If there’s one thing we’ve learned in the last year it’s that no matter how many rules you make or how many laws you pass, people will find a way to break them.
When it comes to our favorite pastime (and the most popular game in the world!) few things are as frustrating as trying to follow the rules and make the right play, only to have the person next to you laugh in your face and make you lose all your hard-earned money.
Many consider online poker to be a game of chance rather than skill, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth.
When you’re playing against people with money in the same pot rather than random cards, the game becomes a lot more strategic. Plus, there’s always the added bonus of being able to study your opponent’s hand as well as you can study the cards in front of you.
Based on what we’ve learned over the last year or so no particular year should be singled out as being especially significant. But, given it’s 2019 and the last year’s been an interesting one, let’s take a minute and reflect on some interesting developments in relation to online poker, shall we?
Online Poker’s 2019 Revival
It seems like only yesterday that we were talking about how much damage the pandemic would do to online poker and how uncertain the future of the game would be. Well, happily, those days seem a long time ago.
While the world was still in the grips of the pandemic, governments were forced to close down all forms of gambling, including online poker. In some places, the legislation that was passed specifically forbidding online gambling prevented poker sites from operating even before the pandemic. The game’s popularity dropped significantly as a result, especially in countries where traditional forms of gambling are widely available.
Despite the challenging environment, not all hope was lost. Poker enthusiasts and professionals alike saw a unique opportunity to bring the game back from the brink of disaster and began working on a solution.
The Return Of The American Poker Tour (APT)
In January of this year, the American Poker Tour (APT) made the bold move to return from the shadows and continue its operations. The tour made the decision to do so despite the pandemic and the uncertainties that the country faced at the time. But, as they say, necessity is the mother of invention. And, given the opportunity, what other choice did they have?
The American Poker Tour has long been one of the most influential poker tours in the world. Launched back in 2007, the tour gained notoriety for its innovative approach to teaching the game, using high-quality instruction videos from the International Game Teachers’ Association (IGTA). The videos are designed to help beginners learn the ins and outs of poker, without the intimidation usually associated with the game.
. The series’ instructors are also widely considered among the best in the world, with many people considering them to be the best of all time. Over the years, the American Poker Tour has grown from strength to strength and now boasts a global network of schools, forums, and communities that supports its mission to educate and encourage people to play poker.
Online Poker’s Rules Changes
Along with its resurgence, the American Poker Tour decided to shake things up and institute some changes to make the game more accessible to a wider audience. The first and most significant of these was the introduction of multi-table tournaments (MTTs).
These are group tournaments where players can enter and play against more than one opponent at a time. In single-table tournaments (STTs), players play against the dealer or the other players at the table; there’s only one opponent at a time.
The number of STTs has been declining steadily since their introduction in 2003 with the intention of making the game more accessible to beginners. While they’re still relatively popular, the rise of MTTs means that more experienced players are being drawn to the game.
The other significant change that the American Poker Tour implemented this year was a reduction in the maximum bet from 50 to 20 cents per card. This was done to encourage more people to play and participate in tournaments, where the small bets add up quickly. It’s also in line with the game’s evolution from a hobby to a serious sport.
Where Do We Go From Here?
While the game itself has changed a lot in the last year, the world of online poker is in a constant state of flux. With so much change, it can be difficult to keep track of what’s been done and what’s still to be done. But, one thing is for sure… rules are made to be broken.