Bovada is the leading online poker room for U.S. players, and it is also the only site with 100% anonymous poker. Over the past several years it has grown to become the most trusted site in terms of reliable payments to U.S. players. So what is anonymous poker and how can you use it to your advantage?
When Bovada says anonymous poker, what they mean is that you don’t have a screen name that shows up to other players. So no one at the table knows who anyone else is. This is a huge difference from most online poker, where many players at the table use HUDs and other software that tells them all the tendencies of everyone at the table. Online poker at most sites has become a game of who knows the most about the other players at the table. What anonymous poker does is simulate walking into a poker room and sitting down at a table of strangers. This gives players who are willing to pay attention to the game a huge advantage.
Why did Bovada go to anonymous tables? The main reason is that it enables less experienced players a better chance. With more sophisticated players having software that very quickly shows tendencies, less experienced players are at a huge disadvantage in non-anonymous online poker. They quickly lose their money and quit playing, and that isn’t good for the online poker room – they want more players, which leads to more rake for them.
However, anonymous poker can also be very good for dedicated players, because it favors players who are willing to spend the time to watch their opponents and the game closely. Here are some tips for winning at Bovada Anonymous Poker:
1. Break out your paper and pencil! In the early days of online poker, players didn’t have software to keep track of other players, so many players took notes about their opponents’ tendencies. If you want to win at Bovada Anonymous poker, go back in time and start taking notes. At the low stakes tables, there are some bad players who you can get great reads on very quickly. Take your notes and gain that little advantage. Bovada is also different from many other online sites in that there isn’t chat, and there isn’t online note taking. So it really is similar to a live game, minus any social aspect.
2. Know the odds. If you don’t have much information about your opponents, and they don’t know much about you, the player who knows the odds the best has a big advantage. Study up on the odds of poker and make the right plays at the right time. Poker training becomes very important in anonymous poker.
3. This is a very rare occurrence, and I’ve very rarely seen this on Bovada (especially in low-mid stakes), but If something doesn’t seem right, leave the table. One concern with anonymous poker is that players have no way of identifying and avoiding “suspicious” opponents, such as colluding friends or suspected bots. Bovada says that they actively enforce fair play, but in reality most cheating is caught by players, not sites. Bots and cheaters usually make some very unusual plays. If you notice an opponent doing something no fair-playing human would do, consider switching tables. This is a very rare issue, and in no way outweighs the potential benefits of anonymous poker.
So overall, Bovada is an excellent site for U.S. players looking for a game where all players are on equal footing, and skill (as opposed to who has the most information or the best software) can lead to big wins. They have both cash games and great tournaments. Bovada offers a 100% bonus on 1st deposits for new players on their site – they double whatever amount you deposit. So if you are in the U.S. and have never played at Bovada, you can download the software from this link, follow the recommendations I listed, and have a great poker experience.
Getting rid of HUD’s would be the best thing for the game … not sure if I like anon players, but I like how Bovada has taken the lead on protecting poker’s most precious resource, the recreational player!