Rob Yong released a tweet yesterday telling in behalf of PartyPoker, that they will begin to show players real names in heads-up cash-games instead of player aliases. The change was put on use yesterday, the 12th of August.
Is this a good improvement to heads-up cash tables? What about poker in general?
When I started to play poker in 2006 the most interesting action took place in heads-up cash games. Online poker legends, such as Phil Ivey, Patrick Antonius, and Victor Blom, built their reputation (and bankroll) in heads-up cash games. In poker boom era railbirds were constantly waiting in the high stakes lobbies of FullTilt and PokerStars for humongous heads-up cash game action. It was breathtaking to witness players compete for money that would be life-changing for most people.
“Games are minimalistic compared to what they used to be and the railbirds are gone. “
After the Black Friday and PokerStar’s decision to stop providing heads-up cash tables (except Zoom), the heads-up culture and fan base began slowly to fade away. Nowadays the biggest high-stakes online poker cash games are played mostly on PartyPoker and six-max Omaha tables. But the games are minimalistic compared to what they used to be and the railbirds are gone.
The heads-up cash games are more or less dead now, and we’re not going to see another poker boom in the near future. We need innovations and development. Playing without HUDs, with real names and focusing on the players and community might be the cure to bring back the poker that we fell in love in the first place.