As most of us know Party Poker decided to ban the use of Heads Up Display on their tables on Monday the 17th of June. The updated client doesn’t allow downloadable hand histories and as a result, HUDs won’t work anymore. I went to play heads-up tournaments in PartyPoker to see if anything had changed.
The new PartyPoker poker client forces alias changes and prohibits downloadable hand histories. (@pokernews.com)
PartyPoker’s heads-up hyper-turbo games used to have quite an interesting mixture of regulars, bad regulars, and recreational players. In lower stakes games there has been quite a big representation of Eastern European players, which isn’t always a good thing (except during night time).
I wanted to make an empirical investigation at the tables after the reform and see if anything has changed. I had a feeling that the games could be even more lucrative (at least for me) after the HUD-ban.
After a couple of hours of playing, my first impression was that there wasn’t much action available on Tuesday evening on low-to-mid stakes heads-up hyper-turbo tables. I played a dozen of matches against low stakes regulars, who played a well-balanced strategy. I also faced a delightful number of recreational players without an
After four hours of play, I think I got a good understanding of what the transition of banning HUDs has done to heads-up tournaments in PartyPoker. There were definitely a lesser number of regulars than before and the games where softer. On the negative side, there wasn’t much action going on, even though it was evening.
My opinion is that, although regulars are making more money with HUD, I think it is the right direction to ban HUDs. Heads up displays are a feature that pushes recreational players away from the games. Nowadays fun players know that there are HUDs available and they will have a clear disadvantage if they are not using them. This limits new players from joining an online poker community and makes them reconsider whether it makes any sense to play poker online.