Should Poker be Considered a Strategy Game Just like Chess?
From a bird’s eye view the contrasts between chess and poker could fill a small book. The players’ tools are different, cards to chess pieces, chessboard to a felt table, and in fact, the only similar thing in terms of appearances could be the players themselves sometimes.
Players such as Ylon Schwartz (Peak rating of 2408) made the switch from playing high levels of chess to poker simply because “A lot of people are broke playing chess,” he told pokerlistings.com. Ylon Schwartz started his career young as a fixed gambler, betting people that he would be able to throw a lemon over Burger King when he had already practiced the night before. As of 2012 his winnings have exceeded 4.6M. Ylon believes many skills developed by playing chess can be carried over to playing poker.
A Game will inevitably reveal itself as to whether it’s a strategy game or not after long periods of play due to standard deviation. For example if a computer played out a simulation of rock paper scissors you may expect after 1000 matches that the results will be near 333 victories for each respective object in rock paper scissors. Statistically, neither side had an edge against each other so the amount of victories would be very similar. However, due to variance one may pull just a bit more victories than the other. Another situation that may arise from variance is rock beating scissors 20 times in a row. That may raise a few eyebrows but the results will always be close if played long enough.
It’d be no surprise that a much higher rated chess player would win many more times against a lower rated chess player than he would lose. The same really can be said for poker. A better poker player will undoubtedly have a higher chance of winning more money than a worst poker player and will win more when played long enough. It’s no wonder poker champions are usually familiar faces. Poker just lends itself to more variance due to the rules and nature of the game. When played long enough, the only edge a player has over others is their experience and intellect.