Here's my brain dump for what it's worth. some of this is obvious and known maybe some of it isn't. hope it helps...
****** DO NOT TAKE EVERYTHING I WRITE HERE for being 100% ACCURATE. I could be wrong and feel free to say so and correct me *******
I used to play on bodog before I migrated to FT back in August 2010. I migrated because I outgrew the games/stakes and I wanted rakeback.
I'm checking out carbon now because it appears to have slightly more volume than bodog or cake and bodog does not offer any reload bonuses.
- 35% rakeback paid daily is nice
- onetime bonus is deceptive as it is very hard to clear (7 times as hard as FT)
- however, onetime bonus is not deducted from rakeback
- unlimited tables
- other promos - seems to be much more varied offers than bodog/cake. However, I'm too lazy to check out all the offerings and don't have time to play any tourneys that last longer than two hours anyways
- stats are tracked at sharkscope but not PTR (cash)
- works with HEM, PT and Sharkscope HUD (but sharkscope HUD kinda sux anyways). Make sure you download the most recent version of HEM!!
- does not work with Tourney Shark/Poker pro.
- not sure what is legal and what is not as far as tracking tools. I'd rather not know
- semi-consistent action up to $10 normal ring SNGs (bummed I can't find regular higher stakes)
- semi-consistent action up to $10 and $20 DONs
- don't get excited because by semi-consistent I mean you can find a game with 10-15 minutes
- higher stakes SNG action seems to be only at the heads up level ($100 stakes - would assume various regs sitting waiting for a game)
- consistent cash game action up to 200NL. Highest I have seen running is 400NL. Often just 1 or 2 full tables at 400NL.
- issues with my HEM. WHen I play $30 full ring SNGs it tracks as $10. no noticed issues at other $$ amounts
- registration lobby does not allow you to view or enter player notes or symbols (I table select. doesn't matter right now since I am just table praying for something $30 or higher to open up)
- chat. i actually liked seeing the chat in the corner. unfort. for those of us playing on cheap laptops (yes, that's me) screen space is a priority so keeping chat open takes up too much space because you have to have everything else open. I only run the software in the mini-mode so I can play 3-4 tables at once tiled. So I'm vookenmeister out there but don't say hi because I won't see it in the chat. PM me instead.
so.. i've spent the last week keeping the lobby open and sorting by players registered. Once I see a scattered tourney of $10 or more stacks (full ring only) start to fill up I registed. THis has resulted in my playing a lot of DONs. On a good note, I have still seen plenty of bad play so far (I watch the action on my tables). on a bad note, I expect all of you to join the site and play at some point.
Basically, short term it sux to be a full-time or semi-pro U.S. full ring SNG player. The games at Bodog, Carbon and Cake just don't fill up often enough at higher stakes to generate a great hourly rate. My days of high hourly rates are done unless the pace picks up. I would estimate right now my hourly will drop to 25% of what it was if I don't adjust or things don't change. It is enough to make me consider having a friend overseas setup an account for me so I can still play at Full Tilt. Hopefully the pace will pick up some.
Otherwise I will need to focus on playing heads up SNGs or at least 6 man SNGs or maybe back to the cash games. And I am not even a PRO!!!
Also, I usually only play 3-4 tables at a time anyways so I can't imagine how much the lack of volume is killing folks who multitable successfully and efficiently. I feel for those of you who are real pros and/or multi. GL!