Caption: Is online poker better than live poker in every way?
For many years now, poker fanatics have been discussing whether online poker or live poker is the better platform. For those who enjoy live poker, there’s a thrill in face-to-face games, being able to see your opponents and really experiencing everything the real world of poker has to offer. On the other hand, there’s no denying the multiple benefits of having an online poker account and playing in internet poker rooms. In fact, we’re going to discuss just three of the ways that online poker beats live poker from pacing to accessibility.
1. Preferable Pacing
Caption: If you prefer a slow pace, then stick with live poker, otherwise, online poker is for you.
For many poker players, especially those with a lot of experience, the pace of live games can get quite tedious. This is because live poker sessions tend to be quite lengthy, with a very relaxed pace. Online games, on the other hand, are extraordinarily quick, allowing many games to take place and barely any waiting around for other players to select their hands or for the cards to be shuffled. Still, it all depends on which pacing you prefer.
When playing a poker game face-to-face, there’s a lot more room for human interactions, human gestures and, well, natural human pacing, which tends to be quite slow. This is particularly true when compared to online games. When playing a live game, there’s usually no time limits put in place unless the game is specifically time-assessed, such as in turbo tournaments. So, players will tend to take their time, chat with their opponents, and take a moment to judge the facial expressions and reactions of those around them. It’s not even unusual for players to get up to go get another drink or some snacks to put out on the table.
In addition to the basic human interactions that slow the pace down significantly, there’s also the fact that we can’t do simple tasks such as shuffling, dealing or sorting out bets in an instant like computers can. Really, the only element that could feasibly make a live game quicker than an online poker session would be the number of turns, but that would have to be significantly low to compete with how fast live poker games are.
Online, everything that occurs outside of each players’ power happens in an instant: the dealing, shuffling and other factors that are controlled by a computer. Then, a time limit is usually placed on each player, and each hand is instantly summed up to decide who is winning. Still, if there are quite a few players taking part in an online poker game, then it may level out and shouldn’t go so fast that you can’t keep up, especially if everyone’s taking part in the chat.
Caption: Would you rather shuffle your own cards or let a computer do it?
2. Multiple Boards
When playing live poker, chances are the host only owns one type of poker board or table, as well as a finite number of chips and other elements that are crucial to a good game of poker. This is by no means a slight to live poker game hosts, it would be ridiculous to expect someone to own every variety of poker board, table or table top out there. Plus, buying the poker board or table was probably a huge challenge in the first place, as you’ve got to decide which is best for you, where you’re going to put it and whether it’s worth spending quite a lot of cash on it at all.
Fortunately, with online poker, this isn’t a problem. You don’t even need an electronic poker table or board because everything you could ever possibly want or need can be found online. Take 888poker for example; this online poker operator offers customers a variety of poker options including Texas Hold’em, Omaha Hi and 7 Card Stud, as well as poker tournament games, all with boards that best suit your game of choice. All you need is a desktop, tablet or smartphone and the online poker site will do the rest for you. No clutter, no difficult decisions, no having to double up your poker table as a dining table.
3. Unassailable Accessibility
Finally, we have perhaps the most appealing aspect of online poker: the accessibility. With live poker, games must usually be organised well ahead of time, with everyone involved ensuring they are able to attend, then actually showing up. More often than not, food and other amenities must be organised as well; that is, if you’ve already decided on where the live poker game or tournament will be taking place. Of course, you must also decide upon which game or games you will be playing and if everyone attending knows how to play them. We’ve already covered the board or table fiasco, so let’s not get back into that. Needless to say, it can be a time-consuming hassle.
Online poker, on the other hand, has none of these drawbacks. Every type of poker you can imagine is available online and, best of all, you can join a game at any time, anywhere and play with anyone. No longer do we have to wait for poker night to roll around each week; now, you can log into your online poker operator of choice and play to your heart’s content. More often than not, you won’t even need to wager money every time, as there are often free games or demos for anyone who simply likes to keep their mind and their skills sharp.
Really, there’s nothing wrong with being a little old school and preferring the thrill of a face-to-face poker game. There’s no arguing that the experience is a lot more authentic than an online game and, for casual or committed poker players, it can be a lot of fun. Still, there’s no denying the benefits of playing poker online. It’s just so much easier and there are so many more options, especially if you aren’t surrounded by eager poker players in everyday life. Ultimately, it comes down to personal preference, so let us know whether you prefer live or online poker in the comments below.