No New Tale To Tell: How to Tell if Someone’s Bluffing Online


Contrary to popular belief, bluffing at the virtual tables is pretty much possible. When the online poker industry experienced a surge of players during the turn of the century, a lot of real-life poker players—especially the ones who are great at bluffing—had a hard time translating their skill sets from real tables to digital ones. Players like the French poker vixen {Vanessa Rousso}, who is known at the online card circuit as “Lady Maverick”, slowly found ways on how to bluff online even without telltale signs such as facial expressions, jitters, and deliberate verbal cues. Pretty soon, card players developed their own set of online bluffing skills at the virtual felt. In case you’re new to online poker and you want to know how bluffing online works, here are some tips you might want to heed:

1. Outrageous Bets

Tuan Le, a France-based poker personality, cautioned online poker players against the likes of him: aggressive and risk-taking players. According to the two-time PartyPoker-sponsored World Poker Tour champion, players who are aggressive when it comes to betting big are most likely bluffing, coercing everyone raise the stakes and make them fold before the big reveal. If a player goes all in even before one person flops, then it’s most likely a bluff rather than a legitimate move. However, he advised against players who are just throwing outrageous bets just for kicks. Although most huge bets on online poker are bluffs, bear in mind that some of them are just doing it randomly.

2. Best Cards

Since you’re not the only one who’s trying to fool everyone, it is best to spot the bluffs of other players—and play along their plot until that perfect moment comes along to steal the spotlight and send them to the cleaners. However, this only works when you have good hands such as pocket aces, face cards, or a high pair. But when you have a weak hand and you feel like other players are bluffing, it is in your best interest to fold and minimize your losses rather than play all the way to see if you can take them down. Remember, a smart player knows when to advance and when to retreat.

3. Fooling Everyone

As former American president {Abraham Lincoln} said, “you can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time.” This maxim also holds merit on online poker. While the purpose of bluffing is to sway everyone into thinking they have little chance at winning that round, it is hard to fool all the players since you have to remember that you are dealing with your own kind as well. Unless you want your entire plan to fail, be cautious on how you play your bluffs.


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