As in any other game, in poker there are little tricks that the smartest players use to their advantage to take control of the game or use additional advantages resulting from their skill in the game. In poker, one of these techniques is card counting, a resource that has been used in many movies and that has less fantasy than one might expect.
Card counting exists in poker, but it can’t be done by just anyone. Special skills are needed to know how to count poker cards, as well as a prodigious and well-trained mind to know how to lead the combos head on. A single mistake is enough to ruin everything, so whoever knows how to do it is because he has experience and a lot of training behind him.
How to count cards in poker? Let’s see what we can teach you.
What is counting cards in poker?
Counting cards in poker consists, in essence, in counting the cards in order to know how many cards are in the deck that can make you win. This allows you to make a more accurate calculation of the outs, the cards that have not yet come out and that can be of help to complete a hand. It is extremely useful when pursuing a project, since it allows to improve decision making and not to make mistakes with the calculations when betting or not.
What is counting cards in poker? Counting cards in poker requires a whole series of skills, but also handling concrete data. For example, that a deck of poker cards has 52 cards, that we will count at most 47 in the postflop game, and 46 when there is only the river.
There are four cards of each number, and from there the possibilities branch out. To form a pair we can use 3, for double pairs we can use 6, for a three of a kind we can use 2, at most. This is to calculate the outs, and it is much easier if you learn to count cards in poker.
By knowing how to count poker cards, we can calculate the outs by deducting the 2 we have, the community cards that are dealt and the 2 that each player has. It will vary, therefore, if we play in a full ring or shorthanded table.
When we know how to count cards, we will have mastered the management of outs. Now the key is to know when it pays to bet and when it does not. A good way to obtain conclusions based on card counting is to use a formula like this one:
If using this formula, the result is lower than our odds, it is a good bet and we should bet. If it is higher, we should pass. The method of 4 and 2 is a good way to know what suits us best, and is complementary to the use of other methods. It consists of multiplying the outs by 4 and the turn by 2.
Can you card count in poker?
Yes, you can card count in poker. It is possible to achieve it, even if you’re a fish. But to be able to count cards in poker it is necessary to train, to develop visual and mental agility skills to quickly calculate the outs and make quick decisions, without rushing, but without “hijacking” the game.
But it is difficult to count cards like a professional, although it is the easiest way to have the outs under control. It is important to master the technique of card counting to know what are the chances of our initial hand to be able to tie a project with the cards left in the deck.
Although casinos and online poker platforms restrict the use of tricks to naturalize as much as possible the possibilities of the participants in the game, there is nothing written against the use of all those skills developed by the players that allow them to have a clear mastery of the game.
That is to say, we are not talking about a trick or a legal ambiguity, but about a skill that the highest level and the best trained players can develop.
It should be noted that, although it is not an illegal act, casinos do reserve the right to take the measures they deem appropriate to prevent the use of this tactic, which can be considered a kind of “exploit” that serves to other players to burst the natural odds of the game.
It is not the first time that casinos expel players for practicing techniques that go “against the interests of the casino itself”. Even celebrities such as Ben Affleck have suffered this in poker card games, such as Blackjack, so it is important to know what we are exposed to when we employ techniques of this style.
Poker card counting techniques
There is no repertoire of poker card counting techniques. It’s as simple as that. It is all based on visual agility to count, there is no trick to know how to count cards in poker. As it sounds. The poker cards that are dealt, the ones we have, the ones that are part of the community cards and the ones that are left in the deck.
Counting cards starts a game of probabilities, and with those probabilities we can determine what chances we have to tie our project. It is important to manage probabilities to make the right decisions, to bet when it suits us and not to lose money foolishly.
By counting cards, you can get an overview of the situation of the game, know what odds each player may be handling and know in what range you are placed according to your hand and your chances.