Monday, March 31, 2008

A New Sheriff in Town

There's a New Sheriff In TownDecided yesterday to go ahead and make that last push toward getting the Silver Star on PokerStars. I was close when the day began, having to pick up nearly 100 more FPPs/VPPs to get there. Besides, I did get over to the gym on Saturday (finally), so that made me feel relatively less guilty about wasting away a few more hours in front of the laptop.

Ended up putting in several hundred hands of pot limit Omaha ($25 buy-in), limit Hold ’em ($1/$2), and Stud Eight-or-Better ($0.50/$1). Took a while, but I finally crossed the 1500 FPP/VPP mark around nine last night, after having taken a break to watch Davidson nearly pull the huge upset. (Didja notice how on CBS they abbreviated Davidson as “David” on the score line? They shoulda just gone ahead and listed Kansas as “Goliath.”) Logged off a winner for the day (about twenty-five clams up), though was a bit miffed at having made a dumb PLO play near the end that essentially cut my profit in half.

All in all, though, I think I did well not to push too hard (i.e., multitabling, playing too high) in order to rack up the points. As I mentioned over on the PokerSift blog yesterday, I know folks frequently end up getting into trouble chasing bonuses, oftentimes losing at the table more than they stand to gain from the bonus. I know that has happened to me a time or two. During these last few bonus chases, though, I’ve realized I’ve actually been able to play with extra patience, perhaps knowing that even when I’m folding a hand I’m still “earning” something just by sitting at the table.

Shamus Gets His StarNow, of course, I am curious to learn what exactly being a Silver Star means. When you reach Silver Star, PokerStars sends you a little email with a link leading you to the VIP Club page where you can read more about just what your little shiny star gets ya.

There are daily VIP tourneys for Silver Star peoples. Just 10 FPPs to enter, and they have $500 prize pools. Will likely have to try a few of those.

There are weekly VIP tourneys every Saturday afternoon, too. Those cost 100 FPPs, and have $20,000 prize pools. Might have to try a couple of those as well, if I can. Saturday afternoon is an excellent time for me, although I might end up having to multi-table it so as to play in Saturdays with Pauly (which I’ve missed the last few weeks).

Then there’s a big VIP tourney at the end of the month with a huge $100,000 prize pool. Looks like I’d have to satellite into that sucker.

A couple of other perks. One is that for April I’ll be earning FPPs at 1.5 times the usual rate, although one still earns VPPs at the same clip. (Meaning I probably can’t hope ever to rise above Silver Star status, practically speaking.)

Then there is the VIP Store where those with Silver Stars are allowed to purchase certain items others cannot. Hunted around there a little while, but didn’t really see a whole lot that I couldn’t also have gotten as a measly Bronze Star. I don’t care about clothing or coffee mugs or that folderol. The books are all the same (and at the same prices). There are a few electronics items that look interesting, such as the iPod 8 GB Nano, but I’d have to accumulate a whopping amount of FPPs this month to get there. Other stuff (tourney entries, gift certificates, etc.) would also be well above my FPP budget.

The only other item of interest here would be to trade 5,000 FPPs for $50 cash, an offer only Silver Stars are invited to take. If you look around on the forums, most judge that trade to be a relatively poor investment compared to playing certain SNGs and MTTs. There’s a lot of debate on the topic, but I’m seeing a lot of people calculating 62 or 63 FPPs to be equivalent to one dollar (a figure usually arrived at by comparing FPP price tags for various items and/or tourney entries). Trading 5,000 for fifty bucks would make each FPP worth only a penny (100 FPP = $1) -- on the surface, not such a good use of the FPPs, although since I rarely play tourneys it might be an option worth considering.

Stuff to ponder. Any of you Silver Stars out there have any ideas on the matter?

Meanwhile, if you were wondering, I pulled an Iggy with that photo above. You might recall how about three weeks ago the Blogfather published a first-ever photo of himself on Guinness and Poker. Actually this is not the first photo of me that has appeared on Hard-Boiled, but in the other I wasn’t facing the camera.

That’s a two-year-old Shamus up there. Check out those striped pants. Strikes fear in yr hearts, don’t it?

While we’re on the topic of public embarrassement, keep a watch on this space for the debut of The Hard-Boiled Poker Radio Show, due tomorrow. (Publishing the first episode on April Fool’s Day means I can always claim it was a joke later.)

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Blogger Klopzi said...

I've got SilverStar VIP status on Stars and I don't know what to do with it either. I don't play tournaments and I'm not interested in the random fare offered in the VIP store. I'm saving up for a $250 gift certificate but I doubt I'll earn enough points this year to do so, especially with other sites offering frequent bonuses and rakeback.

3/31/2008 1:50 PM  
Blogger said...

Good luck with the show. ... it ain't easy. 8-)

But given your due dilligence with writing this blog and your other poker dealings I'm sure it will be well-researched and enjoyable.

3/31/2008 2:34 PM  
Blogger WillWonka said...

I have to admit that I took the $50 a few times knowing that it wasn't the greatest value.

3/31/2008 5:43 PM  
Blogger Simon said...

When you order the books as SilverStar they come personally signed by the author.

Might not interest some but I like that kind of thing and have bought a few myself.

3/31/2008 11:22 PM  

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