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Players sometimes ask how to adjust their game to the particular circumstances that prevail in online micro-limit games, as well as brick-and-mortar games at limits such as $2/4 and $3/6, where players are very loose and often passive.

Limit hold-em

For full book-length treatments of small-stakes limit hold-em see Winning Low-Limit Hold'em, Getting Started in Hold 'em, and Small Stakes Hold 'em. In brief, some of the adjustments involved are:

  • Realize that speculative hands are more often profitable. This means pairs, even small ones, and suited connectors have a positive expected value from pretty much any position as long as the game isn't terribly aggressive preflop (so that you can reasonably expect to see the flop for one or two bets). The reason why these hands become so much better in these games is that they can make sets and full houses or straights and flushes, respectively[1], which have greater potential to win bigger pots with more participants.
  • Drawing hands on the flop are more likely to retain their value. You're far more likely to have pot odds to draw to gutshots, two overcards, or various composite draws incorporating pairs backdoor flush and straight draws.
  • With more people in the pot, the average winning hand will need to be stronger; top pair is less likely to hold up to win a pot.[1] Conversely, when you do win a pot it may be huge! Therefore be prepared for more variance. It comes with the territory in low-limit games.

[1]Ed Miller, Small Stakes Hold 'em (Henderson, NV: Two Plus Two Publishing, 2004), p. ???.

[2]Lee Jones, Winning Low-Limit Hold'em, 2nd edition.