: 2,640
      Originally posted by hacacare
      I wonder if these guys are playing for profit here, or they're just having fun :s_ugly:

      imo WHYJACKASS got this. :D