Playing some lower stakes tournaments and freeroll tournaments, I play pretty loose. I track my VPIP (or whatever its called, Voluntary Put in Pot Pre-Flop I believe is the long form) for just the session. My VP is usually around 75 - 85 in these and I do very well at first, I build a large chip stack almost every time end up in the top 10 for most of the tourny but always end up busting out close to the bubble.

I tried to adjust by tightening up once I had a big stack and the player pool started dwindling, but this doesn't seem to help. I play tight and the other players are still playing like maniacs, I pick my spot w/ AA or AK or whatever, then get trounced. Sometimes 3 or 4 times in a row to go out.

This is online play so no doubt could just be the rigged casino ripping me off, but I'm wondering if anyone had any advice on playing at this level. I'm great at building a huge stack, but I just can't seem to hold onto it until the bubble. Sometimes going out as the last person before the money which is extremely depressing after beating out thousands of people and spending hours on something.

Any advice or help would be much appreciated.

1 Answer 1


A VP$IP (voluntarily put $ into pot) of 75%-85% is not just big, it's gravy. You're not just playing loose, you're playing in maniac status, just spewing money and i guess in very marginal situations due to frequency of plays.

The VPIP is just the frequency of raising and calling preflop. I don't know if you're calling more than raising but calling too much is worst than raising. I guess you're calling too much in late stages / before the bubble without the required respect for your hand or your stack.

For example, if you have a deep stack eg. 45+ blinds it's not optimal to lose all of them overplaying a hand like A♥K♠ by shoving it against another big stack. I see many player overplaying this hand without respect to their big stack.

Additionally, if you table is a pool of maniacal fishes that raising/re-raising/shoving one after another (frequent in freerolls), it's good to fold even with TT/JJ/QQ if these players can hurt you because they have similar stacks or you sense you're going to be called by all these guys.

Don't try to be more aggressive than them, instead search for optimal situations (be late in position, after you see a lot of folds) before acting. Although you can't get a good advice unless you post a specific hand(s) and some reads or villain stats.

  • Thanks for the advice, maybe I should be folding those high pockets late in tourny, seems to be what i go out on every time, QQ, KK, AA getting busted up. I do realize the VPIP is way high, but everyone is playing like fish with same VPIP as me. Mine is high because I call/raise just about anything pre-flop, and post flop I'm betting any pot that's check to me with a small bet, but other than that, i'm folding to any re-raise post flop if I don't have a strong hand. VPIP is high, but play is still very strong and only going further with good hands. Jun 29, 2015 at 17:58
  • In the early stages, I go big or go home (its just a freeroll anyway), so if I survive that, I'm usually at 45+ BB the rest of the time, and I just grow my stack by bullying and catching fish w/ weaker hands going all in. I dunno, maybe I just need to fold everything once it gets to the point that I have a large enough stack to bubble. I guess my thinking is, who cares if I bubble, if I got like 5 chips left after that. Trying to keep the large stack and keep building it so i have a chance at 1st - 3rd place. Perhaps I need to change that thinking. Jun 29, 2015 at 18:00
  • Also, w/ AK and people pushing and stuff like that, I'm not one of those guys. I realize AK is only good if it hits or you get lucky vs 1 or 2 opponents and never go all in like a moron pre-flop vs full table at late stages. I'm very very careful about stuff like that. I've been playing a long time but mostly against good players so this freeroll stuff i kind of not my forte. These guys go all in pre-flop with like 57o like its the best hand in the game. It's not uncommon to see two guys all in w/ 57o and 85o pre-flop and it's like wtf I just folded AJ suited. You goofs! Jun 29, 2015 at 18:03
  • @Notorious Pet0, no i didnt said to fold AA/KK/QQ, only these medium-big like TT/JJ and only if there is a danger to get called by 5,6 guys. In that case, you still want to raise these hands and more aggressively to reduce the aggressive field you're dealing against. It's good that you realized it's bad to call everything; the worst hands to call with are hands like AJ, AT, KJ that are going to cost you money. It's ok to call hands like 22-99, 76s, QJs on planning to flop a monster. Against very aggros players you planning to play hands that flop monsters
    – user1165
    Jun 29, 2015 at 18:08
  • 1
    Well I placed 3rd in that tourny after getting to final table with 2BB left. Played super tight from about 5 tables in as I got hit with a couple bad beats and my stack got chopped in half at that point. I gotta give you the accept on this one as I can only assume it was following your advice that got me to the money. I have played many many many of these same tourny's and never bubbled until today. Thanks for all the help! Jun 29, 2015 at 22:32

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