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

Pokerstars New SNG Levels – Farewell $16’s!

As anticipated, the new Pokerstars SNG setups have been implemented. This post will cover the main changes. First though, there does seem to be some upset among grinders out there in poker-forum land…Inevitable of course, you can not please all of the people all of the time… and the ones who are ‘vaguely positive’ or ‘neutral’ are not going to be the ones taking the time to post their thoughts – it’s the angry / upset ones! Anyway, a couple of thoughts first, then I’ll list the key changes. My first take is this, change often seems bad to the huge majority… anyone remember the horror when Facebook first bought in the newsfeed view?? When 2+2 changed their layout / look a year or two ago? That kind of thing… In a couple of weeks it will be normal again and we will wonder what the fuss was for. My second is that the grinders are important to the poker sites, they generate a lot of rake and provide liquidity. Often, I get the impression they feel they are the most important part. This is wrong, the recreational players make it possible for the grinders to exist, when the fun players are happy they provide the basis for the poker economy that provides the grinders with wages to exist… what makes the recreational players happy should be welcomed, it is up to the pros to find their space within this setup, not the other way around!

One more preview note – there will be a new layout for the lobby at Pokerstars next week, which will make it easier to spot which game is which (columns etc). I will do part #2 of this post tomorrow for the MTT SNGs and heads-up games, and also update my Pokerstars SNG Review page once that one is done.

Pokerstars SNG Changes – The New Buy-In Levels

Here are the levels, which have become very familiar looking! I have listed them with the buy-in level and then the rake (fee) for the different variations. 50/50, Heads-Up, Multi-table, Knockout SNGs and non-Holdem SNGs - I’ll deal with separately. $1 + 18c (standard), 15c (turbo), 17c (6-max), 14c (6-max turbo), 8c (hyper-turbo) $3 + 38c (standard), 32c (turbo), 36c (6-max), 30c (6-max turbo), $5 + 50c (standard), 43c (turbo), 48c (6-max), 40c (6-max turbo), 23c (hyper-turbo), 21c (6-max, hyper-turbo) $10 + $1 (standard), 85c (turbo), 95c (6-max), 81c (6-max turbo), $20 + $2 (standard), $1.70c (turbo), $1.90c (6-max), $1.62c (6-max turbo) $30 + $3 (standard), $2.55c (turbo), $2.85c (6-max), $2.42c (6-max turbo) $50 + $4.75 (standard), $4.04c (turbo), $4.51c (6-max), $3.84c (6-max turbo) $100 + $9 (standard), $7.65c (turbo), $7.27c (6-max turbo) There are also $200, $300, $500, $1000 and $2000 buy-in levels, if you are good enough for these then I’m guessing you already moved beyond what I can offer you at SNG Planet!

Pokerstars SNG Changes – New Blind Levels

Pokerstars-old-new-blind-levelsNow, changing the buy-ins is one thing… the 1,3,5,10,20 idea is already in use at most other poker sites. Changing the blind structures – now that is bound to get a vigorous debate going. Key here is that ‘Turbo’ at Pokerstars used to be a kind of happy medium between the ‘standard’ and ‘turbo’ of other sites, the 5 minute levels left more room for play than you might have expected. Turbos are now 3 minutes, with standard blinds at 6 minutes. To balance this, a some new blind levels have been introduced at 30 / 60 and 40 / 80. This brings the structure closer to that at Full Tilt, where the blinds go up faster but with shallower increments, with antes starting at 100 / 200 to speed up the end-game. The table on the right was provided by Pokerstars in a 2+2 post and compares where you are at in terms of blind levels during the game... the actual blind levels now go (in blind blinds) 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 80, 100, 120, 150, 200 (ante 20), 250 (25), 300 (30), 400 (40), 500 (50), 600 (60), 800 (80) 1000 (100) and so on.

Pokerstars SNG Changes – The Fifty / Fifty Games

Here is the same kind of table for the Fifty50 games, the games are all 10-player ones, the 3 minute (turbo) and 6-minute (standard) blond structures are the same as for the ‘normal’ 1-table tournaments. $1 + 11c (standard), 8c (turbo) $5 + 30c (standard), 24c (turbo) $10 + 60c (standard), 48c (turbo) $20 + $1.20c (standard), 96c (turbo) $30 + $1.80c (standard), $1.44c (turbo) $50 + $3 (standard), $2.40 (turbo) $100 + $5.40c (standard), $4.32c (turbo)

New Pokerstars SNG Levels – Wrap Up (for now!)

I’m positive on the changes, and I’m going to repeat something that has proven to be true over and over in the world of poker… the first few weeks after any major change are very profitable for players smart enough to adjust! If you are not yet on Stars (and I do realize that 99% of people reading this are already there!) then you really should check them out – marketing code = PSP3108 for your 100% matched bonus…. Click this link to visit Pokerstars now! For everyone else – I’ll do a ‘part #2’ of this article covering heads-up, multi-table and the 180s (the changes to which have caused a little controversy) tomorrow. Would be appreciated if a few of you would be good enough to share this article in your blogs / forums or even on your Facebook page – it took a lot of my Sunday to put together! GL at the tables, Mark PS: There is now a part #2 to this post... here is the link:

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