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Theoretic new style of rake table for cash games Theoretic new style of rake table for cash games

07-19-2011 , 03:54 AM
The rake schedules at today's online casinos are outdated. Casinos should be taking less rake in relation to the blinds as players move up stakes but online, this is often not the case. There are often "rake sweet spots" at certain stakes/sites and completely unbeatable "rake black holes" at other sites/stakes, especially at the lower and micro stakes. These current schedules are based off live cash game structures where the games are often so much softer (and slower moving) that the discrepancies are somewhat dampened. These structures are necessary at live games due to restrictions of chip sizes and dealers doing math on the fly but there's no reason for it online.

The reasons that the rake at some sites at a certain stake is so much better than rake at another site at the same stake are sometimes more complicated than some might think. For instance, a 5% rake with a $3 cap is somewhat standard for fixed limit holdem $2-4 to $5-10 but it makes a huge difference if it's calculated as 1 cent per 20 cents in the pot or if it's calculated as $1 per $20 in the pot. Here's the long explanation:

The $1 per $20 increment system ends up being less than half the rake on a fixed limit $2-4 table on average than the 1 cent per 20 cent structure of the same stake and cap. But even the $1 per $20 structure ends up being worse for the $3-6 6 max table than the $2-4 6 max table because there are just that many more pots landing just above the $40 mark and getting raked nearly the full 5%. Check out Full Tilt fixed limit 6 max in this table and compare the $2-4 6M to the $3-6 6M. When you convert the dollar amount to big bets, you can see a discrepancy:

Poker is hard and moving up through stakes can be challenging. If the villains are better at higher stakes AND the rake is higher it can make things difficult for players. What's worse is most players won't figure out why they're running so much worse at one stake level higher up than what they usually play.

I propose a system where the caps and or increments collected are expressed in big bets or big blinds. A blanket rule could cover multiple stakes and currencies and there would never be any unusual discrepancies. Rake is given back to players in different ways via different promotions and rewards so it's not an exact science but here are some rough examples off the top of my head:

-A fixed limit holdem 5% flat rate w 1 cent increments (or smallest available increment) and a cap of 1.5 small bets (for the smallest micro stakes) gradually through to 0.66 small bets at $1-$2 / $2-$4 stakes and 0.5 small bets for the $3-$6 level and so on should be about right.

-A limit holdem table with a 5% rake with increments of 1/3rd of a small bet and capped at 1 small bet could be rounded in the casinos favor and would probably be fine for $1-2 through to $3-6. Cap could be adjusted upwards through the micros and downwards through the higher stakes.

-A 3.5% w flat 1 cent increments (or smallest available increment) capped at 1 small bet could blanket the $1-$2 through to $3-$6 stake. We could again be adjusting the cap for other stakes. A casino employing this 3.5% structure could advertise that it's raking 3.5% instead of the industry standard 5% even though they are still raking as much or more than the casino's with the 5% $1 per $20 w a $3 cap rule of the same stakes.

-A fixed small bet per 100 hands flat rate could be charged. This would actually promote action. Seems like 3 small bets per 100 hands could be charged for the smallest micro stakes moving down to about 2 small bets per 100 hands at around the $5-10 mark for full ring.

No Limit rake schedules could be derived in the same manner as well.

Another discrepancy exists where 6 max tables are taxed by rake much more heavily than their full ring counterparts. I would suggest that 6 max and full ring be raked differently. Most casinos give a break at around 4 or 5 players but I think that 6 or 7 players should get some kind of a break.

P.S. I'm a programmer if any casinos need me to update their rake schedule
Theoretic new style of rake table for cash games Quote
07-21-2011 , 06:35 PM
Well, not sure I understood other than the half rake when not taken in e.g. 1c increments, that doubles the rake at 2-4 limit holdem, and it does (compared to taken at 20) while it seems you might be missing it at 3-6 as the bets are 50% bigger.

Then there was your idea of some 0.5 small bets taken with that 1c inc., that looks to me the same $3 cap but taken straight.

Svenska Spel in Sweden and Ray in Finland already have 2.5% and 3% rakes with caps of 0.5, 1 and 2 (euros) depending, and it's enough to deal with the current games being tougher at lower limits as well as the more raking omaha and stud games problems at other than high limits.
Theoretic new style of rake table for cash games Quote