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View Poll Results: Is 8 handed poker the new norm?
Prefer 10 handed 10 6.49%
Prefer 9 handed 31 20.13%
Prefer 8 handed 113 73.38%
Voters: 154. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-05-2021, 11:03 AM   #51
natureboy
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Originally Posted by GPS View Post
I really thought this required a dedicated thread, so thanks for doing so, hopefully this will get enough attention.

8 handed is a rake trap, and you can think of many reasons why it is bad:

1. More hands per hour per table, so more rake.
2. More hands per hour per player, i would consider this as balance.
3. More rake for the same number of players in the room: think of 40 players playing 1-3, on 10 handed tables, 4 tables with 25 hands per hour average, this is 100 hands per hour. On 8 handed, with 5 tables and 30 hands per hour, this is 150 hands (50% more rake, this is worst case for the casino!!).
4. Worst scenario happens when players start to leave at thee end of the night and tables start to break, with 8 handed you will have 4 tables going on with 5, 6, 7, 7 players! So you cannot break a table! These can fit into 3 9-handed tables! so the rake difference is huge here (more than 50%).
5. Less money on the table.
6. Faster loss for gamblers and recs.
7. Faster table break
8. Higher influence for empty seat: when a player leaves or walks out from the table on 10 ( or 9 handed), players do not feel much difference. However going from 8 handed to 7 handed, or to 6 handed out!!
You can list many other situations why this is bad.
9. More waiting time and longer lists, which will drive recreational away from the game.
10. ...

The worse is: when some manager asks floor why not seating more players, what would the floor answer: more comfort and space for players? Better open range for the pros? more hands on the button for the pros? No, floor will say it is more rake and more revenue for the casino, so the manager will ask why not adding more tables? or even why not making tables smaller and adding more tables !! and you know where will this end up:7 handed, and then 6 handed !!!
I prefer 9/10 handed too and I agree with your points. However I do feel 8 handed is a perfect compromise for players who prefer to play 6-7 handed and others like me who prefer to play 9/10 handed.
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Old 06-05-2021, 11:18 AM   #52
GPS
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Originally Posted by natureboy View Post
I prefer 9/10 handed too and I agree with your points. However I do feel 8 handed is a perfect compromise for players who prefer to play 6-7 handed and others like me who prefer to play 9/10 handed.
Let us hope that 8-handed will play at full capacity most f the time and that we will not see 7-handed trend anytime soon.
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Old 06-05-2021, 11:38 AM   #53
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

If you're a winning player, you should want more hands per hour even if it means the house raking more, DUCY?
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Old 06-05-2021, 12:41 PM   #54
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Originally Posted by SwoopAE View Post
If you prefer 9 or 10 handed you suck and are a nit

That is all
One of the biggest mistakes weak players make is to play too many hands. At 9/10 handed the correct strategy is to play fewer hands than at 8 handed. Weak players are playing way too many hands in early position at 9/10 handed. When going to 8 handed, they will be making fewer mistakes as now it is correct to play more hands in early position. So the edge pros have will be reduced. In addition, the higher rake 8 handed will reduce the pros edge, and the higher cost per hand in blinds 8 handed will reduce the pros edge. But it will make the house more profitable.
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Old 06-05-2021, 12:58 PM   #55
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Originally Posted by djz View Post
If you're a winning player, you should want more hands per hour even if it means the house raking more, DUCY?
This is wrong. The increase in rake more than offsets playing more hands.



Let's say you win $15/hr 9 handed at 1-2 NL with $5 avg. rake per hand. This will put you in the top 1% of players. From the table above you see that 9 handed plays 33 hands per hour and takes $165/hr rake or 165/9=$18.33 per player. At 8 handed, the total rake is $180/8= $22.5 per player.

Winning $15/hr 9 handed at 33 hands per hour means you win 45.45 cents per hand. At 8 handed you will play 10% more hands so you will win 45.45cx36=$16.36 per hour. That is $1.36 higher. But your rake is 22.5-18.33= $4.17 higher. Thus, you will lose $2.81 more per hour net playing 8 handed vs 9 handed. That is a drop of -18.73% for a player making $15/hr 9 handed when he/she goes to 8 handed. Enjoy playing 18.73% more hours to make the same as you would 9 handed.
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Old 06-05-2021, 02:04 PM   #56
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Originally Posted by RedOak View Post
Let's say you win $15/hr 9 handed at 1-2 NL with $5 avg. rake per hand. This will put you in the top 1% of players. From the table above you see that 9 handed plays 33 hands per hour and takes $165/hr rake or 165/9=$18.33 per player. At 8 handed, the total rake is $180/8= $22.5 per player.

Winning $15/hr 9 handed at 33 hands per hour means you win 45.45 cents per hand. At 8 handed you will play 10% more hands so you will win 45.45cx36=$16.36 per hour. That is $1.36 higher. But your rake is 22.5-18.33= $4.17 higher. Thus, you will lose $2.81 more per hour net playing 8 handed vs 9 handed. That is a drop of -18.73% for a player making $15/hr 9 handed when he/she goes to 8 handed. Enjoy playing 18.73% more hours to make the same as you would 9 handed.
So will this would be good for big-winning players as they can still win but the more marginal nit types will get knocked out and thus the game will get better and the big winners will win even bigger?
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Old 06-05-2021, 02:49 PM   #57
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Originally Posted by RedOak View Post
Here is the math showing just how devasting the increase in rake becomes when going from 9 handed to 8 handed:



The first table shows the average cost per hand to play due to the blinds for 10,9,8 handed games. The cost goes up by 12.5% per hand when going from 9 handed down to 8. Anytime you randomly add more forced money to the pot then the skill factor is reduced.

The 2nd table shows how much total rake is removed from the game based on average rake per hand and number of hands dealt per hour. With 10 handed games, I used 30 hands per hour deal rate. With 9 handed games, I used 33 hands per hour, and with 8 handed I used 36 hands per hour. No doubt 8 handed will play the fastest. The total extra rake made by the house is 9.09% higher 8 handed vs 9 handed. No wonder the house wants 8 handed so as to squeeze more money from the players.

The extra money from the player is even worse than 9.09%. Table 3 shows the table configurations based on 18 players in the room, 36 players, 54 players, and 72 players. With 18 players, instead of two tables of 9, there will be 3 short tables of 6 when 8 handed tables are used. This will result in a stunning 63.64% increase in rake for the house!!! With 36 players in the room, instead of 4 tables of 9, there will be 4 tables of 7 and one of 8, and the increase in house rake is 36.36%. With 54 players in the room, the increase is 27.27% and with 72 players in the room, the increase is 22.73%. (note these increases are the same for any average rake amount. $5 is used in the example)

Of course, none of this analysis factors in you will be winning more hands when you play 8 handed vs. 9, and thus likely tipping more which further decreases your winnings. But since everyone here seems to think they can beat ANY rake, then be prepared to play a lot more hours to try and win the same amount you used to make back in the day when tables were 9 or 10 handed. 8 handed poker is the 2nd wave of cancer to hit cash games since the advent of poker jackpots.
You need to calculate cost per hand, not cost per hour. Cost per hour is meaningless if the hands per hour goes up. Also capping the rake means that the cost/dollar raked/hand will also go down. For many many reasons this model is flawed.
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Old 06-05-2021, 03:32 PM   #58
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Originally Posted by checkraisdraw View Post
You need to calculate cost per hand, not cost per hour. Cost per hour is meaningless if the hands per hour goes up. Also capping the rake means that the cost/dollar raked/hand will also go down. For many many reasons this model is flawed.
The cost per hand is there to calculate.


9 handed at 33 hands per hour at $5 avg. rake takes off $165/hr divide by 9 players is 165/9/33= 55 cents per hand. 8 handed at 36 hands per hour at $5 avg. takes off $180/hr divided by 8 players is 180/8/36=62.5 cents per hand. 62.5/55= 13.6% higher rake per hand per player. That is even worse than the 9.09% total rake increase per hour. So the stats are not meaningless. They actually understate the damage 8 handed does vs. 9 handed.
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Old 06-05-2021, 05:23 PM   #59
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Originally Posted by RedOak View Post
One of the biggest mistakes weak players make is to play too many hands. At 9/10 handed the correct strategy is to play fewer hands than at 8 handed. Weak players are playing way too many hands in early position at 9/10 handed. When going to 8 handed, they will be making fewer mistakes as now it is correct to play more hands in early position. So the edge pros have will be reduced. In addition, the higher rake 8 handed will reduce the pros edge, and the higher cost per hand in blinds 8 handed will reduce the pros edge. But it will make the house more profitable.
This is a very simplistic way of looking at it. Sure, preflop hand selection is important, but is only a small way in which a very skilled player can gain a big edge on the rest of the field.

By playing 10-handed, it actually knee-caps a good pro b/c there are simply too many players to wade thru making preflop hand selection too valuable. The pro won't be able to navigate trickier hands b/c 1 or 2 of the nits will be showing up w/big hole cards. That being said, the better player will still find spots to push around the nits and less skilled players, they will just be much rarer than playing a shorter table.

Once you get down to 8-handed, 6-handed, etc. then post-flop play becomes much more important and this is where the skilled pro will be printing money over the rest of the field and really be able to grow his edge and winrate. He'll be paying more rake per hand, but this will be more than offset by an increased edge over the field.

Sure, if your only assets as a poker player are disciplined preflop hand selection, patience, set mining, etc. (aka a nit), then a 10-handed table will be a much better option for you. But for a skilled player with a well rounded game looking to win the most money possible, the shorter the table gets, the better it will be for him.
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Old 06-05-2021, 06:52 PM   #60
checkraisdraw
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Originally Posted by RedOak View Post
The cost per hand is there to calculate.


9 handed at 33 hands per hour at $5 avg. rake takes off $165/hr divide by 9 players is 165/9/33= 55 cents per hand. 8 handed at 36 hands per hour at $5 avg. takes off $180/hr divided by 8 players is 180/8/36=62.5 cents per hand. 62.5/55= 13.6% higher rake per hand per player. That is even worse than the 9.09% total rake increase per hour. So the stats are not meaningless. They actually understate the damage 8 handed does vs. 9 handed.
No what Iím saying is that a $2000 pot on a table with a $5 up to 10% cap is wayyyyyy better than a 40 dollar pot that doesnít reach max rake but is raked at the full 10%. DUCY?
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Old 06-05-2021, 07:36 PM   #61
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

Someone who wins $30/hr at 2/5 is making ~$1/hand so rake isn't increasing enough to offset their increase in WR due to getting more hands an hour. Even if they play in a time rake game that increases from $5/hh to $6/hh and you deduct the $2 from their hourly, they would still be making more playing 8handed than 9handed due to getting more hands.

Online, winrates are higher at HU, which are higher than 6m, which are higher than FR.

For similar reasons, someone who has bad preflop discipline will lose much faster at 8h than 10h. Everything fossilkid said was dead on.

Last edited by djz; 06-05-2021 at 07:41 PM.
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Old 06-05-2021, 08:18 PM   #62
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Everything fossilkid said was dead on.
what he said.
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Old 06-05-2021, 08:46 PM   #63
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

While its true casinos might make a little more 8 vs. 9handed , many players would also be willing to pay more to see/play more hands per hour.

So doesn't seem like a big deal.
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Old 06-05-2021, 10:45 PM   #64
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Originally Posted by djz View Post
Someone who wins $30/hr at 2/5 is making ~$1/hand so rake isn't increasing enough to offset their increase in WR due to getting more hands an hour. Even if they play in a time rake game that increases from $5/hh to $6/hh and you deduct the $2 from their hourly, they would still be making more playing 8handed than 9handed due to getting more hands.

Online, winrates are higher at HU, which are higher than 6m, which are higher than FR.

For similar reasons, someone who has bad preflop discipline will lose much faster at 8h than 10h. Everything fossilkid said was dead on.
Does anyone bother to do any math before just spouting off what they think is true without verification? A $30/hr winner at $2-5 9-handed wins 90.9 cents per hand. At 8 handed, he wins $32.72 per hour before account for increased rake. Rake (at avg. of $5/hand) goes from $18.33/hr 9-handed to $22.5/hr 8-handed or up by $4.16. 32.72-4.16=$28.56 win rate 8 handed vs $30 9 handed. A drop of 4.8%.
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Old 06-06-2021, 12:08 AM   #65
checkraisdraw
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

So go play a game where they fold everything except TT+ AJo+ ATs+ KQs... they'll pay barely any rake at all! Win rates must be massive in those games!

Seriously, I don't think your model is at all meaningful since you seem to be unwilling to engage with the idea that hitting the max rake every hand doesn't interact with your win rate as much as you think. Imagine a game where someone is straddling all in for $500 every hand at a 5/5 game. The rake will reach the max, but someone with a big bankroll could massively crush that game in the long run. But... oh no! They hit the max rake every hand! By your model, that means they'll be losing in the long run compared to a nitty game where max rake is never hit.

If your model doesn't work in a qualitative sense, it's probably time to re-evaluate if you're modeling reality correctly.
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Old 06-06-2021, 01:31 AM   #66
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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I prefer 9/10 handed and I can assure you that I am neither of these!!

Calling someone who prefers regular poker over short handed a 'nit' is the most stupid argument in this forum!

I asked many times, and nobody answered, if less players is better for you and the casino, why don't you ask the floor to open a heads-up table and sit there wait for your villain?
yes you are. stop championing 9-10 handed poker or at least admit you're a huge nit.
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Old 06-06-2021, 01:36 AM   #67
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

Your winnrate isn’t the same from every position. Players win far more on the btn vs utg. Switching from 9 to 8 handed removes the position outside of the blinds where winnrate is the lowest. You see more hands from the higher winnrate positions and more blinds. Your skill level determines if that is a net negative or a net positive.

Someone asked how it’s possible for 8 handed to be better for whales and pros (i.e. where is the money coming from). The money comes from decreasing the winnrate of nits. Their main edge comes from playing patiently preflop and waiting to cold deck the whales. Forcing them to play more hands even against whales exposes them. This is why they hate it even if they can’t articulate exactly why it’s bad.
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Old 06-06-2021, 01:37 AM   #68
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Does anyone bother to do any math before just spouting off what they think is true without verification? A $30/hr winner at $2-5 9-handed wins 90.9 cents per hand. At 8 handed, he wins $32.72 per hour before account for increased rake. Rake (at avg. of $5/hand) goes from $18.33/hr 9-handed to $22.5/hr 8-handed or up by $4.16. 32.72-4.16=$28.56 win rate 8 handed vs $30 9 handed. A drop of 4.8%.
you're making a massive mistake in not realizing his win rate per hand played is more 8 handed than 9 handed and he's getting more hands per hour. you think he's only increasing his win rate because he gets more hands.

When poker rooms opened up again everything by me was 7 handed and I was sure i'd have a much higher win rate 7 handed than I did 9 handed, put in a ton of hours because I knew this wouldn't last forever and did just that. Small sample size blah blah. Live players suck at poker, and suck even more the shorter you get. They still play way too many hands preflop and most of them fold way to much post flop (with a few really fun ones who don't fold nearly enough postflop.)

Anyone who makes more money playing 9 handed than 8/7 handed isn't remotely good at poker, but I admit these players do exist.
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Old 06-06-2021, 01:39 AM   #69
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Another point, it is confirmed that NLHE was played 11 handed in the past in many casinos, and there are witnesses who said it was played 12-handed. I am not saying that this is good, but going from 12/11 to 10, then to 9, and now to 8, will tell you where will this end!

Wait until the casino decides that these tables are too large for 7/8 players and they could use the extra space by using smaller tables, which will look like the BJ table to utilize the space!!!
more nonsense.

casinos now know they can fill poker tables 7-8 handed and that they can't (based on past live experiments) any shorter than that. the casino can't force people to play.
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Old 06-06-2021, 03:00 AM   #70
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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you're making a massive mistake in not realizing his win rate per hand played is more 8 handed than 9 handed and he's getting more hands per hour. you think he's only increasing his win rate because he gets more hands.
I already laid it out for them clear as day why this is the case. They either choose to ignore it or are unable to get past level 1 thinking of focusing only on rake paid per hour. Seems pointless even engaging further.
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Old 06-06-2021, 03:02 AM   #71
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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more nonsense.

casinos now know they can fill poker tables 7-8 handed and that they can't (based on past live experiments) any shorter than that. the casino can't force people to play.
In fact what you say is nonsense, otherwise, why didn't casinos do it from before if they knew they could fill 7-8. If all casinos decide to make it 4-handed tomorrow, they will till fill up. but if only one does, it will not go. So casinos found the perfect time not to go back to 9-handed.

The simplest explanation is this: anything better (more money) for the casinos is worse for players (more money taken from players)!

Even Mason himself listed it in his bad things topic!
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Old 06-06-2021, 03:20 AM   #72
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Originally Posted by Alexander Khan View Post
Casinos make more money 8-handed.
Casinos make more money replacing poker tables with slot machines.

I am worried for the future of live poker in Australia where wages are high and companies/casinos are very greedy.
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Old 06-06-2021, 03:26 AM   #73
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Wink Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

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Those bigger tables exist. MGM Grand might still have those wider tables they used for 10-handed cash games (and apparently 11-handed tournaments way back?).

Unfortunately theyíre designed poorly IMO because itís extremely difficult to see the other side of table if youíre in the 2/3 or 9/8 seats. If you have bad eyes, 40% of the seats actually make it difficult to see the board.

Compared to the early WSOP days the average American male is something like 30 pounds heavier today. That makes a huge difference space wise.

That would be an issue if seeing everything is difficult.
Also, it wouldnt fix my problem if they got bigger tables but then just sat more people at them.

Im glad to hear this being discussed. I might be in the minority here where my only concern is space, but seriously they sat me 10 handed in cash game in Tunica once and it was just too crowded to be any fun.
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Old 06-06-2021, 03:41 AM   #74
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

The only thing good about 10 handed tables is that it gives the fish a chance to play 56 sooted from super utg.
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Old 06-06-2021, 07:14 AM   #75
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Re: 8 handed poker post pandemic?

I wonder what percentage of poker rooms could afford to lose a larger percentage of rake-sensitive players?

Generally speaking and oversimplified, the majority of other players don’t like them for various reasons including them usually playing tight. Dealers don’t like them because they’re tipping below average. Casinos don’t like them because most of them don’t play table games, or spent a lot of money at restaurants and for whatever other entertainment the casino provides.

But they’re still a pretty important part of the eco-system at a lot of places and losing them might mean not having a game at all.
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