I see your point about the HVG strategy page. It's actually fairly extensive but even the writer admits to being unsure of what to do in certain situations. Interesting game though, in that you get to bet twice and the larger 2x-5x bet is made after the flop. (The cost being that both the blind AND the ante need a straight or better to pay.) You will, however, be putting a lot of chips down so you'll need a big bankroll to weather the bad runs. Also, evidently, there's no side bet.
Play Demo at HVG
I find it hard to believe that you shouldn't fold 7-2 off-suit. I question the listed strategy.
I've been playing the demo and wondering the same thing.
You have 2 units in the ante and blind bet. So, pre-flop with a bad hand, you should make a one unit bet (versus fold) if your EV > -2.0.
Based on standard Texas Hold'em calculators, the chance of a 7-2o beating a single random hand is something like 0.321 -and losing is about 0.623 and ties are about 5.6%
So, in this game you must bet at least 3 units to get to showdown - 1X on pre-flop and 2X on post-flop. Assuming your 7-2o wins with a hand that is less than a straight:
- you will lose 5 units with a probability of 0.623 and win 3 units with a probability of 0.37 which implies an EV of -2.15. Obviously, that's a worse expectation that simply folding, with the EV = -2.0.
Thus, if it is indeed correct to not fold a 7-2o it must be because the 3-card flop gives you a lot of actionable information -so much information that it improves your EV by > 0.15.
- With a very good flop that gives you trips or two pair or a flush draw, your post-flop bet will be 5X rather than 2X.
- Even with a flop like 7-4-3, giving you top pair, you will probably bet 5X post-flop. (not sure about that.)
- With a very bad flop, say three cards that are 10 or higher or three suited cards in a suit that you don't have in your hand, your post-flop decision will be to FOLD. This will improve your EV versus the scenario of betting 2X post-flop in these bad circumstances.
Also, just as in video poker, it is always possible that you make a very good winning hand - a straight, flush, boat, quads, straight flush and get significant bonuses from the pay table. However, with a 7-2o I think that happens rarely enough that it doesn't improve your EV much - probably by less than 0.05.
Overall, I suspect that betting 1X preflop on 7-2o probably does have an EV slightly better than -2.0.
By the way, standardly 3-2o is worse than 7-2o versus one random hand. It wins only 30.2% of the time and loses 63.4% of the time, for a showdown EV in this game of about -2.26 (ignoring winning hands that are straights or higher.) However, you will make more straights with a 3-2o so I don't know whether it is truly worse than 7-2o.
1. Max-Bet (5x) the flop if you catch any piece of the flop (bottom pair or better) or with a big draw. Big draws include:
Any flush draw
An open-ended straight draw J-T-9-8 or higher
Any gutshot Broadway draw, including JT on an A-K-x flop
You have a flush draw if you have 7s-2h and the flop comes Qh-Jh-8h, but your expectations are:
That is NOT the type of hand you want to max-bet 5X on!
Exceptions to the posted strategy (above) for bet 5X
1. If you have a flush draw (with no pair and no straight draw) but contribute only one suited card to the flush draw:
- in general, your suited card must be 10 or higher to max-bet 5X, otherwise bet 2X.
2. If you have a 2-way straight draw but contribute only one card to the straight draw, and you other card is an undercard to the straight draw cards
- your straight draw must be KQJT to max-bet 5, otherwise bet 2X.
Example: You have Qh 4s and the flop is Js-Td-9c: You should bet 2X.
3. Bet 2x with the pocket pairs 2-2, 3-3, or 4-4 when you have no straight or flush draw and the 3 flop cards are all higher than your pair.
As a side note, I do like all 3 versions of their games. I think the Pai Gow is my favorite, but would play any of the 3 if was somewhere they were installed.
Yeah, I'm pretty impressed with the innovations. Blackjack without hitting? Mid-hand PGP betting? Cool stuff. I hope they get a trial run somewhere.
The trouble I see them having (apart from how much money a player has to throw down every hand) is that the games might be too intimidating to casual players who don't even have a grip on standard UTH or PGP (or even blackjack basic strategy) to begin with. That is to say: only experienced table gamers will appreciate what's going on.