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Old 04-19-2017, 08:21 PM   #1
LUCIUS VARENUS
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Question The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

I have in prior years asserted that online games can be beaten even though all split pots are raked.

However, more recently, having played a ton of hands from micro limit cash last year on PokerStars, both in Omaha and Stud H/L, I came to the conclusion that one must strive to play at a minimum level in order for the rake to be overcome if one is to play split pot games, and that below that minimum, it is simply long term impossible to do.

This conclusion was derived from playing mostly 10c/20c Stud 8. Despite playing, as far as I could tell better than everyone in those games, whether it is in starting hand selection, folding where they wouldn't but should, or not missing bets, I could never come away a winner unless I won a big pot and immediately left the table.

This was later confirmed by looking at my FPDB statistics, which showed the rake was a whopping 5.5 big bets per 100 hands and that literally nobody who had put in more than a few hundred hands of volume was winning.

I also tried my hand at the Omaha 8 tables, and that didn't go any better.

I'm sure you didn't need convincing, but I'll do it anyway.

If you remember that far back, iirc I was up over $1.2k at $0.50/$1 full ring over many thousands of hands ( <20k iirc ) back in the days that used to run a lot on Stars. I came on the forum saying you could beat this game.

For some reason I used to do better on the $0.50/$1 than the $0.25/$0.50 though. I was still winning in the smaller game but not as much and not as quickly. But I didn't clock it at the time.

I wish I still had the original PokerTracker Omaha to show you.

Anyway, yeah, it's a big problem at the lowest games. PokerStars/others won't be alleviating it. So what do we do?

I think the answer has to be either:

1) To play at a high enough level such that it isn't so significant for your winrate that it prevents you from winning, but that is problematic if you can't afford to play higher due to low bankroll (as has been so often my problem, though gladly no longer)

or

2a) To play in H/L tournaments instead, so that in effect you are having to pay a session fee rather than having your split pots raked, and one that is relatively insignificant and absolutely less than the amounts you will pay in rake on cash games

2b) To simply avoid split pot cash games if cash must be the way to play for you, and focus on a one-winner game. Personally I recommend 7 card stud (the low/micro stakes games are ridic loose and good), that is, if you can avoid the alleged Chinese colluders

There ends my views on the subject.

If your answer is answer #1, (and this question goes out to the guys playing maybe $2/$4 FL and above, and probably something like $0.50/$1 NL/PL and higher) my question to you is:

What do you consider to be the minimum level of games for rake to not be so significant that it prevents players who should be winning from winning?

Also, and this is to everyone, what are your thoughts? Any stats/screenshots you can show will be great for the thread.
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Old 04-19-2017, 09:42 PM   #2
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

In the past, I thought that anything $1/2 limits and below was heavily affected enough by the rake. That some slight winners/breakeven players would become losers.
Though that was a couple of years ago, and it may have changed now with the rake increases etc, so I can't say anything definitively. (I don't play near those stakes anymore.)

That's largely why I played lots of HU SnGs years ago when I was trying to grow my bankroll. Which kind of comes into your 2nd point, as another form of tournament.
Rake is relatively easily beatable there (normally), and you're able to move up stakes, improve etc. Though I personally like/preferred HU, which probably isn't the case for everyone.
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Old 04-19-2017, 11:08 PM   #3
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

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2a) To play in H/L tournaments instead, so that in effect you are having to pay a session fee rather than having your split pots raked, and one that is relatively insignificant and absolutely less than the amounts you will pay in rake on cash games
Yeah, tournaments will be your best chance to get out of the micros tbh.
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Old 04-20-2017, 02:24 PM   #4
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

NL08 18 mans are still great way to build a BR whilst playing micro stakes. you should look into those
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Old 04-21-2017, 12:24 AM   #5
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

What are your thoughts on PL omaha hi 0.25/0.5 cash games?

I preferably wanna play cash games but the games and stakes aren't there for O8 anymore so gotta look into something else.

Viable or no?
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Old 04-21-2017, 08:08 AM   #6
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

Zoom does attract some fish, and in the weekend u have some big fish in there. But during the week i would pass on that.

18 man 1.5$ sngs get raked 18c 1.32+0.18 that is huge.

If u want we can try to get the 0.25/0.50 Zoom Plo hi lo game running.
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Old 04-21-2017, 09:03 AM   #7
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

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18 man 1.5$ sngs get raked 18c 1.32+0.18 that is huge.
wow, that's just sad...probably better look into bitcoin if amaya gonna just rip people off like that
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Old 04-21-2017, 05:33 PM   #8
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

im up 140 this month in 5c/10c plo8

I play up to 1/2 plo8 if/when it runs.

.25/.50, .50/1 mostly

So yes 5/10c is beatable... but not by many.

I aplyed abotu 500k hands of mostly plo8 last year.

here is the rake schedule for the site i play on
https://www.wsop.com/online-poker/limits-rake.asp

limit doesnt run on a consistent basis but when it does mostly 2/4 3/6

I havent tracked my limit play to know exactly how i am doing... but i bet winning over the small sample size
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Old 04-24-2017, 09:56 AM   #9
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

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18 man 1.5$ sngs get raked 18c 1.32+0.18 that is huge.
I never played many $1.50 but the rake at the $3.50 (10%) doesn't stop gigantic ROI's being obtainable so I doubt (12%) is much of a problem
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Old 04-24-2017, 01:02 PM   #10
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

I wish they would change the HL games to session fees, collected like the antes on stud games

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Old 04-25-2017, 12:48 AM   #11
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

omaha high lo has blinds while stud has antes.....

They are both forced bets to induce action. Neither is rake of any kind, they are both part of the pot.

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I wish they would change the HL games to session fees, collected like the antes on stud games

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Old 04-25-2017, 08:28 AM   #12
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

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omaha high lo has blinds while stud has antes.....

They are both forced bets to induce action. Neither is rake of any kind, they are both part of the pot.
You think I don't know that? I've been playing this game since I've been a 2+2 member mate!

What i am suggesting is that every half hour or every hour the software collects the rake as a fixed fee on all high low cash games.

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Old 04-25-2017, 09:33 AM   #13
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

That's a time-raked game, which happens quite a lot live at mid-high stakes, but I can't imagine it ever being implemented online, because there's so much room for angling and rake-dodging.
Because It's much easier to join and leave and online game than it is live, and games start and break much faster online.
There would have to be something like some fixed play amount, if it ever was to possibly work. Which just isn't very realistic or feasible in today's online climate.
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Old 04-25-2017, 09:47 AM   #14
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

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That's a time-raked game, which happens quite a lot live at mid-high stakes, but I can't imagine it ever being implemented online, because there's so much room for angling and rake-dodging.
Because It's much easier to join and leave and online game than it is live, and games start and break much faster online.
There would have to be something like some fixed play amount, if it ever was to possibly work. Which just isn't very realistic or feasible in today's online climate.
Basically everyone pays it when they join a table and are prompted to do so and the software keeps a hidden count on when each player last paid.

So irrespective of leaving/joining games, the fee gets paid if the player wants to play.

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Old 04-25-2017, 09:48 AM   #15
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

Every player has their own hidden timer.

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Old 04-25-2017, 10:01 AM   #16
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

That could work.
Though it would (should) prompt people to play less nitty etc. Although ofc that's not necessarily a bad thing, at least in Stars' eyes.
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Old 04-25-2017, 10:14 AM   #17
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

And of course if the player refuses when prompted they are ejected from the game.

There would obviously be a setting players can select to auto-pay, or maybe the games could have auto-pay built in automatically, with the option in settings to opt out.

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Old 04-25-2017, 10:22 AM   #18
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

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here is the rake schedule for the site i play on
https://www.wsop.com/online-poker/limits-rake.asp
The rake there is lower than on pokerstars i'm pretty sure
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Old 04-25-2017, 09:17 PM   #19
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

Rake races also accomplish pretty much the same thing, as long as you play a decent amount of volume. The extra rake you pay in split-pot games is compensated by you getting more points for it, which would place you in a higher payout tier.
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Old 05-02-2017, 05:41 AM   #20
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

Speaking of which, we still need more regs sitting in the ACR on-demands during morning America time/afternoon Europe time. A lot of people are playing SnG 2.0 I guess (not sure though because it doesn't work on my Mac...), but the fish still show up for the O8 on-demands.
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Old 05-02-2017, 12:42 PM   #21
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

I think if you are playing low (like less than 0.5/1 NL/PL) you should be riding those games so hard that rake is irrelevant in O8. Your edge should be big enough to guarantee winning because the "serious" players are sitting at higher stakes and the "smart" players wouldn't accept the rake/effort/reward at micro-low stakes. It's been said a million times by pros including those at Stars that $1/2 NLHE is unbeatable for the majority due to rake. How that would translate to O8 and FL, PL, NL, I'm not entirely sure. It seems reasonable to suggest $1/2 NL or 2/4, 3/6, 5/10 NL/PL/FL should be the lowest stakes you can have a moderate win rate at and still come out ahead after rake.

Should someone playing 0.25/50 jump to 3/6 PL? Haha I seriously doubt that as the swings are like 12 times greater in magnitude

So I guess 2a) is the right answer and anyone that cares about the money should be playing O8 MTT. Like others said a mix of HU sng or 9/18 sng (sng/mtt same thing and counted the same way by some tracking sites) would be + EV

Also don't forget your slot calculations - the stake, payback (paytable) and traffic are all important. So if rake is 12% at $1.50 and 10% at $3.50/7 then 100% play $3.50/7 and never $1.50. Also consider your payback and the odds of getting what you want from the paytable - so even a micro or low MTT can payback $300-3000. The odds of winning are 1/entrants (LOL) so let's say 200-1. We can do 200 MTT in a month with our A+ game, full concentration, and win 1 tournament. Add the money we get for paid places and our mini MTT (sng), we should be making multiples of what we did at micro or low cash - and pay less rake and take less risk to our roll
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Old 05-03-2017, 06:12 AM   #22
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

Simply improve your game? Any low stakes field can be beat +10evbb/100.

I don't really understand the commonplace assertion that rake is somehow higher in split pot games. Bigger pots, higher rake, yes, but it doesn't matter if pots are split or not.
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Old 05-03-2017, 12:35 PM   #23
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

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Simply improve your game? Any low stakes field can be beat +10evbb/100.

I don't really understand the commonplace assertion that rake is somehow higher in split pot games. Bigger pots, higher rake, yes, but it doesn't matter if pots are split or not.
There are many spots where it is currently a chop, but u may be freerolling to 3/4 or scoop so you are jamming trying to get as much in as possible. Lets say you have a flush freeroll to scoop, so u jam the turn, well you are only about 19% to hit that flush. 4/5 times you chop. If rake wasnt capped on the turn (which in microstakes games it is often not) then 4/5 times all you did was increase the rake.
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Old 05-03-2017, 05:30 PM   #24
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

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If rake wasnt capped on the turn (which in microstakes games it is often not) then 4/5 times all you did was increase the rake.
I understand all this. But what I'm saying is that it doesn't really matter, what really matters is the average size of the pot. So I checked my db to see how much rake I've paid comparing plo8 vs plo.

0.5/1 plo8 6-handed rake per hand $0.1215

0.5/1 plo 6-handed zoom rake per hand $0.1397

This is roughly what I expected, as in plo the average pot is often a bit bigger. The fact that in o8 pots are sometimes split does not generate more rake.
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Old 05-04-2017, 12:18 AM   #25
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Re: The Rake and How To Overcome It? (one for the micros)

What % is the rake as it relates to pot size though? Paying slightly more rake per hand might be worth it if the pots are quite a bit larger in plo than in plo8 on average. Also the plo is zoom and the plo8 isn't, not sure if that would have much of an effect though. And the rake per hand could vary between person to person too.

$12 and $14 in rake every 100 hands at .5/1 seems a bit high, but I guess with a high enough rakeback tier and/or promos it's not too bad.
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