Planet Mark's Blog. Thoughts, News And Strategy For Poker Tournaments Of All Size

One More Post On The Pokerstars SNG Changes

Time for one more (and I really really hope the last!) post on SNG Changes at Pokerstars. Many of the changes introduced in early May have been revised, with the structures returning to close to the old system, and the buy in levels more rounded.First up, nice one Stars for listening to your players – not many sites actively do this and it does deserve props. Likewise those who felt passionately against the changes and used their blogs / time to post and so on to rail against them. My views were that there were some good aspects to the first changes, in particular the $5 to $10 to $20 progression had a logical feel to it that I felt would benefit the recreational players by not having the big jump from $6.50c to $16 too soon.

You can see my previous posts here, here and here. These changes have now gone - the levels are: $1.50c, $3.50c, $7, $15, $30, $60, $100 and up. Still a smaller gap from $7 to $15, not quite the ideal $5 to $10 that I liked… I’m ok with this though – an improvement on $6.50c to $16. Blinds are back to 5 minute for Turbo / 10 for standard with the old 20-30-50-100-150-200 big blinds. There is an extra level at 150 / 300 (25 ante) too which does stop that brutal jump from 200 (ante 25) to 400 (25) being so severe, another good revision. There are fewer buy-in levels for the Multi-table SNGs by the look of it – a good thing as this will increase the volume on those levels which remain. I still feel a little uncomfortable that the grinders have a little too much influence.

Sure, I teach people to grind in my $16 Per Hour SNG Blueprint course… however I am also acutely aware that if you make the games too ‘grinder friendly’ you kill off the fish too fast, and with it the longer-term prosperity of the poker ecology. By making it easy for the inexperienced players to climb the levels, and reducing the skill element *just a little bit* to give the run-good few a chance to build a bankroll and get established we create a healthy pipeline… which makes everyone better off in the end. I have nothing against grinders, or their views – I just hope that someone at Stars is also listening to the recreational players! I’ll continue to make a balanced argument here – whether anyone agrees with me or not. At the end of the day this looks like a fair compromise, so respect to all who made it happen.

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GL at the tables,


PS: I have now updated my article on Pokerstars SNG Tournaments (this is the static review, these are designed so readers can compared the SNG offerings at different sites easily)

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