Before looking to spend some time online to play a poker game, any sane player would want to verify whether it is a rigged game or not. After all, who would want to lose money to some shady casino? Today, we’ll explore whether online poker is rigged.
WHY DO PEOPLE THINK THAT ONLINE POKER IS RIGGED?
Is online poker being rigged by malevolent game providers and operators in an effort to make more money? There is no blanket answer to this question, since there definitely are shady casinos out there that operate this way, especially unlicensed ones.
Nevertheless, here’s why most people believe online poker is rigged.
ACCUSING THE RNG OF BEING RIGGED
RNG, which stands for ‘Random Number Generator’, is often believed to be the culprit of either bad beats or losing streaks. Random Number Generators are used to randomise the cards drawn by the dealer so that there is no telling which card is dealt next.
Any reputable online poker site uses RNG in its online rooms in an effort to keep the game as unpredictable as possible. Bad players with a tendency to lash out at the mechanics of each game they play are the ones who usually voice this opinion.
STATING THAT NEW POKER PLAYERS ARE FAVOURED
A bad beat or two may lead many players to the conclusion that new players are favoured by the house. They may think that, in an effort to bridge the game between players with great poker skills and those who don’t, the casino might decide that the fish start winning more than usual.
Unfortunately for players who voice this opinion, poker software doesn’t choose sides. It is virtually impossible for RNG to benefit players with less experience playing online poker. Bad beats happen when online gambling; that is just the harsh truth. Instead of trying to shift the blame on other players, some players are better off brushing up on their strategy.
CLAIMING ABOUT THE PRESENCE OF BOTS
The same players who tend to blame RNG for their shortcomings might also believe that their online poker room is infested with bots — fake, automated accounts that, in this situation, serve to fill in online poker rooms.
In most cases, it is almost impossible to have definitive proof that the players at your table are bots, but when it comes to legitimate and renowned casinos, this goes against basic common sense.
After all, why would casinos give up their rake just to fill up a poker table? The more real players in a poker room, the more rake the casino will enjoy. Casinos would lose too much money if bots would infest their poker tables.
SO MANY BAD BEATS!
Good players can only take so many bad beats before potentially lashing out when losing to a ‘bad’ player. “How could my pocket aces lose out to what was once just a flush draw?” Should said player suffer a huge loss and be forced to buy chips to remain at the table, then this sentiment could be aired in a much more aggressive way.
Bad beats are instances where a player with a strong hand loses to a supposedly weaker hand. People may feel that these bad beats happen too often, and that they are the result of a rigged poker game.
CLAIM THAT THEY LOSE TOO OFTEN
Many players accuse the game of being rigged solely because they have spent an hour online and ended up losing a substantial amount of money. There are a couple of problems with this accusation, however.
First off, when playing any kind of poker game (be it online or live poker), you risk losing quite an amount of money if you aren’t careful. Going all-in multiple times or pursuing a top pair for bigger pots will not necessarily end well in most cases.
Furthermore, it’s important to consider a large sample size when calculating how many hands you lose per hour. Remember that the more hands you try, the more accurate your win rate will be. A winning player knows that a large sample is required when analysing their success at a particular table.
WHY ONLINE POKER IS CERTAINLY NOT RIGGED
So-called rigged online poker games are very much a rarity or even a myth if you’re playing at legitimate online casinos such as EnergyCasino.
Nevertheless, here are some arguments against the belief that online poker is rigged.
CASINOS HAVE NO REASON TO OFFER RIGGED GAMES
Online poker sites have no reason to rig their games, and there are two reasons for that:
- Pulling off an online poker scam would result in the casino’s integrity taking a massive nosedive, which would thoroughly hurt its profits. This is especially the case in major tournaments where the visibility is high.
- The house (or, in this case, the online poker site) always wins in the end, especially the more new players it has. Unlike a poker pro, beginners commit many mistakes when playing online poker, and these mistakes translate into income for the poker site.
With this in mind, what would the site’s incentive be to rig its own games?
THE POSSIBILITY TO CHECK PAST HANDS
Poker tracking software is a tool that allows players to track their own performance and analyze the play of their opponents. These tools typically work by collecting data on the hands played by the user and their opponents, and then displaying that data in an easy-to-use format.
This is done in the casino’s best interest — mostly to avoid allegations that their online poker site is rigged — but players can put this to good use to review their lost hands and perhaps strive to do better next time. Doing so will elevate your odds of winning, so we really recommend giving this a try if your poker cash games offer this feature.
Nowadays, many casinos allow the use of software to show your hand histories, but others are known to prohibit them. Some sites may also have their own built-in tracking tools that are available to all players. It is important to check the terms and conditions of the poker site before using any software, as using prohibited software can result in account bans.
HOW ONLINE POKER REALLY GETS RIGGED
The truth is that not all online poker sites are safe to play at. Although a large portion of poker sites are legitimate — especially those that are licensed and accredited by renowned gaming authorities — there definitely are fraudulent poker sites out there.
THE ABSOLUTE POKER SCANDAL
The year 2007 was a dark one for poker players that frequented the website Absolute Poker. It was during that year that rumours of bad play began circulating, specifically against a particular player whose nickname was ‘Potripper’.
After a tournament, a player who played at Potripper’s table requested their hand history, and the poker site mistakenly sent him the master hand history, thus proving the players’ allegations correct: Potripper was a fraud, and there was real evidence to prove it. Potripper was making large sums of money through a second account, which was giving him information about his opponent’s hands.
THE ULTIMATE BET SCANDAL
A poker site called Ultimate Bet suffered a similar scandal to the one above, which, coincidentally, occurred just months later. Similarly, a player was caught replicating Potripper’s flawless play, but they were caught in the act.
As it happened, this fraudulent activity had been happening for more than a year, which is why the poker site was handed a hefty fine.
One of the major threats to playing a round or two of poker in a safe environment is a bot ring, a number of accounts being played by just one guy. The scope of bot rings is to earn money from other users as well as win even more money back thanks to potential rakebacks.
Poker bot rings can be difficult to detect, as the bots are designed to mimic human play. However, some signs that a player may be using a bot include playing a large number of hands, playing at multiple tables at the same time, and making unusual or improbable decisions.
If an online poker site suspects that a player is using a bot, they may investigate the player’s account and look for evidence such as unusual patterns of play. If a player is found to be using a bot, their account may be banned and their winnings may be confiscated. It’s important to note that the use of bots is considered cheating, and it is strictly prohibited by most of the reputable online poker sites out there.
HOW TO MAKE SURE THAT YOU’RE PLAYING POKER AT SAFE POKER SITES
Now that you know about the complexity of the poker world, your next step is to learn how to play online poker safely. Seeing as nobody would want to start losing money to fraudulent online poker sites, we’re sure that you’ll want a few tips to avoid them.
- To identify safe poker sites, you should look for sites that are licensed and regulated by reputable gaming authorities.
- Additionally, you should look for sites that use secure connections, such as SSL, to protect your personal and financial information.
- Furthermore, you should look for sites that are independently audited and tested for fairness and that have a good reputation among players.
- You can also look for sites that have been recommended by reputable sources, such as poker magazines or websites.
- Review the casino’s payment methods. Before proceeding to make a deposit, you should ensure that the server is secure and that other precautions are in place to protect you throughout all transactions. It might also be worth looking into the payment methods the casino may offer. If your options are extremely limited or seem unreliable, it would be best to take your funds and transactions to a more reputable casino.
CONCLUSION: IS ONLINE POKER RIGGED?
In most cases, online poker is definitely not rigged. Some people may think that online poker is rigged because of a few reasons, but none of those are necessarily true. The best way to make sure that you’re playing at a safe casino is to verify its licences and check its reviews.
If you’re a live poker player, make sure that your live casino is licensed by the most renowned game authorities out there. If it is, then you can rest assured that your live game is legitimate.
PLAY POKER SAFELY AT ENERGYCASINO
Should you wish to play live or online poker, you can feel free to check our online and live poker releases over at EnergyCasino!
If you’ve never played live poker before, then you’re in for a real treat, since we’ve partnered up with several connoisseurs of live games, including Evolution, Pragmatic Play and BetGames. This way, you can rest assured that you’ll be playing both an exciting and fair game at the same time.