Discount Gambling

Session Outcome Distributions for UTH w/ Trips Bet

Posted in ultimate texas hold'em by stephenhow on March 28, 2010

Last night while playing Ultimate Texas Hold’Em, I finally decided to play the Trips bet every hand, just for the fun of it. I played for a few hours, and left while I was winning about $20. (Most of that was due to two dealer mistakes, where I pushed against the dealer hand, but they paid my Blind bet anyways.) Anyways, if I only play a few hours, its worth it to play the Trips bet, since it adds to the camaraderie of the table. The dealer also seems to care more about you when you bet the Trips (probably because that’s when they get toked). I figured the Trips bet adds to the variance of the game, but I calculated the session outcome distribution for 100 hands just to make sure:

Session outcome distributions with and without the Trips bet.


Yep, more variance, more cost, and more fun.

5 Responses

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  1. Dave C said, on March 28, 2010 at 10:53 am

    I noticed a few comments on dealer mistakes and had my first on the possitive side.

    I correct dealer mistakes for others at the table when it in their favor, never when it’s been against them.

    I was playing at a new location with what I assumed to be reglars. Dealer made mistake and paid me when he had winning hand. I wasn’t going to say anything until the local player quietly mentioned it to dealer, I didn’t touch my payoff after things settled I agreed my hand wasn’t winning hand. Pit boss told dealer to let it stand.

    I am assuming I handled it right, any other suggestions on the proper way to handle?

    Should I have been quicker to point out mistake?

    Begginer but learning.

    Dave C

    • stephenhow said, on March 28, 2010 at 4:14 pm

      Personally, I don’t think it’s the responsibility of the player to correct a dealer mistake in the player’s favor. Ethically, you should point out such a dealer mistake ONLY if you know: 1) there’s a good probability of surveillance catching the error, AND 2) dealers get disciplined (“written up”) for such mistakes. You can ask the dealers for the answers to these questions. At many places I play at, the dealers will say “it’s no big deal” if they make occasional mistakes. In fact, sometimes they’re in the middle of paying off the whole table because they didn’t read their hand right (e.g., they didn’t see their straight), when they realise they’ve made a mistake. However, they also know its simpler to just continue paying off everyone, and get to the next hand, rather than call the floor over and take the money back. But, some casino fire dealers over such mistakes, so definitely help out the dealer at those places.

      Otherwise, dealer mistakes are a huge part of making the game +EV for me. (The other advantages are seeing players cards, and cashback rewards.) I see it as a continuation of player reward incentives, like the $10/visit one casino gives me. Don’t worry, the casino won’t go broke from this; it’s already factored into their operations.

  2. Julio said, on January 18, 2011 at 2:34 pm

    Is it possible to draw the curves for win/loss versus playing time (or hands)? Say, we play $10 on Ante and $5 on Trips, we run the simulator 50, 100, 150, 200, up to a lot of hands. On the Y-axis, we have win>0 and lose <0, and on the Y-axis, we have number of hands (or the time of play). I wonder if we would get a nice (or reasonable) sinusoidal curve. This tells us how fast / slow hot hands turning cold and cold hands turning hot. We might be able to hit and run. Similar, plays of $5 on Ante and $5 on Trips could be studied. There must be a patent somewhere, right.

    • stephenhow said, on January 19, 2011 at 2:11 pm

      Julio, you can always analyze the outcome distributions for any scenario of bankrolls, goals, and bets you can describe. Mostly, you’re going to learn about the variance of the game through this kind of analysis. You end up on the left hand side of the distribution when things go (unbelievably) cold, and you end up on the right hand side of the distribution when everything goes “right”. Note how the distributions above are shifted more to the losing side than the average loss (-2.2 Antes), while there’s a longer tail on the winning side. This means that while the average loss is small (-2.2 Antes), you rely on the good hands (Blind, Trips) to offset the odds you often lay (a 4x bet is often laying 4x+1x+1x = 6x to win 4x if the dealer doesn’t qualify, and 5x if the dealer does qualify).

  3. Julio said, on January 18, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    I meant on the X-axis, we hane number of hands.


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