Today’s question comes from Scott H, and Scott says, “Hey, James, thanks for the awesome videos. Can you give some general strategy for playing full ring on the Bovada anonymous tables? They do allow a limited HUD, Holdem Indicator. Thanks.”
Scott, I’m glad to hear you’re enjoying the other videos and hopefully you’ll enjoy this one as well. My advice initially is actually going to mirror the video that I talked about where I talked about the Bovada anonymous zone tables, which are essentially anonymous tables that are done on a speed variant, so similar to Rush on Full Tilt or Zoom on Poker Stars. What I talked about in that video is that those tables really, really force you to hammer out your default strategy; your default opening range, default three bet range, default bluff frequency postflop, etc. That has pros and cons to it, right? The pro is that you really, really hammer out your default online poker game/strategy, but the con is that once you have that default game hammered out, where else do you go? There’s really not much else you can throw into, which of course is problematic when you’re trying to become the absolute best poker player that you can be.
That all being said, I understand that you’re not playing anonymous zone tables, you’re actually playing anonymous tables and you do have a limited HUD at your disposal, which is that Holdem Indicator that you mentioned. Now, when you’re using a HUD on an anonymous table, you’re really not going to have big sample sizes, just given the nature of the table type, which means that a HUD for this kind of game is really only going to give you very basic information at best. Really, the only poker hud stats you’re going to be able to use would be sample size, VPIP, PFR, maybe three bet ATS and flop continuation bet percentage…and that’s really about it. Anything after that is usually not going to have a big enough sample size to be any sort of useful. So using a stat like four bet percentage or turn check raise percentage, they’re just not really going to be super useful because not enough samples are going to happen in the little bit of time you’re playing against someone on an anonymous table.
So the thing is, when you have a very limited HUD like this, it’s really only useful for trying to figure out player types and then once you have that, usually again, you’re forced right back into using those default lines, how do I default play against this player type, how do I default three bet against this player type, or default turn value bet against this player type? That’s what it’s mainly, mainly used for. You’re usually not going to get big sample sizes on specific stats where you can really, really drill into the HUD and get those really, really precise lines going.
My general advice in this situation would be to keep working on your default game, your default strategy, keep getting that really, really strong and solid and that’s just kind of a byproduct of playing on anonymous tables in the first place. But use that limited HUD to your advantage, start understanding, okay, given my limited HUD, what is the player type that I think this particular opponent is? And understand your default lines per opponent type. That alone is going to allow you to take slightly better lines against the exact individual you’re against. Not going to be as great as having a really, really big sample size against a specific opponent where you can really drill down and use positional stats and those kind of things, but it’s certainly better than nothing and better than having zero information whatsoever.
So Scott, thanks for the great question, and hopefully this gets you started and next time you fire up one of these tables and if you or anyone else has a poker-related question, feel free to leave it on our Google+ page. Also, please make sure to like and subscribe if you’re enjoying this type of video.