Beware of Bonus-Hound Bankroll Building

Ware! Ware, I say! There’s a typically wonderful post on the Two Plus Two Forums which discusses, with great earnestness, a procedure for building a bankroll via bonus-hounding. Let me save you some time. The author discusses building a bankroll from $100 by hitting the various bonuses from the Cryptologic poker skins, followed by Paradise, then back to the Crypto skins until one’s bankroll is $500 to max the Party skin first time deposit bonuses.

It’s completely do-able for an experienced player who has decided for whatever reason to build a bankroll from $100, but as a guide for new players, I have to take exception. The main problem is that the Crypto skins don’t have anything lower than 1/2, which is too high a limit for a $100 new player bankroll. An experienced player might be able to play the rock-like game that this thin a bankroll requires without allowing this to affect his overall game, but a new player? No way. A new player has to learn starting hand discipline and post-flop aggression with a 50 Big-Bet bankroll? Not without more luck than you can expect. Losing 50 BB isn’t uncommon during play. In fact, it’s common.

My advice to the beginning player is to take your game to Poker Stars. They don’t run first deposit bonuses, so you won’t miss out on any bonus money by depositing there. What they do have are games at the $0.25/$0.50 limit, which means a $100 deposit is 200 Big Bets, a much safer bankroll. Right now, Stars is second to Party in terms of ring games and real money players. Use your time to build up that $500 bankroll before going directly to the Party skins.

A quick note, Pokerroom has $0.25/$0.50 tables as well, but has an aggressive signup/first deposit bonus which you should get if you can. Problem is that you probably want to clear Pokerroom bonuses at 2/4 unless you’re playing there a lot at the lower limits.

9 Responses to “Beware of Bonus-Hound Bankroll Building”

  1. Mike Says:

    Hi, I’m not sure about the other crypto skins, but I decided to try for the 100% bonus at InterPoker and did notice that there are in fact .25/.50 and .50/1 games there.

    That said, since the rake needs to be over .25 for it to count as a raked hand, fewer than 50% of the hands at .25/.50 are counting for me, which kind of makes playing at that level pointless when you’re shooting for a bonus. I’m new to playing for money online though, so I think I’ll stick it out at that level for a while.

    btw, I like your site.

  2. juanblanco Says:

    Interesting development. I wasn’t aware of this. Time to retreat and re-think.

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