.25/.50 vs 1/2 at a home game (1 Viewer)

natumes

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One of my regs who is a good player has suggested I change the stakes of my home game from .25/.50 to 1/2 based on how it plays. His argument is that raises get no respect, and people are playing any 2 cards to the flop because it's only a few bucks. Since I am a good player (and so is he) it would benefit us to raise the stakes, and improve the game in his eyes. I don't disagree with his points here. My goal was to create a friendly game for "night out" stakes, but people are bringing more and more buy ins each time I host.

My concern is raising the stakes will mean a lot more money on the table which makes me a little uncomfortable from a security perspective (we play in my garage which is open on the back side). He believes people will bring the same amount to play with and not more, and the game will just naturally end a few hours earlier.

Another concern is limiting the player pool to grow the game. I don't think I would lose any of the current players, they will probably initially like the higher stakes. The solution to this is probably to run a turbo tournament for like $30-40 and get the players willing to play for that amount in the door and run the cash game afterwards, just makes for a long busy night for myself.

Curious on the forum's thoughts and experience on raising the stakes.
 

LeLe

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Raising from 25c/50c to 1/2 seem to be a very big jump. Maybe you want to consider taking baby step by doing 50c/$1 or 25/50c/$1 with straddle to test out a bit on how your player react to it.

Also how much is the buyin and rebuyin ; if your buyin is 100 bb and rebuyin is limited to 100bb as well rasing to 1/2 sound too big and may turn some player around.
However, If you rebuyin is match the biggest stack, most player will play like 1/2 near the end of session anyway due to the deep stack.

I used to play a 25/50c game and we raise it to 50c/$1 after awhile but sometime later we still fall back to 50c/50c as still some players are not comfortable with the raise in stake. Now is seem to rotate between 50c/$1 and 50c/50c depending on the players attending
 
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turboj623

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I agree with @LeLe that going from .25/.50 to 1/2 is a significant jump. 50/1 or even 1/1 would probably be a good transition because it raises the stakes enough to where a that is four or five times the big blind will make players think a little more about the cards they play.
 

Rhodeman77

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I agree with the above comments, go to $1/1 at the most. Another option would be to add a mandatory straddle to $1.

See how that works for a few months before making any further changes. Players have hard time going back down in stakes once you go up. It is a mental roadblock.
 
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PocketDux

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Sounds to me like you're in an awesome spot if you play your cards right (yep, said it). If you've got the room and time it sounds like you can open up your play up to a "Big Game" and a more "friendly" one. The point your buddy is making about the raises getting "no respect" is pretty much a bogus one, BTW, more a product of the players, playing style and comfort with the buy-in level. This is also the first thing newer players taking their game more seriously tend to think. Moving up in stakes and becoming exclusionary "improves" the play to where people "start playing correctly". Not surprising in this day and age where Pointdexters with GTO strategy and their solvers are trying to crack the code. Go play some 1-3 at a card room and report back on how many limpers there are as well as players in a 3x BB raised pot from UTG. Oh, 2-5 doesn't necessarily play much better, but the pots are much larger. Poor poker play and variance are what make the poker world go round!

I'd never limit the player pool, if it were me (Dugthefish's point is of note here) according to play. Bad behavior, yes, but bad play...NEVER. Proficient poker players know how to adjust their game accordingly to maximize win rates. Also, there are ways to make the game play bigger without changing the individual stakes too much. For instance, play with mandatory straddle. The game then would play as .25, .50, 1. Raising the starting stack limits can also make the game "more real" and less of a play money basement type game. Look into introducing "the rock" perhaps (Google it).

Adjust stakes to the players that attend consistently comfort level. THEN, any player wanting to play larger can do so either at the "big" table on the same night or a different night (all depends upon your hosting resources and abilities). You're going to have players cross over and play both, some will just move up and others will just stay at the smaller stakes. Yeah, I'm new to this forum, but not to playing cards, gambling, starting clubs and running functions. INCLUSIVE is the way. Just as an overall poker point, poker rooms in America are starting to close. Poker is in a healthy state, but it's certainly off its mass expansion explosion rate. Interest in Hold 'Em is declining. Keeping as many younger players involved is important. Keeping players that play poorly involved...CRITICAL. Good luck.
 

Highli99

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Buy in amounts and rebuy caps are more relevant than blinds. How are those set up?
 

detroitdad

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One of my regs who is a good player has suggested I change the stakes of my home game from .25/.50 to 1/2 based on how it plays. His argument is that raises get no respect, and people are playing any 2 cards to the flop because it's only a few bucks. Since I am a good player (and so is he) it would benefit us to raise the stakes, and improve the game in his eyes. I don't disagree with his points here. My goal was to create a friendly game for "night out" stakes, but people are bringing more and more buy ins each time I host.

My concern is raising the stakes will mean a lot more money on the table which makes me a little uncomfortable from a security perspective (we play in my garage which is open on the back side). He believes people will bring the same amount to play with and not more, and the game will just naturally end a few hours earlier.

Another concern is limiting the player pool to grow the game. I don't think I would lose any of the current players, they will probably initially like the higher stakes. The solution to this is probably to run a turbo tournament for like $30-40 and get the players willing to play for that amount in the door and run the cash game afterwards, just makes for a long busy night for myself.

Curious on the forum's thoughts and experience on raising the stakes.

What's the buy in for your .50 game?

Adjusting the buy in vs the blinds helped my game. We do 100 max
 

Legend5555

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What's the buy in for your .50 game?

Adjusting the buy in vs the blinds helped my game. We do 100 max
I'm in the use a $1 big blind camp first. There is a big mentality shift between $0.50bb and $2bb. Buying in multiple times for 50-100 at the lower is NOT the same as buying in at the higher only one or two times.
 

MrCatPants

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You'll lose people and have to develop a new player base. I moved from .25/.50 to .50/1 a few years ago and it was too much for some folks. Settled back on .50/.50 but damage was done.

Money means different things to different people. Some folks just don't want to face a $20 preflop 3 bet - it's too much compared to their income/assets.
 

trigs

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Include a straddle. Or use a rock and whoever has the rock must straddle UTG when it gets to them. Whoever wins the straddled pot gets the rock next. Therefore, it's a random straddle instead of every hand.
 

natumes

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Buy in amounts and rebuy caps are more relevant than blinds. How are those set up?
What's the buy in for your .50 game?

Adjusting the buy in vs the blinds helped my game. We do 100 max
$100 cap then match the stack. I guess another piece of information to add, about a month ago is when I changed it from $100 rebuy cap to match the stack. Several players left for the ATM and came back to rebuy for $500-700 each, since the largest stack that night is an "any 2 cards to the river" player.

A mandatory straddle is irrelevant as at least half the table is already straddling consistently.

I am leaning towards running a big game night maybe once a month playing 1/2. I think the idea of having 2 tables is great, but I'll need enough players first. The monthly big game will attract a certain crowd and the smaller stakes will allow me to keep recruiting a wider base of players. Same with running a tourney beforehand, as I know a handful of people that really only want to play for $20-40 (newer to poker) and they are intimidated by even the .25/.50 game. Playing more poker I think will get them more comfortable in the cash game.
 

Highli99

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Ok, yeah, if your players can sustain $500-$700 buy ins than you’re probably fine at 1/2.
The main risk with “match the stack” is that you will get some players in over their heads and then the game will flame out. A lot of us do “half the stack” matches and the primary reason for that is game sustainability. Meaning, as a host I always want butts in chairs and if someone has all their money on the table and can’t rebuy they are done if they get stacked. Also those players might not return.

the key is finding a stake where players can comfortably lose 3 buy ins. That usually means a long term sustainable game.
 

detroitdad

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$100 cap then match the stack. I guess another piece of information to add, about a month ago is when I changed it from $100 rebuy cap to match the stack. Several players left for the ATM and came back to rebuy for $500-700 each, since the largest stack that night is an "any 2 cards to the river" player.

A mandatory straddle is irrelevant as at least half the table is already straddling consistently.

I am leaning towards running a big game night maybe once a month playing 1/2. I think the idea of having 2 tables is great, but I'll need enough players first. The monthly big game will attract a certain crowd and the smaller stakes will allow me to keep recruiting a wider base of players. Same with running a tourney beforehand, as I know a handful of people that really only want to play for $20-40 (newer to poker) and they are intimidated by even the .25/.50 game. Playing more poker I think will get them more comfortable in the cash game.

100 or up to 50% of the deep stack
 

Lilsissy

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One of my regs who is a good player has suggested I change the stakes of my home game from .25/.50 to 1/2 based on how it plays. His argument is that raises get no respect, and people are playing any 2 cards to the flop because it's only a few bucks. Since I am a good player (and so is he) it would benefit us to raise the stakes, and improve the game in his eyes. I don't disagree with his points here. My goal was to create a friendly game for "night out" stakes, but people are bringing more and more buy ins each time I host.

My concern is raising the stakes will mean a lot more money on the table which makes me a little uncomfortable from a security perspective (we play in my garage which is open on the back side). He believes people will bring the same amount to play with and not more, and the game will just naturally end a few hours earlier.

Another concern is limiting the player pool to grow the game. I don't think I would lose any of the current players, they will probably initially like the higher stakes. The solution to this is probably to run a turbo tournament for like $30-40 and get the players willing to play for that amount in the door and run the cash game afterwards, just makes for a long busy night for myself.

Curious on the forum's thoughts and experience on raising the stakes.
Why not change it to .50/1.00 first and see how that goes?
 

BearMetal

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Maybe $1/$1 so you can get rid of the need for fracs.
Fracs = Happiness

But I agree that 1/2 is too much. We have a similar problem with our .25/.50 game - raises get no respect (at least not later in the night). We actually switched to a tiered model where the original stakes are .25/.50 for the first couple of hours. This lets the $20 buy-ins come play and have fun. And then when they leave and/or bust, and only larger stacks (and true degenerates) remain, we move to .50/1 and it plays very nicely.
 

Legend5555

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$100 cap then match the stack. I guess another piece of information to add, about a month ago is when I changed it from $100 rebuy cap to match the stack. Several players left for the ATM and came back to rebuy for $500-700 each, since the largest stack that night is an "any 2 cards to the river" player.

A mandatory straddle is irrelevant as at least half the table is already straddling consistently.

I am leaning towards running a big game night maybe once a month playing 1/2. I think the idea of having 2 tables is great, but I'll need enough players first. The monthly big game will attract a certain crowd and the smaller stakes will allow me to keep recruiting a wider base of players. Same with running a tourney beforehand, as I know a handful of people that really only want to play for $20-40 (newer to poker) and they are intimidated by even the .25/.50 game. Playing more poker I think will get them more comfortable in the cash game.
This changes everything. Sounds like they want to play higher anyway.

Though, if you've seen how Texas games run, the blinds are basically an irrelevant suggestion. Maybe you just do nothing and let it be. Doesn't seem to be hurting anything.
 

allforcharity

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Fracs = Happiness

I don't disagree.

But, they can be very expensive to gather, make, or customize. If your buy-in stakes are big enough to do without fracs for blinds, then that's a good amount of money and effort to increase the quality of the remainder of the cash chips.

It's worth thinking about.
 

Kain8

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One of my regs who is a good player

His argument is that raises get no respect, and people are playing any 2 cards to the flop because it's only a few bucks


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A good player would never bemoan how loose a game is.
 

Legend5555

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I’m with you, bud. To me, a game without fracs is casino stakes - grit your teeth, get down to business, grinding work. Fracs mean home game - fun, bullshit, drink too much and trade insults with your friends.
My 1/1 game from the mid/late 2000s would disagree with you. ;)
 

shorticus

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He believes people will bring the same amount to play with and not more, and the game will just naturally end a few hours earlier.
I’m going to assume that a 4x increase in blinds with everyone bringing the same amount of money to the game will become a shove fest pretty fast.

A.) That’s not a lot of fun
B.) It diminishes the skill and leans more towards luck.

If I have a nice group of regs, I’m probably getting their opinion on this before doing anything. Last thing you want to do is ruin your game cause it got overly expensive.

Is your buddy trying to get more money on the table to try and make more money? Is he trying to force Poker competence? Trust me, raising the stakes won’t make players more competent (I’ve seen this first hand), it just makes their mistakes more costly. If you want a better game, try teaching your players about the game.

I have conversations with my players about the game more now since seeing listening to and observing @Rhodeman77 . I’ve actually only started doing this recently, but I think talking to my players about the game and helping them to understand the game is good for me and them. Teaching some principles and talking out hands is a great way for your players to learn the game, and it reinforces the concepts that you’ve learned over the years.

Anyway, I’ve babbled long enough. Good luck with your game bud.
 

Coyote

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Max buy-ins can be more important than blinds.
I 'd go .50/1 with a $100 max, and eventually up to HALF the big stack.
I 'd even cap the total per player per session at $500 max, to protect drunk friends and lock out wealthy maniacs (maniacs will eventually loose, but you have to have lots of liquidity in your pocket to see them to their demise).

Playing for casino kind of money (1/2) without the casino's security personnel and equipment could be dangerous at home, unless it's a very closed circle of old friends, not looking for recruits.
 
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