The first phase of partypoker's plans to level the playing field as part of its "Poker For The People" remit is complete after the online gambling giant released a software update on the morning of October 15.
Two weeks ago, partypoker announced it was implementing some changes to its software that would prevent players from using third-party software to aid their decision making and bring a stop to seating scripts, the latter being an automated program that automatically sits players on tables with lesser skilled opponents.
Personally, I think it's great that recreational players are being protected from the using third party software.
A software update this morning has seen two of three planned changes take place. With immediate effect, the following changes are in place:
- Players wishing to wait for a cash game will join a room-wide waiting list and be randomly seated when a seat that matches their preference becomes available.
- Players joining a cash game will see the names of their opponents only once their first hand is dealt.
As you can see in the image below, players are referred to as Player 1, Player 2 and so on, and their avatars are not displayed. However, if you join that table and receive hole cards, the names change to their screen names and an avatar displayed.
Mike Sexton, a partypoker ambassador, is pleased to see the first phase completed , saying the move is great for recreational players.
"As a professional poker player, I understand players who seek out games with weaker players, but they must realize that those being ‘stalked' will most likely quit playing if the same user names continually show up at their table when they opt to play," said Sexton. "Losing these players is not good for the everyday player or the site. Personally, I think it's great that recreational players are being protected from the using third party software. Hats off to partypoker for implementing this."
The second phase of the changes should arrive in the coming weeks and is the one that seems to have split the opinions of the poker community. Once completed, partypoker players will no longer have their hand histories saved locally to their machine, nor will they be available in a downloadable format, effectively ending the use of software such as PokerTracker 4 and Holdem Manager 2 and their heads-up displays (HUDs).
Players will, however, be able to view their own hand histories via the partypoker client if they so wish.
Have you played at partypoker since the changes were implemented? Do you see the changes as a positive thing for partypoker players or otherwise? What are your thoughts on the prevention of tracking software and HUDs? Let us know in the comments box below.