After losing ignominiously to Lizh I hung around to kibbitz with people. Glad I did since I noticed some things that APT might wanna modify. Nothing big mind you.
But first congratulations are in order to DavidL, ssserrbbb8 and Marciak, the top 3 headhunters. Good job each of you..... No question that all 3 are deadly dangerous! I will say that David entered his last 2 challenges with a substantial chip advantage. Marciak gave him a hard time. Having players who'd beaten someone play a new player (1500 chips) with their accumulated chips (6-12000) was,
just a bit unfair. Admittedly, in a tournament setting the stacks might be uneven, maybe 2 to 1, 3 to 1, or maybe even 10 to 1, but that wasn't what I expected to see in this event. First time no harm no foul. Maybe each level should start with even chips but double each time 1500, 3000, 6000 etc. Just a thought.
In his 2nd challenge DavidL's opponent sat out, no clue why. This meant David had to work through the guy's 3000 chip stack a hand at a time. Perhaps a ready button with a countdown followed by a forfeit is in order to preclude this happening again. Dave had the lead after this game and didn't surrender it after that I believe. David thought that this result should be excluded, a testament to his sportsmanship.
A surprise entrant was sitepro stevestokely who played one against adamslanding who beat him handily (so I've been told). A testament to the site's training efficacy and Adams' skillz (or maybe he just got lucky). Good job Adams and fun for Steve I hope.
Sooooooo to sum up, I think this a GREAT first attempt at a style (a gladiatorial hackfest) of event most of us need to work on and I want to thank the Blays for incorporating it in the new, expanded tournament lineup. I had a ball talking to people after my bleeding was staunched.
HINT: It'd be great be able to schedule h2hs with our friends to practice.
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The format you suggest would be a "shootout" format, synthesist. We could certainly try that, but there are two downsides:
1. Late registration is not possible
2. When you beat someone, you have to wait for all the other tables to finish, before getting a new opponent.
But I'll await any other comments. I'm fine which switching it to shootout format and giving that a try too.
Thanks for the speedy reply ANNNNNNNNNNND for joining in. I'm sure that was a thrill for adamslanding.
As to changing to a "shootout" format (biting my lip here) I think I prefer things this way personally. Finishing fast confers a bit of an advantage especially if you wind up playing more challenges. That's just poker IMHO. Now that more types of events are being scheduled ther's lots of ways to experiment.
As far as late registrations go I say the more players the merrier. Yesterday, at times, there were players waiting for other's matches to conclude who'd have appreciated the arrival of fresh prey I think. A different thought would be to allow re-entry (maybe one time) for a period of time. My rational is that I think we all need as much h2h practice as we can get except for Dan Cates. However, if this was for something besides APT bragging rights I'd be more circumspect about giving people more than one shot per event.
I do think there should be a way to abort a match/remove a player after a "reasonable" amount of time has elapsed if a player sits out for some reason. I was chatting with DavidL while he worked down his absent opponent's stack and he wasn't having much fun do it.
Having played in two H2H tournies now and having read all the comments and opinions made so far (and having been encouraged by Steve Blay to write my suggestions in the forum instead of in an email to him!), here are my thoughts...
1. Is there a Tournament Director's rule book for H2H tournaments? If so, then ignore everything below. I looked online and couldn't find one...but I did find the following link to be informative...
2. The current format where the quickest winners in the early rounds are given a distinct advantage in future rounds by carrying bigger stacks into their next contest is, in my opinion, just going to encourage more crap shoot play. I thought the main purpose of APT was to give players a venue to become better poker players, not to make better dice rollers. Of course poker is both a skill and luck game, but its not a Roulette wheel! If APT wants to help teach its members how to rely more upon luck than skill to win, then the current structure will promote this. Its the same basic argument of why some players favor turbo tournament structures and others favor slower, bigger stack structures. The slower the structure, the more skill it takes to win. Obviously if you go into round 2 with 2 or 3 times the stack size of your opponent, you will have a distinct advantage and conversely, the smaller stack will be at a distinct disadvantage (and probably have to gamble more...or get extremely lucky!).
3. From an entertainment perspective, certainly players don't want to wait around to begin their next H2H round. If APT members join in order to become better players, then a short wait shouldn't matter. If you joined because you want inexpensive action and you are a person than gets bored easily, then you will prefer the current play (when the next opponent is available, start, regardless of stack size format). Please note...if you don't like waiting, how about watching another table play while you wait!? Just ask Syn how much better he's gotten sitting in stealth watching me play!!! lol. I do have a question for Steve however...with rounds beginning on a first come, first serve basis, how are you escalating the blind levels when there can be a round 1 playing while a round 2 is also playing simultaneously, and even a round 3 also playing, etc? Anyone out there who's watched multiple H2H tables at the same time that are playing on different rounds, starting chip counts, etc? Syn... fess up!!?
4. The first and only exposure I've had to heads up poker was on TV, where every year there is a big buyin, Heads Up tournament broadcast. In this TV H2H format tournament, the round 1 winners meet to play the other round 1 winners...and they all start with the same chip stack in round 2. I can't remember however whether round 2 is double their round 1 starting stack or not. Each round was a best out of 3 matches...so to move to round 2, you had to win 2 out of 3 of your matches against your round 1 opponent. With the popularity of TV poker, I think there will be pressure for ATP to use the TV rules and format (without the best out of 3 match rounds...unless of course Steve, you have an unlimited programming budget!).
5. Fairness. When there is luck involved, it can never be truly fair...but we can try can't we!? To really determine who was the best player during a specific tournament, starting each round with the same stack size will take a great deal of the luck factor out of the contest, especially for the round 2 opponent who may have to start with fewer chips than their opponent and will thus probably have to gamble more (ie need more luck). From ATP's programming standpoint, to do a round 1 vs round 1 winner format, there is always going to be at least 1 player who has to play 1 less round to reach the final table if the number of players is anything other than an exponent of 2 players (ie 2 players, 4 players, 8 players, 16 players, 32 players, etc). Go ahead Steve, work it out on paper (do multiple winner trees), you'll see that if you start with anything other than an exponent of 2 players, there will be at least 1 player who plays 1 less round to reach the final table (how will you determine who that 1 player is and what should their stack size be when they play their catch up round?). That's gonna be a fun debate!
6. I don't think it really matters what stack size a round 1 winner starts with in round 2 as long as its the same as their opponent's...each round could begin with the same round 1 stack size and level. This should be easy to program. Or you could have round 2 start with your round 1 winning stack but then, what blind level should round 2 start with? Thoughts anyone? Since your stack size is double, should the blind level be double the round 1 starting blind level...I don't think its that simple!!! Another debate brewing? lol
7. Additional thoughts regarding the dilemma of rounds played in a H2H tournament...I think its impractical for ATP to limit the number of players in a H2H tournament to an exponent of 2 players (2,4,8,16,32,64...in the short term however, this would be the easiest way for ATP to rid themselves of a lot of these issues until they can get the programming right). Therefore what should be done with the 1 player who reaches the final table having played 1 less round if a non exponent of 2 number of players started the tournament? Should they start with fewer chips? I think that's the only variable that can be played with. You could make a case that instead of each round starting with the same number of chips as round 1(ie contradicting my point 6 above...lol) that every time you win a round, those won chips carry forward. Therefore the player who played 1 less round would start with the chip stack they had at the last round they won, and thus their stack would be less than their opponent's, but because they played 1 less round to get there, it might be somewhat fair? But if you work through a 10 player H2H (just as an example), you'll see that there will be a round 1 winner with no match at round 2, therefore the soonest they could play again would be round 3, where there will be 2 round 2 winners with double the round 1 winner's stack. Now should this odd man out from round 1 play a round 2 winner with 1/2 the stack or should the two round 2 winners play, giving the winner 4 times the stack size of the poor left out round 1 winner, but with the round 1 winner reaching the final table? And what is a fair blind level for a round 1 winner vs a round 3 winner? I can see a another debate brewing! So that there aren't big stack size differences, I think the left out round 1 winner should play one of the round 2 winners (or the soonest available open round), with the round 1 winner having 1/2 the stack of the round 2 winner. Then that round 3 winner plays the other round 3 winner at the final table with the winner going into the final table with a 2/3 of the total chips in play 8. In the link I gave above, it was suggested as an option that handling the odd man out could be as simple as just giving them a payout (as though they made the $$) and then send them on their way.
So Steve, did you realize that trying to program a H2H online tourny was going to be this much fun?
So let the debate begin!
Well, thats all I have...for now!
As always, thanks to the everyone at ATP for being so responsive to its members concerns and questions. And thanks to all the vocal members who express their opinions civilly and constructively.
Keep up the good work everyone! And to quote PFAL, "May the variance be with you all"!
One restrained comment/reply before dinner (more to be added later perhaps).
I won 5 h2h matches last night before losing to Alexfish who played a spectacular game when she defeated abers (they did have roughly equal stacks to start with btw) before winning the tournament itself! In the time I played 5 matches there were others who were sweating it out while engaged in 1 TOUGHER match (or maybe a more even matchup skillwise). So I accumulated 15,000 chips in that time and could, conceivably, then have been matched up against north32rowan and his 3,000 chips after his 1 win.
North32rowan finished higher in the standings then I did btw! Unfortunately for him his 2nd match was against Alexfish and her MASSIVE chipstack! Who played better me or north32rowan? He would have made the $$$ in this form of h2h event. I'd have walked home empty handed despite, IMHO, my better performance. It's okay though...... I understood the type of event I'd entered before it began.
Was that fair though??? I dunno. Poker isn't a game i associate the word fair with usually. If someone objects to this style of h2h tournament maybe they should skip it. I'll be playing them though. If APT'S mgmt decides to try a shootout style h2h event to soothe those people's wounded feelings I say fine bring it on I'll play that too.
In a real life tournament at the finale the h2h is rarely a level playing field, soooooo, for me personally, the unequal chipstacks is just a way to practice what I may be likely to encounter in the real world. I like to practice and I've used the APT H2H trainer a lot. I beat those bots a lot too! The harder the better as far as I'm concerned.
A tip: I'll tell you that I didn't play the h2h on the tablet I, frequently, use. I played on a 24" monitor, sitting in a comfortable chair at the desk in my office and watched multiple other tables while playing. Waiting was of NO consequence to me. NONE. I chatted with other APT members at various points and arranged to chat on the phone with 2 to become better acquainted and exchange some ideas on how to improve. One may even join me for a live tournament in the near future.
As DavidL asserted, I do stick around and watch a lot of the times when I go out of an event early. I learn a lot watching and I think the time invested (discounting the sheer entertainment value) is worthwhile for me. Important even.
On a different note - i try to be amusing with my railbird chat which isn't always reciprocated. Not a problem. I know when to stfu usually and have apologized to one person who I offended.
Corey "synthesist" Gimbel
Why am I listed as a Skimmer and Syn listed as a Veteran? I've been a member since 2016! lol
Good thoughts Syn...but I still think you should play equal chip stacks when starting a new heads up contest. All sporting events start with the score 0-0...not 120 to 60! Why not start a basketball game at 30 to 10 to teach the team with 10 to play from behind and see if they are good/lucky enough to win even with a big starting points differential? Lets make every sporting event a come from behind event. Its great that you learn something from the experience...but starting with equal stacks and then losing the first pot will also teach you to come from behind as well. But at least you started as equals.
I don't disagree with your position D, I was merely pointing out that there's a possibility of more than one h2h style tournament and why the lopsided one has some utility in the poker universe.
Corey "synthesist" Gimbel
The titles like skimmer or veteran have to do with the number of posts in the forum. I'm actually not sure if the titles were standard for the forum software or if Heather made them up.
The software we use for the live tournaments is licensed, not our own, so we are limited to what is available in the software. So many of the issues such as what to do with non 2^n people etc is probably not something we can do much about, nor do I think it matters at all since these tourneys are purely for fun. If prize money was involved, it would matter. But this is just for practice, so it really doesnt and it will all even out in the end anyway if you play them regularly. However, the question of immediate rematch vs. Wait and start second round, etc. is a question worth talking about because stack sizes obviously do matter.
Right now, these tourneys (any of them)are played regularly by a very small percentage of our users. They are great for practice and I love the community they are creating - I really enjoy interacting with all of you, you're a fun group and I enjoy running the site a lot more now than before we had the tourneys and forum. So I want the tourneys to be formatted in a way that encourages the most people to play. I'm not sure what the correct answer is. Assuming the software has the ability to do bracket format, it probably is worth trying it out. I think we will be able to see quickly whether a lot of folks just quit when they have to wait. I think a pretty good portion of the people who play these tourneys are just doing it for fun and may not like waiting. But that's something that we can try out if the option is there in the software (which I presume it is or Steve would have just told me it can't be done instead of encouraging the discussion).
@David et al....
I enjoy our interactions at the table and here in the forum. I hope more of the live event players chime in. The back and forth repartee with you, and others, adds an extra dimension to the fun. Your comment about me being in stealth mode frequently deserves a response as well. In 2011 I pretty much left poker behind on Black Friday. Between disgust and something resembling the loss of a loved one I walked away. Over the years I'd. periodically, reminisce over what was.................... I had some fun, made some $$$ and acquired some relationships through online poker. Maintained some of the relationships, pretty much lost the $$$ (not all of it thankfully) and moved on. When I'm lurking quietly I am, actually, intently studying the play (perhaps on all the open tables). My wife finds it hilarious but I find her community, volunteer work to be equally amusing so we're even.
Now, mostly because of my serendipitous discovery of APT, I've resumed my poker hobby, both online (admittedly not for $$$ here at APT) and live in the charity events I discovered after starting to study poker again. Win win for me. It took me the better part of 6 months to regain a chunk of my previous poker chops which still need some work (particularly on my impulsive willingness to go all-in. I sometimes (okay frequently, forget that living to fight another day is the point of tournament tournament play)). For those who go WTF Syn!!!!, sighhhh, WELL I PROMISE TO CONTINUE TO WORK ON THIS ASPECT OF MY GAME. I know it's my worst leak by far.
On a more upbeat note: I vigorously applaud the Blay's willingness to address the desires of a small % of their clientele by enhancing (doubling) the live daily tournament offerings and creating this forum.I hope it creates more buzz about the site............ having SteveStokely show up at the 1st H2H was thrilling. Having Adamslanding beat him was priceless. I think these actions have enhanced the loyalty of the current live tournament community. They certainly made moi really happy. I see lots of new screen names popping up at the tournaments and go out of my way to welcome/encourage them to continue participating. The more diversity the better............... More like real life events IMHO where I seldom have any insights into the people I'm involved with (working on that by playing more live).
So there you have a bit more of my thinking. Your mileage may vary.
Corey "synthesist" Gimbel
Steve...how many forum posts do I need to make before I'll be labelled a Veteran, instead of the current Skimmer? Skimmer makes me sound like I'm some hacker trying to spoil everyone's fun!
Obviously its more than 2! lol
Jeeeeeez just promote him! Right now! The length, and great quality, of his posts should qualify him. Instead of vote for Pablo I say vote for David.
Maybe you need to show us the various rank designations so David can work towards "Grand High Poobah" and assert his supremacy.
I yield the floor to my esteemed colleague.
No offense David you know I like you......
The Skimmer designation is for only the first four posts. The name can be changed if folks have another one they would prefer. On the other hand, you can just get up to that fifth post for your next designation!
You mean I get a Title for just posting this ??
Yes you do! Welcome abers.
That's Skimmer to you
You're cracking me up here..............
For the record the h2h between abers and AlexFish (which seemed to go on for an hour or more) was noteworthy. i've watched quite a few of these h2hs over the past couple of weeks since the event kicked off. Sometime I kibitz a bit (sometimes a conversation ensues) but during the one between abers and AlexFish I 'm not sure I said a word. It was that good and, since I like them both, I saw no reason to cheer one, or the other, on
The live h2hs are a really good thing. If I could choose my opponents, for sheer educational benefit to myself, I'd choose a few that I think would be fun to battle (in no particular order and no offense to anyone not mentioned):
Helenkeler (cause she drives me crazy)
ssserrbbb (cause he's just deadly)
Publisher (cause I respect his game a great deal)
Aligning (again) and (he deserves a rematch)
AlexFish (again because I deserve a rematch)
abers (cause he's so much tougher then I am)
Duxman (the chat would be worth it by itself)
Jazzygirl (because the score is Jazzy 15 Syn 3 maybe)
Cosmas (cause I think it'd be an even match)
Lizh (again because I deserve a rematch)
Condoasu (cause I respect his game a great deal)
ohar (cause I respect his game a great deal)
PFAL (the chat would be worth it by itself)
North32Rowan (the chat would be worth it by itself)
MrLabRat (cause he's so much tougher then I am)
Thomperry (because the score is Tom 43 Syn 2!!!!)
mgmbob (cause IMHO he'd like to kick my ass once)
I could add 20 more but you get the idea............
They would all be a challenge.
Corey "synthesist" Gimbel
I'm glad you are enjoying these. I hope everyone else is enjoying them also. I wish we could get more people posting on the forums regularly. I think that would also be fun - and a great way to share hands, etc.