Пускам една темичка , която пуснах и 2+2 относно промените покрай ЕПТ Барселона и как те може да ефектират върху Live МТТ Pokera. Ако имате сходно и на мойто мнение , нападнете ги и там. My view about recent EPT changes. Amaya trying to approach poker to a lottery. - Poker News - News, Views and Gossip Hello, dear poker community and lovers of the game around the world. After the recent changes in the distribution of the prize pools, tournament structures and whole EPT festival schedule occurred, I have decided that the way the organizers (Amaya/PokerStars) are trying to push the whole game and industry is pretty forbidding, sneaky and dark. In my opinion the sports and competition sides of the game, its individuality and attractiveness are slowly effaced. The offered variations of poker are much more approaching some kind of casino game or a lottery in which the player has chances close to zero winning in the long run. Important thing to consider is that these methods and policies might have been borrowed from other companies as well. That’s why with the help of little common sense, mathematics, psychology and business practices I will try to present my point of view regarding what Amaya is doing to the industry with the new changes and policies. How and why they might affect negative, not only to professional poker players, but to everybody enjoying the game and the industry in general. Hopefully after I expose more facts and examples everybody will have a moment with him/herself and strengthened his/her negative first impression about how abominable and nasty the changes are. I believe the recent events and announcements have been a breaking point and we as a community have to take care of the game we love and keep its authenticity, originality and beauty! I will jump straight into the explanations and examples, so I can clear, brighten and explain to more people why these policies are not good in general for the game. What were the key changes made before the start of the last EPT Season 13? - The prize pools pay not as usual 15%, but 20 to 23%. The prize for the places between 15% and 20 to 23% is around 1.1 the original buy-in! - Early levels of the tournament structures were removed and the antes were increased. - A policy which actually entered season 12 of EPT, but have been boosted for every single new stop is that the ratio of Turbo, Hyper Turbo and Super Hyper Turbo to Normal NL events it’s something like 3 to 1. Let’s take for example this and last year payouts from Barcelona. 2015 2016 1694p - Total prize pool - 8,215,900 1785p – Total prize pool - 8,657,250 FT – 4,189,080 FT – 4,063,150 1-3. 2,774,500 1-3. 2,576,150 4. 405,000 4. 535,100 7. 194,100 7. 230,000 9. 104,000 9. 123,450 10. 87,750 10. 98,350 15. 70,050 15. 69,170 20. 53,000 20. 49,000 25. 37,000 25. 33,000 35. 27,000 35. 21,300 70. 18,300 70. 15,400 247. 8,800 247. 8,600 247-360. 0 247-360. 5,600 If we make a dissection of the prize pool from this year and compare it to the old one we can see few things. - Top three prizes have been reduced - All places after 15th are getting smaller prize with larger field. - All these places are getting with around a buy-in less. - Around 7% from the whole prize pool are needed for the additional prizes. From a psychological and marketing perspective the top three places are still huge and are giving hopes to all the players visiting the festival and give them a reason to play. Everybody wants to become a millionaire. Basically everybody else who makes it into the money will get a prize that is much smaller that it’s supposed to be. For example 35th place in 2015 is paying 27,000 and 2016 – 21,300 and that’s with 100 more players larger field! This way people will receive a prize which will be not big enough to give them some kind of satisfaction and make them happy, but makes them feel sorry how they went so close to the million, but received just 2-3 times more what they paid to participate. I believe, that this group of people will be much more vulnerable, after they take their payouts and realize they are actually break even for the whole trip or have won just enough to cover their travel, accommodation and food expenses. They might decide to leave the location right away, but if they stay there are tournaments to be played and the money is there. Almost nobody cares about the prize distribution from 10th place to the last payout place, nobody is watching these prizes, if you finish 25th from 1,800 participants, you are not being interviewed and nobody cares if you took 3, 4, 5, 6 or 10 times the buy-in. So they can manipulate with these prizes as much as they want. What about the players that just took their money back? Every kind of gambling is giving you at least 1.5x your bet. I mean sports betting, roulette, blackjack, baccarat, all variations of coin flips. One of the main reasons for this is that no matter if you win or lose your levels of dopamine, serotonin, cortisol and all the hormones responsible for your adrenaline and addiction levels will raise and you will want to play more or stop. Well, if you bet and receive your money back after it, you will perceive that nothing happened and simply repeat the bet, but with poker things work a bit differently. When you go to a festival like EPT you hope to have pleasant time, have fun and then you know you can win some, lose some, maybe win big, maybe lose everything you came with?! Why the larger field tournaments started at 10a.m.? No, the idea wasn’t because they want you to go bed earlier and not play until midnight. The idea is to simply have more time for more tournaments. That’s why they have a tournament starting anytime of the day 10:00, 12:00, 16:00, 18:00, 20:00, 22:00. They want you to be at the casino all day, go sleep and come back. Whenever you bust into the money of a tournament and received back the buy-in, so you can register something else right away. But what does the schedule of the festival offers you? From 64 events in 14 days you have around 30 Turbos and Hyper Turbos, 10 Satellites with normal structure which are pretty turbo anyways, 10 non Holdem events, 4-5 High rollers and Super High rollers, event for women, event for seniors, some PLO events and around 7-8 normal No Limit Holdem events which are actually the most liked and played form of tournament poker by the whole population - recreational/gamblers/pros/fans of the game and so on. So whenever you bust from a tournament in the money the chances to jump into the hyper turbo that stars after dinner are pretty big. Simply not much else to play and you’re there anyways – you came to play. The problem is that all these Turbos, Hyper Turbos, Super Hyper Turbos, Turbo Satellites are having the same rake as a regular tournament. Well not exactly the same, if the tournament has buy-in higher than 2000, they reduce the rake from 10% to 7.5%. As higher the buy-in is, as lower the rake is. But it’s like that anyways. Regarding 1000 tournaments, it doesn’t matter if they have normal, turbo or hyper turbo structure, they always have 100 fee and 3% for staff. And these are the most played tournaments. Why the ante was increased from 10% of the BB to 18% of BB and why 100/200 with no ante was removed? Well, reason here is pretty simple – people will bust quicker as the game becomes much more aggressive and short. I have a perfect example for it and here it is: 2015 - Day 2 of the 2015 European Poker Tour €5,300 Main Event is done and dusted. After just about 1,000 players returned for action the field was steadily cut down to 343. Finishing atop the survivors was a familiar face as Nick Petrangelo bagged up 570,000. 2016 - Day 2 of the record-breaking 2016 PokerStars.es EPT Season 13 Barcelona €5,300 Main Event saw more than 900 players return to tables at the Casino Barcelona and another 28 hopefuls opted to buy-in with a fresh stack of 30 big blinds. Another issue with the 20%+ payouts is actually the bubble play and stalling. What happened on the Estrella High Roller was more than revealing. With 1,100 players starting the event and 240 in the money people started stalling from 350 left. Well, the tournament directors were hearing complaints from the whole room and decided to put the hand-for-hand play with 246 players left. The whole bubble process continued for an hour and 20 minutes and during that time we made no more than 12-14 hands. I told to the main tournament director that this is a joke and when they have such a huge fields and bubbles, they should pause the clock every 2-3 minutes for a hand. He told me that the average hand is 5 minutes. After that sentence, I received a quick flashback about the Hyper Turbo and Turbo tournaments, which gives you the opportunity to play 2 or 3 average hands per level, since they have 10 and 15 minute levels. Anyways we started the bubble with level of 1500/3000 and average stack of 40bbs, when we finished, it was 2500/5000 with average of 24bbs and just 5-6 players were out. Well that’s an issue for me. A lot of you might say “the money back prize actually should save time on bubble, because nobody is really concern about the small prize”, but I don’t think that this is exactly accurate. Truth is nobody wants to lose. So when it comes to prizes, everybody wants to get in. That’s just another unconsidered side effect of 20%+ payouts. Well, if you collect all of the upper changes and how they effect to the game, it’s pretty clear to me that the future policies of Amaya regarding poker are: - To approach the form on No Limit Tournament poker experience as much as possible to a game with a lottery character. - Raking more the whole money turnover of a single festival by offering us to play push or fold poker. - Pretending they do a lot for the industry by bringing more players from spin’n’goes, freerolls and so on, but actually not giving bigger prizes to anybody, expect 5-6 spots at the final table. - Not investing in better overall poker experience, but trying to make profit from side activities: 11 euro hot-dogs, crappy chairs, huge waiting lines for everything, same old small rooms with more and more tables. Scary thing here is that Pokerstars has always been and still is the most innovating, business analytic, investing in different forms of human know-how, acquiring software companies, spending huge budgets on various forms of marketing company in the industry. Unfortunately their competitors can easily see which business methods are gathering more profit and apply some of them into their new policies. For example EPT are offering Bounty and Turbo tournaments for at least 4-5 seasons and WSOP put their first Turbo and Bounty event in 2015. I’m not saying WSOP will go the same way, I’m sure they will not, because the game of poker is like a religion in the USA and has a strong community backgrounds. Unfortunately people are greedy and more money is always good - this is how to world works at the moment and anything is possible. I just realized I almost missed something really important, which supports my point of view a lot The 50k€ Super High Roller , would have been canceled, because all the high rollers announced via Twitter they will be not participating with 20-23% payout structure. Well , the Super High Rollers are really important from marketing considerations and growing the business. These are the tournaments with highest pressure, most drama, millions and millions of dollars or euros. They need a ton of cash and big balls to play. These are the tournaments where you can see all the best players around the world playing. Well, Super High Roller players are 150-200 from around the world and most of them know each other, even are good friends. These people ain’t stupid guys. Just the opposite most of them are pretty smart and sharp people and that’s why they can afford to play a SHR. All of them knew that this structure is not only bad for them, but it’s pretty bad for the industry. That’s why they have spoken their voices out loud. If there is no SHR this means Amaya really messed up everything. So Neil and others decided to put back the old 15% payout structure and the SHR began. This is a classical example of how corporations and governments doesn’t care about the masses and take more and more from them, because they can. But whenever somebody important and valuable is speaking, they take care of him. I don’t know about you people, but when and if I go to the next Pokerstars live event stop again, I would feel the same way like: taking a fast loan, buying cheddar cheese which there is no nutrition substances, going the long way with a taxi, being robbed at the main street of a big city, watching ads about losing weight supplements and so on. I would feel cheated, I would feel robbed. I believe that we as a community should make something to keep the authenticity, beauty and fun in the game, resist to the business models which are trying to kill the game and turn it into a casino game. The first thing that comes to my mind is to completely boycott EPT Malta. I’m pretty sure most of Bulgarian recreational and professional players will not go. The thing is that Bulgaria is a small country and wouldn’t affect as much as the bigger countries. I would be really thankful if somebody can translate these words in Italian and share it with the Italian community. I’m pretty sure if most of Italians have the facts in front of them they will definitely not like it and skip Malta. I said Italy, because usually this is the country with most participants in Malta. Oh, well that’s pretty much everything from me. Thank you for your attention and I apologize for my bad English grammar! P.S. I know Pokerstars has done tremendous things in positive aspect for the industry and have leading role for the game being so popular nowadays. Unfortunately Amaya is not Pokerstars anymore.