PokerStars is announcing 2016 VIP Club changes as well as new policy towards third-party software. You can read more on our corporate blog here. http://psta.rs/1Pef1rZ
VIP Steps will be implemented in all licenses on January 1st. VIP Steps is more intuitive and visible for players that is easier to understand and should engage more players than the current system. Along with this change, players will earn StarsCoin rather than FPPs.
Most players between BronzeStar and GoldStar statuses will be able to earn a similar level of rewards with VIP Steps as they currently do. In some cases, players will receive less; in some cases, players will receive more.
However, for those who are high-volume players, there are significant changes that will be implemented on January 1st, 2016. Rewards for players who earn >200,000 VPPs will be capped at 30%. Players who earn SNE in 2015 will receive a specific level of rewards of 45% rakeback in 2016. By January 1, 2017, Supernova Elite VIP status will be discontinued.
It’s not a decision that we considered lightly; it’s being made after months of analysis and investigation to find the best possible model for the long-term viability of our poker ecosystem. Over time, the VIP Club rewards have become so enticing that we have inadvertently altered why some people play and how they play.
The significance of this change is not lost on us. The dedication and passion demonstrated by our highest status VIPs has been astounding. We are introducing these changes to move towards a more balanced long-term poker economy and to return the game back to one that rewards skill via winning at the tables rather than playing primarily for volume.
We are also announcing plans to roll out new policies that will reinforce the fundamental elements of human competition by limiting certain software programs that may provide an unfair advantage to some players. The new restrictions on third-party software will extend recent changes to our third-party software policy. Last month, we reduced data mining in Zoom!, restricted the use of heads-up displays, and limited the use of Spin & Go seating scripts.
Our intention is to expand these restrictions through major changes within our own software that we will communicate in more detail through 2016.
For the majority of our player base, we believe these changes will have an overall positive impact by making the VIP Club more visible to players and easier to understand, by engaging them in a single session rather than on a monthly/yearly basis, by limiting the advantages some players gain by use of certain software, and by improving the long-term viability of our poker ecosystem.
The VIP Club changes are as follows:
• All rewards will be given in a new currency, StarsCoin, each of which will have a fixed value of $0.01
o All FPPs will be converted to StarsCoin on January 1 at a rate of 1.2 StarsCoin for every FPP.
o Players may use their FPPs as they currently do to purchase cash bonuses, tournament tickets and merchandise at current FPP prices until midnight ET, December 31.
o All prices in the VIP Store, including tournament tickets and cash rewards, will be updated on January 1 to reflect the StarsCoin value of $0.01.
o Tournament buy-ins will be updated to StarsCoin values.
• All current rewards – FPPs, Stellar Rebates, and Milestone Rebates – will be consolidated into a single form of reward called StarsCoin earned via VIP Steps
o Complete details for VIP Steps and how many StarsCoin will be rewarded for each Step will be posted on our website soon.
o Players who earn Stellar Rebates and Milestone Rebates in 2015 will still be able to purchase them in the VIP Store in 2016.
o On average we are aiming for the following percentage of rewards as compared to the current reward system:
2016 Average Rewards by Status
BronzeStar - No change
ChromeStar - Up to 10% increase
SilverStar - No change
GoldStar - No change
PlatinumStar - Up to 10% decrease
Supernova - 0%-27% decrease
200k+ - 44%-60% decrease (30% rakeback cap)
• VPPs will not be earned in high-stakes cash games. High-stakes cash games include pot-limit and no-limit games with blinds of $5-$10 or higher, 8-game $10-$20 or higher, and other limit games with blinds of $10-$15 or higher (limit hold’em of stakes $15-$30 and higher).
• VPP multipliers for all shared liquidity licenses will be as follows:
o 5.5 VPPs for each $1.00 USD or CAD in fee paid, 6.5 VPPs for each €1.00 EUR in fee paid, or 8.25 VPPs for each £1.00 GBP in fee paid for all tables, no matter how many are seated at the table.
o Microstakes games are as follows:
VPPs awarded per $1.00 USD in rake collected VPPs awarded per €1.00 EUR in rake collected
o These changes result in an increase in VPP multipliers for UK, DK, BG, and SH.
o This change results in a decrease in the VPP multiplier for tables where 8 or more are seated.
• VIP Store
o Cash Rewards will be offered as follows, and there will be no restrictions by VIP status:
- $25 – 2,500 StarsCoin
- $100 – 10,000 StarsCoin
- $1,000 – 100,000 StarsCoin
o Some examples of MTT, Spin & Go and Sit & Go tickets:
- $0.10 Sit & Go tickets – 10 StarsCoin
- $0.25 Spin & Go and Sit & Go tickets – 25 StarsCoin
- $3.30 MTT ticket – 330 StarsCoin
- $215 MTT ticket – 21,500 StarsCoin
• VIP Freerolls
o The Supernova Quarterly Million freeroll will be discontinued
o The last Saturday of every month will feature:
- $5,000 25 StarsCoin buy-in tourney for BronzeStar+
- $20,000 freeroll for ChromeStar+
- $30,000 freeroll for SilverStar+
- $100,000 freeroll for GoldStar+
o Other Saturdays on a weekly basis:
- $2,500 25 StarsCoin buy-in tourney for BronzeStar+
- $10,000 freeroll for ChromeStar+
• Supernova Elite VIP Status will be discontinued on January 1, 2017
o The benefits cap for players who earn Supernova Elite in 2015 will be 45% in 2016.
• There will no longer be monthly maintenance requirements for Supernova and Supernova Elite statuses
• Hall of Fame Rewards
o 5M and 10M VPP prizes will be rewarded through December 31, 2016.
o 5M rewards offers two options: Tag Heuer watch or $2,500 Apple gift certificate
• Concierge service for Supernova and Supernova Elite status to be discontinued
Head of VIP Club and Poker Promotions
Last edited by PokerStars Matthew; 11-01-2015 at 01:13 PM.
Reason: added line space for clarity, change 2016 Average Rewards by Status heading for clarity
We are introducing these changes to move towards a more balanced long-term poker economy and to return the game back to one that rewards skill via winning at the tables rather than playing primarily for volume.
3-man hypers with 8% rake and random prize pools seem an interesting way of achieving this
Since the players are taking a hit because of the cost of transacton fees, be sure to make as many transactions as needed to get your balances off. Daily min cash outs from every SNE/High stakes player may make them aware of how wrong they are.
I'm sure it has nothing to do with overpaying the "Pros" that's never happened before(sarcasm)
[Itís not a decision that we considered lightly; itís being made after months of analysis and investigation to find the best possible model for the long-term viability of our poker ecosystem. Over time, the VIP Club rewards have become so enticing that we have inadvertently altered why some people play and how they play.]
People play to win money, even if they are recreationals, yesterday today and tomorrow.
In order to do that you have to overcome your rivals at the tables AND the rake.
RB was just a way to offset the high rake paid. So hopefully you abide by this new principle and decide to lower it too, so that the effort to make people capable of winning at the tables not only comes from the top tier VIPs getting their RB cut