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Having a break

Discussion in 'Online Casinos' started by gerilege, May 3, 2007.

    May 3, 2007
  1. gerilege

    gerilege Meister Member PABnorogue PABrogue

    Occupation:
    IT
    Location:
    Hungary
    I will likely stop online gambling for a while again. This is the second time I am facing with a difficult decision, as my girlfriend doesn't seem to tolerate the downswing I have right now. Last summer I had to experience another relatively big, but much smaller downswing (I lost more than 1.200 GBP in a few months playing BJ 3 GBP per hand, circa 13.000 hands), and I couldn't convince her that online gambling was fair.

    Later in the last year I did quite well, hit several good wins, cashed in a very nice profit (with the help of bonuses), which could have been more if I had more discipline, although my biggest win came from a very -EV situation. Everything went fine.

    But this year is terrible for me so far. I switched to a more aggressive strategy, and suddenly 4/5 of last year's profit is gone within 4 months. I had to regularly suffer video poker sessions with 10-20% house edge and 200+ units downswings with 2-10% probability, and the big win - to put me in line with the expectations - just didn't come. The good winning BJ streaks also avoided me on all sws except probably one. The probability of the overall downswing I have is less than 5 percent. Additionally I have two problematic big cashouts, and I would really need the money right now.

    So I think I will take a break, and come back later. Probably I will go back to play my old low-middle limit holdem and omaha hi/lo poker game. Less, but more plannable profit. I am able to handle those swings, but I'm fortunately not alone, and I won't let variance kill my personal relationship.

    I will be here on the forum, and I wish you all the best.
    Good luck!
     
    1 person likes this.
  2. May 3, 2007
  3. AudiManinBoro

    AudiManinBoro Ueber Meister MM

    Occupation:
    Sales
    Location:
    UK
    ahhh girlfriends and gambling, will they ever really go together lol
     
  4. May 3, 2007
  5. CasinoForumu

    CasinoForumu Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Manager
    Location:
    Bursa
    Good luck with your decision.
     
  6. May 3, 2007
  7. KasinoKing

    KasinoKing WebMeister & Slotaholic.. CAG MM PABnonaccred webmeister

    Occupation:
    House-Husband and Casino Advisor
    Location:
    Bexhill on sea, England
    Same with wives & gambling.
    As to wives & girlfriends... don't even go there! :D

    My misses is very tolerant, but only cos I usually win.
    Having said that April was pretty diabolical, and I can totally understand why runs of bad luck make people re-assess the whole malarkey. But this is a good thing in a way because it teaches us to be more careful in the future.
    No-one should gamble with more than they are fully prepared to lose, and never chase your losses!

    Good luck to gerilege and anyone else taking a break from this crazy habit. :thumbsup:
    KK
     
    2 people like this.
  8. May 4, 2007
  9. EasyRhino

    EasyRhino Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Analyst
    Location:
    San Diego
    Probably better off with a gf that doesn't like gambling than one who loves it :)

    Two questions for you:

    1) Why were you playing video poker with such huge house edge? You could find much better payouts.

    2) It really sounds like you started "overbetting your bankroll". In real-life gambling, I count cards, and there it's absolutely crucial to not overbet relative to the amount you have available to lose, and that's in a game where you have a small advantage!

    When you're just gambling for fun, it's even more important to pay attention to what you're wagering. Unless your wealth increased substantially, a "more aggressive" gaming pattern will necessarily result in either a) shorter sessions, or b) bigger losses. And you know, it's often easier to find small limit tables on the Internet than brick and mortar. Heck, it's one of the few advantages the online casinos have.

    ... and I understand the desire for a break. I just took a $2k haircut over the weekend, and I think I need one too! :rolleyes:
     
  10. May 4, 2007
  11. suzecat

    suzecat Dormant account CAG MM webmeister

    Occupation:
    Retired
    Location:
    California
    It is a very wise man who sets his limitations.........hats off to you!
     
  12. May 4, 2007
  13. soflat

    soflat Senior Member

    Occupation:
    Scientist
    Location:
    Florida
    If the probability of your downswing was around 4 or 5%, that is not a low percentage. You have to plan for having those regularly whether you play blackjack or texas hold'em or any other game.
     
    1 person likes this.
  14. May 4, 2007
  15. gerilege

    gerilege Meister Member PABnorogue PABrogue

    Occupation:
    IT
    Location:
    Hungary
    1. Sorry, English is not my native language, and I was probably mis-understandable. I played full pay JoB, usually 4handed, so the expected house edge would be 0,46%. What I meant that I had a lot of sessions playing 4handed JoB like this:
    Wagered 2285 GBP ( 457 rounds * (4*1,25 bet), lost 375 (=75*4*1,25) GBP. So the house edge for that specific session was 16%. Ok that is variance, and I understand that, but I had many sessions like that, and my girlfriend doesn't understand that. And I could cite more examples of bad luck, like losing the last 11 "toss-a-coin" situation on Blackjack with my deposit+bonus. It's just as frustrating as if someone would play roulette, and the black would come 11 times in a row when you bet on red (at least that never happened to me so far as I never play roulette).

    2. I don't think that I started "overbetting my bankroll". I started to play more aggressively when my bankroll grew up enough. But loss is loss, and it is a bad feeling, no matter how big your bankroll is. The aggressive betting was necessary to create more +EV situations for the bonuses. The problem is that I was on the good side of variance last year, and my girlfriend felt that that money was ours for good. And when the downswing came, she asked my why did you lose the money which had been already won.

    I started playing poker in 2004 from freeroll winnings and micro stakes online poker bonuses, and by the end of that year I managed to reach a bankroll that was enough to comfortable play 3/6 USD fix limit holdem even with the downswings. My biggest downswing there was 200 BigBets, and 600 BigBet bankroll is considered comfortable for FL hold'em, and I had a lot more than 600 BigBet. By the end of 2005 I added online casinos to the pack with easy bonuses, and continued to play hold'em, and my bankroll (and my poker knowledge) reached a point when I could comfortably play 5/10 FL holdem and omaha hi-lo. The relationship in which I live in began that time. Within a few months I switched to play casinos rather than poker, because I could manage my spare time better playing casinos. I played with very low bets, and my bankroll grew, then I had the first downswing which I mentioned in my first post, that put me back a little, but then things went in line with the mathematical expectations, and by the end of 2006 my bankroll reached a level which was comfortable for playing 15/30 FL holdem, and suitable for higher risk casino bonuses.

    Then the downswing I mentioned came, and it killed 50% of my whole bankroll and 80% of last year's profit. I can manage it, and right now I'm really down on variance slope, and things will get better on the long run, and my bankroll is still very comfortable, although I would like to have the reinforcement with the problematic cashouts. But my girlfriend says that she doesn't believe in online gambling any more, and I should stop it. And I can't convince her. This is why I will probably go back to play poker, my bankroll is still very comfortable, and the risk (just like the expected hourly rate) is simply lower.

    I will probably continue with the casinos later, but I will likely avoid one software provider on which I lost 50% of my whole losses. I don't say it's not fair, it only has psychological reasons, especially for my girlfriend.

    I really appreciate all feedbacks.
     
  16. May 4, 2007
  17. gerilege

    gerilege Meister Member PABnorogue PABrogue

    Occupation:
    IT
    Location:
    Hungary
    Yes, you're right. I thought I was prepared for the downswings, but I am yet to recalculate the probability, because my notes, excel sheets and available gamelogs are far from being perfect. At least this is one lesson that I learned.

    I had such downswings with the same probability earlier, this one simply took much longer and more money was involved. What I have also learned that it could take much more time to recover from casino downswings than from poker downswings. Playing proper poker the edge is basically on your side, playing casinos it's basically on the casino's side, no matter you play in +EV situations with bonuses, because the chance for a downswing is influenced by the house edge. This difference between the casinos and poker is what I probably didn't consider.
     
  18. May 4, 2007
  19. Avatar73

    Avatar73 Experienced Member

    Occupation:
    Pilot
    Location:
    UK
    I thought 10pc house edge was very clear!

    I recently played a slot with an 90pc house edge over 200 ;)

    (my "pc" key is broken)
     
  20. May 4, 2007
  21. lojo

    lojo Banned User - repetitive violations of <a href="ht

    Occupation:
    Tradesman
    Location:
    USA
    'nuff said
     
    1 person likes this.
  22. May 4, 2007
  23. gerilege

    gerilege Meister Member PABnorogue PABrogue

    Occupation:
    IT
    Location:
    Hungary
    Good news

    Life (and luck) is really strange.

    After posting today here I received good news in my private life.

    I got a phone call that I got the job for which I applied earlier, although I didn't really expect to get it, and I went to the interviews in a quite loose manner.

    But somehow they nevertheless hired me, and I will earn twice as much as before. :) (And I can gamble twice as much as before. NO,NO Just kidding :thumbsup: )
     
  24. May 4, 2007
  25. Rusty

    Rusty Banned User - repetitive flaming

    Occupation:
    IT
    Location:
    Manchester UK
    :lolup: :lolup: :lolup: :lolup:
    I hope you are!
    Take it as a sign that you have made the right decision.
    all the very best
     
  26. May 5, 2007
  27. EasyRhino

    EasyRhino Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Analyst
    Location:
    San Diego
    wooT1

    All right, congrats on the job!

    And as for my questions/criticism, you didn't say that you were out hustling bonuses, that changes everything entirely.

    First, if you play a few hundred hands of video poker, and lose 10% of your money, that's not a 10% "house edge", it's just how much you lost that session. In fact, in video poker, like slots, the majority of your sessions are going to be losing ones, and what you're experiencing is the "drain" between large wins.

    To calculate the house edge, I just consult the paytable at a site like wizard of odds. Unfortunately, I don't know very much about comparing drain and variance on VP, as I only play it a litlte bit.

    Second, if you were bonus-whoring, why were you playing VP? In my limited experience (mainly remaining US casinos), VP is rarely a good option when clearing bonuses. Either the paytables are bad (way worse than .5%) , and blackjack is a preferable game, or the paytables are good, but you don't really have much or any wagering requirement, so I'd recommend a low-variance game to try to get more reliable wins. (there ARE circumstances where VP is the optimum game, I just haven't played it in a long time).

    Third... just how aggressive is your playing strategy? Let's assume you have a stick/phantom bonus that will be deleted when you make a withdrawal, this would be the type of bonus where you are most aggressive... what is your "target" number when you're wagering?

    It's mathematically optimal to set a very high target value when playing these bonuses, but practically, it's foolish, because you could bust yourself easily. (For instance, playing the entire deposit on single roulette numbers would be bad).

    Arnold Snyder wrote some "generic" advice here:
    You must register/login in order to see the link.

    (basically, don't play these if you have a small bankroll, set a target of 2x if your roll is over $2k, and a target of 4x if your roll is over $4k).

    Personally, I set a target of 3x (depending on the rules). I could probably support a 4x target, but I don't like all the losing sessions. :)
     
    1 person likes this.
  28. May 7, 2007
  29. bridgehajen

    bridgehajen Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Software Engineer
    Location:
    DK
    That's great, contratulations on that :)

    As for my bankroll strategy, I've always kept a nice bankroll of $2000+ (I've increased this recently because I want to play more aggressively) at NETeller, so far this has been enough of a buffer for any downswings. I only take out the surplus.

    As for my "informing my wife" strategy, I don't bother her with detailed information about "petty" amounts, such as winning $1000 one night or losing $500 over a couple of days at other times. Since she doesn't understand the math anyway, she can't really handle this kind of information. I tell her when I hit the occasional jackpot; and I tell her when I withdraw some lump sum. We put the money into common use or into our common savings account, so all in all she doesn't object to my little hobby.
     
    1 person likes this.
  30. May 8, 2007
  31. gerilege

    gerilege Meister Member PABnorogue PABrogue

    Occupation:
    IT
    Location:
    Hungary
    Thanks a lot, I signed the contract yesterday :)

    First, regarding vp, you're right, but my girlfriend doesn't understand that. I checked the wizard, and I have a good estimate on variance, but my latest vp sessions consistently fell into the 2-10% probability range, over the no-so-long run, more than 25.000 hands. That's gambling.

    Second these were circumstances where VP was the optimum game. Furthermore sometimes you want higher variance (I prefer higher variance when only cheque withdrawal is available, because of the cheque expenses), but you're right, usually the same can be reached with higher BJ bets.

    Third. I set 2x bonus + deposit. I busted 11 times in a row with that target :mad:

    Also thanks for the link!

    And yes, I played a poker tourney on Sunday, and I really enjoyed it. Although I busted out near the bubble (QKo paired vs my A9s), it was great fun.
     
  32. May 8, 2007
  33. gerilege

    gerilege Meister Member PABnorogue PABrogue

    Occupation:
    IT
    Location:
    Hungary
    Then you're really lucky, although it depends on what and how do you play. My gaming bankroll was much higher, and it fortunately survived the downswing, but it was really close.

    I can't do that, because she sometimes watch me playing, and she regularly asks how did I do? I also did that, we used my winnings for common purposes, but she usually also considers my bankroll as winnings, as I have built up my bankroll from scratch as I described in one of my previous posts, and she wants me to pull out my remaining bankroll as winnings and stop gambling. I know that continuing would be +EV, but I can't convince her. Pulling out and quit would be a good option if I would hit something good or at least get in line with the expectations, but it would be an inferior strategy right now down on variance slope. That's the main problem and hence the break.
     

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