** END OF MONTH REVIEW - December 2018 **
Bit of a slow bleed to round the month (and the year off). Fired pretty big on the UOS main Sunday and came up back with nothing to show for it unfortunately. No other big wins of note either, just small winning days on Hexapro really. It's good to book a positive month to round off the year but it's not been one to remember on the poker front.
** End of Year Review **
Start BR (Jan 1st 201: €1739.38
End BR (Dec 31st 201: €116.57
2018 has been the complete opposite of 2017 on Unibet. I'll be honest and admit I don't really remember when or why the downfall started but there are a number of factors that probably assisted in creating the black run of a graph you see above.
Probably the best one was the introduction of Esmee aka BabyTBC into the world. Preparation for her arrival took time, money and energy (physical and mental) which meant sitting for 8-10 hours on a Sunday clicking buttons stopped being an option pretty quickly in 2018. A lot of the time I just wasn't in the right frame of mind to play and when I did, I was playing badly. It's taken me a long time to get into a rhythm where I can play again at a level close to what I used to by adjusting when I play and for how long but I think things are starting to fall into place so that I can maybe get that graph heading upwards one more time in 2019
Another factor was the slow decline in my passion for the Unibet product. It's well documented here that I believe the product has changed for the worse in the last 12 months and when you don't like something you feel negative when you use it. I'm still having way more fun on other clients playing big MTTs and other game formats and really struggle to find a reason to open the Unibet client. I'm hoping the UO/UK Tour schedules get released fairly soon so I can plan at least one poker trip and spark some motivation to play again. The death of the ticket exchange has made the prospect of qualifying a little less appealing but I've always had the best times at Unibet live events so I'd like to continue supporting them in 2019.
The final factor is that I'm just not a winning player anymore. I may never have been a winning player and just ran well for a year or two, it''s very hard to tell. I know for sure that just now I'm way behind the curve and it'#s going to be incredibly difficult to catch up given how little free time I'll have in the next few years. Luckily I've already come to terms with this idea and it's stopped really phasing me. Over the last month or so I've gone into any MTT I play knowing that at any point I may just need to sit out and do real world things which are more important. It's -ev for sure but that's OK. Sometimes you'll come back and still have stacks, sometimes you'll be in 10bb push/fold mode but either way I'm still playing a game I enjoy and getting anything back financially is a bonus. So much of the focus in poker is on the money and I think sometimes people forget about enjoyment and fun. If you take golf for example, 99% of players are losing players, they make no money from it and actually lose lots of money in equipment and fees every year. They just play it because it's fun and they enjoy it. That's essentially how I see poker now.
Having said that I'm not going out there to punt in 2019 and breaking even/winning is still the ultimate goal. In any spare time I do have I'm still going to be trying to watch training vids, reviewing hands and talking strat with the Discord boys. On Unibet specifically I still want to get to a point where I could withdraw knowing I'd have withdrawn more than I deposited. That's around the €700 mark so I think it's completely doable in a year even without huge volume. I've got 2x cash tickets to play through and both are currently above starting stack so if I ever get through the flop requirements that will be a few bi in the MTTs. Other than that I'll just plod through the missions each month and play MTTs when I have time. Not sure how I'll play it BRM-wise as it's a mental struggle to play €1 MTTs again and have to dodge all the craziness but it might be a good test of discipline. I'm going to play it by ear based on promos and drive really.
I've got some money on most of the major sites and am just going to continue to bounce around playing wherever has a decent promo or MTT series running. I've been making several deep runs in the Winter Series on PS over the last few weeks, including one in an NL08 PKO which was a lot of fun, so I feel a little better in my game getting through fields of 20k+ players to the last few hundred. There might be some hope yet, we'll see in 2019.
Before typing this out I had planned on finishing this post with the closure of the blog. It's been getting increasing harder to type these posts because of lack of content to talk about and lack of passion for doing it. I'm now on the fence. Looking back at what my BR used to be I'd really like to get it back. I have two tables of NL4 open while typing so I can work through the mission and cash tickets so there is some desire to work to a goal left . I expect what will happen is I'll play on Unibet in between the MTT series running on other sites and see where it gets me. I'll be around for the UOS as well and hopefully another bounty promo if they do one.
If anyone has any honest feedback on the blog over the last few months or wants me to write about anything specific then let me know. I quite like writing stuff, I just need more subjects to write about
There definitely be another post at some point, whether it's an update or a goodbye is a AKs vs QQ at this point
Hey @MoreTBC just been catching up on your year. Congrats on the new arrival!!
You're right that isn't the prettiest of graphs, but thank you for the openess and willingness to share! Your point about too much emphasis been out on money with regards to poker is correct, we should certainly play it because we enjoy it first and foremost.
Having said that, I get you in terms of wanting to build your roll back and get into profit on the site. It seems you have some gripes with Unibet, the majority are fair and warranted, having said that, every site has its faults. Look what the likes of stars have done over recent times, supernova elite for example.
I think you are more than capable of beating the games with a little work and determination. But I will also so that you very likely will not suvcesu without that determination and desire.
My advice, given your lifestyle would be to avoid MTTs, yes they're the most fun, offer the biggest returns and probably are the best value it is not going to work if you're walking away from the table etc. Plus the huge fields bring huge variance. Personally I would focus on STTs or cash, probably the latter, as you can come and go as you please, less short term variance and a nice heater could soon have your graph going the right way.
Whatever you decide, I'd love it (and I'm sure others too) if you continued to enjoy poker, play and keep the blog goimg.
Good luck mate!
Thanks for sharing your graph. I didn't realise it had gone so badly for you this year. Are you trying to become the whale of the day?
Esmee has a lot of explaining to do, imo.
Inb4 Hexapro hexapro.
** END OF MONTH REVIEW - January 2019 **
The blog is alive!
A positive month on Unibet (ignore the results for just now) on and off the felt has rejuvenated my desire to carry on detailing the world of the regular Joe Internet poker player. I've always found this blog makes me accountable for my actions so that, for example, if I decide to completely ignore BRM and start firing the Supernova each week I have to write about the fact I did it, it didn't work and that BRM should really be followed if you want longevity in poker . Having that accountability keeps me roughly on the straight and narrow and minimises the risk of full degen
I was also lifted by the comments of @UAC, @GR1ZZL3R and others that people actually still read this nonsense. When I started it, blogs on the community were few and far between so it was easy to get visibility of it. Today the listings are filled with quality writing, fun challenges and generally more proactive content creators than myself so it's nice to know this, now, monthly blog still has some legs. I'd love it to be as vivid as a blog like Daras or Lappins but I just don't have enough stories/knowledge to use as reference points and I think baby metaphors will wear thin pretty quickly.
I've always battled with the idea that the blog felt like I was just live reporting and didn't really have any meat to it but that might have been a side effect of how often I used to update it. Now we're on a monthly schedule it seems to work better in a recap form with highlights of the month and thoughts rather than day by day run downs. Anyway, let's see what's been going on in January.
Turns out I have not completely forgotten how to win poker tournaments. I played it to complete the "Play a singularity" mission and ended up shipping the thing. It was a long time ago now so I remember very little about what happened but I know it felt good to get a trophy that early in the year. I followed it up with a rare profitable Sunday where I bagged a Nova ticket on the first attempt from tickets I bought with BP (didn't cash) and finished 2nd in a €2 PLO for just under €50.
After that I spend the rest of the month mostly losing while chasing those pesky Hexapro jackpots. The total month ROI on SNGs (which I class Hexapros as for results tracking) shows a small loss on them which makes sense considering how well I ran last month.. I was due some runbad. It just seems to take a few big multipliers not going your way to really hurt your bottom line. The field seems to be getting -slightly- tougher as well now as people get the jist of the format and more people come in to enjoy the marshmallow pit.
One area that doesn't look good from the results but was actually really good was cash games. I had 2 cash tickets I'd been working through after getting them via Challenge points and Community promos and managed to get them completed during January. The biggest ticket cleared for €37 and the small one was €9 so that's a pretty good return on €0 invested. It doesn't work with the ROI calc (because it's trying to divide by 0) so there is no % total and I didn't record what days I played because the results would be 0 in, 0 out so cash sessions played is also wrong but I played enough to clear 300 flops
Off brand it's been a fun month as well...
Managed to satellite twice into a $215 PKO on the same day as the Singularity win and FT'd a $5 turbo the day before. I can't remember where I finishing in the turbo but it was worth about 10x buyin I think. Edit: Found a screenshot in Discord..
My other big FT was in the Hot $22. This is not a tournament I normally play and on a day/time I don't normally play (Saturday night) so it was an unexpected FT for sure. I think the GF had gone out on a night out so I was home alone with the baby. The Hot 22 starts around 9:30pm I think so the baby was sleeping through most of it, which always helps. I got in via a $3 16 player 4-max 2x shootout (say that 3 times fast) so by the time I reached the FT we were talking about many multiples of my investment up for grabs.
As you can see things were not going particular great as we headed into the FT but considering most of the table had 20bb or less you're just one flip away from being in a comfortable spot to get some decent ladders. It didn't take long for me to find myself in a position where I needed to win a flip. I had ATo in the SB and it had folded all the way around to the button who shoved with a stack that was marginally bigger than mine, and by marginal I mean there was maybe 500 chips different in it. It did not feel great at all but I felt I had to go with the hand I had and I called. BB folded and the button showed 22.
Flop comes down xxA, turn A.. river 2.
A truly miserable way to bust in a spot I really wasn't comfortable or sure about. I Insta-opened ICMizer.
Maths said it was a fine call. It should have been a relief, but it wasn't. There was a player with 3bb at the table when the hand went down and I couldn't stop thinking about whether I should have folded and let a few more players bust. I don't know how to describe it but I had a feeling that I would have witnessed some ICM suicide if I had just folded and waited for another spot.
I posed the question of folding to the Discord group and got a pretty unanimous "call" response. Ultimately the goal is to win the tournament and you can't do that folding. For every 2 outer hit by the villain there are going to be more results where I win, double up and possibly make a decent run at a 4 figure score.
Still hurts a little though
There seems to be plenty to do in February on Unibet. Bounty Badlands is back which is a promotion I love. It brings back fond memories of beating Ian Simpson in our first prop bet and him having to wear a silly outfit at the Glasgow stop of the UK tour. There are a new set of missions to complete and some stuff here on the community too. The Podium hunters promo seems like it would be fun to do and I'm going to try and remember to play the weekly series games when I can.
Maybe it's just me but it feels like everything is moving again at Unibet. Between all the new promos, more requests for player feedback on all products here on the community and the new 'player panel' (not sure what the official name is) it feels like things are getting back to the 'By the players, for the players' mentality that spoke to me as a customer when I signed up. Obviously I'm going to take full credit for it as my previous few blog posts, filled with negative comments, have been the catalyst for all the movement
As far as poker goes I'm not sure what my plans are outside Unibet. There is always so much to choose from that it's easy to get overwhelmed. Right now there is the Turbo series on PS (although nearly all the buy-ins are too high for me), a PKO series and Irish Open sats on Party, Irish Open sats on Paddy, MPN live sat.. the list goes on. I've had some pretty miserable Sundays recently and I think it's partly down to wanting to be able to play everything and ending up with too many tables and just playing poorly on them all. I'm going to try and make a conscious effort to limit table and play better. Whether this means picking one site a session to play on or picking one MTT from multiple sites to play at a time i'm not sure on yet but hopefully it'll mean better play and results either way. I also appear to be running below EV which isn't helping..
Not to worry though, we'll just power through it and continue to try and make the big bucks
Thanx for the update @MoreTBC, great read...still loving the Blog Mate.
Keep up the good work man !!!
** END OF MONTH REVIEW - February 2019 **
So I basically ignored everything I said I was going to do in my post at the end of January. I didn't bother with any of the promos on Unibet and in all honesty barely opened the client all month. I continued to play more tables than I should on Sunday's and got battered. I played a sum total of 2 Irish Open sats, none on MPN (because they never bloody run) and generally just continued to play and run badly. The only two screenshots I saved in Feb were $109 and $215 sat wins on Stars for the Turbo Series that I ended up making no money in anyway.
Strangely I've been finding myself spending more and more time playing cash. I don't really like cash that much but I'm finding myself playing $0.01/$0.02 NLHE/PLO zoom on Stars or games on Run It Once more and more. In a world where you can be called on to be responsible for a tiny human at any point, MTTs really don't gel well with that kind of time management. With that in mind I'd been trying out different quicker formats to see if any stuck with me as interesting. I tried 45 man SnGs and although these work quite well it feels quite robotic playing them. With the lowest limit cash games I feel much more free to just splash around and have fun. I'm a terrible cash player but it's entertaining to abuse player tendencies and 4-bet all the time because everyone just assumes you have aces. I've also really started to get into PLO because I find it a lot of fun to play.
Hope is not lost for good ol' Texas holdem though. I still have a plan to get to Malta at some point this year via any operator that will have me through sats so I, along with most of the poker world, purchased Dara's book and plan to read that this month. I also took part in the easiest promo of my life on Run It Once to get a free month on the training site so I've started watching some videos as well. I'm struggling with the videos so far, mostly because I'm not very clever, and also because I just can't seem to absorb the information in the way I want to. It's probably just a matter of finding the right set of videos that work with my brain but I've not quite found them yet.
I'm not sure how much I'll play on Unibet this month as I'm having a very hard time looking at the table and wanting to play good, solid poker. It's all in my head but everytime I load a game brain tells me that no matter what I do someone is going to get there with garbage and stack me and then I just play high variance and lose. Probably need to use Primed Mind or Headspace before I start and get all zen or something
If anything exciting happens before the end of the month I'll post an update but if not, I'll see you in April