Posts Tagged ‘Unibet’

Unibet Pares Back High Stakes Cash Games

 Unibet Pares Back High Stakes Cash Games

It has been a while since we have heard of an online poker room cutting back its high stakes cash game offerings, but here we are again. Unibet Poker has announced that it has removed its highest level of cash game, the €800 No-Limit and Pot-Limit tables. There was not a whole lot of action at these lofty heights, but Unibet feels that their elimination is the best move for the health of its poker economy. The games were added less than a year ago, in March 2017.

Unibet’s Head of Poker David Pomroy explained:

Our main priority has always been to safeguard the ecology of our site as everything we do is ultimately built on that foundation. The addition of NL800 and PL800 had contributed to short-handed games and slightly faster loss rates of recreational players at our higher stakes. Although the situation was by no means critical, we decided it was best to act on that trend sooner rather than later. We’ll be launching a new promotion next month which will be aimed at our recreational higher stakes players and will consider restoring NL800 and PL800 in the future once we feel a sufficient support structure is in place. This decision doesn’t change our long-term ambitions to continue growing the site but right now our focus is on ensuring that we continue to offer a non-predatory environment and the most enjoyable cash games online.

Analyzing that statement a bit (and without first-hand knowledge of what the Unibet lobby has looked like of late), it looks like what was happening was that deep pocketed casual players – and what in many cases may have been “fish” – were getting destroyed at the high stakes tables. There seemed to be a couple things at play contributing to that. One was that the €800 No-Limit and Pot-Limit tables were naturally not as popular as low stakes games and were thus less populated, creating short-handed tables. Second, those that did sit at the tables are generally going to be the most skilled players. Add those two things up and you get recreational players playing short-handed games – games in which blinds come around faster and which generally require more skill than full-ring – against tough players, resulting in rec players’ accounts getting drained quickly.

Online poker rooms love high stakes recreational players, as they are the ones that lose money and have to re-deposit, but they don’t want them losing quickly and not having fun. If that happens, the players are less likely to re-deposit and keep playing. Thus the need to protect them and, in Unibet’s case, remove the highest stakes cash game tables from the lobby.

The highest stakes No-Limit and Pot-Limit games on Unibet are now €400, the same level it was a few years ago.

The post Unibet Pares Back High Stakes Cash Games appeared first on Poker News Daily.

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Unibet to Launch Around the World Dream Raffle with New Poker Software

 Unibet to Launch Around the World Dream Raffle with New Poker Software

With Unibet set to go live with its long-awaited new poker client on Thursday, the online poker room is also gearing up for spiffy new giveaway to promote the upgraded software. Dubbed the “Around the World Dream Raffle,” Unibet will be giving two dozen phenomenal trips away, including one that will treat someone to a month-long vacation visiting some of the greatest locations on Earth.

Starting December 1st, the day the new poker client goes live, Unibet will randomly drop raffle tickets at the real money cash tables. The player on the button at the lucky table that is chosen at any given moment will win the Around the World Dream ticket, while the rest of the players at the table will be granted Unibet Open qualifier tickets.

All tickets are not created equal, however. The higher the stakes of the cash game table (No-Limit and Pot-Limit only, not Fixed-Limit), the better the potential prize. Here is how it breaks down:

Gold Raffle Ticket – NL/PL25 and above – €10 UO qualifier ticket for everyone else
Silver Raffle Ticket – NL/PL10 and above – €10 UO qualifier ticket for everyone else
Bronze Raffle Ticket – NL/PL4 and above – €2 UO qualifier ticket for everyone else

There will be 5 Gold tickets dropped per day, 10 Silver tickets per day, and 30 Bronze tickets per day. Everybody who wins a ticket will win something, even if it is not one of the biggest prizes.

SPEAKING OF…the ultimate prize for the Gold level is a 28-day journey to the “New 7 Wonders of the World,” a trip valued at £31,088. The Wonders and their locations include, in the order they would be visited:

Rome (Colosseum)
Amman (Petra)
Agra (Taj Mahal)
Beijing (Great Wall of China)
Cancun (Chechen Itza)
Cusco (Machu Picchu)
Rio De Janeiro (Christ the Redeemer)

Also included in the prize package is all the transportation and 4- and 5-star accommodations one would need.

Unibet is also awarding another 23 Gold ticket winners various trips such as a South African safari, sailing in Barcelona, and golf in Ireland. Non-trip winners will win Unibet Open packages or tournament tickets.

The top prizes for both the Silver and Bronze tiers are a €3,000 Travel Experience plus €2,000 cash. Other top Silver prizes include a laptop, a €2,000 Unibet DSO Mauritius package, and a €750 UK Tour package. The remainder of the prizes for both levels are tournament tickets.

The raffle will be held live on Twitch on Saturday, January 7th, 2017. The top prizes will be hand drawn and announced by David Vanderheyden, while the lower value prizes will be selected by an automated randomizer program. Winners will be notified via e-mail within seven days, so it is not necessary for raffle ticket holders to be watching the drawing as it happens.

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Unibet Balking at Lottery Sit-and-Go’s

 Unibet Balking at Lottery Sit and Go’s

Lottery Sit-and-Go’s are arguably the hottest thing going in online poker. Seemingly every online poker site and network is adding its own version of the game to its lobby. One exception, though, is Unibet. In an interview with PokerIndustryPRO (paywall), Unibets’ Head of Poker, Andrew West, explained that his site has no plans to join the fray and launch a Lottery Sit-and-Go variant.

Standard poker, whether it be ring games, Sit-and-Go’s, or multi-table tournaments, can be a heck of a lot of fun. Poker can also get boring. Games can become a test of patience and willpower, as players just fold, fold, fold, check, fold, and maybe raise once in a while. When I played regularly, I was a tight player myself, but just as I hated it when the table was too loose and crazy (I know, I should like that), it got incredibly irritating when everyone was as tight or tighter than I was.

Lottery Sit-and-Go’s appeal to many types of players, but particularly those that just want to play some action-filled poker with a chance at a big payout and then get on with their day. These types of games are generally three-handed (there are exceptions), short-stacked, hyper-turbo Sit-and-Go’s, so players can’t just sit around and fold their way into the money. At the same time, the prize pool is not known to the players until the game starts. Once the game begins, the prize pool is revealed; it is usually only going to be two or four times the buy-in, but on rare occasions, it can get as high as thousands of times the buy-in, depending on the site. This is where the “lottery” part of the name comes in. While it is unlikely that you will see a huge prize pool and corresponding first prize, it is entirely possible to make a huge chunk of change for a small buy-in in just a matter of minutes.

Recreational players, in particular, have flocked to Lottery Sit-and-Go’s. And in many cases, seasoned pros have followed, going where the action is. It seems like if a poker room wants to survive, it needs to add Lottery Sit-and-Go’s.

But Andrew West said that’s not going to happen at Unibet. “At some stage,” he said, “a feature becomes industry standard and you lose players by not having it. I don’t think that’s where Expresso-like games are yet, and I don’t think they’ll get there any time soon.”

Expresso Poker was the original Lottery Sit-and-Go, launched by French site Winamax in 2013.

What West and his colleagues don’t like about the games is the high variance. With stacks so short, blind levels so fast, and blinds hitting players almost every hand, it sometimes seems that “lottery” has to do with the luck it takes to win. Certainly, there is still skill involved and the best players have been able to modify their usual strategy to win more often than casual players, but it can definitely get tricky to navigate such a wild game.

“They’re definitely fun, but they’re too high variance for there to be many winners, and I think you need winners for games to have a future. They’re also vulnerable to 3rd party software granting huge edges,” West said.

PokerScout currently ranks Unibet as the 12th largest poker room on the internet, with a seven-day average of 650 cash game players. The popularity of Lottery Sit-and-Go’s has actually skewed rankings such as this, as some sites have lost cash game traffic despite retaining their customers, as players have migrated from cash games to Lottery Sit-and-Go’s.

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