The popular online poker website PartyPoker.com has unveiled their new campaign, dubbed “Poker for the People.” The campaign is aiming to level the playing field for everybody playing poker in New Jersey, from amateurs to seasoned players. They’ve done this by making big changes to how players interact with each other online and how they progress through the new loyalty program on the site.
Partypoker.com set out to change up their VIP loyalty program, calling the new version “Loyalty 2.0.” The points program for the rewards tiers has changed quite dramatically, some for better, and some for worse.
According to the PartyPoker.com website, the new Loyalty 2.0 program makes it easier for players to earn rewards. Depending on the player’s “Loyalty Level,” they can earn rewards such as credit for tournament tickets and cold hard cash. They do this by earning points when they use real money to play poker on PartyPoker.com. Under the old rules, players earned one loyalty point for every $10 wagered on the site. But now, they earn 1 point for every $25 wagered. So far, it sounds like they’ve made it harder to get points – and therefore rewards.
They have also overhauled the progression of achieving new loyalty levels. The old system progressed from Bronze to Silver to Gold to Palladium to Palladium Elite. There have been some somewhat confusing changes to an already confusing loyalty structure. So to make this (somewhat) easier to understand, we’ve broken our explanation down by loyalty level.
Bronze: Nothing has changed in this tier. Players previously needed 0 points to qualify for the Bronze level, and the credit reward maximum at this level caps out at 6.7% of your total spending for that particular month. In the new program, this all remains the same.
Silver: Players on the website previously needed to accumulate 250 points in a calendar month to move up to the Silver level and earn a 15.4% loyalty reward. This number has since been reduced to 50 points per month – a 200 point drop from the previous program. Simply put, players will be able to reach this reward level (and its associated 8.7% max reward jump from Bronze) much faster than they could before.
Gold: The two highest levels of the loyalty program have the most notable changes. The points needed to achieve Gold loyalty level jumped from 500 points per month to 750 points per month. As well, it only has a 5% increase in maximum rewards compared to the Silver level, for a max reward of 20.5%. This point increase has made it harder for people to reach this reward level.
Palladium: The max level of the new reward program, Palladium, used to cost an already astounding 1000 points per month. The price has now doubled to 2000 points per month, for a max reward percentage of 30.7%. That’s a 10% increase from the level below. Again, you’ve got to spend a lot more money to hit this level now.
Also in the new program, the Palladium Elite loyalty level has been eliminated entirely.
If you need a more visual guide to these changes, check out this table from the PartyPoker website.
This new structure will undoubtedly help newer players jump up to the Silver reward level faster, with less money spent per month. However, it has a rather large impact on those players who like to spend more money online to get to those higher loyalty levels – and the bigger rewards that go along with it.
Recently, PartyPoker.com held a tournament for British citizens with pretty sizable winnings. A player from the United Kingdom named Adam Bone recently outlasted over 338 other players in a dusk to dawn tournament. Bone ended up winning over $3400 in addition to his team placing 4th overall, and receiving another $840, bringing his total to just over $4000. The interesting thing about this tournament and the winner is that he’s a director at a marketing company and not a professional poker player. More and more players winning these online poker tournaments are ordinary people who are making a pretty good living from it. The fact that it’s online also makes the bluff – a strategy lots of professional players hang their hats on – pretty much obsolete.
Another large change implemented in the Poker for the People campaign is that players have to wait until the first hand has been dealt to see the other opponents who are playing the hand and their associated cash totals. Before, players could see who is playing and how much money they have in their corners before joining. So now, instead of a Bronze level player getting intimidated by a Palladium player and quitting before the hand starts, everyone enters the game on a level playing field.
One change that might upset people playing with real money is that they now will most likely experience wait times. This change has been implemented to accommodate the players in the waiting room. Now, players will be chosen randomly from the queue whenever an empty seat opens up. Players will also be able to see their past year’s worth of hands and their histories, helping them see patterns and figure out new strategies.
Tony Dunst, a representative of PartyPoker, said, “These changes at PatyPoker are designed to create a more hospitable environment for recreational players”. This quote really hits home to the fans of online poker and its players. This should help attract new players who have the perception that online poker websites are for elite and wealthy players who know how to take advantage of novice and casual players.
The fact that the website is actively promoting new tournaments almost every month or so, and catering to the larger market of people who have a budget for gambling will certainly bring in higher profits and change the game of online poker sites. While some players will likely be upset at the changes, the people who have a curiosity and spare money might just want to give this website another look.