Poker is a game with such a variety of elements and rules. Yet, not all of these rules are strictly confined to how to play the game. There are also a lot of social rules around how to play the game. Read on so you can rule the poker tables, without making an embarrassing social faux pas.
Eating While Playing
Look, we love a good snack but if possible try to keep your tasty treats away from the poker tables. This is particularly true if this snack is a messy one. We don't give this advice because snacking will affect your game, as much as because of its unsanitary nature. After all, touching cards and chips that’ll be handled by others after digging your hands into a mountain of Cheetos won’t make you popular with your fellow players. Instead, focus on the game and hold off until a suitable break before refuelling your body.
In the same vein, try to hold off on drinking alcohol excessively during the game. Drunk people can be irritating at the best of times, but more so when you’re locked into a poker game with them. Now, we don’t like to be party poopers - so we’re not saying to go teetotal. Just hold off on knocking back whiskey and tequila shots! More than just annoying your fellow players, alcohol can also negatively affect your game strategy. Poker is a mental game and excessive alcohol consumption can result in a significant decline in cognitive functions. When your decision making isn’t sharp, you’ll find it harder to keep your composure (and cash) at the tables. Instead, wait until you take home the pot and save the alcohol for the celebrations!
Poker is ultimately a social game. Hence why it works so well in social casino apps like Pokerist! Like our advice on alcohol, this wisdom is aimed at improving both your game and likeability at the tables. Firstly, some shrewd and covert questioning through sociable conversation can uncover a wealth of data! From this chit chat, you can discover another player's potential strengths and weaknesses. Not only that, but these musings can uncover how serious of a player they are or their experience level. While there is no full-proof strategy for carrying out this advice, if executed correctly, there’s no telling what valuable gems you could unearth.
What’s more, poker is a game. It’s supposed to be fun! The joy of finding a good game of poker is finding like-minded enthusiasts that you can bond with. If you’re only starting out then naturally a lot of your focus is going to be on strategy and gameplay - as it should! Still, as you become more proficient in the game try losing up and getting involved with the other players.
On the flip side of the above advice, don’t get overly comfortable at the tables. This can come across as cocky. Not only might this affect whether or not players want to play with you, but it may also cause them to target you. Not exactly a winning strategy! Also, poker can be a game of extreme highs and lows. You may be taking the pot in one hand and taking your leave in the next! Thus, keep your ego in check…just in case!
Slow rolling is to poker as heating tuna is to offices - there are no strict rules against it but it's just not the done thing! In more detail, slow rolling is when a player intentionally takes their time revealing their hand. This is done when the player knows they have their rival beat and are waiting to drop the bomb on them. Essentially, it’s just seen as bad form to allow the rival to think they still stand a chance when you know you have them beat. Some beginners believe this is a harmless part of the game where they can enjoy making a rival sweat. Whereas, experienced players know there’s nothing to be gained from it.
Commenting on Other’s Hands
Like our previous paragraph, this behaviour is usually carried out by inexperienced players who aren’t familiar with good etiquette in the game. Furthermore, we usually see this from players sitting out of the hand. So, if you’ve folded and are sitting out of the rest of the hand, then sit out! This means refraining from making comments about other players’ supposed tells or sharing your opinions on their game strategy. Instead, use this time to study and track other players and improve your game strategy. For more advice on what to do when you’re sitting out of a hand check out our previous blog post on the topic here.