Brilliant Idea for Home Sit&Go Play

4 years ago
Idea for Home Sit&Go Play
10 Aug

The average friend circle does not consist entirely of poker players – and if you are out on that fringe of the bell curve where your only friends are the sickest of degenerates, they don’t always have the roll to play at the same stakes. So how do you run a casual poker night and chill that will allow everyone to get the thrills and spills that they want at the level that they want it?

Stixx_27 of Reddit, has an elegant solution, which they are calling a pay whatever you want tournament. As the title suggests, in this game everyone buys in for whatever amount they want. That player who still needs a piece of paper with the hand rankings on can chip in a few quid/crowns/dollars/renminbi/buttons, while the Supernova online grinders can throw down a ton.

The tournament then plays as a winner take all sit and go, with the winner being played by each player the amount of their own buy in or the winners, whichever is lower.

For instance: a six man tourney with a couple of pros who buy in for £100, a newbie who chips in for £1, and the other three players spending a fiver.

If one of the pros wins he takes a fiver off each of the fiverers, a quid of the quider, and £100 off the other pro for a profit of £100 + £5 + £5 + £5 + £1 = £116. If the £1 player wins he takes £1 off each player for £5 profit. While if one of the £5 players win they take a fiver off of each of the pros and each of the other fiverers plus £1 off the £1 player for £21 profit.

The result is that everyone can play at whatever of risk they like without being horribly unbalanced or unfair.

The Downside

The format does terrible things to your ICM models, it makes for plenty of bizarre situations that are either horribly inequitable or somewhat outside the strict sense of what competitive poker is meant to be. Plus, the payout system means that the opportunities and incentives for collusion are built into the structure.

After all, if the pool is mostly people with a large chunk of cash invested and you find yourself in for a song but up against one of the big boys, you can both make a lot more if they other guy will slip you some graft to throw the match.

All of which is somewhat beside the point, this is not a format for the profit hungry pro. This is a game for casual players, drunks and degenerates. If you’re gonna play this format you need to have faith in your friends ability to play for fun, because sours othing sours a drunken gambool quite like people feeling they were had by some smug con-artist.

But assuming your friends aren’t avaricious monsters or humourless sociopaths, then with the right people and plenty of liquor this seems like a fun way to include the timid and the inexperienced in the game.

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Jon is a freelance writer and novelist who learned to play poker after watching Rounders in year 9. He has been giving away his beer money at cards ever since. Currently he is based in Bristol where he makes sporadic donations to the occasional live tournament or drunken late night Zoom session. He ...Read more


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