The concept of an ante in poker and how to master it What is an ante and how does it influence a poker game

Whether in online tournaments or online games live, poker is a discipline that requires time and patience. When the table comes alive, fans of the game can experience great emotions and have a lot of fun, but it doesn’t always happen that way. Players often have a lot of money in the balance, so they sometimes need a little extra motivation to take the risk of putting their chips in play. And poker has a few tools to do that, and that’s is what we are going to explain to you in detail by telling you about the antes.

In poker, the ante is a mandatory bet which, as its name suggests, must be paid prior to the actual distribution of the cards. But you have to be careful not to confuse it with blinds. The small and the big blinds are also bets that must be made before the hand is launched, but these rotate with each hand so that the player will only pay them once every 8 hands if the table has 8 players for example. The ante, him, must be paid by all players before all hands, thus allowing a kind of common pot from the start which can motivate undecided players to put down a few additional chips to try to grab it.

Its unique but is to entice players with a style rather softand who normally only plays with strong cards in his hands, to play, to bet and to take risks. In Stud Poker, which is a relatively calm variant of the game, an element like the front end is of paramount importance in speeding up the game. In Texas Hold’em, it can also help, although it will not be there. as decisive as in other versions of poker. But if we add the tokens of the blinds with those of the antes, on a non-negligible sum of money to be recovered and which will perhaps be worth the risk of betting.

In online poker, the ante is paid automatically without the player having to do anything. Any tournament will inform us in advance if the game we want to join works with antes or not, and if so, the organizers will also show us the amounts of these. You should know that the value of the antes increases as the game progresses, like the blinds, and often the antes only begin to appear at an already advanced stage of the game, that is to say when the players are even more cautious than usual with their chips and need a little nudge to get into a hand.

This late entry of antes is even more pronounced in tournaments in live where these only appear in the last moments, usually just before the bubble, when no player wants to take the risk of being eliminated while the first paid places are at hand. In this kind of tournament, it is possible that the system before put in place even though it had not been announced is at the start. This decision rests with the organizers, in order to provide a more attractive and tense game and to motivate those with a good stack of chips to continue to participate in the hands.

And as you can imagine, the front is a concept that can change quite a few things around a table. To reassure some players, it is important to say that the ante is generally not used in gamblingfor the simple reason that there are no real eliminations. On the other hand, it is much more present in multi-table tournaments.

But what influence do antes really have on poker? The first consequence is that the value of the hands played will generally be lower. Indeed, the players will be more motivated by the idea of ​​going to see the fiasco since they will have already put chips in play because of the obligatory ante and many will want to compensate for this loss by participating in returning to the hand. This will result in players with average hands not hesitating to bet, and not only those with strong hands.

The second consequence is that you will have to get used to seeing players trying to steal the blinds. But we can also try ourselves at this exercise, namely forcing his opponents to fold thanks to a strong raise. This is a fairly common practice to put pressure on opponents and is often commendable, and even more so if the pot has been enlarged by antes. Thus, this kind of evenings with antes tend to make the game both more interesting for the spectators but also much more stressful for the players. And for that alone, it’s worth a try.

And the third consequence is that this system before requires even more advanced strategies than usual and therefore favors players with the most accomplished technique. In general, in games with antes, it is often the best players who win, although of course the element of chance cannot be entirely set aside as long as it can turn things upside down in no time. .

Finally, you have to suffer the fact that the ante is generally equal at 10% of the blind and that it tends to boil the blood of aggressive style poker players who will take advantage of the proximity of the bubble to try to grab as many blinds and antes as possible from more defensive players. It will then be necessary to be united mentally and not to risk following too many reminders. And it will be necessary in particular to be wary of the players with the button, because it is the best position to steal the blinds. It will therefore be a question of knowing how to defend oneself against these attacks.

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