Attempting to host first home game!

wcsmik

Sitting Out
Joined
Jun 20, 2021
Messages
18
Reaction score
47
Location
riverside, ca
Playing poker online or at a casino is easy... but now that I'm trying to host a home game I have questions (and I'm unsure of even what to ask)

I bought 500 Majestic poker chips
$1 X 150
$5 X 200
$25 X 100
$100 X 50

Looking at max maybe 6-8 people (with lets say 2-3 rebuys per person), but was unsure on chip distribution.

I initially posted on reddit but was referred to this forum... so here I am.

Any help would be appreciated it!
 

Taghkanic

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2017
Messages
4,204
Reaction score
4,317
Location
Hudson Valley, NY
$1 X 150
$5 X 200
$25 X 100
$100 X 50

I’d say you’re in good shape for either a loose 1/2 game or a tighter 2/5. Could add some 5s and 25s if you want to play higher, but with all those 100s you can make change from big stacks if necessary.

If it’s your first game, start at 1/2 and see how your crowd plays.
 

wcsmik

Sitting Out
Joined
Jun 20, 2021
Messages
18
Reaction score
47
Location
riverside, ca
Tournament or cash?
cash game im thinking 20 bucks buy in with 2-3 rebuys per person maybe
I’d say you’re in good shape for either a loose 1/2 game or a tighter 2/5. Could add some 5s and 25s if you want to play higher, but with all those 100s you can make change from big stacks if necessary.

If it’s your first game, start at 1/2 and see how your crowd plays.
what does a loose 1/2 or tighter 2/5 game mean? sorry i know how to play poker online but hosting a game im at a loss.
 

upNdown

Royal Flush
Joined
Aug 8, 2016
Messages
12,322
Reaction score
15,600
Location
boston
sorry i'm noob.. i may not be answering this question right. i was thinking $20 buy in?
When somebody says stakes, they're talking about the amounts of the blinds (at least for NLHE.) So $20 buy-in means very little. If you've played online, and you were playing NL$20, the max buy-in would be $20, and the stakes would be .10/.20, because online cash games usually limit the max buyin to 100 big blinds. That allows for reasonable poker play and is a good rule of thumb for live games as well.
Since the smallest chip you bought was $1, you're really only ready to play $1/2 or $1/1. You say you've played at the casino - ever see anybody sit down at a $1/2 table with twenty bucks? No. Usually the minimum you could buy in to that game would be $60, and most people are buying on for $100-$200. For $1/1, you'd ideally want people to be buying in for at least $100. I guess you could do $1/1 with $50 buyins, but that would be lousy poker - people wouldn't have deep enough stacks for significant post-flop play.
If you want people to buy in for $20, you should probably be playing .1/.2 or .25/.25 stakes at the highest, so you'd need some lower denominated chips.
what does a loose 1/2 or tighter 2/5 game mean?
Loose or tight just refers to how people are playing at that table. Loose means a lot of people are playing a lot of hands and splashing a lot of money around. Tight means people are playing more conservatively. But you can't really plan for people to play one way or the other - it's just a way to describe how people are playing.
 

Chawks45

3 of a Kind
Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 21, 2020
Messages
610
Reaction score
2,326
Location
Kansas City metro
what does a loose 1/2 or tighter 2/5 game mean? sorry i know how to play poker online but hosting a game im at a loss.
The former typically signals a lot of action with aggro players, while the latter projects as a game full of nits.

That said, if I'm playing 1/2 at a home game, I'd want the ability to buy-in for 100 BBs at a minimum. With your preferred $20 buy-in baseline, I tend to agree with the tourney recommendations from other posters unless you drop down from 1/2 cash games to either .25/.25 or .25/.50 games . You'll need fracs for that, like @raynmanas suggested.

Oh, get a hot dog roller!
 

wcsmik

Sitting Out
Joined
Jun 20, 2021
Messages
18
Reaction score
47
Location
riverside, ca
When somebody says stakes, they're talking about the amounts of the blinds (at least for NLHE.) So $20 buy-in means very little. If you've played online, and you were playing NL$20, the max buy-in would be $20, and the stakes would be .10/.20, because online cash games usually limit the max buyin to 100 big blinds. That allows for reasonable poker play and is a good rule of thumb for live games as well.
Since the smallest chip you bought was $1, you're really only ready to play $1/2 or $1/1. You say you've played at the casino - ever see anybody sit down at a $1/2 table with twenty bucks? No. Usually the minimum you could buy in to that game would be $60, and most people are buying on for $100-$200. For $1/1, you'd ideally want people to be buying in for at least $100. I guess you could do $1/1 with $50 buyins, but that would be lousy poker - people wouldn't have deep enough stacks for significant post-flop play.
If you want people to buy in for $20, you should probably be playing .1/.2 or .25/.25 stakes at the highest, so you'd need some lower denominated chips.

Loose or tight just refers to how people are playing at that table. Loose means a lot of people are playing a lot of hands and splashing a lot of money around. Tight means people are playing more conservatively. But you can't really plan for people to play one way or the other - it's just a way to describe how people are playing.

thank you for the explanation... i guess ill just sticky to a tournament style game until i can get smaller number chips.

Or start everyone with $200 and divide by 10 when cashing out.
this sounds like a good idea... thank you.
 

Ainton

Two Pair
Joined
Jan 14, 2021
Messages
292
Reaction score
273
Location
Sweden
Buy in for 20, but start with 200, then play 1/2 blinds! Divide with 10 when they cash out. Ask your group what stakes they want to play also! And make sure to have fun, you dont play with your friends to win lots of money.
 

LeLe

3 of a Kind
Joined
Mar 12, 2021
Messages
712
Reaction score
765
Location
Singapore - Reshipper @ Portland
For $20 buy in it is most suitable for a 10c/20c stake game with 100bb

You will need 10c/50c/$1/$5/$20 or $25 denomination for the game.

A good breakdown for 500 chip set will be 100/100/200/80/20 10c/50c/$1/$5/$20 giving u a bank of $1060 which is 53 buyin

An example of the starting stack for $20 will be 20/20/8 10c/50c/$1 for the first 5 guy and sub player u can just issue them a barrel of $1’s
AA36B1D0-0673-4478-BB72-5BF21D609AB9.jpeg
 

Taghkanic

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2017
Messages
4,204
Reaction score
4,317
Location
Hudson Valley, NY
1) Ohhhh, those black and red 10 centers above...

2) By loose or nitty play, I was referring to how crazy or conservative your players are with their bets. In some 1/2 games, the standard preflop open is $5-$7, in others it’s more like $12-$15. In some games, people get all in constantly; in others, a shove is a rarity. So I was suggesting: Your chip breakdown would be fine for a loose 1/2 game, but a little short of $5 and $25 chips for a loose 2/5 game. However, that was based on the assumption that there would be normal-ish buy-ins allowed. See below.

3) When I posted, I had not seen that you were projecting buyins of just $20, and might limit people to 2-3 buy-ins. As others have suggested, your chipset is really not suited for a group whose players only want to buy $20 at a time. You should either increase the max buy-in considerably for 1/2, or add some chips with smaller denominations and play lower stakes. Even if you got a lot of quarters ($0.25 chips), at $20 that would only allow someone to buy in for 80 big blinds (BB).

Typical cash games have a min buy-in of 30-50BB, and a max buy-in of 150-250BB. At my nearest casino, the smallest amount you can buy into a 1/2 game is $60, and the max is $300. Almost no one buys in for the minimum, except (a) very inexperienced players, (b) people who didn’t bring enough money to the casino, or (c) “short-stackers” who are exploitatively trying to take advantage of the table... which is hard to do unless you really know what you are doing, and also get lucky repeatedly early on.

Also, it is not common to limit the number of buy-ins at cash, and I don’t see any point to it, unless your crew is full of problem gamblers. In which case... it’s probably better not to host at all.

4) My feeling having played poker avidly for about 12 years now is that a full table of short stacks is not desirable, if you take the game seriously; and not an interesting game for more than one session, even if you are just looking to gamble small amounts of money. It means that you are going to have players going all-in preflop or on the flop almost every hand. It means that no one will have enough chips to play more than a push-shove game until everyone has rebought 3-4 times. This type of game can get old quickly.

You’re free to do what you enjoy, but I would suggest buying some small denom chips to go with what you have, and make the standard buy-in more like 100BB if your players don’t want to spend too much. So if you get a bunch of 25 cent chips, make the stakes .25/.25, and the typical buy-in more like $25, with the possibility of buying in for as much as $50 at a time.
 

grebe

Flush
Joined
Nov 3, 2019
Messages
1,125
Reaction score
1,614
Location
Richmond, VA
Playing poker online or at a casino is easy... but now that I'm trying to host a home game I have questions (and I'm unsure of even what to ask)

I bought 500 Majestic poker chips
$1 X 150
$5 X 200
$25 X 100
$100 X 50

Looking at max maybe 6-8 people (with lets say 2-3 rebuys per person), but was unsure on chip distribution.

I initially posted on reddit but was referred to this forum... so here I am.

Any help would be appreciated it!
Just buy yourself a rack of quarters and you are golden! Play .25/.25 (both blinds the same..people do it all the time) and have your max buyin be like $40 with no min buyin.

You can buy by the chip right here: https://www.apachepokerchips.com/product/majestic-poker-chips/
 

brewdawg

Pair
Joined
Feb 5, 2021
Messages
137
Reaction score
110
Location
McKinney, TX
I would say unless you are set on a cash game, consider playing a tourney instead. Everyone can buy in for $20, and you can give out a decent sized starting stack. This lets everyone play and have a good time without breaking the bank. Play and host a few tourney style games first and then if everyone wants to change to a cash game you can make the transition.

For a fun night with the guys I like a tourney setup a little better. That being said, you do have to manage a clock and blinds. But there are a couple of options for iOS and Android apps that can help with that.
 

wcsmik

Sitting Out
Joined
Jun 20, 2021
Messages
18
Reaction score
47
Location
riverside, ca
The former typically signals a lot of action with aggro players, while the latter projects as a game full of nits.

That said, if I'm playing 1/2 at a home game, I'd want the ability to buy-in for 100 BBs at a minimum. With your preferred $20 buy-in baseline, I tend to agree with the tourney recommendations from other posters unless you drop down from 1/2 cash games to either .25/.25 or .25/.50 games . You'll need fracs for that, like @raynmanas suggested.

Oh, get a hot dog roller!

hot dog roller... haha maybe once my games become routine ill definitely consider it!
1) Ohhhh, those black and red 10 centers above...

2) By loose or nitty play, I was referring to how crazy or conservative your players are with their bets. In some 1/2 games, the standard preflop open is $5-$7, in others it’s more like $12-$15. In some games, people get all in constantly; in others, a shove is a rarity. So I was suggesting: Your chip breakdown would be fine for a loose 1/2 game, but a little short of $5 and $25 chips for a loose 2/5 game. However, that was based on the assumption that there would be normal-ish buy-ins allowed. See below.

3) When I posted, I had not seen that you were projecting buyins of just $20, and might limit people to 2-3 buy-ins. As others have suggested, your chipset is really not suited for a group whose players only want to buy $20 at a time. You should either increase the max buy-in considerably for 1/2, or add some chips with smaller denominations and play lower stakes. Even if you got a lot of quarters ($0.25 chips), at $20 that would only allow someone to buy in for 80 big blinds (BB).

Typical cash games have a min buy-in of 30-50BB, and a max buy-in of 150-250BB. At my nearest casino, the smallest amount you can buy into a 1/2 game is $60, and the max is $300. Almost no one buys in for the minimum, except (a) very inexperienced players, (b) people who didn’t bring enough money to the casino, or (c) “short-stackers” who are exploitatively trying to take advantage of the table... which is hard to do unless you really know what you are doing, and also get lucky repeatedly early on.

Also, it is not common to limit the number of buy-ins at cash, and I don’t see any point to it, unless your crew is full of problem gamblers. In which case... it’s probably better not to host at all.

4) My feeling having played poker avidly for about 12 years now is that a full table of short stacks is not desirable, if you take the game seriously; and not an interesting game for more than one session, even if you are just looking to gamble small amounts of money. It means that you are going to have players going all-in preflop or on the flop almost every hand. It means that no one will have enough chips to play more than a push-shove game until everyone has rebought 3-4 times. This type of game can get old quickly.

You’re free to do what you enjoy, but I would suggest buying some small denom chips to go with what you have, and make the standard buy-in more like 100BB if your players don’t want to spend too much. So if you get a bunch of 25 cent chips, make the stakes .25/.25, and the typical buy-in more like $25, with the possibility of buying in for as much as $50 at a time.

definitely looking into .25 chips! think about 150 would be ok? or should i get 200?
 

Taghkanic

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2017
Messages
4,204
Reaction score
4,317
Location
Hudson Valley, NY
150 probably would do for 6/8 players, even with multiple rebuys… But the difference in cost would be only about $20, so I would go for the 200. Then you have them if your game grows, and neither you nor the players have to worry about making change.

(There are some on PCF who spend a lot of time computing the bare minimum numbers of chips necessary for various games, but I’m not one of them. Unless one is on a very tight budget, having plenty makes life easier. And players tend to enjoy having bigger starting stacks, not smaller ones.)
 

mummel

Full House
Joined
Mar 30, 2016
Messages
3,736
Reaction score
1,598
Location
USA
If you cannot get $0.25 chips to arrive before your game, 100% do a tournament.

Going forward though, you’ll definitely need quarters and play 25c/25c blinds with $20 buy ins. I suggest 200x25c for MOAR.
 

grebe

Flush
Joined
Nov 3, 2019
Messages
1,125
Reaction score
1,614
Location
Richmond, VA
hot dog roller... haha maybe once my games become routine ill definitely consider it!


definitely looking into .25 chips! think about 150 would be ok? or should i get 200?
100 (one rack) will be fine. More is fine too, but 100 is all you need for 1 table. Your primary chip people will bet with for these stakes will be the $1.
 

dmoney

Flush
Joined
Dec 7, 2017
Messages
1,189
Reaction score
1,562
Location
Pennsylvania
A few things I have found helpful for running cash games if you end up going that direction:
  • I've found estimating 10-12 frac chips per player to be a sweet spot, so 100 is generally a good number for a set
  • "Starting stacks" don't matter for cash games - there's no need to give everyone the exact same number and breakdown of chips to start. Just get their $ buy-in right.
  • Try to get all of your fracs and workhorse betting chips (i.e .25-$1-$5 in order) in play before using your larger denominations (remaining $5-$25-$100 in order) for add-ons and rebuys. With all of the lower-denomination chips already on the table, it's easy for players to make change without going into the pot while a hand is in play
  • I have found the breakdown below to be very playable for single-table games from .25/.25 through 1/2, so your set should be ok for cash games at those stakes with what you already have if you add quarters
    • 100x .25
    • 200x $1
    • 200x $5
    • 80x $25
    • 20x $100
 

Taghkanic

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2017
Messages
4,204
Reaction score
4,317
Location
Hudson Valley, NY
If you cannot get $0.25 chips to arrive before your game, 100% do a tournament.

Going forward though, you’ll definitely need quarters and play 25c/25c blinds with $20 buy ins. I suggest 200x25c for MOAR.

Or, you could play with actual quarters, harvested from your local bank...


Re: How many to get: In a .25/.25 game, I would expect more use of quarters than usual.

A fairly standard 3x preflop open would be $0.75. Many players will just use 1s and want change from the pot, and this can get annoying and slow. (Or, you’re going to get bet inflation—people opening for 4x just because it’s a single $1 chip.)

Ex.: Blinds put up two quarters (.25/.25). Early position player announces a 3x raise to .75, but throws in a $1 chip expecting change. The button and the blinds call. If the blinds pull back their quarters and put in a 1, now there is no change in the pot. So now someone has to either pull back their 1 and make it three quarters, or someone else not in the hand has to use 4 quarters to change out a $1. (Ditto postflop: What does EP c-bet into the $3 pot? What do people use to call/raise?)

Having more quarters means (a) people will make more precise bets/raises, (b) both the original bettor and others who continue need to make less change.

It also means that less confusion arises from all the times someone uses a bigger chip to make a non-round bet. Then, as invariably happens, other players don’t pay attention and think the person c-bet $2 instead of $1.50 or whatever, because they just look at the chips instead of listening to the action.

In any case, Majestics are not expensive chips. There’s no real reason to go lean with the set.


P.S.: Don’t know whether you are going to allow straddles, but if so, you also might want to think about what the straddle size is for .25/.25, and what that means as far as buying more quarters. 50 cent straddles, I guess?
 
Last edited:

Taghkanic

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2017
Messages
4,204
Reaction score
4,317
Location
Hudson Valley, NY
Good choice…

Did you have a lot of rebuys, or did having 100BB each make the gameplay more careful?
 

wcsmik

Sitting Out
Joined
Jun 20, 2021
Messages
18
Reaction score
47
Location
riverside, ca
Good choice…

Did you have a lot of rebuys, or did having 100BB each make the gameplay more careful?
no one bought in again... turn up was kind of small.

i did feel the gameplay was tight and would have preferred a looser feel. im thinking ill try 1/1 blinds instead of 1/2 next time.
 

LeLe

3 of a Kind
Joined
Mar 12, 2021
Messages
712
Reaction score
765
Location
Singapore - Reshipper @ Portland
no one bought in again... turn up was kind of small.

i did feel the gameplay was tight and would have preferred a looser feel. im thinking ill try 1/1 blinds instead of 1/2 next time.
No one get felted ? haha it is a very short session ?

Or people just leave after finish their chip cause of lack of actions ?
 
Top Bottom