Along with David Sklansky’s Hold’em Poker, Doyle Brunson’s Super/System, originally titled How I Made Over $1,000,000 Playing Poker, heralds the beginning of what I would call the “modern age” of poker. More than anything else, I believe that the rise in poker’s popularity over the last 25 years is due to the amount of good information that has been made available about the game, and Super/System is preeminent among the information sources that brought about this surge in popularity. However, it may be asked, how does this classic stand up more than 20 years after its initial publication?
The book begins with some introductory remarks, including an abbreviated history of Brunson’s poker career, before the author launches into some general strategies for winning poker. This is all stuff that today’s well-read poker player will take for granted: keep emotional control, carefully watch the competition, play patiently, etc., but it’s pretty much all good advice. I can’t say I completely agree with Brunson’s feelings about ESP, but the information he provides isn’t damaging.
Then, for the bulk of the book, Brunson has someone he considers to be a true expert in a given poker game lay out their advice on how to be a consistent winner. He assigned draw poker to Mike Caro, 7 card stud to Chip Reese, the various forms of lowball to Joey Hawthorne, 7 card stud high-low split to David Sklansky, and Bobby Baldwin and Brunson himself tackle limit and no-limit Texas hold’em, respectively. This is as solid a lineup of poker players as has ever been assembled. The book concludes with a glossary and a compendium of Slot poker numbers and charts compiled by Mike Caro, explaining the various possibilities of various occurrences in the games covered in the book.
Many of the games considered in Super/System have undergone considerable change since the book was written. When the book was published limit Hold’em structures were quite different than one would typically find today. It would be very difficult to find a draw high game spread in a card room today, and even lowball, …Read More