Diary of a Promo Junkie

I took a few months off from Replay and prolly will soon again but I’d like to share my recent promotions experience with all of you.

Omaha SnG - promo … This was both enjoyable and very competative as 1st 7 usually is. I didn’t have to cram games all day, nor did I feel “press’d” to play … By having Daily boards, you can try different strategies for “1st 7” and see which ones work better, plus if you go card dead 1 day, there’s always tomorrow … Very Fun PROMO … WHile I only took 2nd for total wins and didn’t win any 1 day, I cashed usually top 10 each day…

The Hustle - ring promo … After reading a recent post on the points formula for rings, I was curious and decided to play. I can tell you from a player standpoint, this was the most Un-Fun promo I have played in a long time. With the creation of promos for rings, staff tried a few different varieties… hands played, hands won, BB won, BB won/lost, ect ect ect… WHile I was gone they settled on the current formula which , ( to me ) makes it a participation event, with no Skill necessary to do well… I guess I have no skill cause I took 1st on the med LB.

Just saying it was un-fun, doesn’t help Replay tho… by wednesday I was already sick of it as a player, but play’d all week… If (RingGamePts) are the new normal for ring events, I would only like to humbly suggest that some form of skill be add’d to the basic RGP system. The formula seems weighted to hands played… not even flops seen, but just hands played … and certainly not hands won… What this says is, HE who can play the most tables @once for the longest each day Wins … and this totally leaves out the casual players, as only 3-4 maniac players are left @top by weeks end. PLus those maniac players are playing so many tables, they lag somewhat on all thier tables making it un-fun for everyone else too that like a faster paced game.

I guess I don’t know how to use the link function, sry all …

I like the random marathon event once and a while, but if that formula is always used, it makes EVERY event a marathon event, and is that the Funnest way for us players ??
Perhaps adding a component of “hands won” into the formula … Please add a skill component to the ring game pts formula.


They tried to do that by adding the “BB Won” component, but down-weighted it to a point where it’s wiped out by sheer volume of hands played. Appropriately weighting this metric in the overall RGP system would be a far superior “skill component” to merely counting the number of hands won.

Consider also that a player’s profitability should be fairly neutral to the number of players at the table. On the other hand, if the number of hands won is factored into the RGP formula, this can be hacked by playing at shorter-handed tables, where pots will be won by any given player (ceteris paribus) with higher frequency. As an example, a player sitting at a 4-handed table will win about 25% of the pots. Playing 9-handed will cut that to just 11.1%, not to mention taking longer as more people have to act.


Thats the potential “hook” to not only get greater participation, but to have tables fill easier … allowing players to start tables easier… here’s how.

Because both HandsPlayed and HandsWon have a statistical/speed adv. at a shorthanded table, anyone paying attention will join such tables. You get 2-3 ppl doing this, all of a sudden its no longer a shorthanded table its practically filled up. Tables will fill up faster, as players themselves regulate advantages. This is good for players, as well its good for Replay… Replay gets far more participation for the promos, better competition, and offers more ppl that “I can win” feeling … which will bring them back again, again, again. Its good for players because more players get that “I can win” feeling more often, less “run-a-ways” should occur, less often will players have to “wait” to join tables, and skill will be rewarded. Instead of say (4) tables of 9 and 1-2 waiters @ each, you’d hopefully get (6) tables of 7-8 players with noone waiting.

Ring Games are the hardest to develop promos for, with such few options for metrics available. I look’d thru my activity and for a 9max table, 100 hands took about 1h 45m. so lets look @ that as an example.

( player buys in for 100 BB , full table , 9max, current formula )
Lets say they play 50 hands, sit for 6 full orbits, and that takes about an hour. ( if this is a full 6max table it will take 33% less time, and 33% more BB paid )
Just for sitting there, they earn +50 pts for HandsPlayed and lose -2 pts just to pay blinds (-3pts if 6max). If they double thru ( 1 hand, with 100BB ), they earn an additional +20 pts. Also because someone raised thier blinds, they folded those hands too. (( HandsPlayed 50, FlopsSeen 1, HandsWon 1, BB paid 6, SB paid 6, BB won/lost +100 )) So they earn aprox 67 pts …

For TheHustle, I earned just over 12,000 pts, for 1 week ( 168 possible hours to play 24*7 ) … So thats an average of 71 pts per hour, if I played 24 hours a day straight for 7 days (1 table). If I only played 8 hrs each day, then its an average of 213 pts per hour. ( Thats insane ). by Wednesday I was the clear frontrunner, and by friday night it was down to 2 people who could win, thus a horserace… everyone else could only watch and hope for 3rd place. Because HandsPlayed was the dominant metric, as long as I play’d as much as the other person, basically they had NO chance to catch me ( with a 1000pt lead )… No matter how much they won… Trust me, Nomad tried really hard to catch me, and I tried just as hard not to let that happen.

Average players would feel great if they sit for 1 hour, and double thier chips and leave. Average players won’t have just been involved in 1 hand, they prolly see 30-40% of the flops, and of those maybee win 10% (hopefully)… which works out to (( HandsPlayed 50, FlopsSeen 16-20, HandsWon 5, BB paid 6, SB paid 6, BB won/lost +100 )). How can we even this out somewhat, in this example.
If you got 1pt for playing a hand, 1 pt for seeing a flop, 2 pts for winning a hand, and 1/2 pt for each BB won/lost … thats +50, +20, +10, -4.5, +50 or 126 pts … yet that person who just sits there and folds every hand only would get 46 pts, thus they would have to play 3 tables just to offset another player doing good on 1 table, and actually playing an average # of hands with an ave rate of success. Encouraging players to be “involved” on the tables they play on, to even out # of players @ each table themselves, and still rewarding winning(skill). Basically they got 70 pts for participation/trying and 56 pts for doing good… So it still is weighted somewhat to encourage people to play, yet doesn’t just reward quantity over quality as much. It does reward Skill ( winning ) because if you get really hott, then other players have to step up thier game to catch/beat you. Simply playing a zillion games per hor won’t quite cut it. ( now to even out the differences between 6max and 9max, unless you do a different LB for each… would be to divide by 6 the pts on a 9max, and divide by 9 the points on a 6max table. then multiply both results by 10, to move the decimal place 1 to the right… )

There is NO un-exploitable formula, I know Replay tried a few different options before settle’n on 1st 7 & best 7 for the Gemstone Leagues… I like the occasional Marathon event, I also feel sorry for the casual players that just can’t compete for the Leaderboards easily against the ppl thay do play 10+ hrs a day. Other than restrictions for Tables played @ same time ( hard to enforce/tabulate ) or # of hours played (again hard to do)… Ring Game Promotions will stay the hardest game type to develop Promotions for.

Since feedback is most helpfull when details are given, I have tried to be as complete as I can without stepp’n on anyone’s toes, while @least offering positive ways for everyone to enjoy playing Replay’s Promotions more.

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