Is 888 Poker Rigged? Here are the Facts [2019]

Is 888 Poker Rigged?


People often ask me if 888 poker is rigged. And believe me I get it, sometimes the amount of bad beats that you take in online poker is simply unbelievable.

So I decided to write this blog post to finally answer once and for all if 888 poker is rigged or if it is legit.

Here is the short answer:

888 poker is not actually rigged or rigged for action. It can just seem that way due to the speed of online poker in general. An online poker site like 888 deals hands 3 times faster than a live poker game. And if you play Snap poker then it can be 10 times faster. This means that you will see a lot more bad beats and it can feel like it is rigged.

But let's dig into this a bit deeper.


Is 888 Poker Legit? Is It Rigged?


So why do some people still believe that 888 poker is not legit and is rigged against them then?

Well, I believe that this is simply a natural thing for some people to believe especially if they haven't gotten the results they want yet from poker.

The unfortunate thing about poker in general is that there is an incredible amount of "variance" in the short term.

Variance by the way is the technical term that we use in poker to refer to the standard ups and downs that all poker players face over the short run.

The reason why poker continues to be such a profitable game for many people like myself (10+ year pro) is precisely because of this short term luck factor.

On a poker site like 888 poker sometimes you are going to receive a lot of bad beats over a short period of time such as a few days or a few weeks.

888 poker rigged for action

And this makes it easy for the less skilled players to blame their overall lack of success on it simply being "rigged."

Professional poker players know that poker results over a period of days or weeks are completely meaningless.

But amateurs are often obsessed over their results in the short term like this even though they are mathematically meaningless.

It is a completely natural defence mechanism. People need to find a reason why they aren't having success in poker.

So if they do not get the positive results that they want, then they will often blame the poker site. This is despite the fact that 888 Poker is one of the biggest online poker sites in the world and has been around a long time.

It's easier for bad poker players to just claim that 888 Poker isn't legit, it's all rigged against them. This is a natural defence mechanism because finding some external reason for their poor results prevents them from addressing the real core issue, they play bad.

Now with all that said, it is still important to remember that some people will always be trying to cheat the system. Any time there is money on the line, a certain segment of people out there will try to cheat.

You need only look at the stock market to see the truth of this!

But is 888 Poker legit? Is there any widespread cheating going on at 888 poker? Is it really rigged against your just because your AA got cracked a few times?

Probably not. Here are 5 reasons why.


1. 888 Poker is a Very Profitable Business


888 poker has seen large growth in recent years and is now one of the top online poker sites in the world. It also offers some of the best action and softest games in my opinion of any site.

And with this has also come a lot of success for the 888 poker brand. As I often say, the biggest winner in poker is always the house.

Just like all other poker sites out there, 888 poker charges a "rake" which is a fixed percentage that they take out of many cash game pots and tournament buy-ins.

While it might seem like a small amount to you, when you factor in the fact that there are thousands of people playing on 888 poker at any time of the day, this adds up in a big, big way over time.

In fact they have reported profits approaching $80 million dollars a year recently. There is no poker player on earth who is making this kind of money even if they win the WSOP main event!

So the obvious question in a situation like this is why would 888 poker want to risk this highly profitable business that they have by rigging their site?

It makes no sense at all.

In fact, they have every reason in the world to make sure their games are not rigged so they continue to just let the profits keep rolling in.

888 poker has literally everything in the world to lose by rigging the action on their site and pretty much nothing to gain. This is one of the strongest arguments for why 888 poker is not rigged.

There is simply no motive at all. In fact they have every motive in the world to protect the integrity of their games.


2. The Players Themselves Can Police 888 Poker


The second reason why 888 poker is probably not rigged is because the players themselves can police the site. They do this by downloading hand histories and checking for anomalies.

Yet another reason why I always suggest that you use a good tracking program like PokerTracker if you take online poker seriously is so you can verify your results for yourself.

By downloading all of your hand histories from 888 poker, you can simply stick them all into PokerTracker and see for yourself if your EV (expected value) winnings are wildly different from your actual winnings.

The thing about a poker site like this which is essentially "open source" is that the players can always verify the randomness of the site for themselves.

In other words, if you think 888 poker is rigged then all you have to do is go run your hand histories through an equity program like this and show us the evidence!

888 poker complaints

Typically a poker site that is trying to rig their action like this would not allow the players to verify it for themselves. They would want to prevent this ability so they couldn't be caught.

888 poker is not a poker site that is trying to hide anything about the randomness of their deal. You can download your hand histories and verify it for yourself at any time.

This is one of the biggest reasons why 888 Poker is legit. You can simply go double check the fairness of their deal for yourself!

Now once again, it is important that you understand a little bit about variance and statistical significance in poker before you do this.

If you have not played at least 100k hands of poker, then you will not have a sample size that is big enough to overcome basic variance.

I have found again and again that there is a direct correlation between people who believe online poker is rigged and not having played enough hands to even test it.


3. There is No Evidence That 888 Poker is Rigged


And this leads me to the next most obvious point. There has never been a conclusive study showing that 888 poker actually is rigged.

Despite the fact that anybody can download their own hand histories and stick them through an equity program like PokerTracker, nobody has ever produced a statistically valid sample showing widespread irregularities in the deal at 888 poker.

Because if this were to ever happen it would be an absolute bombshell across the poker world and 888 poker's entire business would decline very rapidly.

In fact, if such evidence was presented it would likely be picked up by the mainstream media as well as proof that all of online poker is rigged and bad.

But for all the people out there who claim that 888 poker is rigged, I have never seen one of them produce an actual statistically valid sample proving that this is the case.

Instead their arguments usually run something like:

"My AA got cracked 3 times in a row last night! This is proof that 888 poker is rigged!"

Actually this is not proof at all though. All a statement like this displays is a gross misunderstanding of basic statistical variance in poker.

As I just mentioned above you need 100k hands at a bare minimum in order to get past basic statistical variance in poker.

For most people this might represent a full year of play or more especially if they only play part time. So in other words, what happened "last night" or in your last few poker sessions literally has no statistical meaning at all.

As I mentioned before, there is a large element of short term luck in poker and most people vastly under-estimate how important this is.

There is nothing amazing or earth shattering about your AA getting cracked a few times in a row or even every time for a week.

This is completely normal statistical variance in poker that all professionals like myself understand from playing millions and millions of hands.

Your poker results from day to day or even week to week simply do not matter. Most amateurs simply do not understand this and therefore they claim that a site like 888 poker is rigged.

In fact, one of the biggest reasons that some amateurs believe that online poker as a whole is rigged is because they are not used to the speed of it.

Online poker deals far faster than a regular poker game in the casino or your home game and therefore the bad beats on a site like 888 Poker are going to come much faster than they are used to.


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4. Most People Lose at Poker (Defence Mechanism)


As I mentioned above, another reason why some people claim that 888 poker is rigged is due to something that is completely natural. It is called a defence mechanism in psychology.

A defence mechanism is basically a story that people tell themselves to prevent them from having to address the real deep route cause of a problem.

In the case of online poker, the problem is losing.

Now the biggest reason why most people lose at poker in my opinion after having coached 100+ people in the past is twofold:
  • Tilt problems
  • Bad play

The #1 reason why people lose at poker is because they get frustrated and start making poor emotionally charged decisions when they get unlucky for a few hands in a row.

Tilt literally runs the entire industry. It is the cause of so many losses in poker all the way up to the highest stakes.

In fact as I have said numerous times on this blog and in my poker books, often the biggest winning poker players aren't event the most talented.

They are simply just able to control their emotions better than everybody else.

The second reason why most people lose at poker is bad play. Now again, this is another one that most people do not want to admit.

Because after all, poker is a lot like driving. Everybody thinks they are "pretty good" at it.

Let me tell you that this simply isn't true at all. In fact, most people who play low stakes poker in particular make massive glaring fundamental mistakes again and again.

This is how people like me have managed to build an entire career out of this game. As they often say, "denial runs the entire industry."


5. 888 Poker Complaints? You Can Take Your Business Elsewhere at Any Time


The final reason why 888 poker probably isn't rigged is because you can simply take your business elsewhere at any time.

And quite frankly, for all you people out there reading this who believe that 888 poker is 100% rigged no matter what I say, this is something I always encourage you to do.

If for whatever reasons imaginable you have some complaints about 888 poker, simply take your business elsewhere and leave.

It simply blows my mind how many people will continue to claim that a poker site like 888 poker is rigged until they are blue in the face, and yet they will continue to keep playing there.

This is literally like the definition of insanity.

If you truly believe that 888 poker is rigged, then why on earth do you keep playing there? Withdraw all your funds immediately and never come back.

But the entire reason why 888 poker makes $80 million dollars a year is because of the profit they get from each individual player like you.

They know how important each customer is to their bottom line. In fact there is fierce competition among online poker sites to acquire and retain customers.

They know how important you are. And therefore, they would never risk rigging their site against you because that is going to be the quickest way to lose you as a customer.


How I Became One of the Biggest Winners of All Time in Small Stakes Online Poker Games


As I mentioned, I have been an online professional poker player for over 10 years now. And I have some of the highest winnings in online poker history at the micros.

I accomplished these results by playing over 10 million hands of online poker. This means that I have taken countless bad beats.

Perhaps more than anybody in history.

But what I have always done is stay focused on the long run in poker. I know that my results over a period of a few days or even a few days don't mean anything.

I have worked incredibly hard over the years at improving my game and also my tilt control so that I can learn to overcome short term variance much better than the average player.

This is one of the biggest reasons why I originally wrote what is now the best selling book of all-time for low stakes online poker games, Crushing the Microstakes.

Is 888 poker rigged?


I wanted to show people that is was possible to make tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars in small stakes poker games with a simple strategy and some basic tilt control.

And this is why I also created a 6+ hour video series as well to go along with the book where I just show you directly how I absolutely crush low stakes 6-max, Zoom and full ring.

Is 888 poker rigged?

You basically get to just "look over my shoulder" while I show you how I created some of the highest winnings in online poker history in these games.

And yes, I take bad beats just like anybody else in the videos. You can see it for yourself!

But you also get to see that if you use a solid strategy and learn how to control your tilt in these games, that you can absolutely crush them beyond belief for huge profits.

The bottom line is that your success in poker is totally up to you. You can keep making excuses all day about it all being rigged against you.

Or you can finally take control of your results by learning the right strategy to beat these games and stop tilting away all your winnings.


Final Thoughts


So is 888 poker legit? Is it rigged against you? Well, probably not.

Just like with any other large online poker site, the chances that 888 poker rigs any of their action is pretty low. The reasons why are numerous.

As one of the larger online poker sites 888 poker makes a lot of money. Yes, it is true, the house really does always win in the end.

When you are making so much money already there is simply no reason to rig anything. In fact 888 poker has a direct motive to do the opposite, protect the integrity of their games, and simply let the money keep rolling in.

But more importantly, despite what some people say about their "AA getting cracked 3 times in a row" there has never been any statistically significant evidence presented that 888 poker is rigged.

Instead, arguments that 888 poker is rigged are always based on ridiculously inadequate sample sizes like this.

The facts are that 888 poker is one of the "open source" sites that issues you your hand histories. Therefore, you can simply run them through an equity program like PokerTracker and check to see if it is rigged for yourself.

It really doesn't matter what I say here though. The debate about 888 poker being rigged or not will rage on no matter what.

So make sure you let me know in the comments below if you think 888 poker is rigged. Do you think 888 Poker is legit and it is safe to play there?

--

Lastly, if you want to know how to consistently make $1000 per month in low stakes 888 poker games, make sure you grab a copy of my free poker cheat sheet.

12 comments:

  1. great information. you mentioned variance requiring a very large numbers of hands played. wish you had mentioned your variance percentage as a good guide of what to expect playing. again tks for your time in providing all of your information on micro limits poker. al

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    1. Hey Al,

      Yes, I believe you need to play 100k hands to get past basic variance in poker.

      I have been saying this for many, many years now. It is my personal opinion after witnessing the swings in my own poker career with over 10 million hands played.

      But believe me, I get it. 100k is a very high number. Most people don't even play this many hands in a year. So nobody wants to believe me :)

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  2. Nice article Nathan. I play a lot at 888 poker and destroy the 5nl games with a good winrate. I am not beat 10 yet. Soon i will try it for the fourth time. 888 poker is indeed not rigged. This week i had a downswing. It began when i started with 10nl because i was rolled. Unfortanetely i didn't make it and went back to 5nl. The downswing didnt stop and the cards didnt fall my way. Since yesterday it finally stopped and i had a huge upswing of 8 buy ins. In the time i had a downswing my aces were cracked, i were rivered and i make a few mistakes. Not big mistakes but little. I undrstand that people at moments like this think that the pokersite is rigged but they dont remember there upswings, only their downswings. People must work on their own game and not complain all the way. Its impossible to have a winrate at 5nl between 10 and 15bb when you play all day against regs. If 888 poker was rigged then i was broke and i am not while i played maybe a few 100.000 hands on 888 poker.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for reading and for your thoughts Diablo! Variance in poker is an incredible thing.

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  3. Even if it's rigged, but you make solid money, then what? And if you are a fish, you'll lose anyway. So my point is - it's absolutely irrelevant if it's rigged or not. You are either a good player or a losing player.

    This question is irrelevant if you think about it a little.

    What is relevant - what to do now, when you can only play 4 tables on pokerstars. Would be cool if you made an article about that. ;)

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    Replies
    1. Hi Zee,

      I don't typically write articles about the changes that individual poker sites make because they change their policies all the time.

      Also, I have been asked about the new PokerStars 4 table rule so many times already on social media, and answered so many times :)

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    2. I have never heard long term winners claim, that online poker is rigged. But to be fair to the conspiracy theorists, if it was actually rigged, it would be possible to rig it in a way, that there essentially were no long term winners.

      Everytime someone build a bit of a bankroll, just rig it against them and let them miss their draws, get their aces cracked, run their sets into bigger sets etc., until the winnings are gone.

      The problem for the conspiracy theorists though is, that there are actually many proven long term winners. But I guess, they are all bots employed by the poker site itself or something LOL.

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  4. If its rigged,its as if i rigged it today,i grinded mtts and sngs on various sites and today i crushed!.Some solid play with a few hits by the deck..So yeah today online poker was rigged by me.Yesterday live poker was rigged against me.Back to back Aa vs kk, aces lost.Thats poker guys,you are supposed to run like a god and like shit from time to time.Live or online.No riggs.Better worry about possible colluders or, god forbid, superusers if you wanna worry about something.No funny rng theories.

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    Replies
    1. I agree. Poker is always rigged against me when I am losing! haha

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  5. there was one time i ran from $0.5 to $25 satellite finally got the $185+ for 2nd place (1st place -$215 ticket) it was an INSANE run.

    couldnt complain more, but i sucked at nl5 cash games probably calling too much 3b to set mine oop, or 4b hands like K5ss too much and villians trapped me by calling my triple barrel because i was tilting the fact i couldn't beat these guys and the poker site kept racking my money...

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  6. i've a simple question outside of this.
    i was in a super turbo tourney, i had JJ in bb (roughly 15bb), utg raised 3x, it was roughly 9 players away from money. I shoved, and utg shown AA ...i was out..

    bad play or just variance.

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    Replies
    1. Hi Tom. We are of course never folding JJ to a standard open. And if we just call, we are never getting away after the flop on save boards anyway. So if he have QQ-AA, we are still going broke most of the time.

      By shoving preflop you give yourself fold equity and take away his positional advantage, so this is indeed the best way to play JJ with a 15BB stack. Just remember to hit that J on the river next time, so you can send him off on a rage to write in a forum, how online poker is rigged LOL.

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