Thursday, August 07, 2008

A Social Experiment

Last night, I finally decided to check out the PokerPro machines at Trump Plaza. With all the talk, I knew I eventually had to five in. And wouldn’t you know it?

The room was bustling. There was one game going with two seats open.

I have made my opinion clear before about the machines. I don't care for them, however, there are things to like about PokerPro. I decided I was going to give it a fair chance. I don’t enjoy playing online, but this was half live, and half computer.

- No tipping dealers (this seems to be everyone’s favorite part)
- $3 rake
- The machine keeps track of the amount of money in the pot
- Bets are announced (not audibly) without having to take time to count chips
- The game runs quickly and efficiently
- Mistakes are nearly non-existent.

- No type of order. Chaos seems to be prevalent even with floor people standing around.
- No one tells the players not to talk about a hand while it’s in progress. So, a lot of poker ethics are gone out of the window.
- Team poker.
- Floor people who don’t understand the rules of poker. Just how to work a machine and push some buttons.
- No protection for players from verbal abuse.
- Less tells you can notice people.
- Getting your money and your account in order is too long of a process.

I am sure there are more, but these are the ones that stick out. Last night, there was a player berating the fish at the table. It was disgusting to the point where I finally said something. After winning a huge pot, he was dancing and singing in his seat.

I asked him if he his behavior was necessary. His response: "Yes, it was."

I said, "Good job. That man has not said a word to you all night and he is dumping money on the game at a ridiculous rate and all you want to do is make fun of him."

I wanted this kid to get snapped off so badly. But, frankly, I didn’t have the patience to sit around that game any longer than I did because the people playing this machine were unbearable. I think it’s a problem with poker in general, but that’s for another day in another post.

In the end, I didn’t really like the machine. The players have to police each other if they want the integrity of the game to hold up. When that happens, you start looking like a douche or a bitch. No one wants to be that guy on the game because it’s not profitable.

Both my boyfriend and I won, which is great. But it's weird because I didn't reall y enjoy the win. The players were awful and it was pretty obvious what they had most of the time. Frankly, none of these people are poker players and never once thought what you would had in your hand. They just see the two virtual cards in front of them and play with that, which is fine.

I said last night that the only reason I would ever come back is because this seems very profitable. But I really don’t even feel like I am playing poker.

The other big problem was putting money in my account and getting my money out of my account. You go up the cage and give them your money. However, now they have punch buttons into a computer, fill out a piece of paper and finally you’re set up to play. Maybe this doesn’t sound like a long time, but it took about two to three minutes. When it comes to playing with chips, you push your money up and get a rack of chips. This may take all of 30 seconds.

Getting money was even worse. You have to pull out your ID and club card. More computer punching and more filling out paperwork. All this just to get my money out of my account. If you don’t get the money out of your account at the end of the night, you can just keep your bankroll on your card.

But this lends to another question. Are they keeping track of my wins and losses? If I win a certain amount at the end of the year, are they going to report this to the IRS?

I like real poker.


Freddie Bicknese said...

I was wondering whether you were still keeping up this site. Glad I checked back.
I think one point that also must be made about PokerPro machines is that it is too hard to protect your hand from view of others. It would be better if there was a separate button to press to show your hand and you could then cover up your cards before you press the button. The way it is set up now is awkward.
Also, did you try the heads up 1 on 1 tables?

Sooz said...

Sometimes I get a little busy with work and what not and don't get to go out as often as I would like to.

I actually had a hard time looking at my cards. I kept putting my hands over the cards and couldn't see anything at times. I was busy fighting the machine.

I didn't play the heads up game although I tried to get my boyfriend to play with me. He would have beaten me anyway.

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