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fun ways to play poker without money I have a group of friends I regularly play board games with and I was hoping to introduce them to poker.
However, I'm pretty sure they wouldn't be willing to play for real money.
My idea is to offer we play some no-limit hold'em for an hour, and at the end of the hour we tally up "profits" and "losses" based on chips won and lost.
Everyone would have at most one or two reloads for the session counting as a loss.
My plan is that we would play regularly and keep a "leaderboard" of sorts, resetting the leader board every so often.
So this would be a play money "cash" game, rather than learn more here />Do you think most serious board gamers would take that structure seriously?
By "seriously", I mean to not all-in spew too much and be capable of being bluffed.
Also, any design recommendations?
Alternatively, if "play money" poker can't be taken seriously, I was thinking of a way to connect performance in the poker game to some sort of advantage in a subsequent board game, thus giving chips some type of value beyond poker.
Any ideas if we went that route?
The only way I've been able to get people interested in poker is just to find the balance in stakes where it's cheap enough to make it non-threatening, but just enough of a prize to make it interesting.
No one I've ever encountered plays "play money" poker seriously.
It just doesn't happen.
My only suggestion is to start with inexpensive tournaments.
Cash games are the least appealing to non-poker players, but tourneys can be enjoyed with a small initial investment.
Most of all, be exceedingly patient and willing to teach.
Introducing new people to poker is a long game, and there are a lot of pre- fun ways to play poker without money misconceptions to get over, even among strategy gamers whom you might think should know better.
In all honesty, I've had way more luck introducing poker players to board games than vice-versa.
But I do know that in 12 years of playing poker, I've never seen play money games played seriously or outside incentives matter.
As a thirteen year veteran of poker, I completely agree with this.
It is not poker.
A simple sit-n-go, mini tourney with a smaller buy-in is the way to go.
Players have to have tangible losses or else they won't care.
I've always thought of poker as being on the knife's edge of this contradiction: You must care enough about the money to not want to lose it, while being completely unfazed when you lose it.
That balance is like Zen to me.
It is essential to playing well and still enjoying poker.
Personally, I always have loved the changing player dynamics of an ever smaller table in poker, which you get with a sit-n-go.
My question is why would I play a game where every time we play everyone at the table loses money except one, when our hobby is literally filled with thousands of sometimes arguably better games which don't do that.
In a Magic draft you keep the cards you pick.
Even if you don't win anything, you still have a shot at keeping some playable cards from the packs you opened and that got passed around.
If you lose a poker game you don't keep anything.
Yes, but you're missing the point.
If I do a Magic draft with friends, we're each covering the cost of three boosters.
Regardless of whether we win or lose we each get to keep three boosters worth of cards.
If we're doing it at a store event, or if we paid extra to have prizes, everyone still keeps at least 3 boosters worth of cards.
If we pay for snacks, we get to eat snacks.
If we don't feel like spending money and play a board game instead, no one loses any money.
If I do a poker game with friends where the entry fee is the same as three Magic boosters, whoever loses comes is out a few bucks with nothing to show for it.
I'm not saying that poker is bad or that people shouldn't like it.
Jut trying to make it clear why board gamers might not be huge fans of real-money poker.
It's my point that you're disagreeing with.
So who's keeping the poker set?
With a Magic draft everyone keeps their own stuff, and each player could use that deck again on their own.
You're not splitting the cost, you're buying three boosters and using com play worldpokertour to play.
You can't really split up a poker set.
If everyone's splitting the cost, everyone except one person is still out money with nothing to show for it.
I'm not saying it's literally the exact same situation.
I was responding to this: why would I play a game where every time we play everyone at the table loses money except one with another example of a gaming activity where you pay some money to participate, and for which only a few of the participants will receive value from it in the form of prizes.
Then change draft to constructed.
You're paying money to play with cards you already own and the winner walks away with more.
It's the same idea in poker.
You all put money up, pit your skills against each other.
Some win, some lose.
Well, how much overlap is there between board gamers and Magic players who pay to enter tournaments?
Because fun ways to play poker without money question that started the discussion was why board gamers would pay for the chance to lose money when they can board game for free.
We're not talking about competitive Magic players playing poker, we're talking about board gamers who are used to playing for free with no real-money stakes.
I don't think it's fair to call it "paying for a chance to lose money".
You're risking money, or paying for a chance to win more.
The reason to involve money in poker is because it drastically alters how people play.
For some reason people don't play seriously when there's no money involved.
This is not typically a problem in your average board game.
I think of it more like going out to the movies.
Poker with friends I find to be the same way, you are spending money to have fun with some friends playing a game.
In the end it is only some of the players who are paying because whoever comes out ahead is making money on the experience.
As TeakNUT said, playing without money strips all the tension and fun from poker unfortunately.
I've tried and you just can't get people to play poker the right way without having a stake.
So sure, there are thousands of equal or better games available where there is no stake in winning, but some people actually like the tension of having money on the line and find it exciting.
As an example, an old friend who was really into poker for years can't wrap his mind around my modern board game hobby.
He's an ultra competitive guy and whenever I tell him that I went to a board game meetup or something, the first question he asks me every time is, "Did you win?
Incidentally, I don't think he considers co-ops legitimate games.
It's just that if I wanted to play a game of hidden information, player reading, bluffing, risk management, odds calculation, and knife-edge decisionmaking that gets infinitely better when players are on the same skill level, I'd rather play Netrunner.
I'd rather play Netrunner.
And that's perfect for your tastes.
But just don't try to frame it as though your personal taste in a game, or your distaste for an aspect of another, makes one game objectively superior.
If the game is not to your tastes, then don't play it.
It seems like the dynamic in poker isn't to your liking.
If you have to ask the question, and then remain unconvinced as this thread shows, then my answer to "why would I play" is "You shouldn't.
I don't like miniatures wargames, but I don't think they're inferior to the resource-management Euros that I love to death.
It's completely understandable in the money aspect of poker turns you off, but that doesn't mean that aspect of the game is wrong.
No need for the downvotes, guys.
I'm not trying to be antagonistic here, just straightforward.
Sorry if that's not how my tone came across.
Well, if you play with the same friends and everyone is close in skill then the wins and losses should even out.
I played poker almost exclusively online and only occasionally with a friend online.
I didn't feel bad at all taking the money of strangers or of my friend.
Poker is a fantastic zero-sum game.
It sounds like you are just against gambling or against losing money.
That's fine if that's the case.
The money lost in poker, if you lose, is the cost of the experience.
When you pay to see a fun ways to play poker without money, or get into a theme park, or whatever.
You may have nothing to show for it afterwords.
The experience and hopefully fun was worth it in your eyes.
Not all games are for all people.
If you've never played much poker then you really can't judge it.
Poker I didn't like at first.
Even If I lose all night long it was still fun.
May have felt better if I won, but that is the same with spending the evening playing board games.
Yeah it is fun to win, it's fun to just play though.
Of course, I've never hosted a live turbo tournament, so I could be wrong here.
What do you think?
Any structure ideas for a approx.
I've play slot free online spartacus Turbo Sit-N-Go's before.
They're a fun diversion, but not my preferred play style.
Now, this may be utterly biased, but here goes: I think that type of Sit-N-Go is honestly only appealing to long-time players who understand the strategic adjustments and the nuances of that style.
I feel like new players will ascribe the rather chaotic nature of that type of format to the game as a whole, and it's maybe not the best way to introduce them to the game.
I might be wrong.
A lot of players got into poker via fast-structured online Sit-N-Go's, so maybe it could be done.
It's best if there are exactly 6 players, but you can go as high as 9 or 10, it'll just extend the length.
Like I said, with 6 players, the average game was 75-90 minutes.
I, personally, don't think poker is a game that should be limited to as short as an hour.
The Sit-N-Go's can be fun, but 3 to 4 hour tournaments should probably be the expectation for a home game, IMO.
EDIT: Had my blind round length for my standard tourneys wrong.
My experience with this is bluffing won't work, and every pot becomes a "family pot" to the flop.
Nobody will fold pre-flop unless money is involved.
I don't see why anyone would take it more or less serious than they take any other board game they play without real money.
The gambling aspect is a big part of poker.
Poker is largely affected by luck so decisions have a lot to do with pushing your luck and thus forward.
When you remove the risk of losing your own money the game just becomes a stupid luck fest for most groups.
Fold equity and other aspects of the game that make it the brain burner it is gets almost removed and any betting patterns and stuff like that gets pretty much removed due to the chips not being money.
They key to playing with play-money is: NO BUYING BACK IN I can't stress that enough.
My main concern with single-elimination is that someone some players might bust out early and have to sit around for almost an hour.
One possibility I thought of is to allow one small rebuy during the early stages of the tourney.
My main concern with single-elimination is that someone some players might bust out early and have to sit around for almost an hour.
Sure, everyone will get to sit around the table and play.
One possibility I thought of is to allow one small rebuy during the early stages of the tourney.
There's still incentive click take more risks with a potential rebuy, but maybe not totally recklessly.
There's also the question when to take that risk.
If they play halfway smart poker, basically not dumping all in right away, there's no way anyone gets eliminated in the first half hour.
IMO play money poker is not worth playing for the many reasons stated above, but there's no way any one takes the game seriously without any risk of some kind If they play halfway smart poker, basically not dumping all in right away, there's no way anyone gets eliminated in the first half hour.
I should go all in.
It's pretty similar to what you are looking for with a few extra mechanics thrown in.
It also comes with suggestions with how to play for real money.
It's not really Hold 'em at all.
It's a weird mixture of Limit Hold 'em, 5-card Draw, and Coup.
I like the game a lot but it's super super weird and the math is completely different 6 suits, 10 ranks.
What worked very well for me for No Thanks with children on Scout Camp is to make it interesting in a simple, physical way.
In No Thanks we did sit-ups how many points you have, that many sit-ups you have to do.
I am quite sure something similar can be arranged in poker Maybe this sounds degenerate, but poker with no stakes is just boring.
Your introduction might not go over so well if this holds true with them.
That said, you can come up with stakes that are enough of an incentive pride might not be enough.
How about keeping a tally of winnings and the overall winner after a couple of months buys the next boardgame that the group will play?
My group played fake money poker many times, we're all playing to get better, and the goal is to not lose all your money so you can keep playing which was a great incentive to bet seriously.
I get that many would find the lack of a thrill 'boring' but I never got the hate for it.
Was it tournament or "cash" game?
How long were your sessions, and did you guys keep track or results across sessions?
I used to play a monthly game of poker with my four roommates, way back in college.
Everyone else got their pick based on their rank.
So last place was usually stuck with cleaning the bathroom.
But hey, nobody was out money and people were super competitive.
Most games have an arbitrary way in the rulebooks of deciding the first player that usually most people disregard.
You can definitely reward someone with being the first player in the game and just tie it in with whoever currently has the highest chip count at the end of the poker session.
And since some games tend to have a bit of a first player advantage I think that would be enough to entice players to take it more seriously.
I've played poker with a few different groups of buddies over the years.
There's a trick between making it cheap enough for people to want to play, but not so cheap that they make silly bets.
Conversely, if you have a high buy-in you might find people are unwilling to play, or make very conservative bets.
One thing I did with some friends in school sometimes was use pennies.
People would end up with usually about £1-£2 at the start of the game.
So you couldn't win much, but it was a good laugh regardless.
It works pretty well.
Yep, have played other gambling games with friends for pennies.
Everyone would show up with a couple rolls of various denominations.
Fake money poker is just super boring to me.
The lack of stakes takes out all of the excitement from the game.
Do you think you could talk them into playing low stakes?
I mean even like 5 dollars per person is enough to make the game exciting.
Yeah, I know generally live play money poker is terrible.
I'm not sure, though, and it seems like most posters don't think that's enough.
I'm leaning towards proposing to play poker for some advantage in one or more of the other games.
I'm still against playing for money with them for a variety of reasons, at least for now.
Why will players play board games cautiously and thoughtfully, but those same players would donk off their chips in play money poker?
For me, it's because poker is boring.
I get that at a certain level there is a lot of skill involved, but I just don't find it interesting.
I'd much rather play a board game than any old fashioned card game.
I wouldn't play for money because I want to keep my money lol.
Maybe a prize, but I'd still prefer a board game by far.
I play boardgames to relax and have fun.
I honestly don't care if I win or lose.
Poker, for me, has always been about winning the money.
There was zero 'pride' involved in online poker, I played to pay my electric bill.
I did have fun playing, but I only had one losing month in years of playing online.
If I had lost all the time I would've quit.
Maybe since I started with poker and have played it for years is the reason I associate it with money stakes so much that I can't imagine playing without cash involved.
But you do pose a fascinating question.
The other players have never played poker, at least not for money, and I'm partially counting on that to keep it interesting.
Although the effect could easily be the opposite: Players who have already played for money may transfer that excitement to play money.
I know a few real-money poker players who will also play play money online, and they play it seriously.
Just to offer a bit of a different perspective: I don't think there's any reason that playing without money can't work.
I've played poker without money on the line, and while I agree that it does lose a certain element of tension, I've never found that people play all that differently.
Assuming that the vast majority of games your group plays don't involve risking real money, and assuming that in these games your friends are motivated to play the game well by some factor other than money, why would poker be any different?
This is what I'm wondering.
I was kinda hoping serious board gamers would transfer their "seriousness" to poker.
Though I leave open the possibility that there's something about poker that makes it different in this respect.
I'd suggest to just give it a shot and see how it goes.
It may be something that just differs from group to group as well.
I really love your question.
Again, maybe it's because I have had hundreds of dollars riding on a single turn of a card, but poker creates odd dichotomies which the player must always strive to balance.
You want to win money, but must be indifferent to its loss.
You want your 90% chance to win to come through, but you must not be upset when the 10% does.
Maybe the wins and losses in poker make me a better boardgame player.
I don't feel the euphoric wins in boardgames, but I also don't allow a loss to affect my attitude for the remainder of the evening.
I suppose the answer to your question is that poker for centuries has been associated with winning and losing real money.
Taking that reward and risk away from poker essentially creates a game slots games play free where players become less risk adverse.
The game loses its more skill based elements and becomes much more of a luck fest.
While it is possible to just play for pride, to do so would be to fight against centuries of societal associations.
I cannot play poker for fake money.
But I love playing poker, study it obsessively, and have played for years.
I wouldn't even play the game without money involved.
I think that's a lot different for other people though.
Poker just isn't poker without real money.
Only time I play without money is to play a few hands to teach someone before the money comes into play.
I know this may not be the answer you were hoping for but have you considered other card games?
A game like Euchre or any other trick taking game doesn't require money to be fun and plays great as a filler game.
I haven't really, fun ways to play poker without money might consider it if poker is a fail.
Any recommendations on a card game that has a lot of the elements of poker?
I'm not sure which elements from poker you're necessarily trying to get out of the game.
For the hidden information aspect I would still recommend Euchre.
Two teams of two compete to get the most tricks in a round and no one can see any one else's cards, so you have to make decisions based on what you see in your hand, however you don't know what is in your partners hand or in your opponents hand so there's definitely a risk element.
The problem with no limit and fake money is that people start acting silly and going all in before the flop and such because it isn't real money.
Put the money in a pot, just a few bucks each, even a dollar is fine.
Everyone gets an arbitrary amount of starting money in chips, and the winner keeps the prize pot.
If I can get several groups of southern Baptists to play like this, including in a church, pretty much anyone will be okay with it.
TRIP REPORT -- 5 handed.
There weren't too many family pots, and I got away with a bluff in a medium pot.
A small but decent percent of hands did not make it to showdown, and there were no really mindless all-ins.
If anything, players got disheartened pretty quickly when they missed the flop and get killed out of position.
Overall, I'd say it went well, and hope to incorporate 30-60 mins of play money poker every session.
The only real downside to tonight was that I flopped a set of kings and rivered a full house, which makes me the supposed shark the current leader.
We'll see how the rest of the season turns out.
Thank you all for your input.
Poker with play money feels hallow and people rarely play seriously.
Odd considering I don't risk or win any money playing other board games and I take those casino playing shuffler review seriously.
I guess it's just in the nature of poker that you need to feel some amount of fear for your chips.
You are better off playing something like Sheriff Of Nottingham, it has all of the bluffing and table talk of poker, but money is not a factor.
I used to play quite a bit of poker, well before I discovered boardgames.
My game group now is mostly people I previously played poker with, so while trying to ease them into games, Sheriff Of Nottingham and Cosmic Encounter have been the biggest hits.
I'm afraid it probably won't work.


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