How to identify your opponents Texas Holdem image and personality?

Elvis Elvis

“Image means personality. Every poker player has a personality that can make or break them at a poker table.”

Your Texas Holdem image is a crucial part of playing Texas holdem and overall poker. Before I started writing this section of identifying Texas Holdem player types, I read an article that I found really interesting that relates to table image.

Bill Burton, book author and professional Holdem player, shares his experience when he was playing Texas Holdem at the Mirage in Las Vegas. A player left his table and a man wearing shorts and a Hawaiian shirt filled the seat. Bill explains, “I immediately pegged this guy for another tourist. Soon after he sat down he was telling stories and joking with the dealer and some of the other players. He didn’t seem to have a care in the world as he sat there talking and playing.” Everyone at the table perceived this character Texas Holdem image as a fish, but Bill noticed that he was winning with his very tight and aggressive play.

As Bill left the table and went to the cashier to cash out, he bumped into his tourist friend and introduced his himself. Bill explains, “I asked him where he was from and to my surprise he said he lived in Las Vegas. I mentioned that he looked like a tourist. ‘I know,’ he said. ‘Why would I want anyone at the table to think I’m a local?’”

How to identify your opponents Texas Holdem image and personality?

The following descriptions are general personalities one may find at a Texas Holdem table. But remember, opponents may use their table image to throw you off to make you believe they are something that they are not.

A Fish – The worst limit and no limit Texas Holdem image and player there is. Also the most prevalent, fishes have poor hand selections and will call just about anything (also known as Calling Stations). This person has very little skill or discipline, investing into too many hands, hoping for a lucky break. Most chips are earned from these players. However, beware of fishes raising, which obviously indicates that they’re hand is huge!

Weak-Tight Players – These players are the complete opposite of a Fish or Calling Stations and possess similar skills to a winning Texas Holdem image or player, but with one exception – they’re a bit scared. They are quite passive and will often check or call. They fear losing a pot with an average hand and get bullied around with raises. These Texas Holdem players may seem easy to push around, but they are capable of trapping you later on.

Maniac – Also known as a loose-aggressive Texas Holdem player, these players play as many cards as the fish but are inclined to raise and reraise. It’s quite difficult to tell if they are bluffing or not. Isolating these players by reraising them off guard or having a decent hand will scare them away. Play tight against these opponents and trap these players to knock them out.

The Rock – A super tight Texas Holdem player who only plays premium hands. When they limp in or call a raise, you’ll know exactly what they have (AA, AK, AJ, KK, etc). Rock players are very predictable; so when the rock raises, it should be obvious to get out of their way and fold.

Tight-Aggressive Players - These Texas Holdem players are at the top of the pyramid: strategic and tactically sound. Tight-aggressive players have the ability to adapt to different games and players. They have control over the table and are much more eager to bet at the pot rather than call. They change pace at anytime, making them very unpredictable and feared by their opponents.