When Full Tilt Poker announced the launch of Rush Poker this week, I thought to myself, “Seriously? It’s going to be video game poker!” I thought it was going to be terrible. I was both right and wrong.
It is kind of like video game poker, but you know what? It’s also kind of fun.
Some people have been saying that Rush Poker fundamentally changes the way poker is played, but I disagree. Party Poker’s HellKat tournaments that it introduced back in 2007 changed the way Sit-and-Go’s were played much more than Rush Poker changes cash games. And that’s surprising, considering that Party Poker, though a fixture in the online poker industry, has not really been too revolutionary over the years. Rush Poker is still poker. What Full Tilt did, however, was give casual players something that feels more like a quick-hitting, exciting game rather than a yawn-inducing grind.
I am actually a very patient player myself, but the few times I have played at the Rush tables, I have found that it’s pretty exhilarating to be able to see hand after hand after hand without so much as a few seconds break to grab a sip of water. Even the animation as you move to the next table is cool. It does feel like a video game. And I like video games. I get the feeling of constantly being in motion, rather than sitting at my desk, chin in hand, waiting for a couple players to finish the turn and river.
But I also like it for the potential profitability. Rush Poker was obviously invented by Full Tilt Poker for two reasons: 1) more hands per hour means more rake per hour, and 2) more action and more excitement brings in the losing, recreational players. It’s that second point that should make the games profitable, at least until people figure them out. There are many more casual players than serious players at these Rush Poker tables, so there are many more chips out there to be scooped up.
What I have found interesting, too, is that the bad players are actually worse at Rush Poker than they are at regular poker. First, they tend to play way too tight pre-flop. I am normally a very tight player, but the thing about Rush Poker is that recreational players now have an incentive to fold. In regular games, they don’t like to fold because they want action, which is very good in the long-run for the more serious players, but can also lead to more variance, as the casual players will suck out with every hand imaginable. Now, with Rush Poker, they are happy to fold because another hand, and another chance for pocket Aces, is a second away. Pre-flop, the game looks very exploitable so far. In general, it is easier to steal blinds because of the incentive to fold, and if someone doesn’t fold to a raise, they probably have a good hand.
After the flop, players are also unlikely to challenge your aggression if they don’t have anything, but if they did hit anything, even a good draw, watch out. The “fish” won’t be apt to release their hands. So while aggression is still good post-flop, go easy on the size of the continuation bets, as a moderate bet will typically serve the same purpose as a large one, without the risk.
I am not concerned, like many serious players are, that I won’t be able to use my HUD or get detailed stats on my opponents. Note taking is easy enough to do and people so far have been playing much more ABC-styles of play, making reads relatively simple. I do worry a bit about Rush Poker’s potential effect on the regular tables, though. If casual players are drawn to Rush Poker, that means the regular tables will get tougher as they become more concentrated with higher skilled players. For now, though, I am going to enjoy playing a game of Rush Poker now and then. That is, provided I don’t lose my buy-in within a few minutes.

Tight Poker Staff

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Tight Poker Staff

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For nearly two decades, we’ve provided the best in class for poker site reviews, top online poker bonuses, strategy tips, poker news, and exclusive free poker content.  Consisting of a team of poker and gambling experts, we deliver the best online poker brand experience for players of all levels, from the fish to the sharks.
For nearly two decades, we’ve provided the best in class for poker site reviews, top online poker bonuses, strategy tips, poker news, and exclusive free poker content.  Consisting of a team of poker and gambling experts, we deliver the best online poker brand experience for players of all levels, from the fish to the sharks.