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Thread: Developing my 10-handed game?

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    bambini's Avatar
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    Default Developing my 10-handed game?

    Looking for advice, guys. You see, my 6-seater SNG game is pretty solid - at the low buy-ins I'm playing, I'd estimate that I'm cashing somewhere in the region of 70% - 80%, which is profitable for me. In 10-seater SNGs, my win rate isn't so hot. I've got an idea of where I'm going wrong (not tightening up enough, not accounting for position effectively), but either way I'm not profiting. My losses are small, but a loss is a loss, right?

    The question I have is whether I should stick with my strengths and carry on with 6-seaters, or try to work more on my 10-seater strategy? In either case, on PKR the buy-ins are the same and the 1st prize is (more or less) the same. I mean, is there much point in developing my 10-seater game if 6-seaters are working for me?
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    RyckyRych's Avatar
    RyckyRych is offline Retired Micro Grinder
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    If you are cashing 70-80% of the time in 6-man SNG, you might be the greatest 6-man SNG player ever. Never leave that game, I wouldn't. Assuming only top two pay, cashing that often either means you are cheating or you need to find better record keeping methods. I find that very hard to believe unless these are live games and you play against the same five very bad players everytime. (Or these are DONs, didn't think about that).

    In any case, there is an adjustment to be made. The blinds do hit you less often and now you have true EP decisions to make while the table is still full. In that 6-man game your "UTG" isn't the same as that full table. The bubble will be a bit different as well, with two players vs three (or even four) making the money.

    Short answer? You need to keep accurate records in order to know where you truly stand. You can't just remember the wins and forget the losses like the compulsive gambler that wonders where his rent money has gone.
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    There may be a quick way to get a decent idea of how you are doing. You can use Sharkscope to see how you are performing by ROI, etc. if the site you are playing on is tracked. Stars definitely is, I don't know who else they would be doing anymore. You get five free searches, or at least you use to, so it should be easy to obtain.

    If you want, tell me your screen name and site and I'll see what I can find.
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    J_Verschueren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RyckyRych View Post
    If you are cashing 70-80% of the time in 6-man SNG, you might be the greatest 6-man SNG player ever. Never leave that game, I wouldn't. Assuming only top two pay, cashing that often either means you are cheating or you need to find better record keeping methods. I find that very hard to believe unless these are live games and you play against the same five very bad players everytime. (Or these are DONs, didn't think about that).
    Even in 6-handed DoNs you don't cash as often as that. 62% is possible, if the games are good. I tried for over 2 years and 1k+ games to get 67%, as that seemed feasable, as bad as the other players were playing. But, in the end, I had to admit their calling standards, while atrocious in a cash game or regular sit&go setting, were too close to optimal (actually a bit on the tight side of optimal) in this format to really own these games.

    Quote Originally Posted by RyckyRych View Post
    In any case, there is an adjustment to be made. The blinds do hit you less often and now you have true EP decisions to make while the table is still full. In that 6-man game your "UTG" isn't the same as that full table. The bubble will be a bit different as well, with two players vs three (or even four) making the money.
    True and I do believe it's good to play different games in order to get out of your comfort zone and actually having to think about your decisions. Who knows it might become a habit (the thinking).

    Quote Originally Posted by RyckyRych View Post
    Short answer? You need to keep accurate records in order to know where you truly stand. You can't just remember the wins and forget the losses like the compulsive gambler that wonders where his rent money has gone.
    Quote Originally Posted by RyckyRych View Post
    There may be a quick way to get a decent idea of how you are doing. You can use Sharkscope to see how you are performing by ROI, etc. if the site you are playing on is tracked. Stars definitely is, I don't know who else they would be doing anymore. You get five free searches, or at least you use to, so it should be easy to obtain.

    If you want, tell me your screen name and site and I'll see what I can find.
    Pokerstars is tracked (and a good bunch of sites/networks more), but Bambini needs to "opt-in" for his results to be shown. Tracking sites have been clamped down on by legal action, so, in general, data is no longer publicly available.
    Last edited by J_Verschueren; Dec 15th, 2012 at 11:47 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bambini View Post
    ...I'm cashing somewhere in the region of 70% - 80%
    If this is true, then you don't need to ask any questions on an internet forum.

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    LOL! I laid in bed last night wondering if I'd overestimated my win rate, then logged on here and realise you've been wondering the same. Thanks for keeping me in check.

    Lets me revise my original estimate. In 6-seaters, I cash more than 50% of the time, and certainly enough to be profitable. In 10-seaters, my ITM rate is probably less than 50%, and is probably unprofitable for me. To contextualise it a little, I play microstakes tourneys (60c buyin) so the opponents tend to be weaker, more passive and easier to push around. So I probably win more than I would in a more expensive SNG, where I'd expect to lose more often. Ill be moving up to a bigger buyin soon, so we shall see :)

    But thanks for your thoughts, guys. If anything it's inspired me to start to record my SNG performance on a spreadsheet so I can work with more accurate figures :) Rycky, I'm happy to tell you my username on PKR (BadabingBambini) but I wonder if I haven't yet played enough games to measure a clear trend on a tracker. Which, now that I think about it, makes me wonder if I'm jumping to conclusions on my performance... :)
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    Quote Originally Posted by bambini View Post
    LOL! I laid in bed last night wondering if I'd overestimated my win rate, then logged on here and realise you've been wondering the same. Thanks for keeping me in check.

    Lets me revise my original estimate. In 6-seaters, I cash more than 50% of the time, and certainly enough to be profitable. In 10-seaters, my ITM rate is probably less than 50%, and is probably unprofitable for me. To contextualise it a little, I play microstakes tourneys (60c buyin) so the opponents tend to be weaker, more passive and easier to push around. So I probably win more than I would in a more expensive SNG, where I'd expect to lose more often. Ill be moving up to a bigger buyin soon, so we shall see :)
    In 10-handed sit&go's you only need to cash around 30% of the time (less if your placings are top heavy) to show a nice profit, so I wouldn't exactly be worried about cashing less than half the time.

    Quote Originally Posted by bambini View Post
    But thanks for your thoughts, guys. If anything it's inspired me to start to record my SNG performance on a spreadsheet so I can work with more accurate figures :)
    Record keeping is very important, so you can have an objective look at how you're doing. Otherwise you might let doubts creep into your game, based on subjective feelings of how you are doing.

    Quote Originally Posted by bambini View Post
    Rycky, I'm happy to tell you my username on PKR (BadabingBambini) but I wonder if I haven't yet played enough games to measure a clear trend on a tracker. Which, now that I think about it, makes me wonder if I'm jumping to conclusions on my performance... :)
    Yah, 27 sit&go's (spread over two buy-ins, apparently) is not saying much.

    Even mine (Tkgatma on Pokerstars) doesn't say much other than I haven't played much since my mum's come home from hospital.

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    RyckyRych's Avatar
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    If you cash 30% of the time in 10-man games, spread evenly over 1st/2nd/3rd, you're breaking even to the BI but losing to the rake. Keeping this in mind, the "average" player is a losing player. Think about it. If you pay $11 for a game, typically $10 goes to the pool and $1 is rake. So if ten players enter, they pay in $110 but only $100 is paid out. This means the average ROI for all players combined is -9.1%.

    In order to beat the rake you need to be around 35-40% ITM to be profitable over time and preferably with more wins than anything. In fact, I have always been taught that the best SNG players will have more wins and thirds than seconds. Being average just doesn't cut it in raked SNG games.

    I have absolutely zero games played in DONs so I have nothing to say there. In fact, I have exactly zero played hands since the end of August, save for a few play money SNGs on FTP when it opened back up. I'm not sure anything I know, or think I know, is very relevent anymore. The games change over time and I really haven't truly played since early 2011.

    However, keeping accurate track of your results will never go out of style. Whether you use Sharkscope, PokerTracker, pen and paper... how else would you really know how you are doing if you don't keep score? I knew a lot of guys that thought they were doing much better than they actually were, trust me they weren't keeping records either.
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    Quote Originally Posted by RyckyRych View Post
    If you cash 30% of the time in 10-man games, spread evenly over 1st/2nd/3rd, you're breaking even to the BI but losing to the rake. Keeping this in mind, the "average" player is a losing player. Think about it. If you pay $11 for a game, typically $10 goes to the pool and $1 is rake. So if ten players enter, they pay in $110 but only $100 is paid out. This means the average ROI for all players combined is -9.1%.

    In order to beat the rake you need to be around 35-40% ITM to be profitable over time and preferably with more wins than anything. In fact, I have always been taught that the best SNG players will have more wins and thirds than seconds. Being average just doesn't cut it in raked SNG games.
    That is assuming a skill edge evaporates when the bubble bursts, which doesn't happen, obviously, even though, at higher buy-ins this alone might not be enough to overcome the rake. I didn't mention it, but I was talking about turbo's, which are generally raked at 5% on major sites and I might have made it clearer as well, that dipping to or under 30% would require an extreme bias towards coming 2nd or 1st, rather than 3rd.

    My post was based on a couple of Flemish sit&go grinders who were, before black friday, 12+ talbing the full ring $50,- to $200,- turbo range w/ an ITM% of 32-34% and still having about 5% ROI. Ok, yeah, so maybe I should have said "about 33%, possibly lower". I'll admit it.

    Quote Originally Posted by RyckyRych View Post
    I have absolutely zero games played in DONs so I have nothing to say there.
    In your average micro to low stakes, 10-handed DoN (couple of regs, couple of "ok" guys, about half donks), I would say an average ITM% for a thinking reg would be 56-58%. I don't see how mid stakes DoN's could be profitable with regard to the rake, unless there are vastly more midstakes donks than I care to imagine.
    In 6-max DoNs, things shift in disfavour of the "ok" guys, who suffer at the hands of the regs, as the game, by conception, has no failsafe against a donk with a stack.

    Quote Originally Posted by RyckyRych View Post
    In fact, I have exactly zero played hands since the end of August, save for a few play money SNGs on FTP when it opened back up. I'm not sure anything I know, or think I know, is very relevent anymore. The games change over time and I really haven't truly played since early 2011.
    True, apart from our private games, I haven't really "sat down in anger" for quite a while as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by RyckyRych View Post
    However, keeping accurate track of your results will never go out of style. Whether you use Sharkscope, PokerTracker, pen and paper... how else would you really know how you are doing if you don't keep score? I knew a lot of guys that thought they were doing much better than they actually were, trust me they weren't keeping records either.

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    TIME's Avatar
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    It's good to see reasoned answers to this quandry. I remember when I first started out and cashed in my first ten tries so I decided that I didn't need to keep records because I couldn't lose. I do love your avatar bambini and keep up the good work.
    To the true gambler, money is never an end in itself, but simply a tool; as language is to thought.

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