BetOnline Poker has become the latest site to add Six Plus Hold´em to its repertoire of cash games, giving players the opportunity for “a truckload more action”.
If you like your online poker action fast and furious, BetOnline Poker has not historically been the place to play. Due to the structure of the Bad Beat Jackpot promotion (in which everybody playing at a Jackpot table wins when the Jackpot hits), attempts by BetOnline Poker to introduce new formats of cash games have often fallen flat.
However BetOnline Poker is now jumping on the short deck poker bandwagon by launching Six Plus Poker – a game similar to NL Texas Hold´em, but with cards rated Deuce to Six removed from the pack. The result of playing with a short deck is that you are dealt premium opening hands more often, and consequently more players are involved in each pot.
The game has proven to be a hit – albeit a modest one – at many other online poker sites, and BetOnline Poker is hoping Six Plus Hold´em will help add a little variety to its repertoire of games – the site recently having withdrawn its fast-fold Boost games due to a lack of traffic. Whether or not the site´s hopes will be realized, we shall have to wait and see.
Watch Out for Different Hand Rankings
If you are going to try Six Plus Hold´em, you need to be aware that hands rank differently from regular NL Hold´em. With a smaller pack, it is now easier to make a Full House and harder to make a Flush, so a Flush is ranked higher than a Full House. Similarly, it is also harder to make Three of a Kind than it is to make a Straight, so Three of a Kind is ranked higher. Hands now rank in the following order:
- Royal Flush
- Straight Flush
- Four of a Kind
- Full House
- Three of a Kind
- Two Pairs
- One Pair
- High Card
Where to Find the Six Plus Hold´em Games
BetOnline Poker has included the new Six Plus Hold´em games in its regular cash game lobby, so you may have to use the filter below the “games” bar in order to find them. The games are available at all stake levels from $0.05/$0.10 to $10.00/$20.00 and there is a fixed buy-in of 100x the Big Blind; so, if you want to play in a $0.50/$1.00 game, you will have to take $100 to the table.
All Six Plus Hold´em games are played in 6-Max format and your action at the tables will contribute to your position in the site´s Daily Cash Race. However, because it is easier to make Four of a Kind or better, players at Six Plus Hold´em tables are not eligible to win the Bad Beat Jackpot or share in the prize pool if the Jackpot is won at a regular NL Hold´em table.
Talking of the Bad Beat Jackpot
Since the Bad Beat Jackpot was won four times in quick succession in January, it has been won twice more since – once in February and once in March. However, it is now more than eight weeks since the last time the Jackpot hit and the prize pool has built up to more than $380,000. This means that if the Jackpot was won today, the player suffering the Bad Beat would pick up more than $66,500.
Furthermore, because every player sitting at a Jackpot table shares in 10% of the prize pool, more than $38,000 would be distributed to players who are “in the right place at the right time”. With that sort of incentive to play at the Jackpot tables, it may be difficult to encourage traffic to the Six Plus Hold´em tables;
Will You Play Six Plus Hold´em at BetOnline Poker?
The primary benefit I can see of playing Six Plus Hold´em is that new players will be able to clear the BetOnline Poker first deposit bonus quicker than playing at the site´s regular NL Hold´em tables. This because more players are involved in each hand, so more hands see the flop – the threshold for rake being deducted from the pot.
As Comp Points are only awarded when rake is deducted from the pot, players will avoid the scenario in which they are waiting for ages for a playable hand – only to have every other player at the table fold their cards in the pre-flop action and collect no points. Therefore, the Six Plus Hold´em tables could become a magnet for new players, which in turn could encourage existing players to abandon Jackpot games or mix their action between the two formats; but, as I said above, we shall have to wait and see.