Friday, February 22, 2013

Criswell Speaks

As I predicted close to 5 years ago...

$500k Fee and only be available to a “resort hotel that holds a nonrestricted license to operate games and gaming devices.” i.e. a Brick and Mortar Casino in NV. (again, as predicted)

Friday, February 15, 2013

Adventures in Xbox poker and Bitcoins

I recently downloaded the FULL HOUSE POKER on xbox. It has a few things going for it. The first is that it is available to play... Let's explore the software.

It has a level progression tree where you build experience through defeating either bots or humans. These experience points level you from 1-50. Other than the level indicator, there is little gain in all of this. But it does show you who actually played the game enough to level up and who just came to the table to "donk" as the level is displayed in the lobby. The multiplayer consists of putting your virtual bankroll at a cash or SnG table. You are gifted 200 to start (or when broke) and you build that up. I wish there was a bot cap and the remaining chips would have to come from multiplayer, but that isn't going to happen. If you are willing to play bots for hours, you can build any bankroll you wish. There is a "ranked multiplayer", which I assume ranks you based on winn/loss and not bankroll, but I have no idea how it works. I have finished 3 SnGs, all in second place. I got 4 rank points for each. I still have no idea what it means. On the third one, despite being a ranked event, there were 3 all-ins on the first hand.

There are MTT "Events", but I have never managed to find one. There supposedly 30 minute events where you try to accumulate the most chips, Monte Carlo night style. Ugh.

The real niche of this game is for your xbox friends to get together and play. This supports Headset chat and thus you can have a pretty decent experience, despite the wonky table views (birds eye). If you are interested, let me know. My current xbox friends are all Rockband and Borderlands players, so I hope 9 of you crawl out of the shadows.

Ok, now for the real adventure... BITCOINS. Seals With Clubs poker opened up, which is a online poker room for bitcoins. This means that there is zero jurisdiction for funds, because bitcoins is a non-government backed currency. The equivalent of a community based currency. It works as long as people are willing to use it. It's a bit esoteric to wrap your mind around, so go to the site and watch there marketing video.

Now that I decide to try this, there is a ton (I mean a crap-ton) of learning. Not just how it works, but how to MAKE it work. There is a virtual wallet, which is like a portable safe. Lose it (or the combination) and it becomes a black hole. Then, there is the issue of how to deposit. Here is where the "risk meets the road" (like that?). There are brokers, merchants, cryptic messages like "Transaction status: Not funded. Seller should send the bitcoins to the temporary transaction address. " and lots of cloak and dagger type instructions featuring two factor authentication. I can purchase bitcoins for just under $30 bucks each, assuming I can find someone or somewhere to buy them from. If I want an easy transaction, I may be paying upwards of $50 for a single coin, which is an insane premium for a virtual coin.

I decide to try the local merchant route and use to find a local person to purchase from. Will this work? No idea. I am going to buy 3 coins for like $85 bucks, which is 3000 chips on seal (1 to 1000 conversion). The mission is to meet a broker in Plymouth (over a beer I assume) and trade money for a virtual "code" which contains my 3 coins. That "code" is assigned to me via the broker. At that point, I can "re-assign" the code to Seal, and in exchange for the 3 coins, they give me 3000 chips. Today, I have to arrange a "meet up"... More to come.

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

time invested

spent hours on Saturday afternoon watching poker video and absorbing reasons to NOT fold and trying to gleam better ways to look at hands based on your opponents actions. Later that night, I took down a 3 table league MTT. You would think that I would site cause and effect, right? But what really happened was that in one of the rare nights of my long poker playing adventure, I ran good. I never really recall it happening before. Sure I have won a hand from behind, but usually the luck/odds limit themselves to that instance. After grinding to the final table, in which I was perhaps 8/10 in chips, I snap called a bully push with AK and WON the hand! He had J8 and even hit the jack on the flop. I had already stood up. So, this is the big deal and I expect the one big "one time" I am going to get. But then *I* take a flop with J8s. (It was blind vs. blind and he raised 3x. I felt compelled to see a flop). The flop is J XdXd and I am going no where. I check and when he shoves to get me all, I insta-call. Even though I did not improve, the jacks were enough to win the hand. Good, eh? The final of the big-3 was when I had a pair (JJ?) and HE had AK and had to call my bet with his stack, only to not improve while I made a pair. THREE hands, any one of which I could have easily lost, I won. And even as it was progressing, I was aware. For someone who has a run-bad cloud above him and loses more than 50% of flips, I must admit I enjoyed the moments. I even thought, "So this is run good. I like it."