Zoom Poker Strategy

by trikkur

Zoom Poker at PokerStars is super-fast format which uses the pooled player concept first introduced as Rush Poker by Full Tilt. Players in each pool are randomly combined to form a table for each new hand. The key to this format is a ‘Fast Fold’ button. This allows players to fold before the action reaches them, instantly starting a new hand. By cutting out the dead time usually spent waiting for other players to complete their action, you are able to play 100’s of hands an hour at Zoom Poker.

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With large pools of players and a fast format, you will not have much opportunity to get reads on the play of your opponents. Furthermore, Zoom is a fun format, which attracts a lot of recreational players – many of whom have little poker strategy knowledge. Combining these two factors, you will see that a tight aggressive approach is the best Zoom Poker Strategy.

Tight Aggressive Zoom Strategy

Looking at the Zoom lobby the players seeing each flop percentage varies from 21% at the 1c / 2c level up to 12% in the 50c / $1 blinds game. Since players can immediately go to a new hand by folding, the hand ranges (See Video Trikkur 5 – Hand Ranges) are extremely tight. Early position raises in Zoom must be given a lot of respect – unless you have a specific note that an individual is a light raiser. These tighter ranges ensure that those players using the ‘readless’ environment to play hyper-aggressively will find themselves up against premium hands too often for this to pay.

Later position raises are not always strong, with many players raising their button and cutoff light (See Video Table Positions in Texas Hold’em). You should also watch out for a small blind that makes a 3-bet. Since this player can fast fold from the start, anyone who waits for the action to get to them in the small blind has a hand they really wanted to play. While it can be tempting to think that the small blind is simply restealing your button raise – it is far more likely they are betting for value than in a regular cash game.

Set mining is the bread and butter of Zoom Poker games. Again this comes from the stronger starting hand ranges and lack of reads. In a regular game your opponents can (rightly) get suspicious when you suddenly wake up and start betting – particularly out of position. In Zoom there are fewer reads, and your opponents are more likely to have an overpair too – a great combination which will get your set paid off more often.

Zoom Poker Tables

A great weapon to have in your zoom poker arsenal is taking proper notes and making reads. While the fast format and ever changing players make this seem difficult, you only need to make a few notes per session for these to start having an effect. Having insight into someone’s betting lines has even bigger value in a pooled poker game than a regular game – because the players will not expect anyone to be noticing that their plays are standardized. You can easily sit out of the game for a few seconds and use the hand history view to make that note. These notes will quickly become a big source of profits for you – and your opponents will never even realize that you have figured out their lines. I also expect that the major poker tools such as Holdem Manager and PokerTracker will come up with HUDs adapted for Zoom Poker very soon.

Finally, remember that the vast majority of your profits will come from recreational players making big mistakes. Getting creative with your lines is not necessary, simple ‘ABC’ poker will make you plenty of money.

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