Poll: Home games friendly vs by the book (1 Viewer)

A typical low/mid limit cash game needs someone to ‘rule’ on a hand or hands

  • Yes

    Votes: 49 80.3%
  • No

    Votes: 12 19.7%

  • Total voters
    61
  • Poll closed .

DZPoker

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I've been a member for a few years now and have an honest question…

I haven’t had the fortune of playing with a single person on PCF (knowingly).

That being said, I’ve played in 5+ different semi-regular home games, over 20+ years, in 4 different states. NL Hold’em from .05/.10 to 1/2. I’ve also played in as many if not far more non-regular games ranging from .05/.10 to 1/2 during the same period. Let’s say, conservatively, a few hundred home games with 15+ different ‘groups/hosts’ in the ‘home game’ space over two decades. Not the largest sample…but a solid amount I feel?

Outside of home games, I’ve played in 132 different casinos in 19 US States plus one Canadian Province. Total sessions probably closes in on 1000+ L/NL Hold’em games in limits from 2/4 Limit to 2/5 NL in professional rooms. Again, dwarfed by many, but a fair sample size…no?

Let’s get to the point! I can probably count on one hand the number of cash hands that have needed a ‘ruling’ in either environment in the 20+ years I’ve been playing in each. Is my experience that unique?

All of the posts I read about ‘In my game last night this happened…what should the ruling have been’ make me wonder. We all just tend to sorta agree, nod, and moved on. And this isn’t just home games. I can’t even count the number of times I’ve seen similar happen in a casino. Including times I’ve messed up myself! Ex: This past fall I put out what technically should have been a call of a large raise out of order, but when the dealer saw I acted out of order (I was seat 1, didn’t realize the guy to her right hadn't acted yet and raised while I was ‘calling’ with a large chip)…I just pulled it back and life went on. Ex: several of the home game situations listed recently. Seriously…home or professional…I rarely see anyone even get mildly-aggitated, let alone what hosts describe!

So I bring this poll…am I just lucky or are others just unlucky??
 
I rarely play compared to you and this may have some bearing on my experience but majority of the guys I play with are just kinda wing it majority rule. Someone screws up we take a sensus and move on. I've screwed up a fair number of times and apologized. I felt terrible and deserved any shit headed my way. Instead most of the guys just say it's OK no big deal and move on. At the end of the day we are all friends and usually only up or down maybe 20-40 bucks. That money went to a friend and may come back the next time we play. It's more about the fun than anything. Now if it were at a casino to people not being as nice it may be a different story. I wouldn't know, never played poker at one yet.
What bugs me the most is them not wanting to use two decks of cards to shuffle and be ready for next hand... maybe some day we'll get there.
 
Voting no = majority/consensus
Voting yes = one person can and must rule everything

Am I understanding your poll question correctly?
 
"YES" it might be the majority that make the decision OR break out the rules depending on who was affected. Some guys roll with it and don't give a fuck let's just play and some guys are sticklers and demand to be proven right.
 
One of the long-lasting games I attend has its fair share of "newer" players, whether new to poker or just new to that game in general. The game I host also has a decent number of players that are new to my game. Some players are used to online games or their own home games and don't really have the "decorum" down yet.... when to make change is the biggest of these small norms.

Off the top of my head here are some things I've had to rule on in the last 6 months:
  • Betting out of turn
  • Mucking incorrectly or out of turn
  • Incorrect raising (single chip bet, thinking it will automatically be a raise when it's just a single chip call)
  • (Dealer) exposing a card before the last person has acted, desiring a ruling on what happens to that card
  • (Player) exposing their own cards causing a player to incorrectly assume a call or fold had been made (heads up)
  • Dealer getting to the river, making a bet, then realizing his cards were mucked or part of the burn pile
  • Player getting to the river, showing 3 cards when they thought they had pocket AA's (turned out they had AA3)
  • Making a checking motion, and action continuing before "checker" says "hey I wanted to bet," and other players getting upset because they want the check to stand
  • Making change when not in a hand and then having to explain to others in the hand why change was made and why the pot doesn't look right anymore (this was one of the biggest rulings I've had to make)
  • A player realizing the stakes of the cash game were too low for his tastes and wanting to raise the stakes immediately
  • A player realizing players can straddle and wanting to change straddle rules
  • Players getting dealt into hands while away from the table, coming back to the table before it was their turn to find a player nearby had mucked their hand, but the hand is clearly visible and the player really wants to play that hand.... or other players not wanting that player to play that hand... etc
  • Players and dealer not realizing they gave everyone cards from the red deck but have been dealing the flop, turn, and river from the blue deck

I'm sure I could go on.
 
I rarely play compared to you and this may have some bearing on my experience but majority of the guys I play with are just kinda wing it majority rule. Someone screws up we take a sensus and move on. I've screwed up a fair number of times and apologized. I felt terrible and deserved any shit headed my way. Instead most of the guys just say it's OK no big deal and move on. At the end of the day we are all friends and usually only up or down maybe 20-40 bucks. That money went to a friend and may come back the next time we play. It's more about the fun than anything. Now if it were at a casino to people not being as nice it may be a different story. I wouldn't know, never played poker at one yet.
What bugs me the most is them not wanting to use two decks of cards to shuffle and be ready for next hand... maybe some day we'll get there.
Same experience here, even in casinos for some reason.

I guess I like my life better than yours?
Voting no = majority/consensus
Voting yes = one person can and must rule everything

Am I understanding your poll question correctly?
My point was really that it rarely gets to this. If someone messes up, everyone tends to just agree it was a mess-up and not call for a ruling. If you’re not playing for thousands, is this really not the case everywhere? It’s certainly been for me both in home and in a Lot of rooms!
 
My first rule. There is no substitute.

Leadership in my game makes everyone want to return, especially compared to other games.

Recent example:
Player bets. Next to act voices “call” and then replies “and I’m all in”

I paused action. Made everyone stop talking, and spoke directly to the player and made him understand that he has called, he is not all in at this moment, and warned him to not do it again as it could be confused as an angle/string bet.

Game marched on, they all appreciated the ruling after the hand, and love the tight ship.

IMG_8170.jpeg
 
One of the long-lasting games I attend has its fair share of "newer" players, whether new to poker or just new to that game in general. The game I host also has a decent number of players that are new to my game. Some players are used to online games or their own home games and don't really have the "decorum" down yet.... when to make change is the biggest of these small norms.

Off the top of my head here are some things I've had to rule on in the last 6 months:
I'm sure I could go on.

I’ve experienced each of these in a home game probably in the same time period (roughly) and at least half in casinos (I called myself out for one)….but NOT ONE took a call for a ruling???

Hence the poll…. Are your players just assholes or are the players in my 15+ home game sample and 130+ casino game sample saints???
 
I’ve experienced each of these in a home game probably in the same time period (roughly) and at least half in casinos (I called myself out for one)….but NOT ONE took a call for a ruling???

Hence the poll…. Are your players just assholes or are the players in my 15+ home game sample and 130+ casino game sample saints???
All of the instances I listed are actual rulings I had to make, not just things that happened that players brushed off and continued...

So yes, that's why I said you're "lucky." Not that I mind making any of those rulings clear... I think it's probably more due to the player demographic in my area. A good number of players are newer or coming back to poker after some time off. Other players play all the time in casinos but respect the host enough to actually tell another player "hey, let's ask for a ruling." I always appreciate that because it keeps things from escalating... which has happened, but only on a couple occasions.
 
I’ve experienced each of these in a home game probably in the same time period (roughly) and at least half in casinos (I called myself out for one)….but NOT ONE took a call for a ruling???

Hence the poll…. Are your players just assholes or are the players in my 15+ home game sample and 130+ casino game sample saints???
If you were playing pickup basketball and someone kept fouling the shooter aggressively, would you be OK with everyone just brushing it off and being ok with it? I wouldn't and if the group didn't nip it in the bud, it would probably get annoying to the point where players would leave.

What if someone bet out of turn on purpose, to angle shoot. If the group was ok with that and wanted to let it slide, would it not be an edge to that person every time they did it?

You do what you want to do with your buddies, nobody is going to care what you do in your own game, but there are more of us who'd rather work from a set of rules that are universally accepted than without them.
 
All of the instances I listed are actual rulings I had to make, not just things that happened that players brushed off and continued...

So yes, that's why I said you're "lucky." Not that I mind making any of those rulings clear... I think it's probably more due to the player demographic in my area. A good number of players are newer or coming back to poker after some time off. Other players play all the time in casinos but respect the host enough to actually tell another player "hey, let's ask for a ruling." I always appreciate that because it keeps things from escalating... which has happened, but only on a couple occasions.
No offense made, but after literally decades of different groups, I’m happy I don’t play in yours! This isn’t meant to turn into ‘mine is better that’s yours’…just a poll to see what people really experience!
 
No offense made, but after literally decades of different groups, I’m happy I don’t play in yours! This isn’t meant to turn into ‘mine is better that’s yours’…just a poll to see what people really experience!
Absolutely! No harm. My game is similar to many in the area, but probably totally different in another area of the world.
 
I've been playing a low limit game that began in college and migrated with us to Orlando in the 1990s. The core has played together long enough that the regular players are in sync and the new players jus pick it up with time. What's good about $3 spread limit is it doesn't create pots big enough to create hard feelings. We also play and lot of high/low games that give players more chances to win. Because of that we emphasize to new players on every split pot hand that they must declare high or low by whether they are holding a chip during the countdown declaration. We repeat any rules that might be new to people when we play our circus games specifically.

We emphasize in our Anaconda game that you pass 2 to the Left and 1 to the Right every hand we play.

When we exchange cards in English Stud we say trade a card up and get it up. Trade a card down and get it down.

With that I cannot think of any time we've had hard feelings.
 
Depends what you mean by ruling. People make little mistakes all the time: acting out of turn, putting out one big chip without verbally declaring raise, splashing the pot or exposing cards for example.

I can’t remember a single case where there were disagreements to the point of having to consult the rule book/floor for a decision. Correcting/letting it slide on the go, based on the intension of the action has worked so far.
 
I think it's good if you can resolve issues without having to bust out the rulebook and just have players agree on stuff. That being said, I also think that there should be someone (usually the host) who has designated final say on rulings. I host micros with only close friends, so I'm pretty lax on things like out of order action, one chip rule, etc. Confirm intent but remind them they shouldn't do that. At higher stakes, and/or with strangers/acquaintances I think doing things by the book gets more important.
 
If you were playing pickup basketball and someone kept fouling the shooter aggressively, would you be OK with everyone just brushing it off and being ok with it
I think a more accurate analogy would be that they foul the shooter, some guys point out that we don’t play that way in our game, and they argue that we should and just keep arguing and/or doing the same thing over and over. If similar happened in a home cash game, I guess id need an ‘official ruling’ to solve things. It just doesn’t seem to happen?

You're insinuating that if someone speaks up about a rule they're an asshole. Do I have that correct?
No, I’m insinuating that if someone is told a rule by a dealer in a casino, a couple of regulars at a home game, the host, etc…and then argues to the point of needing someone to make an ‘official call’, they’re an asshole. I’m insinuating that someone who knows someone else made an honest mistake, and doesn’t just let that mistake be undone whenever possible to let the game continue in a friendly manner, they’re an asshole. I’m insinuating that playing poker is more fun than arguing about poker?

Depends what you mean by ruling. People make little mistakes all the time: acting out of turn, putting out one big chip without verbally declaring raise, splashing the pot or exposing cards for example.

I can’t remember a single case where there were disagreements to the point of having to consult the rule book/floor for a decision. Correcting/letting it slide on the go, based on the intension of the action has worked so far.
^^ this exactly. I’m not saying rules aren’t needed, I’m not saying it’s not pointed out when someone breaks one, I’m not saying it’s not important to have someone designated to make a final calling if needed…I’m talking about actually needing to make an ‘official ruling’. @MrRossKeys has had to make 13 in the last several months (sorry to pick on you!!). People seem to post about ones they had to make all the time. It just doesn’t ever happen in games I’m in, casino or home so I am genuinely curious which is more normal.
 
I’m not saying it’s not important to have someone designated to make a final calling if needed…I’m talking about actually needing to make an ‘official ruling’.
How are you making a distinction between a "final calling" or an "official ruling?"

@MrRossKeys has had to make 13 in the last several months (sorry to pick on you!!). People seem to post about ones they had to make all the time. It just doesn’t ever happen in games I’m in, casino or home so I am genuinely curious which is more normal.
I wouldn't categorize everything on @MrRossKeys list as a ruling. Most of what he listed are reminders of procedure and points of etiquette, which is certainly and important job for a host. I would probably define a ruling having to decide on a dispute between different players. If I host 15-20 games in a year, I probably have to make 2-3 "rulings" tops. And most of those make it on PCF here at some point :p. But I am usually good for one or two etiquette prompts in a given evening. I just don't make a huge deal out of it.

So to @DZPoker 's original question, you probably seem to be exposed to fewer rulings than you would expect for the amount you play, but overall, if players are good with procedure and etiquette, and I like to think the players I host are, your need to actually settle a dispute will go way down.
 
Most of these hypotheticals would be fixed by just not inviting that person next time. Problem solved. Play with like minded people. If they aren't good company and on the same page move on.
 
Most of these hypotheticals would be fixed by just not inviting that person next time. Problem solved. Play with like minded people. If they aren't good company and on the same page move on.
I agree, don’t ever invite the rules nazis back. If you have to be that much of a stickler go be an accounting auditor.
 
I agree, don’t ever invite the rules nazis back. If you have to be that much of a stickler go be an accounting auditor.
Wait, so your ok if someone keeps playing in a matter that breaks etiquette/rules that gives them an edge? I’m glad I was reminded about the one chip rule in a homegame. Would rather learn it there instead of being reprimanded in a casino.
 
I voted no, but I don't know what yes or no represents.
This.

(But I voted Yes because I've had to make rullings but never really had to settle an argument)

If you havn't encountered assholes at the games you've played in consider yourself lucky @DZPoker!

My question to you is how do you know
I’ve played in 132 different casinos in 19 US States
but yet you don't know exactly how many official rullings?
I can probably count on one hand the number of cash hands that have needed a ‘ruling’

Kidding. Just trying to be the @$$#*//!
 
I voted no, but I don't know what yes or no represents.
Sorry if I wasn't clear...

Yes - the low/mid limit games you play in typically need the host/floor to deliver a ruling to settle a disagreement over something that happened in the game.

No - the low/mid limit games you play in rarely if ever need the host/floor to deliver a ruling to settle a disagreement over something that happened in the game.
 
I probably make a "ruling" of some sort every game I host. Sometimes it's as simple as acting out of turn with a raise, sometimes it's as complex as turn/river dealt from wrong deck with significant action between 3 players. I also have two backups in case I'm in the hand in question, as at least one of them almost always in the game.
 

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