Is PokerStars Rigged? Here Are the Facts [2020]

Is PokerStars Rigged? 2019
People still ask me all the time if PokerStars is rigged. Or if online poker in general is rigged.

And I have never written an article about it before because I think this just legitimizes what to me seems like a pretty ridiculous question.

But here is the quick answer.

PokerStars is not rigged. It just appears that way sometimes due to the incredible speed of online poker. Because online poker sites like PokerStars typically deal hands 3 times faster than a live poker game, you should expect 3 times as many bad beats. This is even more pronounced in Zoom Poker which can deal hands up to 10 times as fast as a live poker game.

Is PokerStars Legit? Is it Rigged?

But believe me I get it, some people are still not convinced that PokerStars is legit and not rigged.

And I know that the emails and the comments I get about online poker being rigged won't stop. Therefore, hopefully this article will help solve the Great Debate once and for all!

Is online poker rigged? Are we being invaded by Russian bots? Are there mysterious ninjas hired to create another rigged river card just for you right before the final table?

I gotta be honest. I can't possibly answer all of these earth shattering questions in a tiny little blog post like this.

However, a little bit of common sense should tell us that of course there is some nefarious behaviour going on when anything important (such as money) is on the line.

Humans rig the stock market, they rig elections, they lie on their resumes and they cheat on their high school exams as well. Heck a decent chunk of them even end up cheating on the person that they swore their wedding vows to!

So in short, yes of course there are certain poker sites and individuals out there who are trying to rig the system in their favor when it comes to online poker. You would have to be incredibly naive not to realize this.

But is PokerStars legit? Is there widespread cheating going on across the entire industry, and specifically at the biggest online poker site in the world, PokerStars?

Probably not. Here are 5 reasons why.

1. PokerStars is a Money Making Machine

The first and most highly obvious reason why PokerStars is probably not rigged is because they are an absolute money making machine.

As I have said many times before on this blog the house is always by far the biggest winner in poker. And PokerStars takes this to an entirely new level.

They are estimated to be bringing in 500 million dollars in pure profit each year. And therefore god only knows how much they were hauling in 5-10 years ago when poker was really booming.

And I personally have made a lot of money on PokerStars as well over the years simply by playing against guys like this!

So common sense should once again beg the question: Why on earth would you possibly want to screw that up?

When you are already making absurd amounts of money and dominating the entire industry what possible incentive could you have to want to rig something?

PokerStars is one of the most successful and profitable brands the industry has ever seen. And no matter what you think of their new ownership, they continue to crush it in every possible way from a business point of view.

So there is simply no plausible motive here.

In fact they have every reason in the world NOT to rig it and just keep playing a winning hand over and over again.

2. You Can Simply Go Check it For Yourself

The second most important reason why PokerStars is probably not rigged is kind of a biggie as well. And that is that you can actually just go and check it for yourself!

PokerStars is one of the few poker sites out there who are very open about what they do. They will in fact actually send you every single hand history that you have ever played on their site.

I know this because I did it myself once. I requested close to 8 million hands that I had played on PokerStars from them. Within 24 hours I had the links to download them all.

This means that I could then go stick those 8 million hands in a tracking program like PokerTracker and run extensive analysis and tests looking for statistical anomalies.

This is one of the biggest reasons why I am not a big fan of a recent trend in online poker towards anonymous poker sites and/or those who do not provide hand histories.

"Open source" poker sites like PokerStars are much better for the industry in my opinion because they allow us to essentially police the games for ourselves.

Any legit online poker site like PokerStars is not going to hide anything from you. All the hand histories are available for you to see for yourself.

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3. There is No Actual Evidence that PokerStars is Rigged

So given the fact that we can actually run our own tests and search for statical anomalies over massive sample sizes you would think that all the people who are so certain that PokerStars is rigged would have overwhelming evidence to support their claims.

Nope, nada, none.

There has never been one conclusive study that I have ever seen, based on a statistically relevant sample size, which actually proves that there is any rigging going on at PokerStars.

Their standard arguments instead usually go something like this:

"OMG...My AA got cracked 3 times in a row by some stupid fish!!!...I told you JOKERSTARS is rigged, rigged rigged!!!"

The main problem with these "arguments" is that they fail to account for even the most basic variance in poker and they are completely lacking in a statistically significant sample size.

A sample size of 3 hands is completely meaningless in poker. And so is a sample size of 300 hands, 3,000 hands or even 30,000 hands.

This is why most advanced poker training programs these days focus exclusively on long term results based on solid decision making at the poker tables in the short run.

To put it quite simply, you need to be working with millions and millions of hands in order to get to the point where you can mathematically rule out variance.

Anyone who has actually played this many hands of poker knows exactly what I mean by this.

I have never seen a real legit study based on this many hands which conclusively proves that there are widespread statistical anomalies going on with the RNG on PokerStars.

Because if such a study like this actually did exist, believe me you would have heard about it by now. And it would be an absolute bombshell within the poker industry.

4. Human Bias and Defence Mechanism

The next reason why some people are convinced that online poker is rigged is because most people lose at this game. And that unfortunate little reality isn't likely to change any time soon.

Once the poker sites and the winning poker players take their cut there just isn't much left over for everybody else. In fact I would estimate (conservatively) that 70% of poker players lose over the long run.

And the other thing that we know about poker players is that virtually all of them think they are pretty good, or at least above average. Poker is kind of like driving, nobody will ever admit they are bad at it.

So this naturally leads to a situation where many losing poker players will look to either repress this reality or simply shift the blame to something else for their lack of success.

In fact, Sigmund Freud (the father of modern psychology), even created a name for this very common unconscious process. He called it a defence mechanism.

When you aren't winning at poker the easy solution is just to blame it all on your bad luck or convince yourself that the whole game is rigged against you.

This is an absolutely crucial reason why poker continues to be so profitable.

Losing poker players have an easy out. They can just continually convince themselves that their lack of success is due to some outside force beyond their control.

And therefore, they never even think to address the real reason why they keep losing, which is their own lack of skill and lack of tilt control among other things.

There is no other game on earth that I have ever seen that inspires such incredible levels of self delusion. And quite frankly, it is an absolutely beautiful thing.

5. Variance and the Speed of Online Poker

The final reason why some people swear that online poker is rigged is because they don't realize how the speed of the online game changes everything.

Daniel Negreanu actually touches on this specifically in his new poker strategy course.

A lot of the people who claim that online poker is rigged come from a live poker background. Or they have played a statistically insignificant amount of hands online (less than 100k).

Therefore, they simply do not understand that the speed of online dealing (often 3 times as fast as a live game), coupled with the ability to multi-table, means that bad beats and coolers are simply bound to happen far more often than what they are used to.

This doesn't mean that anything is actually rigged. It just means that you are now experiencing the acceleration of a Ferrari instead of your old Toyota.

Yes it is going to feel weird at first. It won't even seem believable at times in fact. This is why many people do not feel that PokerStars is legit.

And if you try your hand at something like Zoom Poker (which deals hands upwards of 10 times as fast as a live poker game), it might just blow your mind completely!

Is PokerStars Rigged?

You really have to understand that online poker is a completely different experience from live poker. Yes it is the same game with the same rules, but all of the similarities end there.

The speed at which the online version of the game is dealt means that you are going to get to the long run far quicker than you are used to. This also means that you will see the true depths of statistical variance much more vividly.

And when you add in the ability to multi-table into the mix as well, you better buckle up. Because it is going to be downright crazy and quite simply not believable at times.

By the way if your are curious how I am able to play 20+ tables of online poker and still keep track of all my opponents, yes I do use several poker software tools and aids.

For the complete list of all the poker software and tools that I use as a pro, click here.

How I Became the Biggest Winner of All-Time on PokerStars (Micro Stakes)

The debate about online poker being rigged or not will rage on no matter what I say here.

And I know a few people will probably even accuse me of being a "shill" for PokerStars after writing this article. In fact, several have already done so in the comments below (more on that later).

The most hilarious part about that is anyone who actually reads my poker blog regularly knows that I have been actively recommending that you DO NOT play at PokerStars for many, many years now!

And that is not because I think there is any rigging going on at PokerStars or that PokerStars is not legit.

It is simply because there are many far easier online poker sites (softer games) available these days to play at in my opinion.

But hopefully some of the points discussed in this article will help bring some sanity back to the discussion. Obviously online poker faces many challenges and the integrity of the games will always be questioned as well.

Humans like to cheat at stuff after all. The sky is blue as well!

But the idea that there is any widespread rigging going on at PokerStars in particular is pretty absurd in my opinion.

I have made a lot of money on PokerStars over the years as a 10+ year poker pro by simply using a solid fundamental tight and aggressive strategy and focusing heavily on my tilt control.

This is in fact why I originally wrote what is now the best selling poker strategy book of all-time for low stakes PokerStars games, Crushing the Microstakes.

Is pokerstars rigged?

And then I also included hours and hours of optional videos with the book of me personally playing Zoom, 6max and full ring on PokerStars.

Is PokerStars rigged?

I have made tens of thousands of dollars in these low stakes games (some of the highest in PokerStars history), and I wanted to show people exactly how I did it with a video series.

I also wanted to prove once and for all that you can absolutely crush these games when you use the right poker strategy and focus on your tilt control.

However, I can't lie.

After playing millions and millions of hands on PokerStars, I have also taken an enormous amount of bad beats over the years. So much so, that it seemed completely unbelievable at times.

And there have been many times when I felt like just giving up completely. Throwing in the towel and quitting.

But I realized that this is the time when you find out what you are really made of as a poker player. When you can't win a hand to save your life for weeks or even months on end.

This is when you separate yourself from all the other amateurs out there. This is when you get to prove that you are a professional.

And this really is the critical point.

Winning at poker over the long run is really hard. It takes an unbelievable amount of work ethic, discipline, self control and patience.

Is PokerStars Rigged?
Me multi-tabling on PokerStars

And as a 10+ year poker pro I can tell you that the vast majority of people who play this game are simply not willing to put in this level of dedication and work.

After all, it is so much easier to shift the blame onto somebody or something else than to actually put in the hard work every single day both at the poker tables and away from them improving your game.

Look guys, if being a big winner in poker was easy, then everybody would be doing it. The bottom line is that you will get exactly what you put into this game.

You can keep choosing to believe that it is all rigged against you like most people do, or you can choose to finally address the real root causes for your lack of success.

Because it is then, and only then, when you will finally figure out how to create real and consistent profits in this game.

That is, when you finally decide to start approaching this game like a professional.

In any case, I wish you all the best at the poker tables in 2020 no matter what your goals are. Thank you for reading.

Lastly, if you want to know how I consistently make $1000+ per month as a poker pro playing on PokerStars in low stakes games, make sure you grab a copy of my free poker cheat sheet.


I want to know your thoughts though. Is PokerStars rigged or do you think PokerStars is legit and it is safe to play there? Let me know in the comments below!

Craziest Comment Section in the History of My Poker Blog!

Just a quick note.

What you will see below is the craziest comment section (by far!) in the 10+ year history of this poker blog.

In fact, if you have any doubts if poker is still beatable in 2020, all you have to do is read a few of the gems posted below.

You will see first-hand how the game of poker makes some people very mentally unstable. This is why poker (online or live) will continue to be highly profitable well into the future.

Fair Warning Though! (Not Safe For Work)

Many of the comments below are completely illogical, contain excessive profanity and every type of personal attack imaginable.

Remember that many of these people have been highly triggered by a few bad beats on PokerStars and they are very emotional and upset about it.

However, in the interests of letting everybody have their "two cents" I have decided to publish every single comment, no matter how utterly ridiculous it is.

Enjoy! :)

Is Pokerstars legit?


  1. Great post Nathan. I really like reading your objective view. You're not forcing your agenda on anyone only laying down facts. Keep up the good work!

    1. Thank you, I appreciate the kind words!

    2. you say that no one ever admits to being bad at something .. wrong Nathan ... I admit to being absolutely dreadful at poker. I blame no one but myself ..never have quite mastered the hand analysis side ..when the pro's talk us through their thinking on any hand, i'm like .. huh? I think you need a particular kind of mind to play poker well.

    3. I agree about Pokerstars,however I do think some of the smaller sites do use algorithms to control card distribution in order to speed up the games....the faster the games the more money the casino makes... well written,fair article Nathan! Thanks again.


    5. Carolina you re a genius man, but not smaller sites man, pokerstars aswell, MORE maybe than other sites and aswell who invest and play more money are more likely to win prizes, same as on casino slots, don t tell me bullshit about you played millions hands,my friend, YOU VE INVESTED THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS so, of course pokerstars want you to be always cashing, so you can keep playing and make sure you re not quitting, cause other loose players will see and they will dream about those cashes. Another point of view, this guy say that pokerstars is a monster moneymaking machine, that correct, so, OF COURSE NOBODY CAN FUCK THEM UP CAUSE THEY ARE TOO RICH AND PAY EVERYONE TO SHUT UP, MAKE COMMERCIALS TO ATTRACT THE Poor people and fuck them up long dick style. Fuck off and stop lie for this fucking thiefs.

    6. Been playing for a month where are the low cards

  2. Hi Nathan,
    I've been 'that man' who thinks all of this online gambling stuff MUST be rigged!

    I've played online Poker, I've tried online sports trading, sh*t, I've even played some online casino 'machines.'

    Through all of the above (with the exception of the totally random casino stuff) I've always come back to realising, that its the person who is playing that is the biggest issue in online gambling!

    If I had £1.00/$1.00 for every time I've 'lost the plot' and gone into tilt mode, then I'd be a lot better off financially, than I am now!

    Long story to short? - The machine really doesn't give a damn who is winning as, in the end, it will ALWAYS win! :-)

    1. Thanks Cynic. I actually should have mentioned in this article that I have sworn it is all rigged against me countless times as well! lol. Always when I lose of course, not when I win :)


    3. Dude, if you have no idea what you are talking about then don't say anything, I briefly read your article and your pulling this all out of your ass.. any form of online gambling is not in your favor and I agree poker rng (random number generator) is not "rigged" to take your money but it is set to deal completely legit crazy hands that give insane action, and with using advanced math these sites can give the allusion that the odds are close and over time the odds sometimes make sense.. trust me each year the scam gets a little closer to being on the news.

    4. i do think there is a problem with the RNG, sometimes it seems you lose too often with hands in particular situations. but you can sort it out for example in my case after a bad beat if the next hand i get deal a pair i cant go all in or play the hand 1722/2137 i lose doesnt matter if i get AA and the other guy have 72o i will lose too often. i dont think its a rigg but certainly it is a problem, and there are other situations but almost all have solutions.

    5. Hi Nathan, hello everybody
      For someone who knows mathematics is very easy to say that the bad
      beats (many many times in a row) in Pokerstars are mathematical
      dubious. Why is this so common then? Let's see something:
      When two facts hapends in a row then the posibility (odd) for the 1+1
      total fact (two specifics bad beats in a row -let's say Overpair vs
      underpair in allin situations) is the direct product of these two
      bad beat percentages.
      So the final posibility (for two bad beats in a row) is
      P = a * b ~ 5,00% in most cases.
      How many bad beats by completelly dominated hands have you taste in
      pokerstars in a row? 2,3,4,5,6,7,10? Think about it.........
      We can discuss it any time with specific hands and numbers if
      you disagree.

  3. "There is no other game on earth that I have ever seen that inspires such incredible levels of self delusion. And quite frankly, it is an absolutely beautiful thing. "

    This statement you made is scary and hauntigly majestic at the same time :D

  4. Hey Nathan, I really like your blog but saying that they don't need to rig it because they already make a lot of money is the funniest and stupidest argument I've ever heard. You play poker, you should know that greed grows the more money you make...
    Also you could never prove or disprove that they are rigging it, except if you're the developer of the software.

    I personally think that there is no online poker site that doesn't rig its games. I believe cashgame is rigged, tournaments are not rigged. Why? Because if you give players constantly two pair vs two pair, AA vs KK or 3 of a kind vs full house you force players to go both all-in, therefore generating rake. Its the easiest way to make bazillions instead of millions, because you just print money.

    It has happened to me so often that I get KK vs AA (in under 10k hands). Based on probability theory this should be impossible.

  5. You're assuming that PS is widespread rigged, but isn' it possible tgat it's rigged for a separate class of players, when it really matters? As an example, the micro tables aren't rigged for the most part, but the high roller tables are to some extent. It can also be rigged on the rivers, when the pot is over xxxUSD. All this rigging can be done, it's fairly easy and it won' show up as an anomaly when you shove 8m hands in a software. All of this without including the PS owned bots. It's infantile to say they havr no reason to do it. They do. More money. Even Zuckerberg did it, and he had enough for 10 generations.

    I'n closing, I have to say that I don't believe it's THAT rigged, but to say it's not is stupid and you my friend might have had a lapse in judgment. Especially when your argument against it is "they make enough money".

    1. Pokerstars only care about pokerstars, they won't even let their image negranu win.. everyone that plays has the exact same problem

    2. amen ,,,,1 word ENRON more u have more u want no matter how much damn bro nathan u smart but to say something that fuking dumb come on man

    3. Online poker is rigged. They dont want players raising pre flop so they rig the game so even if you raise big pre flop to isolate 1 player, the bad cards will hit stupid flops like straight and flush draws all the time against big pocket pairs

  6. I agree with this article. Poker Stars is (was) a solid company. However, I believe their is rampant bot problems on most other sites.

    Bots have improved greatly and are even taking on some of the best pros. These bots have made their ways into the mico-stakes. I believe the bot-sweet spot is 10nl and 25nl. Here they can play a lot of tables and hide from the best competition. It is very easy for bots to play on poker sites with weak security.

    JoeIngram1 has called out American Cardrooms.

    I personally believe that Party Poker has the same problem.

    Bots are the final "nail in the coffin" for online players.

    I hate to say it, but online poker is in a sad sad state.

    Even Poker Stars has sold-out and are turning into a high-raked gaming site.

    Is online poker rigged? Well, yeah, kinda… not by the exact definition. But, what is it called when you play against tough competition, bots and high rake with a low fish count? The decks not stacked, but your paddling up shit creek. Even if you make a profit sites go broke and governments seize your money.

    Can online poker survive...?

  7. Rigged or not--how could you really prove it---you say why would they do it when it is a cash cow, 500M a year.

    Does Enron, Bre X, Bernie Madoff, Holliger and Volkswagon ring any bells???
    All billion dollar companies, regulated by the stock exchange and all where willing to cheat the general public......

    After playing about 10M hands on Poker Stars , I wouldn't bet the house that they are on the up and up ......

  8. Having played for 18 yrs now I totally get what your saying. Your correct on everything you say even down to the many many players who think they are above average.
    Although my poker playing days over the last 4 yrs have been sessions of just 30 minutes every 3 months or so, I’m looking at getting back into longer sessions. But having looked at the smaller sites on offer these days living in the U.K. I don’t have a lot of choice but to play on Stars. Yes the level is better than softer sites but the traffic is poor at best. Party Poker is making a comeback, but still most of their tournaments are fast paced these days with just 5/6/7 min blinds. But you adapt, you have to. But in all my time playing in 18 yrs I’m yet to receive an email back from not just Stars but any poker site telling me players who have been caught cheating on my table, not once! That tells me everything I need to know.
    P.s I know class myself much lower in terms of poker ability, but I know 100% my BRM is in the top 1% of all poker players ever to play the game, and yes that is boasting.
    Great article for those less convinced.


  9. I've always thought that if PokerStars (or FullTilt, or whatever) were in fact rigged they'd do a better job of it :)

    And no, I don't think PokerStars is rigged. You've identified the major reasons why not. The people I see complaining about it generally seem to fall into two categories: (1) folks who make stupid plays and then complain when they don't work, or (2) folks who simply don't recognize that "odds" are just that, and sometimes the long odds hit. FWIW, I don't like it either, but that's why God invented George Dickel whiskey

  10. Well bloody hell everyone is so eloquent and quaint in their observations.

    I just think the article is fuggin brilliant bru! so i shared it to my poker club.. :D

    thats all..

    Happy Hunting!

    1. Yup, as you can see by the comments here everybody has an opinion on this matter haha! Thanks for sharing my article and glad you enjoyed :)

  11. There are some arguments that deep in an mtt there are gonna be setups like when you have 15bbs and dealt pocket jj or qq you are gonna run into kk or aa just to bust you and register to another mtt for the site to collect more entry fees.The question however,as to whom is gonna be dealt the best hand and why him,rises.Is it random?Is it just another type of gamblers fallacy?Is it crappy stories people make up just to justify their black luck?

    1. Dude I got quads 4 times on the "deal" alone playing far less then 300 hands, if you think that is "random" you need further basic education.

    2. Yup, when I fold a straight flush to a higher straight flush and was right and when I get quads 3 times in a 1.5 hour span on a 6 handed table that has to be black luck.

    3. I would love to play you at poker. 😆

  12. I have another thought to share. Let's even imagine it's rigged. Then what? If a person makes his living from pokerstars, it doesn't matter for him. If a person loses there - then stop playing and it won't matter either. So basically this is a pointless question.

    1. It like go see you say that same comment after getting fooled by a "rng" for tens of thousands of hours. People simply go into denial and understandably can't let it go.

  13. Great stuff Nathan, lost count of how many times I've read JOKERSTARS in my short career playing poker xD

    1. "RIVERSTARS" is another classic lol. Thanks for reading Jorge :)

  14. As I have said before on your blog I lost with quads three times in a row. That has always seemed to me quite a big statistical anomaly.

    1. I must of played over 10 million hands in 18 yrs online and I have NEVER lost with quads and yes I play mostly on Stars. By the way have you seen that clip for the main event some yrs ago with the guy with quad aces only to beaten by a royal? 3 in a row I don’t believe that.

    2. Plaza Player: Sorry for the lateness of my reply. I am glad you didn;t just say I was lying as I assure you I wasn't. That hand on youtube practically mirrors the the last one that lost I made quad A on the river and he made a royal. When I saw the river card I knew in my gut what was about to happen but part of me said that it couldn't happen again. I should have followed my gut LOL. The same month these three quad hands happened my wife asked me to help her move a table a short distance. I missed two hand in a row they were both AA (lol). Since that time (it was oct 2016 or 2015) I have not lost with quads and I suspect that the universe gave up trying to t each me whatver lesson it was trying to teach as I just didn't get it. Probably something about self examination who knows?

  15. My issue with Pokerstars is more on how they have started treating their players. They are very open on how they will treat the noobs a lot better than the Regs, Case in point, they have changed the Chest reward system to have much higher targets and smaller Boosts for Regs versus noobs as they have stated in responses that after careful study this was best for the site and the ecosystem (their word) of the game.

    Named Pros have left for a reason and Pokerstars has become very greedy.

    1. Pokerstars is rigged for sure . I know i have won worst but in poker you have to look at how deep you are in a tour. I have 8 final tables i lost twice in a raw better before big miney . I am lloking for a lawyer to to move on against pokerstars and i am looking for more people to ho with me .you can ask your hand history from the fair site named pokerstars and then we will do the maths

    2. Do you have yoir hand history eith the bad beats .if not find them we will need it to go agains stars . I have many hands that prove that for real. 8 final tables i lost before big money 70% vs 30% and 80 vs 20% . I use pokertracker to replay my hands and i can send you if you do not believe .

    3. 70 vs 30 and 80 vs 20 does not mean a guaranteed win which is the way you are treating it. You want to base it the fact that you made 8 final tables and got knocked out twice in a row before you hit the big money? That's the dumbest thing I've heard. Someone still won the money. Pokerstars still had to pay it out, it was just not to you. You just prove what Nathan is saying in this article. Good luck with your lawsuit, lol.

    4. I ran into quads 3 times today. That is actually harder to do than winning the lottery. I'm not convinced that this game is fair.

  16. I just spent the weekend playing there. Definitely a favouritism for the biggest stacks in the hand. The number of perfect cards these bigger stacks hit on the river, to eliminate multiple players,for faster turnover, it exists. 100%. I just watched it happen all weekend long. They definitely put aces to the left of kings. Also,if you're tight, left of aggressor and wait for 99 to smash him,the player on your left will usually have better, or callable. But whatcstrikes me the most is the number of perfect river cards these bigger stacks always hit to break players and force them to rebuy or pay another tourney fee.nah,this site knows it has the perfect crime.

  17. Further, if you're the small stack waiting for your dump hand,they feel you A6 suited or something,but as in my case yesterday,not only was the ace six not the best hand,but there were 4 hands that beat me. 77 on my left, kk on his left,AQ on his left,and the big stack had 44. As per usual,the big stacks horrific call after all this was rewarded with trip 4s,and eliminated 4 players in one shot. And yesterday,they completed a tournament with 75,000 players in under 10 hours. How is this possible? I don't care how fast they deal,that's a lot of big hands clashing all the time. Once again,audit these types of things,you WILL find I'm sure in poker terms a LARGE discrepancy.

  18. Its not rigged against you.its rigged against everybody. How many thousands upon thousands of posts on the internet questioning the shuffle? Can you simply dismiss every last one of the as bad players? Negreanu has won 36 million playing live poker,but is a loser at poker stars. Must be his game.

    1. You are spot on Dave. The money just circulates in ever decreasing circles and Pokerstars just takes the rake. Cash, tournies, zoom, no one wins in the end..... no one except Stars that is.

  19. It is not that I feel the site is rigged, but playing so many hands has led me to believe the software has a built-in flare for the dramatic. So to speak. For example, when a pair of aces hits the board you can almost be sure that another top pair will be held by another player. This of course causes a bingo type environment and skill seems removed. Can drama be written into software? I think so!

    1. Of course it can. A long time ago, a person I know wrote an easy roulette alogrithm with "cheat option". Anytime I pressed the "enter" on my keyboard, a red number came. In the long run, of course red/black evened out, because the "F6" button could roll a black number anytime I wanted. It´s sooo easy to manipulate RNGs. Thus it´s grotesque that so many people do NOT believe the poker RNGs are rigged. All of them, any site.

  20. Poker Stars rigged or not---just about impossible to prove, 500M cash cow....

    Just remember Enron, Bre X, World Dot Com, Hollinger, Bernie Madoff, Volkswagon, all billion dollar companies regulated by the stock exchange and all trusted by the general public--no reason to cheat anyone ??????

    I've played about 10M hands on Poker Stars and there have been a lot of questionable hands...I wouldn't exactly go out of my way to say Poker Stars is on the up and up........

  21. Great Stuff Nathan. I need to say at the outset that in my opinion online poker and especially at Pokerstars is NOT rigged. However I can't get out of my head a conversation a few years back with an online pro who was telling me about a contact he had within the industry who had told him some sites use 'Top Heavy Dealing ' which basically means that instead of a virtual 52 card deck the RNG is actually dealing from a standard all be it virtual 52 card deck + additional copies of the picture cards. The result being a far more dramatic and exciting unpredictable game designed to keep the action and therefore the interest and rake high. It's probably another load of "male parts "😁 but it is an interesting idea. But to reaffirm I DON'T think it is rigged. Mike

    1. Thanks for reading Mike, glad you enjoyed!

  22. Hi Nathan,
    I can agree with all of that. Long ago I read an article about how the shuffle servers work and provide decks to the tables. But there is one little think I can't get out of my head. Although I too think it makes no sense to favor a particular player or a region (I guess you have heard of East Europeans are favoerd, too), I wonder if it wouldn't be possible and even make sense to have a huge load of decks prepared and to filter out hands, thus increasing the number of so called action hands. Even a slight increase, that would be hard to track down, would create more big pots and therefor much more rake. After all we now know "more rake is better". (Yes, I know that refers to something else but I thought it's a nice fitting pun.) :-D

  23. Can i ask smthing? More hands more bad beats bad no more wins? Why u get action and A high calls when u are not strong but they wont pay 2 bb when u have it? Why my last 6 KK run into AA? Why everyone has AA when u have AK
    Why str8s flushes 2 pair are like impossible to win
    Why in 50-50 situations no way u have 50% why they crack your hands so easy but its a miracle when that happens to u ? Why whenever there is the sweetest game ever there s no way to get yiur finger into the honey jaar? Why premium hands are cosmetics? And they arent premium at all? Why all the above happen all at once? With the same pace day in and out? All these all at once how is this luck ? What are the propabillity for all these to happen all at once every day? I have no words its ridiculous try any style of play and you lose the same it doesnt even make sense im an overall winner but i cant accept this `bad luck` there are players who win nonstop 10 and more buy ins a day while i lose whatever hand i make something is very off and they cant hide it the funny part is they dont care about hiding it they laugh in our faces shame on them

  24. Why hasn’t anyone done a study on this. If the comments above say within a secret code or something to bring action, surely then it could be compared to a live study were a deck of cards deals out 9 player hands the burn and the flop turn and river cards then compare the results to hand histories and see if there are indeed any Discrepancies. How can this be done, easy with a robotic dealer. How many hands would be considered a good sample? A million maybe? But it can be done.

  25. Another point seeing though we are talking about Stars, why did they feel the need to increase the rake. I couldn’t believe it when I saw a $10 with $1 rake was now $9.90 player pool and $1.10 rake. That’s just pure greed and no wonder they have trouble making the million GTD these days. I hate greed and always have including my local supermarket. Party Poker, it’s time for you to shine with your revamped software.

  26. I actualy have a legitament argument for pokerstars to rig their games .... in my oppion they may have an algorithym where the undergog hand wins slighty more than it should in mtts.. basicaly giving bad players more of an edge and more reason to return(fun factor)... this could be accomplished very easy and would be next to impossible to prove .... by the way im not the only pro who feels this way

  27. Reading this comment section gave me cancer.

    It just proves Nathan's point:

    "There is no other game on earth that I have ever seen that inspires such incredible levels of self delusion. And quite frankly, it is an absolutely beautiful thing. "

    1. Haha well when I chose to write an article about "PokerStars rigged or not" I knew the response would be massive. Because it always is when this topic has come up elsewhere.

      I have decided not to respond to any of the comments (whether I agree or disagree) and just let everyone state their opinion, only removing posts for excessive personal attacks, spam etc.

  28. Great article as always Sir.
    My theory comes from a completely different angle.
    Live casinos make millions, billions of dollars, taking a 1 to 2 percent edge. And, that may be because of being regulated by some gaming board. Who regulates online gaming? The question has always been - why would they risk taking an edge allowing bots or multi users? My question is - Why wouldn't they create an edge for themselves ( more rake for instance).

    My observations playing on Americas Cardroom isn't my pocket Aces gerring cracked. I have profited several 1000BB/100. My question is how often am I dealt pocket Aces. How often am I dealt any pocket pair? How often am I dealt the top 20% of my range?

    I believe this is where the web site is suspicious. I also believe that ACR (Americas Card Room) gives a statistical advantage to their newest accounts.

    I got curious and used Poker Tracker 4 to do some statistical research on my own hands.

    Here's what I found. My first 6 months on ACR I ran just above statistical average. I was dealt pocket Aces once every 215 hands. The statistical average is 1/250ish. During my 1st 6 months I was dealt any pocket pair 1/14 hands - the average is 1/17. I was also dealt 20% of my range 28% of the time.

    The following 18 months were staggering to me. I was dealt AA 1/265 hands. Any pocket pair 1/23 hands. Top 20% of my range I was dealt 13% of the time.

    Why such a drastic change from my 1st 6 months compared to my next 18 months (2 years of my time)

    My thoughts? After my 1st 3 months I made my 1st deposit.

    ACR is a business. Regulated or not? I don't know. But as a business they want more deposits. Without new deposits coming in, they go out of business.

    My stats above may not seem drastic at first. But we are all poker players. WE are all about the math. If I play 1000 hands and dealt my 1 pocket pair every 22 something hands, I will see 45.5 pocket pairs. If a new account is getting a pocket pair every 13 hands the will be dealt almost 77 pairs. That puts me at a statistical disadvantage. My pairs still held up the percentages they should have and I still brought in 350BB/100. I just don't get them as often. So I adjusted my game.

    Great article. I would love to hear or read about any feedback. Feel free to share. The more input just increases my sample size!

    The above stats were taken form playing 358,000 hands over 2 years.

    I still play on ACR attempting a bankroll challenge in MTTs. This week I played maybe 15 freerolls (500+ runners in each) and cashed 2 times.

    Happy gaming everyone.
    Gamer for life,


  29. TLDR
    who controls the controller?

    In a real game, the deck is a physical entity. The deck, after being mixed up by the dealer, will have a definite, unique and invariable order for all the course of the hand (unless the game is not rigged). All players can check that the order of the cards in the deck is not changed during the hand.
    The cards that will come out on the board are already defined because the order is immutable, they are hidden at sight, but those will be discovered.
    When the deck is immutable, has the sense to calculate the odds, the law of large numbers tells us that in the long run, the occurrence of a certain event approaches the average probability of that event.

    In online poker the deck is a resource that no player has visual access to, no one can guarantee players that the deck is pre-ordered, as in the real world, and that it would remain unchanged during the course of the hand; speculating, I could say that the software could generate different cards for a flop depending on the players that are active in the hand, their probability of collusion, their history, their bankroll, their current stack, who knows?
    With a real deck, the order is one, the guarantee is the physical deck, the cards that will come out on the board will always be those, regardless of the action in the hand, or what else.

    Another topic is the use made of the numbers produced by the random generators, even using as input the data transmitted by the planet best generator, I could generate in output something totally not random, but statistically correct, how can I tell what the software is doing if the code is closed?

    Although the deck of each hand was uniquely generated and controlled by one entity/protocol/software, the question remains, and as said by the Latin rhetorician Giovenale: "quis custodiet ipsos custodes?" who controls the controller?
    The new blockchain based technologies may perhaps offer new expectations in terms of decentralization, security, privacy. As well as the rake-free, impossible in the current major poker rooms.

    A compliment to Nathan for the excellent food for thought;)



    I see the same pattern OVER AND OVER!!!

    Start with getting dealt a 2 60 percent of the time at Everest Poker!! Have proof for that!! E-mail me

    My last AA and KK got cracked for 8 times consecutive!! And more shit like that happening all the time!!

    Late stags in a tournament I have 10bb and shove my AK, ALWAYS a guy after me shows KK or AA!!

    So I get oout of the tournament and can buy myself in a new tournament fast enough for the room to rake more.

    So just SHUT UP and acknowledge. Online poker is a SCAM!!!!

    Why? Because they can and your a donk if you doont see the patterns.

  31. Well, it depends. Let's say you flip a coin and get 1000 tails in a row and then 1000 heads in a row. You make the statistic after 2000 flips and it is 50-50, perfect, but it's almost sure the coin is rigged.

    1. 1+ Exactly that way they operate. (explaind by you the easiest way, so everybody understands, even the 300.000 cards players).

      My last two nights: After not getting dealt anything, I started to get a little more loose: (Almost)everytime (!) I hit big, I was beaten, costed me 5 stacks in a row (after that I deleted the poker software).

      J2 with J29XX board lost to J9. Boom. 77 with X7A43 board lost to 65. 44 lost with 488TA board to 48. One tilter in beetween (got tired of being cheated): With QQ went all-in (I normally never do pre flop), ofc that was AA the opponent had. I thought ok, can be me here. So next hand JJ, and what has the raiser after me? Ofc AA.

      Someone should investigate that cheaters and stop all poker sites. They are big time criminals. I dont need 3000.000 hands to find out about that. Oh, btw. Once I also hit trips without getting action... The other hands were more or less crap (no way I hit 1/3 of my times with AX hands), but still got myself always into profits only to get cheated off my stacks by the site fixing the board.

    2. The only thing that is almost sure is that if you flip a coin enough times you will eventually get 1000 tails in a row and then 1000 heads in a row. You, like most people do not understand statistics, regular reasoning does not apply to statistics, you have to be actually educated on the matter with a trained brain that can comprehent how statistics really work and what they tell us.

      The greatest mistake you guys make is that you completely ignore what educated people tell you. When i do not know something i take advice from those that do. This is the age of information and information is everywhere, it would be stupid of me to assume anything about things i know nothing about instead of consulting the experts.

      What they will tell you is that in order to make any reasonable statistical analysis on the matter a very large number (multiple millions at least) of hands is absolutely mandatory. And any "analysis" done in a number of hands smaller than that is absolutely irrelevant and can't be taken into serious consideration.

  32. Well I just got river raped out of a 109$ ticket at Party Poker. 4 left 3 get tickets. Big stack on my right, as usual, was just dumping his hand pretty much pre flop every deal. SO knowing full well what was going to happen, he was on my right, I told the table in the chat, I will catch this guy with a crap hand, and he will suckout on me anyways, because the big stacks on line are favoured to wipe out players that have to go rebuy. ANd Im dealt King nine heres the hand im gonna get raped on. I call his dump he has Q7 and hits a running four card straight and I miss my 109 dollar ticket by one place. Online poker software is 100% rigged for maximum profit, and fast turnover at the tables. I of course went to Party Pokers chat to complain and show them my prediction of my loss to this seat with whatever hand he plays. He admits i predicted my loss, but says its 100% random, even though I called my beat 15 hands before it happened. Fuck online poker.

  33. It didn’t matter if he hit a 4 card straight or not. Both of his cards were live v yours. He didn’t do anything wrong. He bullied the table with his stack and he played it the correct way absolutely the right way. Your problem was getting frustrated with his actions. What you didn’t think of is, the other two players were in exactly the same position. I would of folded and folded unless I picked up a top hand.
    But if you were the lowest stack then yes you have to make a stand at some point and then watch your opponents do the same. Based on that hand, you can not say it’s 100% rigged. There is simply no truth in that. It’s bad decisions on your part, that’s it.
    Next time think, it’s the same rule to the other opponents to. Who’s going to get blinded off first, do I need to play a hand before someone else does. Having him on your right was the best position for you. What if he was on your left? You wouldn’t know if you were going to get shoved on or not and so you’d waste a ton of chips. Being on his Left at least you knew what he did before it got to you.
    Think long term not short term. Even AA preflop is NOT 100% and so will get beat sometimes.
    You need to learn about variance my friend.

  34. Youre not listening brother. It doesnt matter what hand either of us had, I predicted 15 hands before this he would suckout. I had fewer than 10 blinds and I lost 3 blinds folding to this dickhead. I played tonight. 6 seat tables, under 40 hands. Most of the time the table had 4 live players. I was outkicked with an ace on my left 5 times. Youre not listening man. I know how to play. My complaint is a VERY OBVIOUS favouritism for the biggest stack in the hand to wipe players out for faster tournaments. I flopped trips, got called by K6 he hit a king of course, running spades, because he had the bigger stack. His six was a spade.

    Dude, play anywhere. Pay attention to others hands, not just your own. Watch what happens. Watch how often the king sees an ace on its left. Im kicked 5 times with an ace in under 40 hands, mostly 4 to a table. Cmon. You begin this tourney with 5 big blinds so your pushing any ace.

    The second tourney, the big stack calls my all in, a reraise all in, with QK. Flops two pairs, two players out, two more rebuys to play again.

    Its SOOOOOOOOo obvious. Cmon. Negreanu. Wins 36 million playing live. Is a loser on Poker Stars.

    Online poker,

    Deals bloated big hands even on three seat tables.
    Deals to the left.
    Way too many hands I see where someone has his right outkicked. WAY TOO MANY.

    I appreciate the game. You need to hear my stories. My full tilt story is funny.

    I would blast them in emails for years, nasty nasty stuff, I accused them of everything. Never got kicked out.
    One night I enter a 180 man SNG for advancement to a tourney to be on poker after dark. I won it. Before I could check to see when the next tourney was, I had been kicked out. Im not lying about this. This is 100% true.

    I got a party poker story. I was in a tourney it had some people sitting out. the guy on my left was sitting out. Blinded in now though, so his first hand of the tourney was about to be turned over. I had AK. It folded around to me. As a joke, I went all in. the SITOUT was holding 33. The first hand we see this sitout show is a PP on the left of my AK. Strike one. So here comes the flop, this guy isnt even playing his hand. He flops QUADS. Cmon. A little bit of a stretch for me.

    ANd CD poker, lost 3 hands in one sitting with AA vs AX. Ok that happens. So Im chatting with them telling them how I think the donkey hands are helped out to keep the tables full, because as a poker player yourself, you know that eventually these donks would get wiped out and leave the site. I got the usual responses, hogwash, you just cant play, yada yada. So, at this exact time, Im dealt AA. So of course, two hands on my right, but it gets raised before it gets to me. So I said in the chat, you thinks its hogwash, watch this. I reraise all in, I have just told the table what my hand is, but still, I get an instacall. A-10 for his whole stack. Flop comes 10-10-7 so there you have it, AA cracked by AX four times in one sitting, and I predict the fourth one perfectly.

    I cant make this shit up bud. The full tilt thing that was the final straw. And i just cashed out 180 on a 20 deposit at Party poker, so its not like im losing. But the stupidity of it and the beats when people are calling post flop bets with K6 on a 239 flop vs JJ only to spike the king on the river, it happens way too often.

  35. Well, a fish, most of new players are, will normally lose his money very very quickly since he plays each and every hand and he calls in every spot. If that were the case he will lose his entire initial deposit very quickly and he will likely quit and never look back. But if he gets "lucky" and wins at the beginning (and on some sites it looks like they regularly do; Luck is not so blind or so it seems) he will lose his money in the long run, can't be otherwise, but he will reload and reload again before quitting. Since getting new players is expensive, getting the maximum out of them might be worth while some little "tricks". What do you think?

  36. Its hard to believe pokerstars is a fair site, and hard to believe articles like thsi aren't sponsored by pokerstars. If you are getting paid to cover for their criminal activities, I don't know how you sleep at night - knowing the amount of lives the site has ruined.

  37. untill there are live dealers shuffling the cards and you can see it it will be rigged.

  38. I honestly never understood why you would get more bad beats online due to playing more hands.

    As poker players, i think we all agree that the same amount of badbeads should be dealt out in comparison.
    I myself have a hard time to believe its not rigged, fixed or tweaked one way or the other. Over 100k hands, i've barely run above ev ever, and seems like the standard to run below. Over the last 536 flips i've had out of a sample of 102k sng 45 turbos hands. (considering it a flip when 60/40 or closer to each other) I've lost 80 percent of them.
    Im now at the point that i'm more likely to correctly call out what cards are gonna hit the turn and river to screw me over, as holding a hand im 70% favorite in.
    The few times i get to a FT the guys who usually gets headsup are those with 40+ vpip, and less as 40 All in EQ.

    However, i hope i'm wrong and i one day will become a winning player online.
    Nonetheless over the 63 tournaments i've played live this year i got and 300 procent roi roughly... so probably gonna stick to the game where i see the cards being dealt for real.

    1. u fkin jokin me????? is rigged 100000%...fkin hidden code inside software....u just keep live in different world u morons. Its business and they need to have rigged software...look one thing, if person whos negative let say 70-80% losing all the time, eventually will quit but they don't want from him to quit, they will keep him in thew game. Thats the main thing,money and hidden fkin code inside to control and give action

  39. I see some anomalies like that: When I was playing multitable ZOOM game. In some periodic times I am hitting set, full house, straight etc. at the same time. In some periodic times I don't; but I am losing with set vs over set, full house vs quads etc. at the same time. I mean, this doesnt happens randomly. You can't prove that by checking Poker Tracker statistics. Because, everthing looks normal, in the long run, mathematicly. Poker rooms why do that? Maybe pick up more rakes.

  40. Hi.Why should PokerStars use skewed algorithms when they are already making millions of dollars? Because if they didn't, only players using a "solid fundamental strategy" would win and all lesser players would give up. Ergo skewed algorithms equals more profits for PokerStars. The worst thing PokerStars have done (to illustrate how skewed these algorithms are) is to introduce percentage chances.

    1. Absolutely right. What company wants 10% of it's customer base (The good players) regularly withdrawing money from their bank accounts without putting any money in while at the same time making many of their other 90% of customers (The bad players) go bust time and time again very quickly and therefor give up and stop playing?

  41. Its brilliant comments like these that make me realise it is still possible to find the fish in 2018! Online poker isnt dead.

    1. Haha I agree. This comment section is all the proof you need that online poker is alive and well and the games are good! :)

  42. The scientists say the universe has a 20% chance of being a simulation. If that 20% holds and it is a simulation then I could imagine scenarios in which those that run the simulation screw with us just for the sheer entertainment value. There's a youtuber called magic612 who is possibly quite a celebrity amongst space-weed smoking dimension 12 university students. This is probably more likely than PS being rigged.

  43. I won't state it's rigged or not. But try understanding why I do feel something isn't right on PSTARS. When I started online poker on PSTARS, some 10 years ago, I really won some small games (and hence with a lack of experience!). They make you feel comfortable with the site and you get enthusiastic. Even got Royal Flushes quite some times. Later on it's like they turned a switch on your account. The best hands are lost anytime. KK on the BB. You get pushed all-in by the SB, which holds (example) a bad 9-4 off suite. The flop shows 9-9-4. The turn and river won't help you either. Your money will flush away rapidly and you make a deposit. Also that money is flushed away rapidly and after a lots of deposits they notice that you're a reliable player. So being sick of losing money, you STOP playing. But after a while they miss your deposits so they pull you back in with free tickets and or deposit bonuses. And yes you win big time again! But after a few days.... So again after a lot of deposits you stop again. At some time I got frustrated and create a different account. And yes experienced winning games again. A-A, Q-Q, 10-10 all-in and I called with K-6 suited, and YES I got paid with a flush. And just because you have a big stack I called lots of all-ins with blurry hands as I relay on PSTARS to pay me out. Like all the complaints above, it works the other way around as well! And yes, you'll get lots of funny responses on the chat! But at some point they discovered matching bank account-numbers in my accounts and the second one was deleted (though they did transfer my reserves!). Back to my old account again. But now when I lost a lot of money, I stop for a while, until PSTARS is seducing me to come back in.... And then I know I get paid! So yes I do think there's something wrong with the card dealing. And I understand Nathan very well. What's in there for them for rigging the game? As they rely on rakes you pay. I do think they have some algorithms in place. People who have proven by their deposits, that they are good for the money, loose more often their strong hands. When you are a new player or have been away for a while, you'll win lots of spectacular hands, like your pocket 3's beat A-A and K-K with a flush. And I think the flop is often created after the calls and folds are known! Just to speed up the rings, so people sign in on another one. Though I still like to play the game, I hope someday to find a site with a third party shuffle machine which is proven reliable (like in a live game)! Cheers Dennis.

  44. 100.000 hands to exclude variance??? I am no statistican, but that sounds wayyyyy too much. Example: If a (sports-)bookie needed a sample size of 100.000 games, he could set no "true" lines since the invention of pro Football (around 1920). And yet they set "true lines" from about the 4th week on in any given season (after just 64 games played, not 30.000, not 3.000, not even 300).
    The absurd variance numbers are just excuses for poker players to silent the critics that have reasonable doubts about anonymous uncontrolled easy to manipulate RNGs.
    In reality: If you are not close to the expected winning percentage of certain hand(groups), something is fishy. If you loose 80 times of 100 in situations you are big favourite, you are cheated on. Simple as that.

    Example: AQ on AQXXX board (double pair) has a 85% winning chance against average micro players (starting hand range around 33%). And if you lose in such situations 8 of 10 times, yes only 10 times, be sure somebody (speak the house) wanted to get you back to earth, other people need to "win" sometimes too, to keep them happy from time to time.

    Anyway, after that 10 times you were $ucked, but the house is 100% sure you´ll re-load. That´s there "business" model. They don´t need winning players, the same as online bookies tag profitable players with a "luxury" tax (the dont like winning members either). Dont fool youself. You are tricked as soon you play your first AA flop. You dont need 100.000 hands to find out about that.

    Greetings from Germany.

    Test it youself: Go to any online database of roulette casinos. You´ll never see 80 red 20 black in any 100 coups sample sizes. Except maybe, just maybe the one example in history of mankind where 32 reds came in a row (1943 in ), red had an advantage of 80-20 after onehundred spins. But to get only a clue if having played 100.000 poker hands is absurd.

    1. Exactly...the myth of 100,000 or a million was started by Pokerstars to excuse their rigging of the games. If something happens 80 % in a thousand you have your number.

  45. I think it is very naive to believe pokersites like Riverstars don't cheat on their customers, just because "they already earn enough money" as it is. IMHO when it comes to money, companies are utterly ruthless and they will use any trick in the book to maximize their profit.

    One reason for cheating might be trying to keep the fish on board by giving them a bit of "extra luck" from time to time. We wouldn't want them to leave the site disillusioned, after they got completely ransacked by the regular grinders, would we? ;-)

  46. I think it is rigged totally. It is amusing to see multiple players get pocket pairs. Today I had KK and two more guys had AA and QQ. How is this possible. In another one I got 88 and flop was 842 -I went all in and another guy who had QQ matched my all in -the turn was a Q. This guy I see him winning most of the online tourneys and I suspect it is a Bot actually. The guy seems to get pocket pairs once in 5 hands. If you get a 10-10 or JJ -you can be hundred percent sure other guys on the table have pairs -atleast two more minimum. Totally rigged

  47. Fucking nonsense, what did they pay you to write this ? There are literally hundreds of odds and situations that are off on Pokerstars. Simply look at little things like the frequency of pairs or trips on the flop. Look at pre flop all ins...lower stack loses over 90 % of those situations. Watch how the higher stack will be dealt the higher pocket pair when there are multiple pairs dealt. Hundreds od oddities and "coincidences" Want to have your money slowly swindled from you ? Keep on playing at pokerstars. The same people who invented " a million hands " to get stats or the game is so much faster so you see more. Believe what you see, it's programmed and manipulated.

  48. How much did they pay you to write this. Of course it's goodness open your eyes.

  49. it's not just my own beats. I see other players with sick beats as well.bad calls and bad players are rewarded to keep them playing.if the money was going to the stronger players as regularly as it should there would be very few your money.go play a live tournament.

  50. Hi Blackrain79 Great Read hope all is going well with You much love Peace man . . .

    I think a fair point to make is that if You are a good player You will be getting it in with the best hand more often then a losing player, therefore You will take more bad beats more often then a losing player because they are not getting it in with the best hand as often

    1. That's a great point Dfox about good players often getting it in with the best hand. Way more chances for a bad beat. Thanks for reading, glad you enjoyed this article!

  51. Poker is game where we are playing vs Human still :). Everybody around the table will make up their mind and can bet, fold or raise. If You are sitting down vs nine players (or whatever) = there is nine different people and knowledge vs You. It's totally up to You how will You play - none PS or any other site can't control that. Cards are not so important how humans are with who You are sharing the table. Don't think PS is more rigged then any other site, difference is they have more players and more ''unice'' human minds :) with who You can compare Yourself.










  53. I have one very simple question, and so far I have not heard a legitimate response.

    Daniel Negreanu.

    Live poker, 36 million in winnings.

    Poker Stars, A loser.


    1. ok 1 here u go p stars loser but 36 million in earnings but how much he pay and lose in cash to get those earnings

  54. you see its a total scam, im sitting there with small stack waiting for a chance to steal the blinds Im dealt A5 one player on my left and i took a screenshot before the hand played because i knew i was being setup and lo and behold he had AQ...

    this fucking bullshit is fucking endless ive been raped over and over again all fucking day long at party poker its a fucking joke i lost on final table i flopped a fucking boat i lost to quads, its a FUCKING SCAM.

    1. And now everyone sitting at that table knows you shove Rag Aces with a short stack. Everyone will call your short stack shoves now. Any pocket pair, and two broadway cards and any big Ace.

      Maybe play a hand rather than shoving pre. I'm sure the player on your left would have let you know you were beat with a re-raise or big c-bet.

      Anyway - shoving rag Aces isn't getting sucked out on - you were just beat by a better hand.

    2. lol u get to final table where was the scam there unreal

  55. The Fact is they will not give you your hand histories. When I could play real money, which I did between 2010-2011, I won a small amount in a freeroll and turned it to 1200.
    Not a lot of money, but not bad for no deposit.
    I had access to all my HH's back then, and over many hundred thousands of hands, the math was within 1% of where it was supposed to be.
    I can no longer play real money, so I'm stuck playing for play chips, and play the same game. 9 person S&G. I learned how to play this from the S&G wizard, which is excellent software.
    I don't play any differently than I did for real money, and winning should be so much easier, because people at these play chip S&G games are happy to get in dominated.
    I find it incredibly easy to get in at 3 to 1 and 4 to 1 all the time against 1 opponent. Yet over thousands and thousands of these hands played, I do not have positive equity.
    I realize beats are part of the game, but the rate at which 2 and 3 outters hit when getting it in good is absolutely unbelievable. The math will never catch up.

  56. Are there any studies focusing on testing the presence of action flops? From my experience, as an example, it appears that AA wins the correct percentage of the time but when it loses it loses big. The better players build a big pot when they are a massive favourite and these are the times when the AA losses happen. I have built a bankroll over time and then lose a lot in a short time, even though I wouldn't change anything, because the money has gone in when I'm a huge favourite. 95% favourite on the turn, loser on the river. It happens again and again. It must be easy to test if it is rigged for action. You have AK, he has AA and there's an ace on the flop. This seems to happen a lot. The player who is ahead in the hand also appears to change several times in the hand. You are ahead preflop, opponent ahead on the flop, then swapping back n forth on the turn and river. Would love to know if these things happen as frequently live. I would do the study myself but I'm too lazy. I also only play for a bit of fun and don't expect to win on these sites. I may not be the best player but I have played enough to think that action is artificially induced on Pokerstars. Why would the site want anybody to withdraw winnings? They want money going onto the site, not coming out. The longer the money moves around the site and players the more it can be raked. People have suggested it's hard to rig. The maths is straightforward considering we live in a world where you can stick on VR goggles and go for a space walk.

    1. Maybe you are over playing AA then, if you lose a lot in a short time? Nothing against you, but if you are playing aggressively and you lose, then it’s the players against you that are the ones who don’t know what pot odds of percentages are. Even the action flops, AA is still just a pair and if the board is very wet, then you should NOT over play your AA.
      Do not get me wrong, I filled out a survey for Stars just yesterday and I explained that I do think their random generator needs tweaking. But I also stated that if PokerStars keeps concentrating on new players or less skilled players, they will eventually go out of business. Those lesser players do not generate the same rake amounts than your Supernova wanna be’s and the amount of players that have left because of this is probably in the hundreds of thousands. In my opinion this is why they increased the rake. But it won’t work. Skilled players are not dumb enough to hang around when knowing they can’t beat the rake. The rake is the winner here. Not the new players or less skilled players and I said in the survey, that they need to hold up their hands and apologise to all the regulars who’ve now shifted to Party and 888 and said yes we got it wrong, badly wrong. But they won’t do that. There’s so much ego around poker for them to do that and the business will continue to suffer.

  57. Anybody that thinks that PokerStars is not rigged has either not played there for long enough or does not own a calculator.

  58. My last two tournament details. Sit down. Three hands in, AA. Lose to QQ. Eight hands in, KK, lose, to the same seat, 7-10. Its a rebuy. 88, I lose to A5 he went all in, hit an ace on river. 66, he goes all in with 8-10, rivers me. Final hand, AQ. hand to my right raises, I just call, because it doesnt matter online. Big stack calls as well. Flop comes A-6-4. Excellent. Hand on my right goes all in with A-3, I knew I had him, I call. Big stack on my left, calls as well. He holds 6-4, hahahahahahahahahaha nothing for me beyond that, and the poker room rewards his play because he is big stack and can eliminate two players with one perfect flop right here, watch the suckers who just got cheated go and pay another tournament fee, hoping they will be the ones the poker rooms software has chosen as the LUCKY seat.

    Fuck off online poker. Ive played plenty of live poker and I see beats but not every single hand you play, no matter the call. Dont tell me its the donks either every person I played live with was a donk and I had no trouble wiping them off the table.

  59. How much they paid you idiot. It is rigged!!!




    THEN I GET AA AND LOSE many times in a row 1 vs 1.... WAKE UP IN TEXAX HOLDEM AA WIN 9/10 VS ANY OTHER CARD....


  62. I was given 100M in free play poker chips as a promotional sign-up up reward. I played with it for several months, gaining a few M. Am then notified the promo gift was a mistake. Full Tilt took all the chips back. As compensation, I was given a "ticked" for entry into a tournament that too place 1 week Prior to having the chips seized. I sent several inquires, told basically to shut up. Since then, 9/10 I get sucked out on. Dealt top hands after flop, players consistently sucking out to inside straight draws on all in bets. I mean, this happens on a regular basis. I always maintained at least equal funds. Now I rarely, rarely win any pots. Rigged ??? Of course it is.

  63. Well. I don't know what to think about it. I am not going to take any position but there is a strange phenomenon I have observed.
    I used to be a moderate winner at the micros and had some small successes in tournaments like 10years ago. Hell there was even a time where I was living exclusively off of poker for like 6 months. That time has long passed and now I am a family man and have a semi-normal job.
    I am a seaman which means I go away for 2-4 months and during this time I usually don't play at all. After I sign off and come back home I start playing some Zoom PLO or Spin and Gos. I have been on like 20 contracts and every single time first day or two after I come back I run like god. There is literally nothing I can do wrong. I hit sets, quads, str8 flushes etc. Even if I'm behind I catch what I need. Almost every time in this period I have a winrate of 50-80bb/100. As I said it usually last for like a day or maximum 2 (about 500-1000 hands) and is followed by a downswing where I don't hit anything at all and lose most of the profits. I either keep playing or just get pissed and quit for a few months. Now it's nice to think that I have just a hidden potential that is somehow activated when I have a fresh mind being few months away from poker or there is some fishy business going on. After 10k hands Ev and winnings curves align so no harm done right? What if this is a mechanism making people hooked (making deposits and getting excited about poker)? How this kind of swindle could be ever uncovered? I won't go around telling everybody PS is rigged. Heck I was even once ferociously attacking and ridiculing anybody who said online poker was rigged. Now seeing it happen so many times I think there might be something to it.

  64. Unrigged online poker would result in the bad players (90%) would quickly lose their bankrolls and eventually give up meaning Stars profits would be hugely reduced.

    The scam is designed for all players to get "lucky" enough to keep them playing and keep them paying.

  65. Seaman again. I don't see the thought about some convoluted card manipulation by pokerstars as ludicrous or preposterous. Bigger institutions were involved in much bigger conspiracies and were caught so I don't see why PS (or any other poker room) for that matter would be any different. Just to name a few conspiracies that were uncovered and found true: Tuskegee experiment, MK-Ultra, Bad Booze durign Prohibition, both Samsung and Apple slowing down their devices, and many many other.

  66. Of course it's rigged i just play 10 spin and go in a raw always busted on premium hand the last tourney i've been dealt AAs 2 times and the two times the guy got a runner runner Flush. When they put tour account on downswing u just can't win a hand. Bad beat happen but 10 or 15 chained badbeat that's ridiculous

  67. I literally just watched the following hands come up in order.

    Stright flush, flush king kicker x3 and and then 3 full houses. 7 games 7 crazy hands.

    Bullshit is it not at least altered to make the crazy hands show up more often.

  68. You re correct 70 vs 30 or 80 vs 20 does not mean a guarnateed win but i had my hands analyzed a few years ago because something just didn't seem right and guess what i was losing thise 70 vs 30 and 80 vs 20 type hands almost 50 percent of the time. If you are a 70 vs 30 or 80vs 20 you should win those hands 70 or 80 percent of the time

  69. Some people have software that can see your hands, better to avoid pokerstars. It is rigged.....

  70. As a 10 year live pro,I can assure you that there have been not days but weeks that no matter how way ahead I was,I was always got outdrawn at the river.So lets assume I play 22hands /hour x 8 hours x 5 days x 4 x 12 x 10 = 422,400 lifetime hands.The are online pros who play more hands in 4 months time.This means that all the crazyness I have suffered througout the years,the get to live it in a few months.My point is, no,o poker is not rigged, the whole poker aspect is "rigged" to mess with our sanity.

  71. Pokerstars is rigged becasue of greed ...they fked the rakeback the fked everything in order to optimize winnings and the biggest optimizing tool would be to favor the depositors against the good player you can fkn be sure pokerstars is rigged to the gylls...because of fucking greed

  72. I saw a gentleman on TV four bet A3. Everybody folded. I defy anyone to show me ONE single instance of someone four betting A3 online, in any room, at any time, and takes the pot pre flop. JUST ONCE.

    I saw three way action, the last three way table I played, I was dealt AQ the first hand. I was pushed. I lost.

    I saw three way last night on TV, the hand was bet the whole way. Gentleman held fourth pair, and CALLED THE RIVER BET by his opponent, to win the hand, with fourth pair.


    Give me a break.

  73. Well... really old blog and Nathan probably long gone and desinterested. As a matter of fact he only commented to posts of those who agreed with him, so what can be read into that?

    One could comment extensively on this subject and from many different angles. A way to solidly prove or disprove that pokerstars (PS) is rigged might be quite difficult to be attained, and I think PS management knows it.

    My personal take, after around 12 years of playing PS, is that IT IS rigged. But not only when I lose, also when I win. Sometimes I'll play in a game that "seems" to run in what seems to be an "undisturbed" game, and those are quite enjoyable, win or lose. However, if I win 2 or 3 games in a row or in a short time, I will then get crap hands for 10 to 15 games in a row. Out of these crap hands during these crap games, I get pocket cards with a 2 (2-X) 3 to 4 times out of every 10 hands! (not exagerating). If and when I do get good cards and flop top pair or 2 pairs, I will be winning the hand, but only until I'm commited. If the correct move is to go all in after you've reeled the other player in (after turn but before river), I do so (go all-in), to which I get a snap-call and whatever card the "guy" needed to beat me magically hits on the river, even if it is a one outer.

    Here are 2 other situations (tho not the only ones) that when they present themselves, the results are ALWAYS the same. If I'm in the middle of one of the 10 to 15 "crap game periods" previously described (after winning 2 or 3 times, remember?), if I have J 9 of hearts, the flop will come with two of what I need for a straight and with one heart (for example 8d, 7c, and Ah). After calling standard bets the turn will come X of hearts, hereby putting me on straight AND flush draw. Neither of them will ever hit the river, all the while someone will put in a BIG bet which will cost you most or all youre stack. THIS IS ALWAYS THE SAME, EXCEPT THAT IT MIGHT GO IN REVERSE, PUTTING YOU IN FLUSH DRAW FIRST AND THEN ADDING STRAIGHT DRAW AFTER TURN. River will hit for neither.

    Also, if I'm the high stack on a table and the small stack goes all in and I call him, I always (not exagerating) lose. If he still remains quite short and I get the chance to call another all in from him, or get him to call my all in (but WITHOUT ANYONE ELSE IN THE HAND) then I will win the hand. If there's someone else in the hand its another thing entirely.

    The two situations mentioned above happen like that ALWAYS! A statistical impossibility. And as I said, those are not the only ones I have identified. So... nough' said!

  74. This guy is a fuckin idiot. Online poker definitely is rigged. Its stupid to say you'll see alot more bad beats beacause you see more hands faster online. You should see alot more holds too. Anyone who says that online poker sites aren't juiced for action shouldn't be playing poker. Thats why this dickhead plays micro stakes. He's a donk. Online poker is for donks.

  75. All online poker sites are rigged as fuck. Anyone who disagrees cannot recognize simple patterns and/or is a donk. This idiot doesn't know what he is talking about. Online poker is the biggest fraud in history of the World. Fuck online poker. Can't take your stolen money with you after you die morons. I hope in the next life they come back as fucking rodents that piss all over eachother or snakes that eat the piss covered rodents. Because thats what they deserve for ruining Texas Holdem online.

  76. Hi there! Not matter what i do i keep lossing on pokerstars with some damn huge bad beats and usualy vs same kind of players who play very bad :) i don't think that pokerstars riggd the game in favor of certain players but i do belive that the softwear is some riggd to it.The softwear deals those acction hands,acction flops that gets acction from players to try and speed up the game.Thats my opinion!Every time i ask about theyr RNG (stars) dosen't answer...On the other hand i play on 888 poker and to my surprize i'm a winning player there....My BR on 888 is going UP and my BR on stars is going down, playng the same way on every platform! Too bad the mtt pay outs on 888 are lower, a few years ago were bigger.Good luck on stars because thats all it is there :)

  77. Shame on you. You support the biggest fake crimesite on this planet.

  78. I might believe this if I couldnt look back and hand history and have pokerstars tell me the results were normal. I returned to Pokerstars after winning some money cashing out and taking a break. What I notice is that the odds didnt seem to make sense. So I did the logical thing and complained. Poker stars replied that winning 50% with AA or KK over a large amount of hands was in line with expectations and that I should win no more than 50% of the time in heads up. I never put another cent into the site.

  79. Its humorous how people think Ive made my mind up after my AA got cracked. Nope. 15 years of it made my mind up. Look, the last tourney I played, my two hands were QK suited, and A6. I raised QK suited guy on my left, (who I knew before I raised would hold an A), he called, then fucko with 76 goes all in. I call because I want to prove myself right, and he did call he held AJ, and hit running aces.
    So thats my stack Im left with about 8 bb and right away they deal me A6, folds to me there are 4 hands behind me. I push. I know Im going to be kicked at least. but to my utter surprise, HAHAHAHAHAHAHA fucko on my left had AQ this time, and the other 3 hands behind me ALSO HAD ME BEAT. I WOULD SHARE THE SCREEN IF I COULD.
    So, you see, its not because AA lost a race. Its the deal, the seat that wins that makes 5 grave errors that would bury him in any random game all of a sudden is chip leader of the tournament. Its my QK suited always seeing the A on my left. Its the A6 when I push small stacked after a beat that has 4 hands on its left that are better than my A6.
    Its a fine tuned machine.
    You dont have to agree, and if you have the patience to beat it, good for you. I am a winning online player.
    I quit playing because I would rather keep those winnings than have them ripped back from me.
    You can believe it or not, after I took out 700 of 800 I won in my first three MTTs at Betmost poker when they were around, 1st place, 2nd and 7th, I went on an inexplicable 2 year bad run and didnt make money one single time, losing with AAA to quad 5s that wait until the very last second to call my all in from first position, so he knows his 55 is NOT GOOD HERE.
    Any my removal from FUll Tilt Poker after years of blasting them for their cards in emails, thats right my account was closed seconds after I won a 180 seat SNG tourney to advance for a chance to play on poker after dark. After years of emails questioning their deal. You figure it out. And this is NOT bullshit. This is TRUTH.
    I have no reason to lie, I dont play anymore so I dont give a shit.
    With all the cheating and schemes that have been uncovered, UB , Absolute, FUll Tilt, you still think they wouldnt do it because theyre risking too much?
    Ya, right. And Islam is a religion of peace.

  80. Poker stars are criminals! should be jailed or killed! I ask any top pro to check my hands and tell me how I lose 90% of time when I am 75% favorite 1000 times in row!!!

  81. I think that discussion is not productive,

    Let's say i decided to build a poker full of transparency and make business on it or even make non-profit resource where people can play online without rake. That's finally may fuck PS, because they don't care about transparency in the game and don't care about customers

    What do you think is needed that nobody can say that it's potentially rigged

    1. open source it (everybody can inspect source code) + make build system and allow people to build code themself ?
    2. block-chain based Random Generators, no server side RNG, no money holding by room
    3. Video poker (make sure you are playing with real people) - check web cams from time to time
    4. open hands history for every played hand, anonymous or with real nickmakes, that everybody can verify any statistical abnormals and if they find them team can fix it based on players suggestions
    5. Change Random Generator method to decrease dispersion

    As i understood poker room needs: winning players and losing players, this way room can exist, if loosing players will understand that they loose because of skill, will they continue loosing/improving skills, just continue loosing because they like game, or just give up.

  82. This comment has been removed by the author.

  83. 20 times in a row loses with aa preflop. No rigged at all

  84. The article is interesting, but is not the first discussion on the subject and a satisfactory answer has not been given yet.
    I agree to people that won't state PSTARS or online poker it's rigged or not. It is not proven.
    I also agree to people that say something strange is happening at PSTARS.
    I started online poker on PSTARS over 10 years ago as an recreational player, getting to daily play with some good winnings, now I consider myself an experienced player.
    But indeed, nothing from past compares with recent experience.
    I'm also maths and physics graduated and I master the probability theory well.
    That's why, in principle, I would treat as benighted the emphatic specific examples of bad beating, AA cracked or so, because those are a natural occurrence in the game.
    The point is what here many people honestly observed: the unusual frequency of those thingamy lately.
    I personally experience now an unreal (in percentage and rows length), of strong hands busted by weak hands. What caught my attention is that those opponents are not regular players, but players that seems to be new. Apparently bad loose players, who make spectacular calls and allins, but receive sensational matches, especially on the river. They may be new customers migrated from shutting down soon Microgaming Poker Network or other online poker rooms.
    It may be a fixing algorithm in the RNG itself or in the platform's software. I saw many speculate that it is related to the business model of the company after changing ownership or after recent agreement with Paddy Power Betfair to create the world's largest gambling and betting companies.
    The intent may be to add action on tables, to encourage and keep new customers, to increase the profit from rake.
    What is obvious is that practice disadvantages old faithful players, from that perspective they can be considered reliable players to continue make deposits.
    As you folks, I still like to play the game, so I hope PSTARS won't end falling into this greed.

  85. Read right up to where you said Pokerstars is "open source". Even in quotation marks.. you're either stupid ass hell or you're playing for one side - and even if you're stupid you should understand which side I'm talking about. PokerTracker flags MULTIPLE anomalies on my end. When confronted.. people like you said "well.. it's proof you've been unlucky, not proof it's rigged." Suddenly 4ish mil hands isn't enough to tell. I have to get 10 million hands from 1000 people and prove it that way. If I did that, something else would be necessary, and so on. And your assumption that the fact Pokerstars is a money machine is idiotic. Who has ever heard of people who make money going to greater lengths to make even more-like cheating. Hope you grasp sarcasm. And by the way, the consensus isn't that pokerstars is rigged 100٪ and always. Check out how statistics get distorted and unreal after a huge withdrawa for example. You've explained shit, because in fact, you are shit. "I can't possibly answer all these questions in a blog post".. but I'll chose from the unimportant ones and invent some shit stories to make it seem plausible. Because that's what you need for addicts. Plausible. As for me, Ive withdrawn 28k USD and restricted myself from ever playing. Guess what, they blocked my account for security reasons after the withdrawal request and simply evaded replies. I got my money only after a hired law firm got into the mix. So to sum it up, a bit of rigging towards those who withdraw and towards those who, by algorithm are susceptible to deposit, some carefully placed bots, some few days of pro-rigging just to end up with three 0.4% 1.2% suck out hands losses, a bit of not paying people unless it hoes legal.. and you're right: they're clean as a whistle. Lying cunt. ( btw Im on green with 25k on PS and still telling the truth).

  86. Indeed, as other people have noted, author's first argument: "PokerStars is a Money Making Machine" is not a valid one.
    He wrote "When you are already making absurd amounts of money and dominating the entire industry what possible incentive could you have to want to rig something?"
    The answer is simple: like Enron, Hollinger, Volkswagen and other billion dollar companies that have deceived public confidence, why we should be sure that there is no reason for cheating? Why collecting 10 M. Dollar fee per week, if we know how to double it with a simple software algorytm which can't be detected anyway?

  87. How about "OMG my quads got beaten 3 times in a row".

  88. Now let's talk about author's argument no.2: You Can Simply Go Check it For Yourself.
    He wrote "PokerStars is one of the few poker sites out there who are very open about what they do. They will in fact actually send you every single hand history that you have ever played on their site."
    This is true, but seriously, can we imagine it could be different on a reputable poker site?
    Next, he wrote that one could stick million hands in a tracking program like PokerTracker and run extensive analysis and tests looking for statistical anomalies.
    Seriously, if an IT expert place a fix in the poker software, do you expect to find statistical anomalies in hand history to take you on the trace of the scam back?!?
    That remembers me the electronic roulette table (you all know those, right?). The machine could be easily programmed with a bias to calculate, depending on the ball speed, when to stop the wheel so that the area where the ball fell to be the area where the house had the highest profit. Any check out calculations would have been done by someone, the results of the games would have appeared perfectly random, because the fix was made according to the player's bets, which were always random.
    So you have to be naive to believe that by checking hand history you can find traces of some manipulative algorithm in the software. You need access to the program code to find it.

  89. At the end of the day pokerstars is a programme ,,,,how can a programme be 100% random???
    Impossible, simple as that.
    But yet they still claim without any doubt that their precious fairytale rng is ...

  90. It's f-kin RIGGED, and I'll tell you what proof i've found! I usually play MTT's , 2-3 games simultaneously; and here I am, playing a 3.3$ Bounty Builder 15k GTD alongside a 4.4$ Progressive Bounty 10k GTD when suddenly, received same preflop in both games! (QJo, IDENTICAL HANDS Q of h and J of s); the biggest surprise came after i saw the flop(s) which.....was again IDENTICAL in BOTH GAMES: Jd 8s 3h !!!!.....and again same TURN: As; i could only see the river in one MTT, because everyone else folded to a big bet in the other game, but i'm sure it would've been the same!

    another example: MP raised, me (CO) re-raised, SB, BB and MP called
    flop: Kh 9h 2h - SB&BB checked, MP bet, I called, SB folded, BB called
    turn: 8h - all checked
    river 7d - all checked

    SHOWDOWN: BB showed 22, MP showed 99, I showed KK and won because NONE OF US HAD ANY HEART...... I still try to figure out what odds might've been there.....

    .....and I can go like this for days.....for me is simple, I just play on stars just for fun since 2018, I go to live tourneys and I'm on the winning side!

    IMO, pstars is a bunch of OUTLAWS doing bad things to people and nobody is doing anything against them! I will be more than happy to join others in opening a trial against them! And I know a few software engineers that used to work for them who will be happy too.....