Beating Online Poker without a HUD

BoilerAceBoilerAce Red Chipper Posts: 429 ✭✭✭
I’ll admit it. I’m against HUDs. I have enough to learn about the game and I’ll never have a HUD at a live table. I find them as a crutch and something that changes the game of poker to something that I don’t really care for. I don’t really feel inspired to play if I have to check a stat to determine if I call, fold, or raise.

So, I continue to play online without a HUD. Am I crazy? Maybe. I’m curious if anyone else here plays online without a HUD. Can you beat the game without a HUD? What level? And for those of you that play with HUD, if I took you’re HUD away, could you beat online and at what level?
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Comments

  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    edited October 2016
    At the micros you can certainly play without a HUD, the problem is when you multi tables, since there will be action you'll miss and with a hud you'll have stats to recall the situation. But it gives some advantage for sure because it kept a record. I took the habit of color coding players so when i choose tables i table select very precisely but even if i sit at a table where a known bad player is, the color is a very general info. I could have a 45/3 the same color as a 52/45 which are too different type but same label. With a Hud i know the difference instantly. Also peoples have HUD why you would be at a slight disadvantage ?
  • SplitSuitSplitSuit RCP Coach Posts: 4,069 -
    Poker is a game of information - ignoring valuable information doesn't allow you to play as best as possible.

    That being said, we all play poker for different reasons. If you use online poker simply as a way to practice for live poker in between live sessions, it would make sense to not use the HUD. But if you are working to become the best online player you can - a HUD is super valuable and I would certainly suggest using one whenever possible.
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  • bensnyderbensnyder Red Chipper Posts: 23 ✭✭
    I'll echo SplitSuit...depends on your purpose/goal in playing online.

    I don't enjoy playing online, but play micro to get more practice at reading hands/boards, practice counting outs, calculating odds etc and (re)training my brain to do all of that as I transition back into playing from ~10yrs away from the game. If I could prevent my client from telling me other players' stack size and pot size, I would, so I could get more practice tracking that, too.

    If, however, I was playing online to "beat the game", as you say, and be a profitable player online, I'd use a HUD. The higher the stakes, the higher the chance the other players are using one. Why would you be willing to give them that edge if you're wanting to be profitable?
  • BoilerAceBoilerAce Red Chipper Posts: 429 ✭✭✭
    Don't get me wrong, I would love to make a lot of money playing online! At this point, I still need to concentrate more on the fundamentals of poker and the myriad of study material offered on this website before just use a HUD to make all of my decisions. If you told me I could just learn the HUD, starting playing 200NL and start printing money, I'd say sign me up. However, I don't see that as a realistic possibility with the difficulty of online play and knowing my current skills. Plus, PT4 costs $100 and how long will it take me to make that back?

    For those reasons, I think my status is about the same as bensnyder....I want to use my brain to learn the game which to me, is more fulfilling. I can take this information to the live table and use it there. So for right now, I'm going to just sit and play and try to better my game with my mind. I honestly wish all of the HUDs were "outlawed"...I think its awful for the game...in fact its not the same game anymore. But if I can outplay the HUD guys with my head, all the better.

    Anyway...I still have the same questions in trying to gauge what is possible without a HUD. Can any of you consistently beat the game without a HUD? What level? And for those of you that play with HUD, if I took you’re HUD away, could you beat online and at what level?
    I currently am a break even player without a HUD at 25NL... Is there a level that none of you can beat without a HUD?
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    edited October 2016
    PT4 doesn't cost 100$, you could buy the low stakes versions it cost 60$ and i think it'll work up to NL50.

    You need to play hands, a lot of hands and see spots and you need to analyze those spots later so you'll need a tracker.

    That's the advantage of Online poker why privatize yourself ?
  • BoilerAceBoilerAce Red Chipper Posts: 429 ✭✭✭
    I guess the easiest way to put it is that I don't think it teaches me anything in thinking for myself. I've never going to sit down at a live table and be able to look over and see 16/43 and 29/33 printed on people's foreheads or see their post flop/turn fold percentage written on the table in front of them. And simply put, I have other things that I want to study and learn that interest me more than how to use the software. At that point, it's all about software and little about poker. Maybe when I get more acute at the game itself, I'll have sometime to master HUDs.

    I'm still curious that if any of you took the HUD away, how good at online poker are you? What is possible for great players when they are HUDless? What level can you beat? If you can't beat the game without a HUD, I think it just proves my point that online poker isn't the same game as true poker (using your cards, mind and instincts).

    Great point about the price of PT4 for low limits. My original plan was to play higher limits and I priced it for that back then. It might be worth buying PT4 just to be able to track my improvement and most importantly be able to post hands much easier.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    edited October 2016
    I understand but your not always looking at the HUD, it helped on close situation.

    Think about this, this way. If you go play live, you'll take some notes about hands you played to review them later, Online it's so quick you don't have time to do that. Thats where the Tracking Software is very, very useful.


    Isildur1 never used a HUD for instance.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    From Phil Galfond blog :

    "Over the time we spent together, I got to learn more about his thought process and his approach to the game. Some fun facts: Viktor doesn’t use any kind of poker database or HUD, and he doesn’t watch any training videos. In fact, he hasn’t used any of the resources that almost all full time online pros have".
  • Riverboat BillRiverboat Bill Red Chipper Posts: 454 ✭✭
    edited October 2016
    I have a friend who plays high stakes live and online without a HUD. He wins tournaments and final tables online. He says the hud screws his game up.

    I was A-Lagging it up on ACR with HI, doing well. Then I got PT4 and I have tightened up. I don't know if it just the different look or what. It could be my almost 100% CB range is showing up on their PT4. LOL! I have tried to get HI to work again, but now it crashed ACR. I think PT4 has my files.
  • El LadnamEl Ladnam Red Chipper Posts: 37
    Isildur1 never used a HUD for instance.

    Because he plays in a very small pool. And mixed game players don't use HUD.
  • El LadnamEl Ladnam Red Chipper Posts: 37
    Playing online poker without HUD [esp. ring cash game] not a very good strat IMO.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    edited October 2016
    El Ladnam wrote: »
    Isildur1 never used a HUD for instance.

    Because he plays in a very small pool. And mixed game players don't use HUD.

    Galfond is referencing the "No HUD" when Viktor was playing NLH & PLO
  • BoilerAceBoilerAce Red Chipper Posts: 429 ✭✭✭
    edited October 2016
    El Ladnam wrote: »
    Playing online poker without HUD [esp. ring cash game] not a very good strat IMO.

    I totally agree with you on this. And for the other responses above, I'm not talking about learning from your personal online stats, I'm referring to using a HUD to play online to influence your decisions realtime.

    That being said, I'm still not getting a lot of responses to my questions and there must be a reason for this. It's actually telling and very interesting. I can assume one or more of the following...
    • No one (or very few people on this forum) plays online poker without a HUD.
    • Those that play exclusively with a HUD, don't know what their true online poker skill level is without a HUD....because it's a necessary tool (or crutch).
    This kind of confirms what I've been thinking that online poker is a different form of poker. It's really a different form of poker. Everyone's online skill relies upon data mining, data management, and decisions primarily based on that data of a person's tendencies. Yes, those are the same type of decisions that happen in true poker, but in online poker, the mastery of the software is the real skill...and not primarily traditional poker skills. The online poker game has become a battle of HUD software skill more than a battle of true poker skill...essentially, we're playing HUD poker and not true poker.
  • SplitSuitSplitSuit RCP Coach Posts: 4,069 -
    Online play is always going to veer closer to quant play when tools like HUDs are available.

    While online and live are still both poker at heart, the games play very differently for a multitude of reasons (ability to multi-table, HUD usage, face-to-face dynamics, etc. to name a few)

    And I would agree with you: if a player IS using a HUD to play online, they almost certainly have zero idea how their non-HUD usage winrate would compare since they don't put in sessions without using their HUD =)
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  • Riverboat BillRiverboat Bill Red Chipper Posts: 454 ✭✭
    I agree a lot with @BoilerAce. But I also find if I start thinking through moves, the game changes. It may change just for me, but it changes.
  • The MuleThe Mule Red Chipper Posts: 790 ✭✭✭
    I single table nl10 and nl20 full ring normal speed (using a HUD) and nl10 fast fold 6 max (where my HUD doesn't work). Win rate is similar at ~10BB/100 hands over a small but not tiny sample size.

    For the fast fold, I try to play a default "unexploitable" style. For the full ring, I look for opportunities to exploit my opponents, but to be honest I rely more on observation than the HUD - I use the (very basic) HUD more to monitor my own stats.

    Table selection is crucial for full ring - sitting at a table with only regs is a losing proposition, it's too hard to beat the rake. But there are enough "fun players" in both the full ring and fast fold pools to beat the games.
  • BorgeBorge Red Chipper Posts: 2 ✭✭
    As I see it: You need a database of many 100 hands for each player you meet if a HUD is of any use. I have a few in PT4 that I have played some 1000nd hand, but most are from a few hands to 200 hands.
    Also I must say that I do well without HUD at Unibet where you can't use HUD's.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    Borge wrote: »
    As I see it: You need a database of many 100 hands for each player you meet if a HUD is of any use. I have a few in PT4 that I have played some 1000nd hand, but most are from a few hands to 200 hands.
    Also I must say that I do well without HUD at Unibet where you can't use HUD's.

    You can buy HH ;)
  • The MuleThe Mule Red Chipper Posts: 790 ✭✭✭
    Good luck to anyone buying my hand history - I expect at the lowest levels of the microstakes, players strategies are changing too rapidly for stats to provide useful information.

    As you get higher there are more multitabling regbots, I expect this is where the hud earns its keep.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    You buy them in bulk and it's very useful when you move up. When I moved up I had already guys at 2--->10K hands on them.
  • ZENIZENZENIZEN Red Chipper Posts: 166 ✭✭
    I think you are missing the point Boiler .......The hud at its heart and soul is best used to examine your own play . Identify your own leaks and tendencies while being able to replay hands for further examination . It does almost certainly create bad habits if your not cognizant of it . To deny yourself a tool in this game is career suicide in my opinion.
  • bocky7bocky7 Red Chipper Posts: 369 ✭✭✭
    i don't use a HUD....but i don't play online to win (even though i do win, it is much less then if i used one)...i play to keep in practice for times i can't play live(even though it is not the same, it still helps)...and so far at ACR at 2$ and down, i am winning....so far...i will let you know if it starts to change for me....but i have played online at other sites without one and was a slight winner, so we will see.
  • bocky7bocky7 Red Chipper Posts: 369 ✭✭✭
    ok...won around $50 tonight....50cent was highest table...no HUD...maybe just luck...big hands held up and "most "bluffs didn't get caught ....my advice to playing without HUD, is to be balanced ! "balanced" (for those that don't know), is to mix up your play, mix up strong hands with bluffs or even weak hands to throw off players that try to exploit tendencies that show up in the way you play. ...when we play in higher buy in games (live), it is very important to balance your play, because there will always be opponents that will be looking for your weakness, from playing too predictable.

    At lower stakes most players don't even watch or care.

    my point is , a HUD is like an opponent that always watches and looks for weakness.... so be "balanced".
  • bocky7bocky7 Red Chipper Posts: 369 ✭✭✭
    last night while playing @ the star with nicnameks at my table, I started thinking about my last post on here(just above this one)...my advice could get a beginner in big trouble if : you don't play the weak hands at the right time and know when to bluff and not to bluff...so....if you play, remember:you have to still play tight and almost nothing out of position...and really pay attention to your hand reading...i know (not easy)....but doable ...GL
  • BorgeBorge Red Chipper Posts: 2 ✭✭
    ZENIZEN wrote: »
    I think you are missing the point Boiler .......The hud at its heart and soul is best used to examine your own play . Identify your own leaks and tendencies while being able to replay hands for further examination . It does almost certainly create bad habits if your not cognizant of it . To deny yourself a tool in this game is career suicide in my opinion.

    Dear friend. I know how to use HUD stats, but use of it is IMO exaggerated. What I do is that I notice the overall hand ranges used at the SNG tables I play and use that knowledge to check my own actions in Foldzilla.
    Do remember that HUD stats are collected over some periode of time so the individuelle player may not play the same range any more.
  • bocky7bocky7 Red Chipper Posts: 369 ✭✭✭
    played over 700 hands (3 tables at a time) today....couldn't get anywhere , lost $6(still up $93 for the week)....still no hud....(frustrating) .
  • bocky7bocky7 Red Chipper Posts: 369 ✭✭✭
    ok...this morning i came home from working all night and thought i would play some more ACR poker to cool down from a hard night at work(still no hud)....i looked at the tables and could only find one full ring 9 handed table playing...that was strange...i didn't want to play 6 handed, (there were 20 or so tables 6 max)....the only full ring was a $4 (2/4NL)....didn't think this would be a good thing to do to cool down, but i gave it a try anyway, (crazy, to do this "tired" with no hud)....i know from playing 1/2 online, many times, before, that it is like a tough 5/10 live, so this game was not going to be likely to end well....anyway , the players didn't disappoint me ...it turned out to be a battle for every dollar...every time i tried to play a hand , i was attacked with 3 bet ,4bet, bet, shove in almost every hand and the max buy in was $200 so it was a "short" game to boot.....i was up and down fighting for every hand i played....

    well..after 2.5 hrs i left with the biggest stack of $621 (at the table) and $230 in profit (no hud)....so i hope this helps answer your question ....so far i am up $320 without a hud, playing for less then one week.
  • BoilerAceBoilerAce Red Chipper Posts: 429 ✭✭✭
    Thanks for the experiment, Bocky7. Its appreciated. Did you feel better about being able to beat the game with your own vs using the HUD? From your description, it sounds like it was much more difficult for sure. I'm impressed that you could profit from 400NL hudless.
  • bocky7bocky7 Red Chipper Posts: 369 ✭✭✭
    I don't know if I feel better about it(and I hope no one thinks it is easy.I don't want to get anyone in trouble trying it), but if someone plays mico limits and just wants to play for practice, not using a HUD ok.

    Good luck in the future, and let me know how things are going for you.

    Bocky
  • bocky7bocky7 Red Chipper Posts: 369 ✭✭✭
    btw...i won't be playing online for a while now, because i will be heading out to AC tomorrow to meet the players in the AC "informal" meet up.

    take care

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