Poker Variance and Weidness

A hand is scratching a lottery ticket

Playing poker for the first time is a marvelous”if somewhat intimidating”experience for many a beginner. There are even poker veterans who have not yet gotten used to the carnival of weirdness that the poker table attracts on a daily basis. The reason for this is because poker nowadays has become less of a niche game of chance and more of a mainstream pastime thanks to mediums like the Internet. Ergo, you’ll get to play with poker players sporting a variety of skill levels and poker plays featuring a lot of bad beats, poker variance, and other weird situations.

Poker Weirdness

For many an online player that get the latest Poker Stars download, merely spotting runner-runner spades in two hands in a row is enough to arouse their suspicion, shock, and surprise because of their mostly limited view of how poker is supposed to go. They’ll probably even accuse the computer of cheating or stacking the odds in its favor, even though it’s more likely that random chance has blessed the program with better luck, not software-based manipulations.

At any rate, novices should let this article serve as a lesson to them that many of the bizarre hands and situations that newbie players end up in are run-of-the-mill, ordinary events for most regular poker players, so these newbies shouldn’t be alarmed or cry foul whenever such things happen.

Newer players shouldn’t be so flabbergasted and thunderstruck whenever, say, AA lost to 42o when it was three bets before the flop; it’s a mildly interesting occurrence to witness, but it’s hardly a shocking, earth-shattering experience. It’s a mundane bad beat that can happen to all poker games. A beginner must not be deterred by his first few experiences in poker; he must keep at the game in order to realize what is and isn’t an unusual event. More to the point, he should not conclude all of a sudden that a computer-based poker game is rigged by seeing such curious but hardly unusual phenomenon. They’re nothing more than normal, ordinary, and average happenings.

The First Poker Experience

For example, while playing on, you may see some strange little weirdo who adamantly deals with 42o to pound your AA on a A53 flop; the eight of hearts or three of clubs haunting your hand like some sort of card ghosts; an angle-shooter that somehow gets away with a clearly moronic move through the virtue of luck; back-to-back odds flops; and bizarre, illogical hands from all the bad plays going on. If chaos theory is to be believed, a poker game with beginners could serve as a study on it and how it affects dynamical systems; i.e., how trivial changes can bring about significant consequences.

As with anything else, once you’re a seasoned veteran, the novelty of poker playing quickly wears off, and even the weird situations described above won’t faze a typical, regular poker player. These people have seen it all, and they’ve learned through countless trial and error that when you’re at the poker table, you must expect the unexpected.

However, new players who lack the insight of discerning variance from expectation or bad beats from bad plays are probably going to get shocked by some of the things happening there. Anything is possible in this game that’s equal chance and skill. You can find out more about poker variance by reading this article: Poker Variance and Bad Luck. In it there is a discussion about how to overcome variance and bad luck by knowing and using the odds to your favor.


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