Rake Methods Explained
Poker sites love to use jargon, and when it comes to rake things are no different. Ever been confused by the difference between weighted contributed and average contributed, or wondered what the Essence program is? Well, here at Crush Poker we've written you this guy to simplify how sites calculate your individual rake, so you can decide the VIP program that's right for you.
In this guide, we'll cover the following types of individual rake methods:
the Essence program
The traditional method, dealt rake used to be widely used, but is now seen less often. It's also the simplest – everyone dealt into the hand receives an equal part of the rake. So if there are 10 people dealt hands, you'll all be credited with 10% of the rake, regardless of who wins the pot or how much money each player put into the pot.
If you are a tight player, or even a 'normal' player, this method will contribute more individual rake to you than other rake methods as you'll still get rake credited when looser players play pots between themselves. However, it can encourage people to play a lot of tables and not many hands in order to 'grind' as much rakeback as possible, making the games harder to beat and penalising those players who do play a lot of pots.
Average Contributed Method
One of the two “contributed rake methods” - everyone who puts money in the pot gets an equal share of the rake credited to them. It doesn't matter if this is voluntary or compulsory (the blinds), or how much money you put in compared to other people.
This is better for loose players than the dealt method, as it is slightly fairer – the idea being that those who risk more of their stack should get more in rakeback. However, the average contributed method doesn't really solve this problem, as it isn't really fairer; a player who puts in 1bb gets the same individual rake credited as a player who put in 250bb.
Weighted Contributed Method
This method is fast become the standard, but it is unfortunately also the most complicated to calculate. Each player is credited rake in the same proportion in which he put money into the pot. So you put 45% of the money into the pot and rake is $2, your individual rake is 90 cents. This method is also known as the “actual paid rake” method.
This method is extremely advantageous to loose and extremely loose players, such as recreational players, but far less attractive to tighter regular players who do not play as many large pots. On the plus side for regular players, sites which use this method are less likely to have tables filled with tight regulars who earn a lot of rakeback despite barely playing poker.
The Essence system was introduced to the Ongame Network during 2010, and is intended to greatly favour recreational players. A complex and unknown algorithm is used – it measure's a player's 'value' by “factoring in the style of play and relative performance over the last 90 days.” Simply put, losing players will get more points for the rake they pay, and winning players will get less.
There is no way of finding out exactly how many points you get for the rake you are paying, which makes it difficult to estimate rakeback, and for winning players this kind of system is obviously unwanted. On the plus side, the increase in losing players attracted by higher rakeback should boost winning player's winrates!