Playing online poker for fun – what’s the point?


Have you ever wondered why every online poker room has a play money section? Well, one of the reasons they bother to give their players this free taste of what’s awaiting them at real money tables, is to allow them to get to know the software, and familiarize with the interface, so once they hit the real tables, they don’t mess around holding up the game for others. Another reason is to showcase the software they’re using, so that players can assess whether they really want to be playing in that poker room or not.

There’s a lot of debate surrounding the question: is play money poker an efficient learning tool?
Some people say it is, others could swear it’s nothing but a useless waste of time. Well, obviously, the truth is somewhere in-between. I’d say, play money poker is fundamentally useful. For one thing it’s sure fun, so those who like to play poker only for the fun aspect of it, can do so without putting any of their money on the line. On the other hand, for complete rookies, it is the most powerful learning tool that ever existed, no doubts about that in my mind…

For those who say: play money poker is useless, I have one request only: show me a more efficient way of learning to play poker, for a complete rookie.
Not only does play money poker provide newbies with a thorough understanding of the rules of the game, it also teaches them some basic strategy and most of all, it teaches them how to beat online poker. When you play these tables, your object shouldn’t be to generate as much virtual cash as possible, but rather to learn as much as you can and observe different situations the real deal is going to throw at you.

You should take it as a general rule, that until you cannot consistently beat play money tables, you shouldn’t really move on to real money.

As any learning tool meant for beginners, play money poker obviously has its limitations. There comes a time when a player just has to move on to real money, and leave the fun-tables for other rookies to practice on.