Choosing a Table
In the “lobby” of your online poker site you will find menu links to all the games available along with the site's tournament calendar. Pick the game or tournament that you want to play, highlight it to view the screen names of players already in that game, and note their chip count. You will also be able to find the play-money tables listed separately.
After you decide what limit to play, and whether to play with real money or play money, simply click on “Enter the game” or “Go to game” button.
When you cruise the available games in the limit you plan to play, you are able to see exactly who is playing in which games, thus allowing you to avoid any players you would rather not play against.
You should also be able to pick up on people who are playing in multiple games by noting whether the same screen names appear in more than one poker game.
A waiting list sign-up box is located just below the screen that shows the list of players in a particular game. Ideally, you don't want to wait too long. If there are only one or two names on the list ahead of you, you might put your name on that list and then go to the game, with notebook in hand, and study the players. Look to see how many call to see the flop and whether some call to see every flop. You will also be able to see the total number of chips they have in front of them and the size of the pot.
Will I be able to choose a specific character to suit my nickname, or am I stuck with the avatars seated around the virtual poker table?
There are a few sites that do allow you to choose a character image that matches your nickname when you log onto the site. Bodog Poker even allows you to upload a photo to use for your onscreen avatar.
Once you gain more experience playing online poker, you'll be in a better position to choose your games wisely. You will also have a better understanding of some of your future opponents' play as you pick up on their tells. Any knowledge of weak players in an online or offline poker game is a plus. Use this knowledge wisely and take advantage of any player weaknesses whenever the opportunity arises.