One of the great things about dewalive as a gambling game is that player’s decision is respected. If you decide to call after seeing your opponent’s bluff, you can expect them to have a better hand than you. You never know the reasons why players reach for their chips – does it mean they have a great hand? It’s quite simple to understand why they do so, but not so simple to replicate.
Let’s say player’s hand is 8, 9 or 10, and opponent’s hand is Ace, King or Queen. Should you call? Well, if you believed your opponent was bluffing, you should! Your opponent could be bluffing every hand! You called in the hope that you would hit two pair, or you wanted to double up, as two pairs are the highest pay offs in the game. In any case, two pairs is the highest payout, so you had the highest chance of winning the hand. The hand was lost on the river, but you played the hand in the most profitable way you could.
The problem occurs with marginal situations, your opponent may have actually had a better hand than you thought. Let’s say opponent’s hand is 9, 6 or 9, and you have 5, 5. Those are all marginal situations, and most hands will have less than you. Your two pair potential is a lot lower than your opponents, so five outs is a good figure to call. If you played the hand in the same way, you would have been better off only calling one bet, as you will at least win the blinds.
Pay attention to your position at the table. If you are in late position, meaning you are one of the last three players in line, you have the most information with which to act. At this stage players will be deciding whether to play their hands, raise their hands, or fold. If you have pocket Queen, and you only have one other player in the hand raising, you are probably in a better position to call a bet, as you can narrow the field even further.
Being in early position, or the first three in line, you don’t have as much information as the later positions. This is where semi-bluffing can be good, if you have a half decent hand, and you are in late position. If everyone has folded, or if you are in early position, you don’t even have the excuse of seeing a flop to worry about.
Learning to semi-bluff is a good way to add a dimension to your game, but don’t justemarkish the flop, forget about it! Bring it to the river then take a stab at the pot, or to showdown and throw your cards away. Semi-bluff only works for free cards, good cards that enhance your hand.
An example: you have a 6s6c in the middle. Everyone folds to you in the BB, and you bet. You have nothing but still you have to make a decision. Raise or fold? Well, if you raise, you have less info about the cards the raiser has, and you may scare him off with a raise. If you fold you have no info on the other player, and it is a lot easier to bluff this player then it is to try and make your hand a lot stronger with something less than it actually is.