Over the weekend Selene De’Celeste, the originator and owner of Eve Online Hold’em (EOH) ran a free roll tournament with a prize pool of 1 billion isk to the top three spots.
For those unaware, a free roll poker tournament requires no registration fee or buy in, it’s free! Selene asked a small favor from the Eve poker community in exchange for putting up the billion isk prize. 20 people needed to make a post on the official forums supporting EOH. I must admit a great deal of surprise that it took the EOH Poker channel with over 130 people therein more than 30 minutes to get 20 posts on the forum supporting poker for isk.
It is possible that a lot of people aren’t paying close attention to the chat in that channel and therefore missed to call for support. It is also possible that a lot of Eve poker players couldn’t be bothered to open an ingame browser and type of few lines of positive feedback for a unique and incredibly popular game within a game.
Regardless, eventually the community came around and the first 50 people to register in room 23 on Poker Mavens got a 3 in 50 chance at the money. Third place was awarded 200 million, second got 300 million and first place took a full ½ billion down in isk.
The typical one table tourney on EOH begins six handed with 5,000 chips and 50/100 blinds. This is a decent chip to blind ratio for a fast six handed table. Sadly the structure for the free roll was a definite crap shoot with 1500 starting chips and 50/100 blinds elevating every 10 minutes. To be fair, the owner and bankers running the poker room gain nothing in terms of monetary benefit from a free roll. The owner puts up the whole prize pool and there is no juice.
Juice is the portion of a tournament players’ buy in that goes to the house for expenses and profit. So the benefit to the house for a free roll is purely getting more players onto the other tables and in this case some enhanced advertising to boot.
I didn’t last long at all in this free roll. With such a short starting stack the opening 10-20 hands will often dictate whether you’re in or out of this kind of tourney. I got all my chips in with pocket 5s vs Agent25 holding A8 offsuit. Ace on the turn and curtains for me in 46th position.
I did rail the final table but I left my notes at home (blogging from work for the win). According to my sketchy memory the final five consisted of Nuke (EOH banker) with a big stack, Agent 25, Clixor, Unreal, and Zuter. I do hope I’m remembering the names correctly. There was quite abit of back and forth with Nuke open shoving his 25-30k chips into the 500/1000 blinds fairly often. This kept the pressure on the other players by denying them any cheap chance to see a flop. Eventually, Nuke’s aggressive play led him out in 5th and after saying it would happen when there were 6 players left, Zuter busted out 4th on the money bubble. Unreal took third place. Agent25 and Clixor battled back and fourth over fewer than 20 hands with Clixor rivering the winning 500million isk and Agent25 grabbing 2nd place.
Overall it was a fast fun free roll. Probably the best kind. Grats to everyone and thanks to Selene for putting up the game. And thank you to the EOH community for supporting the cause.