It seems like it's hard to mess up Fantasyland. After all, you see all your cards at once. Beyond avoiding
an obvious mis-set, are you acheiving highest situational hand strength and max value from your opponent(s)?
OFC Theory: The "Cannibals": Cards that merge draw and value ranges, adding to one row while simultaneously
subtracting from another.
OPEN FACE ODDS
PINEAPPLE OPEN FACE STRATEGY
Categories: Pineapple, Probability
Seeing Spots -- Part I
December 13, 2014 -- Constant decisions have to be made in Open Face Chinese. Pineapple OFC
is particularly head-scratching, as you will always have at least 3 cards to decide what to do with! You often must
choose between at least two options, and discarding a card that could improve a row can be frustrating. But a firm grasp of the
math can be a great help in deciding whether to trust - or be suspicious of - your first instincts.
The following spot presents a small dilemma:
An obvious first choice here is to complete the full house in back for value.
Neither opponent is doing very well in the back row, so it appears
that I am well on my way to a back row win and a 6-point royalty times 2, or 12 easy points.
But what about the middle row? Adding the 4 makes 2-pair, taking a lead against the 55 on the right and hedging against a possible
AA from the villain on the left. And a JJJT back row still takes a substantial lead there. So I am adding scoop equity
by two-pairing the middle, as well as giving myself an opportunity to bink a high pair in front and go to Fantasyland.
And, surprisingly, a 3-outer (JTT) is still 58% to come in even after discarding the T.
I hate to give up the full house royalties, however, so I'm inclined to fill up the boat now. 58% chance of completing also means
42% chance of missing. And there are more outs in the middle overall, 7 in total. What are my odds to
get two-pair or trips the middle if I don't set the 4 now? A whopping 90%, with a 43% chance I hit trip deuces for an extra 4 points.
So after this brief math-check, I can go ahead with my full house, nearly guaranteed to make a hand in the middle which can support a higher pair in the front row,
while also taking the lead in the middle.
The last two cards set are shaded, so you can see each players' last pull. My two pair (or better) filled out the
middle, as expected. Opponent on right fouled, and opponent on left
binked an Ace on the last pull to avoid the scoop, and I got close to the max value I could expect without
going to Fantasyland, which would have been 24 points.
At the end of the day I went with my initial instinct, but it was nice to back it up with the math.
The hand was a 19-point win, which was just fine in a 3-handed game.
If you'd like your very own set of heads up and 3-handed Pineapple odds charts, you can purchase them here for a couple bucks:
PINEAPPLE OFC CHARTS