We all know that on a site with play money chips, like Replay Poker, a lot of players like to see a flop and limp-call a lot.
This can be frustrating when you raise with a premium hand like AK and hit top pair and players that had bad hands like J,7 offsuit hits a two pair for example. In normal games, this is just bad luck - but when you have like six players that call your raise, their collective equity can get pretty big even with trash hands.
So what is the “secret” to win big in this kind of games (if the stacks are reasonably deep), especially if a lot of players call your raises? It is to play a lot of hands in position that have the potential to make the nuts or close to the nuts.
You don’t win as many hands as you do when you can isolate an opponent with your premium hands.
BUT when you hit a set (especially top set), the nut (or a high) flush, or the nut straight you will win massive pots since players at social poker sites with cheap or even free chips have a hard time folding when they hit something good that you dominate.
Especially the times you overset them, they have a lower flush or straight you often can win their whole stack.
Or when they think they are tricky and slowplay their aces kings and you can see a cheap flop with a low pocket pair, hit a set and they can’t fold the hand they have been waiting for so long just to trap someone.
Thank you Captain Obvious maybe you think. But I see it all the time: either players tighten up too much or they play almost every hand dealt (nothing wrong with that if you just want to have fun and don’t mind losing in the long run).
Position goes up in importance of course since you do want to either see a lot of speculative hands cheap or raise/re-raise your premium hands big.
So what hands go up in value and what hands go down in multiway pots when the stacks are reasonably deep?
Pocket pairs, especially pairs over 77, increase in value because they have a better chance of getting paid off when flopping a set, which can win big pots against several opponents who have top pair or draws. Try to only see a flop cheap with the lowest pairs 22-66. Since they almost always have to hit a set to be good multiway.
Suited connectors like 78s, 89s, etc., gain value because they have the potential to make strong draws to either straight or flushes. The increased pot odds and potential for hitting big hands make them more appealing. The higher the better of course so Suited Broadway cards are very strong multi-way.
3. All Suited Aces - and in position (on or near the button often) also suited Kx and even suited Qx.
Hands like Unsuited Aces with low kickers, low offsuit connectors (e.g., 65o) that almost always have to make a top straight to win big, or hands with no potential for a strong draw or top pair with strong kickers like K9o lose value in multiway pots. The chances of flopping strong hands are diminished, and these hands become more difficult to play effectively.
High Cards that make “just top pair” like AKo, AQo, or KQo, KJo lose value. If you hit top pair, your hand might not be strong enough to compete against multiple opponents who could have better hands. Play them a lot more carefully than if you just have a few opponents or are heads-up.
As always, the better your position the more speculative hands you can play. So don’t go crazy in early positions unless the players are passive pre-flop and almost never 3-bet you off a hand. In a very passive game, you can open up your range in earlier positions since you are almost guaranteed to see a flop.
In multiway pots, hands with the potential to make strong hands like sets, high straights, and high flushes tend to increase in value because there are more opponents that can pay you off.
Conversely, hands that rely on hitting just one high card for a pair or lack potential for strong draws might lose value because they become harder to play profitably against multiple opponents. As the number of players increases, the value of hands can shift, so adjusting your starting hand selection accordingly is crucial.
Multiway pots are a fantastic opportunity to earn a lot of chips. You don’t tighten up in this type of game to the point where you only play the absolute premium hands - especially not if your opponents not only play a lot of trash but also overvalue top pair and other medium holdings.