Thursday, June 07, 2012

Looking for a Game

Merge failHave to say I’ve all but given up on online poker at the moment. Still have those small rolls on a couple of Merge sites (Hero and Carbon), but a recent “upgrade” of the Merge network has introduced so many issues that playing anything has become quite a struggle.

Two days ago I thought I’d try a sit-n-go on Hero, but couldn’t get past the initial tourney lobbies to get a seat. Then yesterday I did manage to register for one, but when the SNG began the table never opened. When I tried to open the table manually, I encountered the above image.

None more black, as Nigel Tufnel would say.

I tweeted that picture yesterday, in response to which Kevmath quipped: “That picture's still loading, what's supposed to happen? #CWIDT.” I told him it was reminding me of the old Full Tilt Poker promise “You're just a few seconds away from playing the most exciting poker games anywhere online” we used to stare at when the client wouldn’t load.

Was kind of funny, actually, as the tourney lobby continued to reflect the SNG going on as usual, with the levels going up and the stack sizes changing, ostensibly because blinds were being won. At one point I was weirdly leading the SNG, then just as strangely two-thirds of my stack disappeared and I was last. I can’t figure how that could happen without someone actually playing my stack, but who knows?

In any case, after about 40 minutes or so the SNG was finally shut down and the entry fees refunded. Meanwhile, I did manage to get a cash table to load, and everyone there was complaining in the chat box about various problems they were encountering with the site, including difficulties related to cashing out.

Speaking of, players on Lock Poker -- which recently broke away from Merge to join up with Cake Poker to form their own network, called Revolution Gaming -- apparently have encountered some examples of credit card fraud related to the cards they’ve used on that site. Players on Carbon Poker (still with Merge) have encountered similar issues, as PokerFuse reported yesterday.

I mentioned before how after running into initial difficulty when attempting to deposit on sites following Black Friday, I essentially gave up trying. Eventually I won some cabbage in freerolls on both Hero and Carbon, and that’s the money with which I’ve played on those sites. I have never tried to withdraw from either (not that there’s much there to take out).

My friend Bob, the Poker Grump, had similar difficulties with Merge yesterday. Bob has been more adventurous than I with online poker of late. Just the other day he wrote an informative post updating his current experiences with various sites, including Bovada, Black Chip Poker (a Merge site), Luvin Poker (an Everleaf site), the Winning Poker Network (formerly known as Doyle’s Room), and Cake Poker. The post provides good overview of the post-apocalyptic-wasteland-like-scene we currently have here in the U.S. as far as online poker is concerned.

Meanwhile, play money games on PokerStars work beautifully. I always liked Stars’ software much better than FTP’s, actually, and don’t really get it when people keep repeating the line that FTP had the best software at the time of its demise.

Join the Hard-Boiled Poker 'Home Game' at PokerStarsI started a Hard-Boiled Poker “Home Game” several months months ago, and at the end of the Punta del Este trip I finally invited some of my buddies to join and we played a few SNGs. Gave me the idea to crank up the sucker for real, perhaps eventually hosting some sort of weekly tourney for readers of the blog.

If anyone with a PokerStars account wants to join my Home Game, the Club ID is 530631 and the invitation code is noshinola. (Here’s an overview of what PS Home Games are and how they work, in case you aren’t up on them.) I’ll probably wait a bit to see if the club fills up with folks, and if it does I’ll start scheduling some tourneys for us. Will announce tourneys via Twitter (@hardboiledpoker) and perhaps write about them here, too.

Might be fun. Something to do, anyway, while this other game is still loading.

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Blogger Gnome said...

I thought Full Tilt's software was far better than Stars'. On Stars, when a seat came open on the waiting list, I often had to click it multiple times before it would let me sit down. Stars' lobby also was more difficult to filter. Overall, FT's site was more responsive to my clicks, it looked better and it was easier to navigate, at least for cash games.

6/07/2012 2:34 PM  
Blogger Stock said...

Bovada has been OK if you can get by the substandard but functional software. I've decided the anonymous feature is a plus for the low level player. One can play as loose or tight as one desires and not be labeled as such by regular opponents. The original argument about collusion is a minor concern and clearly negated at low level play. Besides, beggars (in the USA) can't be choosers.

6/08/2012 12:16 PM  

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