Hey, I wrote a little blog post about me jumping into plo, anyhow, I'd like to follow up here for strategic advice, if that is still shared. Nothing too complicated, nothing too advanced.
I logged a lot of midstakes hands of plo lately, a lot. Learned the game a lot also. Have a much better grasp and feel for the game and what to do in order to win/exploit.
PLO isn't really hard to get good at, but it seems very very hard to get great at. Not in the mathematical (most players can learn that pretty easily) but a lot more in the adaptation, the bluffing, the inducing, the sizings. It's so easy to simply get in 55/45 or 45/55 and grind it out and get free stacks by the fishes. But it is so hard to play those but also be a good winner in all the other spots.
Now that was the blog post. Here are a few of my interrogations and questions.
When grinding Stars, zoom games. It's always pretty much the same thing, you get a lot of HU pots, a lot of 3 handed pots and that's pretty much it, most players are relatively face up, they tend to underbluff (up to plo100z for my experience), etc. The game plays a little by it self, you can certainly grind it out for profit by bluffing casually and by staying in line.
I quit Stars zoom recently, wanted to hit the softer games on networks I used to play on.
Right now, my average players per flop at PLO100 is probably around 4.2 players/flop.
The game is very passive, not a lot of 3betting, a lot of calling stations. It's very hard to make a big mistake. I have watched some videos of how to play vs passive players, but this is a little different.
I have the feeling there isn't simply much we can do. In those games. Like nothing at all. It feels awful.
I tried a lot of things, tried to loosen up my game a little, which kind of failed because it's always 4 way pots and nobody is folding postflop, but you are pretty much playing a guessing game and when you are not drawing to the nuts, it's pretty dangerous/costly.
I tried to tighten up my game, which seemed the thing to do, but which is also a paradoxe since you are facing very weak competition.
I tried to barrel a lot, which went very bad, got called by easy folding hands too often. I tried to pretty much play as face up as I could, and cbet only in good spots depending on my holding and not of the board, that went okay.
But still, I cannot beat those games. That plo100 is a lot softer than PLO25z on stars, but still I simply cannot beat it. Bluffing and semi-bluffing is impossible and that aspect of PLO seems to be a good part of a good winrate.
Flops are always 4 way, there is no point in iso 3bet often/light a player when on the btn, SB and BB will snap call and so will initial raiser. At least one of them isn't going anywhere postflop.
I feel that my equity with whatever hand is always awful, that the grind is insanely hard, that you basically never win a hand. Are those type of games profitable? Like I said, you simply cannot bluff or semi bluff. You also cannot do much with not nutted hands, since someone somewhere will have a nutted hand and your equity will drop/be awful in get in spots.
Anyhow, this is so confusing, in NL I would love those games, you could get in 96/4 spots pretty easily or in 70%+ spot pretty easily. But in PLO, I feel like in most spots, when I have 35%+ on a 4 way-flop, I'm a god. And I always take that equity, but jesus does those spot swing.
I am so confused to the approach to have, and simply, cannot log a winning session to save my life. One last example would be, everytime I barrel my AXXXs hand on KsXsXx and the turn goes 6s, I would second barrel and get insta-pot shoved on. Not once, not twice, not 3 times, almost every single time. Seems fine when you've got the nuts, and obviously it pays off when you've got it. But damnit doe it not compute when you've got the nut blocker, still you've got to fold, that would so rarely happen on Stars for all the obvious reasons. Now seems simple to just wait for the nuts or the nut draws and profit profit profit. But that is not always easy and exactly all of the rest of the time, having to fold, is insanely costly. So in the end, do we really win?
Anyhow, I'd just like input on the approach to have, my only idea is probably to tighten up as fuck, which is boring, but I don't see any other way. I think abusing of check-raising might be better than barreling also. Problem is game is also pretty passive most of the time and you wont always have a bet to check raise. But pot will be bigger because people are not raising cbets often either.
So basically, I couldn't be more confused, I simply have no idea how to beat the softest games I have ever seen in my life. It was a lot easier to grind zoom on Stars and that doesn't make any f-king sense.