Is there a mental device for Multiway Preflop Equities?

Ahmad RAhmad R Red Chipper Posts: 10 ✭✭
I understand that it's tough to calculate multiway preflop equities due to ranges providing large variances. But I wanted to know if anyone knows of a simple device to calculate your equity?

For example, if heads up 86o has 36% equity against AJ, maybe adding another overpair or range divides the 36% by half down to 18%? I used half as arbitrary for whatever simple device you might know.


  • Ahmad RAhmad R Red Chipper Posts: 10 ✭✭
    I appreciate the link to a tool, but I was looking for something I can do mentally if possible.
  • Ahmad RAhmad R Red Chipper Posts: 10 ✭✭
    Not really looking for a formula. Just an estimation technique (if there exists one, it's possible no one knows of one)
  • SullySully Red Chipper Posts: 711 ✭✭✭
    Honestly I would put all my efforts into figuring out how NOT to go multi way.

    Why? It's very hard to figure out equities and ranges when we are now in a bingo pot and villains could have anything

  • Ahmad RAhmad R Red Chipper Posts: 10 ✭✭
    edited November 2017
    I mean it for the sake of preflop action. Like how much equity weak hands have in order to call multiway situations.
  • EazzyEazzy Red Chipper Posts: 857 ✭✭✭
    my guess is if you just look at hu equity, and then 3 way equity, for different types of will begin to see patterns develop. Make a rule, then continue to test, modify rule make exceptions...test some more. get an AHA moment,.

    Then post it so lazy poster like me can get an easy aha mommoment.
  • Ahmad RAhmad R Red Chipper Posts: 10 ✭✭
    Haha I think you might be right. I will at some point this week (I think)
  • EazzyEazzy Red Chipper Posts: 857 ✭✭✭
    Sully wrote: »
    Honestly I would put all my efforts into figuring out how NOT to go multi way.

    Why? It's very hard to figure out equities and ranges when we are now in a bingo pot and villains could have anything

    well I would argue this point, as I've done very well understanding multi way pots. Yes villains can have more hands...but weak ranges tend to hit flops weakly. Add to this that players tend to play multi way pots very straight forward, and its printing money.

    But yes, you do not need to understand equities in multiway pots as much, do to the fact that they are played so straight forward. You instead just need a genreal feel of how loose ranges, played in many places hit flops.
  • Yanming ZYanming Z Red Chipper Posts: 294 ✭✭✭
    IMO, instead of mentally calculating your equity preflop, try to learn to play the way where the situation fits your hand. High pairs, big Ax, KQ should never be played in a multiway pot, these hands should always be 3 betting to isolate, where the equity will be easy to estimate. Speculative hands, such as suited connectors, suited Ax, and small pairs, implied odds should be more important than equity, where you can call in a multiway, just make sure the implied odds is at least 20-30 times the amount you are calling with.

    The problem dealing with equity preflop is that you are rarely able to realize your equity in a multiway pot. Also there are so much more money going into the pot post flop than preflop, where the post flop equity is much more important.

    If you are still curious, build a table where you can record the hands of interest, against top 30% range. You can do this on many equity sites, and repeat for 3 ways, 4 ways etc. and memorize the table.
  • moishetreatsmoishetreats Red Chipper Posts: 1,679 ✭✭✭✭
    Good question, but I don't think that it's a worthwhile path to pursue.

    It's multiway and gets to you. There are bigger questions to ask. Say that you're the BB.

    Question 1: Given the opponents in the hand, is a bluff-raise if limped to you or a squeeze if raised and called before you a viable option?
    Question 2: If I flat-call and flop a monster, will these opponents pay me off?
    Question 3: If I flat-call and flop a draw, do I know how to maximize my winnings while minimizing my losses playing this hand OOP against these opponents?
    Question 4: If I hit part of the flop, do I have the discipline to fold? And what if my hand improves on the turn but another V is showing remarkable strength?
    Question 5: Do I have the hand-reading and V-reading ability to make this call profitable?

    Those questions, IMO, are FAR more worthwhile than calculating whether or not you have, say, 36% or 29% or 16% equity in the hand especially since, multiway, you have no real way of knowing any other player's holdings. Let's simplify: you're behind, and likely way behind.

    Now, if you're in a later position or the SB and there are multiple limpers/callers in front of you, you have to consider the additional possibility of being raised behind you before going to the questions above.
  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 4,206 ✭✭✭✭✭
    IMO you're just going to have to get a feel for the concepts by going through the hand equity calculator with many different multiway hands, and then you'll have a feel for it in real poker. You can't just extrapolate based on the number of players. For example, if you have 66 and your opponent has AK, you know it's more or less a coin flip. If you extrapolated for 4 opponents with hands like AK, QJ, T9, and 87 then your equity is going to go down proportionally. On the other hand if your opponents all have AK, then your equity is going to go up the more opponents you have in the hand. In the first case it plummets from 52% to 17%. In the second case it skyrockets from 52% to 83%. That's why there's no easy way to calculate it.
  • Dean MDean M Red Chipper Posts: 171 ✭✭✭
    I may be too dense to understand this...
    Octavian I wrote: »
    A raise is worth some extra "outs", so to speak. If you have a flush draw+pair you got 14 legitimate outs. If you raise, say villain may fold only 12% of the time, now you have like 14outs + 6outs = 20 outs. The 12% folding is worth 6 extra outs from flop to the turn on top of your legitimate outs.

    Can you link to some references to explain this concept? I must confess that it's completely new ground for me.

  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 4,206 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November 2017
    I think he's simply saying that since a card in the deck has roughly a 2% chance of coming, you can convert between outs and percentages in terms of equity. For example if you have 10 outs on the turn (let's say a set with outs to hit a full house) then you have about a 20% chance of hitting (it's a bit more actually). That gives you 20% equity in the pot. If you think there's a 20% chance he'll fold, then you have 40% equity. So that's like having 20 outs.

    I don' t really agree with this by the way :) Raising changes the pot odds significantly when called. So if you're using outs in conjunction with pot odds to determine if you should call, this will all be thrown off completely. So I think this way of thinking about it is too simplistic. The formula only works if you called on the turn instead of raising and he was bluffing and insta-mucks.
  • Greg_VailGreg_Vail RCP Coach Posts: 51 ✭✭
    Focus more on playing better post flop. We don't make a living preflop. Starting hands are just a place to start, we make most of our money when opponents put too much thought into the preflop play and make massive mistakes post flop. This is what sets amateurs apart from professionals in the long run.
  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 4,206 ✭✭✭✭✭
    That is all well and good and I doubt anyone disagrees because those are pretty basic concepts*, but that's a far cry from assigning 1 out for every 2% chance your opponent will fold. It just doesn't work out that way - not in any useful way.

    *except I doubt many pros would agree "there are very few times when calling is the right thing to do".
  • RedRed Red Chipper Posts: 1,499 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November 2017
    @Ahmad R : follow @moishetreats 's advise. It's useless to try to guess that.

    Here is 3 reasons why:
    1. It's almost impossible to guess. You've to evaluate all the ranges of all the Villain in the hand. Limp-call, open-raise, call MP, call IP, raise over a limp, call OOP (blinds). It will be different ranges - and even the same Villain could have different ranges depending on how he entered the pot. It's but a good exercise to do off-table: when you break a hand down, to see how good/bad you were on the flop.

    2. It's useless to know. As said @moishetreats : it's more important to understand the dynamic of the hand. Also then, if you want to continue on the turn, you can have a better guess on Villain's range backward: a) with what would have they call/bet flop in a vacuum; b) out of all these possible hands, which ones can I dismiss because it doesn't fit their preflop play (like dismissing QQ+ because they only call preflop).

    3. You've to know why you enter a MW pot, and with which hand. Some hands play poorly in MW, some are better. Typically, you can accept to play MW with hands who perform well postflop, i.e. who can either go for the nuts like AXs (nut FD + ev. straight draw) or have a good playability like KQo (double blocker + good TP if hit). Some other perform poorly, because easily behind or even dominated, where you will find yourself easily in the 2nd best but loosing hand.
    This is why, for example, you shall not play 86o MW as asked in your original post: low postflop playability and no nut draw. :)
    This point also echoes to what said @Greg_Vail : we don't win preflop, preflop is used to prepare our postflop play. So if you hand play badly on flop in general, it's better either to raise (isolate or scoop the pot) or fold.

    And usually, we don't want to play MW too :) Even with AA: look on Equilab how much equity AA loses against 2, 3 or 5 Villains - that's why we raise such hands: to build the pot AND isolate one Villain.
  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 4,206 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November 2017
    Octavian I wrote: »
    Well, the TOP state very clearly what the semibluff is all about.

    Octavian I wrote: »
    It adds value to your legitimate outs to make the hand.

    Octavian I wrote: »
    You win if he folds or may win if you make your draw.

    Octavian I wrote: »
    If you have a chance to make your draw and win on the next card, say 30% with 15 legitimate outs for a straight-flush.

    Yes (more like 33%, but OK)
    Octavian I wrote: »
    Now, if you think he will fold 10% only if you bet and win that will be 40% win. (he fold or you make it).

    Octavian I wrote: »
    How many outs you'll need to have 40% on the next card? - Well, .., guess what? - exactly 20 outs.

    Yes. (not really, but for sake of argument, OK)
    Octavian I wrote: »
    His 10% folds are exactly precisely without a doubt 5 extra outs for us.

    No, you're misapplying the principle and the math.

    If you use outs to calculate your equity chance of winning, comparing odds of winning to pot odds of the call, this goes completely out the windows when you raise. If you want to come up with a formula, you're going to have to factor back into it your shattered pot odds when he does call. You're comparing apples and oranges.

    Not only that, but you're ignoring the fact that he might 3-bet you, so you have to factor that in somehow as well.


    -pot $100 on turn
    -bet is $120
    -pot odds offered 1.8:1
    -odds of winning with 15 outs 2:1
    So, you can't call

    -bet $120
    -you raise to $400
    -he folds 10% = .1($220) = +$22
    -you're giving yourself 20 outs
    -odds of winning with 20 outs 1.3:1
    -according to you this is a super easy raise with only 10% fold equity because your odds of winning are now effectively 1.3:1 and the pot odds offered are 1.8:1

    (See your problem? You're using his bet of $120 to calculate the pot odds, when in fact if he doesn't fold then you have to use a bet size of $400 to calculate your pot odds.)

    .1($220) + .9(.33($520) - .67($400)) = -$86

    And it's even worse if you get reraised.
  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 4,206 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Octavian I wrote: »
    When they check to you OTT, and you can’t win at the showdown without improvement, you must bet.

    Another option might be taking pot odds of infinity to hit your winning outs (a.k.a. the free card.)
    Octavian I wrote: »
    The bet on the turn will generate the most folds because it's done with the leverage of "future" river action.

    Using that logic, the bet on the flop should generate even more folds because it's done with double the leverage/double the future action (or more than double if you consider the geometrically increasing size of the pot.) Yet I'd say in general that flop bets tend to get called more often than turn bets, so there's probably something else going on as well.....

  • moishetreatsmoishetreats Red Chipper Posts: 1,679 ✭✭✭✭
    Octavian I wrote: »
    When they check to you OTT, and you can’t win at the showdown without improvement, you must bet. You definitely must bet in that situation because otherwise if you check behind and decide to bet instead on the river (OTR), they will call you there for sure.

    Okay, Houston. We've had a problem here.
  • ragin_cajunragin_cajun Red Chipper Posts: 38 ✭✭
    "You are better off barreling the turn if you decide to power play your way out of the situation."

    When I apply a little nuance on my end when I'm reading through what he's saying, treat it and use it like advanced tip for advanced level player, this turns out to be right much more often than not. Don't read it like a commandment for every turn situation, but think about's solid.

    Try it another way ..... If you want to improve your bluff effectiveness, put a PSB down on the turn--I think everybody can "feel that". C-Bet on the flop is almost useless these days. Turn is where decisions are made these days.

  • EazzyEazzy Red Chipper Posts: 857 ✭✭✭
    Octavian I wrote: »
    A raise is worth some extra "outs", so to speak. If you have a flush draw+pair you got 14 legitimate outs. If you raise, say villain may fold only 12% of the time, now you have like 14outs + 6outs = 20 outs. The 12% folding is worth 6 extra outs from flop to the turn on top of your legitimate outs. Use as a standard of 10% folding to your raise and that always adds 5 extra outs to any draw you may have. A straight-flush draw has in this case 20 outs. Always consider raising before calling or folding. Raising always adds extra outs to your hand. Even if you only have 2 overs like AK on a 7,3,2 flop, if you bet or raise you have 6+5 = 11 outs. How would you play any other hand with 11 outs? So, play your 2-overs like you got 11 outs.

    I think this is an interesting way of thinking. Equating fold equity with outs. I had not seen it before, and I like new ideas. So I thought I might put my 2 cents in on it.

    I think its doing it backwards (to how I do it) and the hard way.

    Your EV in any bet has three components, On one side of the equtiion

    1) How much it cost you (how much you have to bet or call) and

    on the other side of the equtaion

    2) showdown equity (your chance of winning if it goes to showdown
    3) fold equity, if your betting (raising) the chance of your opponent folding.

    You decided to to simplify by formulating a way to equate fold equity, to showdown equity. Thus I am betting 100 into a 100 pot, I need to win 50% to break even, I have a 30% chance of winning at showdown, but if I add in my fold equity X amount, and convert that to showdown equity (add in outs) if it comes to more then 20% I have a winning bet. Thus you reduce it down to comparing 1)How much it cost to 2) an adjusted show down equity.

    I think its easier to equate showdown equity, to the other side of the equation, and think of it as a refund....its much easier to calculate.

    Thus if I bet pot, $100 into a $100 pot. I need to win 50% of the time, I still only have 30% show down equity, but his time instead of saying I win X amount more because of fold equity,

    I prefer, to use 2) showdown equity, to adjust 1)How much it costs
    Thus ifI estimate 30% showdown equjtiy, I look at it as a refund, The pot will be $300 if called. I get 30% of that so it's $90....Since my or initial bet is $100, it get a refund of $90,..Thus i'm effective betting $10 to win $100, and can estimate that I need fold equity 10%.

    I think this is just an easier and more useful way of getting an estimation of the numbers one needs.

  • jeffncjeffnc Red Chipper Posts: 4,206 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Octavian I wrote: »
    Well, the turn bet reveals the "second-action" The flop c-bet folds the very weak players with weak holdings. The turn bets folds players that understands what's going on also the turn bet fold the draws because the effect of "one-card-to-come"

    Not disagreeing, but my point was this is not consistent with the leverage (or "hammer" as Ed Miller would say) of future bets. As so many concepts are in Holdem, these are conflicting, not corresponding.
    Octavian I wrote: »
    You see, If we run K7s vs. K6s in PokerStove or Flopzzila we get 62:38. So, people will start arguing that K7s is a better hand. In theory it is but in practical terms is not. If you never play those two hands outside of the blinds you will not feel any substantial difference on your bottom $ line.

    Of course you could say the same for playing a royal flush. If you folded it every time you got it, you will not feel any substantial difference on your bottom line.

    And if it makes no difference if you play them or not (I'm assuming you're talking about hand of roughly neutral value here), then you could just as easily play, and if you do so, K7s is better than K6s both in theory and in practice.

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