Poker has been around for hundreds of years and has changed a lot in that time. The poker we play today is very different from the game played in riverboat casinos for the first time in the 1800s. In 2022, poker is more popular than ever, thanks partly to the growth of online poker sites. The last ten years or so have seen more changes than ever to the game, including how and why people play. Here are some of the biggest changes poker has faced.
The Accessibility of Poker
Today, poker is far more accessible than at any point in history. Almost anyone can get online, load up a poker site and start playing. In years gone by, it was much harder to play poker, as you’d need to find a poker room or casino and join in when a space opened up on a table. Modern poker can be played 24/7 as there are always people online you can play against.
The increased accessibility of poker has meant that more people than ever are now playing. More people now play poker than ever, with an estimated 140 million players around the world. Online poker has been the biggest cause of this, but the game being featured in movies and TV shows has also helped.
Because it’s become so popular, new players always want to learn more about how to play. Poker resources are available all over the internet, and you can also find lots of books and other information guides. It’s now much easier for someone to learn about how to play poker and pick up knowledge that was never available just a few years ago.
Poker Skill Levels
With more people coming into the game, you’d think playing poker would get easier. If anything, it’s gotten harder. Poker is now more competitive than ever, and it’s potentially going to get even more difficult in the future. New players are now learning from a wealth of online resources and can also make the most of tools like poker tracking software. This software provides insights into how you play and lets you learn from your mistakes.
Some software can also be used to cheat, providing players with information on opponent hand ranges and giving them the best possible strategy. Online poker sites usually ban these software tools, but they’re still common and have made it much harder to play online.
In general, players are also far more aggressive than they were a few years ago. Today, passive players will struggle to compete. Although they might still win games if they’re good, they quickly get outpaced and beaten by players who use a more aggressive strategy. To succeed in poker, you need to be aggressive, and you need to put a lot of work into studying and practicing the game.
Poker as Entertainment
Poker first appeared on TV in the 1970s, but it wasn’t until the 2000s that it really started to gain popularity. While a lot of poker games are relatively uninteresting and slow to watch, they’re really exciting when they get going. Thanks to special tables and camera angles, viewers can see the cards of each player to give them a better understanding of what’s going on.
While poker tournaments like the World Series of Poker are still available to watch on TV, it’s not as popular as it was. However, online streaming has brought it to a new audience. There are lots of poker streams available to watch live on Twitch.tv and other streaming platforms. These allow fans of the game to watch and interact with one another, creating a new form of poker entertainment.