Mission146
Posted by Mission146
Jan 17, 2020

Introduction

The only day that I met DarkOz in person wasn’t particularly interesting, other than DarkOz himself. I’d only had limited interaction with him on these forums and didn’t really know much about him. Granted, he posted pretty extensively, and I read every post given that I was an Administrator at the time, but posts become pretty hard to recall if you read every single one of them.

A lunch was orchestrated between a former member of this forum, DarkOz and myself. We actually almost didn’t meet one another, and wouldn’t have, had he been a little bit later. I had a long drive from Atlantic City back to the Pittsburgh area that day, with one or two stops along the way that I had to make time for.

I initially took DarkOz to be a man in, politely, the very late stages of life. I don’t know if he was avoiding detection at the meetup casino, and honestly, I can’t remember if we ate at the same casino where we all three met up. I know we met up in some food court area and then made our way to a restaurant attached to a casino, but I don’t remember if it was the same casino.

I also don’t remember which casino we ultimately ate at. I think Tropicana, but that could be wrong. This lunch would come up years later, and for some reason, people were surprised to find that I was hazy on some of the details. I don’t know why that should have been a surprise, from my perspective, I was just having lunch with some dude from the forum. I was actually kind of in a hurry to get out of there and go about my day, as I had a very long day ahead of me, but I didn’t want to be impolite about it.

Anyway, DarkOz appeared wearing a very convincing mask and continued to wear it until some point during the meal. The funny thing is that he was talking just fine, and his mannerisms did not seem unusual, but then he took a drink of water and it started slopping all down his face. For a second I wondered, “Is this dude, like, having a stroke right in front of me!?” As it turns out, while the mask is visually effective, it’s really tough to drink whilst wearing this particular

sort of mask.

DarkOz finally took off the mask to reveal a significantly younger face...and one better equipped to control beverages. The third party to the lunch said he strongly suspected it was a mask, whereas, I said that I wasn’t really sure. I guess DarkOz also appeared at a WoV meetup wearing a similar mask, or perhaps the same one.

Let’s get to know DarkOz: The Man Behind the Mask:

Mission146: Pennsylvania (I accidentally said West Virginia) being a two-party consent state (for recording), are we able to confirm that we are the only parties to the call, or that any other parties to the call are not going to speak?

DarkOz: Okay.

Mission146: How would you say that you got your start in advantage play before the New York play? I want to discuss maybe what led up to the New York play.

Darkoz: I was pretty much homeless, at that point, back in 2012. I had been trying to get a movie made in Hollywood, so I was traveling up and down the subways, hoping to get out of that situation. I had purchased the rights to a comic book based off of the Wizard of Oz (movie),

it was called Dark Oz, which is why I call myself, ‘Darkoz.’

The project didn’t end up going through, finally, after eight years of trying to get it made. It was a race, there were other studios, trying to get an Oz film made. As you know, Disney finally got the green light. But, I was dealing with some pretty big names at the time, the producer of the Batman films, the producer of Transformers films. It wasn’t a hollow hope.

At that point, three months had gone by since they announced the green light of the Disney film. I didn’t know where I was going to go or what I was going to do. I was just traveling aimlessly up and down the subways at that point, and I passed by a--what I thought was a mirage---I

thought I saw a casino in New York City, which made no sense, because as far as I knew, the nearest casino was in Atlantic City-

Mission146: --Right, and New York City also not being Tribal land, right?

Darkoz: Right. In fact, I didn’t even know there were Indian Tribal casinos in New York -upstate- but those were four or five hours travel, so it was out of my purview. Anyway, I once again passed by that station which is the Aqueduct station, I looked out the window and thought,

“Wow, there is a casino there.” It was in the middle of the night when I (first) saw it, and I went back to sleep and woke up the next day wondering if it was real and found out it was.

Although, I didn’t go in that same day. It was a few days later I went in, set aside some time, and strolled around the casino. It’s funny, when you’re homeless, you find things to do. I mean, you’re going back and forth on the train aimlessly, but you have your schedule. If

there’s something you want to do, you have to schedule it.

Mission146: Right, well, I can understand that, I mean, I imagine you have a lot of time to kill. At the same time, I guess you can either find a way to fill and kill time or you can just be miserable. Like, if you’re basically homeless--those are your options.

DarkOz: Yeah, you find things to do. For example, there would be times of the day that I would go to the library. The library was quiet, nobody hustled you, and besides taking out books, there was computer time. You could get some free computer time. Being homeless, I didn’t

really have too much access to the internet.

Mission146: Now, are we talking about---because obviously, there are varying degrees of homelessness---are we talking your stereotypical cardboard box type homeless, sleeping on grates homeless---or are we talking couch surfing homeless, like you just didn’t have a permanent address that you lived at? Did you have any support in terms of people helping you out, letting you crash if the weather was bad, things of that nature?

Darkoz: There was support initially but then I wore out my welcome. You get some help, but then sometimes people can’t help anymore. There were family and friends houses where I could shower and shave, so I was a clean homeless person. I had clean clothes on, and it was tough, because I’d be sleeping on the subway and people were talking about how horrible homeless people are and I’d say in the back of my mind, “I’m homeless and you don’t even know you’re talking to me. You’re talking right to a homeless guy.”

Because it was every three to four days I’d be able to take a shower. Maybe by the third day you could start telling I didn’t have a home.

Mission146: I like the theory, though. I’ve always believed that being clean presents opportunities that its antithesis does not.

Darkoz: Yeah, I always had a little bit of change in my pocket. I’ll tell you this: I never asked anyone for money. There were places you could eat in New York for free. In fact, there was a pizza shop on 68th & Broadway which, when they closed every night, would give any leftover

pizza to the homeless. There was a line, you’d get on the line. I mean, I was homeless and eating BBQ chicken pizza every night.

Mission146: That’s not a bad diet for a homeless person, right?

Darkoz: Yeah, yeah, exactly.

There was also, near Penn Station, there was a truck that would come by at nine PM every night and they would hand out some of the most delicious soup actually I’ve ever:

(Both laugh)

It was actually a hurdle to get from the 9:00p.m. soup to the ten and eleven closing at the pizza shop.

Mission146: Oh yeah. I mean, I volunteer down at a soup kitchen here in Pittsburgh--this going into print I’m not going to say which one necessarily, but, you know, they get stuff that comes in---I put together salads, fruit salads, do dishes, a little bit of light cooking...but we get stuff that comes in from restaurants all the time. Chicken cacciatore and what not, you wouldn’t believe what comes in.

Darkoz: Yeah, I’m pretty certain I gained weight while I was homeless, I didn’t lose weight.

Mission146: Well, it’s not an ideal condition for exercise, other than walking. But, not really your ideal conditions for more rigorous exercise---and when you’re only showering intermittently, I suspect you want to avoid sweating, as well.

Darkoz: Yeah, I mean, the worst part truthfully about being homeless was from twelve to six a.m.---twelve midnight to six a.m.---there was almost no way you could go to the bathroom. Sometimes, I hate to say it, I’d just have to find a quiet corner in the subway (station) if I really had to go. Because, they close all of the public lavatories in every station, so people don’t get pulled in there and raped, I guess.

Even the restaurants and stuff pretty much are closed.

That was the only thing---waiting until six in the morning so you could run to the Port Authority and go to the bathroom. That was like the craziest thing.

Mission146: Yeah, and what about---and the only reason I mention this is because I have a little bit of experience in that regard---not being on the streets per se, but I managed a hotel in (omitted), but we also owned a hotel in (city omitted) where I would fill in sometimes.

DarkOz: Mmmhmm.

Mission146: We were the only, during the times that you said and actually more than that, if the bars on (omitted) Street and (omitted) Street were all closed, we were essentially the only public bathroom in Downtown (omitted), so I would see people all the time. Were there not, or were the hotels in New York City, do they keep the front doors locked at night, or what?

DarkOz: Well, the hotels, they don’t keep the doors locked---they have doormen, though. You can’t just pop in and say, “I need to use the bathroom.” I don’t even know that all of them have public bathrooms in the lobbies. I know the ones in Atlantic City do, but most of the hotels,

your bathroom is in your room.

The hotels in New York--the big ones are going to have doormen who won’t let you in. The small ones just aren’t going to let you in because the only bathrooms are going to be in the (guest)rooms.

Mission146: Oh yeah, well this (my) hotel obviously---it was not a five star resort hotel-- but I promise you that there were bathrooms also for each individual guestroom.

DarkOz: Yeah, I don’t think it really occurred to me to go from hotel to hotel looking for a place where I could go to the bathroom, though. If there were bathrooms in a specific spot in a given hotel, it was just out of my purview.

Mission146: See, I’ve got my homeless plan put together, right? I’ve actually put thought into this for reasons that I don’t even know. I would focus on hotels and laundromats.

(DarkOz laughs)

I think laundromats are a place you could go in and you could get cleaned up in the public restroom there. You could take a sink bath, right? Maybe you can catch a nap. You could throw your clothes in the dryer...you don’t even have to have the dryer running, suppose you don’t have any quarters, you would just have to have something in there to look like you were a legit customer.

(NOTE: I’ve used laundromats and you couldn’t tell a homeless person in a laundromat from anyone else. Probably some of them are homeless. I can’t imagine homeless people have access to a private washer and dryer.)

And then if someone comes and bothers you, it’s like, “Look, my clothes are in the dryer. Okay, they’re done, I’ll go get them, I’m out of here.” How the hell do they know if you ran the thing, or not?

Darkoz: That wasn’t an issue I had to deal with, because like I said, I would go take a shower at my friends’ or family’s house. I don’t think it’s as easy as you make it sound because there are a lot of homeless out there in New York who are not clean.

Mission146: I think it’s just a tendency of an advantage player, right? To look at things a different way. Like, “If this were my situation, and this was my goal--to try to be as clean and presentable as possible--to try to get a job or a day rate job--like, what would I do and how would I do it?”

DarkOz: Right.

Mission146: Like, if I didn’t have a place where I could eat and I could shower and I had no money, you know, what are my options here? How could I, theoretically, get cleaned up?

I think that’s a very natural advantage player way to look at things. I think that advantage players are presented with a problem and as I’m going to get into (Part III), I think a few characteristics that advantage players share are:

They’re independent. They don’t necessarily like to defer to authority. They don’t like being told what to do, and also that they’re creative.

I mean, who goes into a casino, and like what you described in that thread, who really views it as a problem to be solved? Or, who can really look at a situation--I guess what I’m saying is you have to have a pretty high logical IQ to be an advantage player--at least to create your own plays, determine your own plays, not to follow the blueprint of what someone else did. So, I could see where they would be protective of their plays.

Darkoz: Yeah, I’ll give you a homeless advantage play which was, I’ll give it free to the forum (both laugh) because I was doing it on a regular basis. Most of the fast food restaurants, Burger King was my favorite because I like Whoppers, the receipts have surveys you call and

do. Nowadays, it’s an online code. You do the survey and get the code and you get a free Whopper.

At that time, it was literally a free Whopper, now you have to buy---

Mission146: Now, it’s a BOGO Whopper--

Darkoz: Now, you’ve got to buy fries and Coke with it.

Then I would just go in and look around for someone who just left their table---usually they left their receipt behind---and grab their receipt. The first time you did the survey, you got the code and the code was pretty much the same for the whole month, they didn’t change it until

the end of the month--

Mission146: Right.

Darkoz: I think the last few digits were different, but the front part of the code was pretty much the same, so I didn’t bother with the surveys. I just started filling in codes and getting my free Whoppers. (Chuckles)

Mission146: On what day of the month did you have that month’s code memorized?

DarkOz: Um...I don’t know if they started necessarily on the first of the month, but periodically, I would make the phone call just to make sure the code was the same.

I mean, the worst that happened was the guy said, “This is an old code.”

I said, “That’s the one I got on the phone.”

He said, “No, couldn’t be.”

I replied, “Okay. If you don’t want to honor it, that’s fine.”

What’s he going to do? Call the police and say, “Hey, guy gave an old code online?” (Chuckles)

Mission146: What’s that? You mean they didn’t backroom you?

DarkOz: Yeah, Burger King didn’t backroom me! (Both laugh)

Mission146: You weren’t accused of wire fraud? (Laughs)

Darkoz: Actually, I think the guy ended up giving me the burger anyway.

The manager said, “Okay, just give him the burger, but make sure you’ve got the right code next time.”

Mission146: Yeah, that’s the way to do it. I mean, that’s good for business.

Anybody reading this right now---there was a guy who was hungry, he tried to jive Burger King, which is understandable because he was hungry, and Burger King said, “Hey, you can’t do it quite this way, but we are going to give you food--we aren’t going to let you

leave here without a burger---because we don’t absolutely hate you.”

DarkOz: And, I don’t do that anymore--

Mission146: (Laughing) I would hope not!--

Darkoz: I have money I pay for my Whoppers, I still like them, but I’m too lazy now to bother filling in survey codes. I’m like, “Ugh, yeah I’ll save the price of a Whopper if I do this code, but I make enough money I don’t have the time to do it, so I throw away the receipts.”

Mission146: I’ll tell you what, Wendy’s just did one that they could have done. If they...I guess your homeless person won’t necessarily have a smartphone, but for those of you out there who do, and Wendy’s might still have it going on---

There was a VR code on the cups, right? You would scan it and it would give you something for free. It wasn’t necessarily a Dave’s Double or anything like that, but it was an (order of) fries, or it could have been a burger.

You know, all you needed was an empty cup in order to do that, you didn’t necessarily have to be the purchaser of the cup. You know, you’re walking down the street, you see a Wendy’s cup in the trashcan, you can scan the thing. I wouldn’t, but someone could do that once per day.

Darkoz: Casinos do overkill. They have like a zero tolerance policy, which is kind of ridiculous, if you’re using a player’s card, even if someone else’s (ADDED BY MISSION: Like your girlfriend’s, or something) you’re spending your own money, so I don’t know why they would freak out.

Here’s a Burger King example: If you had a coupon, like a BOGO--

Mission146: Right…

Darkoz: You could go in, say you’re homeless and someone goes in, you could say, “Hey, are you buying a Whopper? I’m not asking for money, but I have this buy one get one free coupon, do you mind using the coupon because I’m hungry and it doesn’t hurt you. Nothing is coming out of your pocket because you’re buying one anyway, just give me the free one.”

Sometimes people say, “Okay, no problem.”

Can you imagine if the Burger King employee would say, “Look, if he’s using the coupon, HE has to eat the burger. If the money is coming out of his pocket, he has to eat it--”

(Mission laughs hysterically)

Mission146: That’s a good comparison. Although, the Wendy’s thing you could do every day...I understand there was a particular advantage play in Atlantic City that you could do every day. I understand it’s a little lower in value than what you were talking about, do you want to give an overview of what that consisted of?

Darkoz: Atlantic City play? Which one was that?

Mission146: The bus play?

Darkoz: The bus play involving getting counterfeit tickets and getting on the bus and trying to get your $25 free play?

Mission146: Yeah, you got the $25 free play, but weren’t you saying, I thought I saw on the forum---you were able to get them to load it or able to get them to sell their free play vouchers? They went directly into the machines and you could give them, $10 or $15, and they were like, “Hey, guaranteed ten or fifteen dollars,” you’d have $25 free play with an expected value of more than $10 or $15?

Darkoz: There were actually two separate plays. I think you’re getting a little confused. I’ll go over the Atlantic City play: That wasn’t my play, I didn’t do that.

Mission146: Oh, okay.

Darkoz: I just witnessed it because I was doing other stuff in Atlantic City, and taking the bus, so I would see other people getting on where it parked and they would wait for the driver to go get the host. While the driver was getting the host, they would stand in the background.

When the legit passengers were getting off the bus the hustlers would meld into the back of the line, and if the driver wasn’t paying attention, they would present their players card along with a ticket---but they hadn’t actually come on the bus.

I actually knew someone who had told me that they were using counterfeit bus tickets. They were using a printer to print out the bus tickets. They would get the $25 free play. A new bus would come in every half hour, so every half hour, they would jump in a line somewhere. That

wasn’t me, though, that was something I heard and wrote about.

At the time you would get vouchers for free play at Bally’s, Caesar’s and Harrah’s, but they got rid of that. Now it goes on the card. I don’t know if you could still game it that way. Eventually, it got to the point where security would be standing there when the bus came in

every day because they would be trying to pick out who was just getting in the line.

They ended up just kicking them out. They tried to get them arrested, but the cops were like, “Well, they’re just getting free stuff, right?”

The security was like, “Well, they didn’t pay for it. They didn’t pay for the bus ride.”

The cops would say, “But, they didn’t take the bus ride, so they didn’t steal a bus ride. What did they steal?

(Mission laughs)

That was the problem, they tried to get them arrested...but the cops were like, “If you can show that they counterfeited a bus ticket AND took the bus, then we have theft of service. But, if you’re saying they are taking something that is free anyway, then we can’t do anything.

You’re giving it out for free.

Mission146: Right. Well, I think that casinos bite themselves in the @$$ with their own literature when they say, “Free play has no cash value,” also.

Darkoz: Yeah, they try to claim it has no cash value, but then when it’s not in their favor---no, no, no, it has cash value. Oh, my lying eyes, it says right there, “No cash value.”

Mission146: It has no cash value, unless it can get somebody arrested, and then it does!!!

Darkoz: (Laughing) Right.

Yeah, there was another play that involved the busses which was the--Sands Casino in Pennsylvania. I was involved with that for maybe three months. There you would pay $15 for a round trip bus ticket and you would get $45 in free play.

Mission146: Okay, $30 free play overlay, figure 10% house edge (on slots) you’re coming out ahead twenty-six bucks--

Darkoz: Yeah, I would always play it. I would just go to, (machine effective for running free play at a steady return) I don’t know if they still take it. They did at the time. You could turn it around.

But, there were some people who didn’t want to play. There was a little black market for people, the passengers just wanted to ride the bus and those they sold it to just wanted a $5 advantage. They’d pay $40 and have an overlay of $5 in free play.

Mission146: But, but they would let you just play---did they treat (good way to run free play) as a free bet at the tables? How would you---

Darkoz: No, no, on the machines. (Paraphrased)

Mission146: Oh, okay. Lots of casinos get pretty chintzy and they won’t even let you play video poker, let alone that. I think we’ve both been to Valley Forge. I know some of the video poker machines you couldn’t download your free play, I don’t know about the bar tops.

DarkOz: I know you could on the bartops, at least in 2016, because I was doing it.

Mission146: Did you ever try it on Ultimate X? Like, on the floor? (It’s possible here that I mixed my casinos up. I’ve only been to Valley Forge twice)

Darkoz: No, but I’ll be honest with you, I’ve just never played video poker. I’ve never liked it. I couldn’t get into it. I’m probably one of the few APs who doesn’t play video poker.

Mission146: I think you’d get it in your repertoire in a real hurry if you weren’t able to do (the other thing) in a real hurry. I’ll put it this way: Supposing you have a few hundred dollars free play in a particular day, you know without going into big time numbers---suppose you have your own personal card---with your own personal free play--- There’s a couple hundred on it, and you get a 50% return on it in terms of actual return, off of slots four or five days in a row. That gets old really quick. So, does spinning slots for (low cost) for a thousand spins to make sure 50% doesn’t happen. That gets old really quick, too. So, I think video poker is the old go-to where if you play 100 hands, if you have 100 hands worth of free play, more often than not you’re getting at least 80%. (Assumes a low variance game)

Quite frankly, I’ve seen (Darkoz’ method) run worse, but I think that’s because most people bet a higher amount relative to the free play than they do with video poker.

Darkoz: I can probably get 80% (almost guaranteed) from the slots with the free play. On video poker, I’d probably get less because I’m just terrible at it. I enjoy the slots, I play all my free play on the slots, or I’ll do (other method) if it’s available.

Mission146: It sounds like the Sands bus play was pretty nice, $15 for $45 free play. It’s not +30, but you know, $30 less whatever the house edge on the $45 is, so still a good overlay. I’d say, on average, at least +$25 every single time in the long run.

Were those vouchers, or did they load it on the card?

Darkoz: They were anonymous players cards. They would hand out players cards with no name, you had to insert it into the machine. You downloaded the free play, but it was not your personal players’ card. You got off the bus, and since you were coming from New York, they handed you this anonymous card.

By the way, that didn’t happen when you went to---there was another bus that came in from the local---I forgot the city now. Maybe thirty minutes away. When you got off, you had to show ID, and it went on your (personal) players card.

Mission146: So, what was the going rate on those anonymous cards? Say you wanted to buy one off of somebody, they paid $15 for the bus ticket, I could go up to someone---

Darkoz: You paid $15 for the bus ticket, get the anonymous card with $45 free play, you could sell it to someone for $40. I think they changed it a little there because somebody---not me---but somebody came out with an article years ago that pretty much divulged the whole thing,

but it wasn’t me.

Mission146: Wait, so the buyer’s buying $45 in free play for $40 cash? There is no way I would ever pay that.

Darkoz: Well, you wouldn’t have had anyone willing to sell it to you then, because there were people who were paying $40.

Mission146: That’s wild.

Darkoz: That was the market. (Chuckles)

Mission146: I’ll tell you what, I’ve been involved in, you know, you can pick up this amount of free play...you know, if I’m going out of town I might entrust a friend with my free play and we chop it.

Darkoz: I think the situation was, in order to get the $45 free play, you had to spend two hours on a bus. The people who were selling the free play were like, “You’re coming up to me, you’re telling me you want a little advantage, and I’m doing all the work. So, you want a $5 advantage,

here it is: Otherwise, go get on the bus and take a two hour ride or four-hour round trip yourself.”

Mission146: Hey, that’s probably fair. All I’m saying is that the sellers did a REALLY good job managing the market and that (Darkoz laughs)

--If they were getting (darn) near 90% guaranteed on a particular amount of free play---that is impressive.

Darkoz: Yeah, the other thing is they were all homeless. I’d say 99% of the people on the bus were homeless.

Mission146: Wait a minute. You’d think that would be good for the buyer, you’d think if they were all homeless, they’d take less money than $40.

Darkoz: No, these were savvy homeless people who came every day. The way that it worked was the bus company would sell the ticket for that particular seat. They would come up the aisle as you were riding (back) to New York and ask, “Do you want to buy a ticket for tomorrow?” This way they would have advance sales, they knew they were sold out before the next day came.

The same people, homeless people, would buy the ticket and make sure they caught their bus because it was non-refundable. They’d be there on time. So, every night the same people would have the same seats. Some of them told me they were sitting in the same seat for five years.

So, they weren’t taking less than forty bucks. You couldn’t say, “Oh, you’re homeless, you just came here,”--they knew the deal and they owned those lines. The homeless people owned the market and decided the price.

Mission146: So, they--they created the market, they controlled the market, they managed the terms of the market---

Darkoz: Mhmm.

Mission146: They made sure that they--this would be---this would be an antitrust violation, in a Wall Street scenario.

I will say this: If you’re a CEO, if you’re a Wall Street executive, get your @$$ to Sands Casino, like immediately---

(Darkoz knows where I’m going with it and laughs)

---Round up all of the homeless people you can and give them jobs because these (profanity deleted) know what they’re doing---I’m going to have to censor that word.

Darkoz: Well, I’m going to tell you what my theory was: I know casinos and they don’t give out anonymous players cards with no name unless they have a good (darn) reason for it, and the Sands didn’t do that with the locals, they only did that with the people from New York.

At the time, they were constantly touting how they were doing expansions---they’re building this and they’re building that---some giant complex. I think they promised their investors that they were going to get more than just locals, they were going to get people from other states

to come:

(Mission146 NOTE: Advantage playing the investors!!!! Those hypocrites!!!!)

They didn’t give a (darn) who came. They could hand out all of this free play, they could hand out all of these players cards, “Oh, look at all these customers coming from New York!”

They didn’t care who they were. They were getting a service---the homeless people were giving them a service of being able to show x number of people were coming into the casino.

That would encourage the investors to continue their support. That’s my theory. But, I also dealt a little bit with magazines and magazines do the same thing. They’ll give away free magazines so they can show they have eyeballs to get the real money--which comes from the advertisers.

Mission146: Oh yeah, that’s the same thing with the newspaper companies, right? Because the newspaper companies---I delivered newspapers when I was a kid--

The newspaper companies have, I don’t want to call it a, “Supplement,” because it arrives separately.

It was something that every Friday, we hated these things, man--I’m not getting paid for them. From the perspective of a carrier you’re not getting paid for them. You are, because it’s part and parcel with having the routes in the first place, but you feel like you’re not.

You have to take these stupid things to all of your non-customers. These were being included in the number of eyes looking at the product, it had the classifieds, so it counted towards those numbers.

These were all being included in the circulation numbers for everything. So, it’s like, “Jesus Christ, so everyone in the City of (omitted) reads the newspaper, huh?”

(Both laugh)

Darkoz: Yeah, those busses were coming in with about fifty heads every half hour from New York. That was the circulation aspect, they didn’t care who you were, except you couldn’t do it from the local busses.

Mission146: I still think they did a good job on negotiations. That’s the kind of deal where, if one person (I meant a few people) break rank, then you get into some trouble on it. But, everyone on the bus said, “No. Absolutely forty dollars.”

And they couldn’t...I guarantee you half of them couldn’t walk into the casino with the cards and manage to exit the casino with forty dollars. I don’t think so anyway.

Darkoz: Right, correct.

Mission146: That was Sands, that’s north of the city (Philadelphia), right?

Darkoz: Yeah, that’s the one…it’s called Wind Creek now.

Mission146: Well, listen, I’m going to release a huge advantage play right now. I think the guys are going to get mad about this one.

Darkoz: Okay.

Mission146: Did you know if you go to Parx Casino and you signup, I didn’t sign up because it wasn’t juicy enough for me, but if you sign up and earn fifty points, you get a free candy bar.

(((MISSION NOTE: I’m putting this in here as a joke and also to make fun of Parx Casino for having such a stupid new player offer.)))

You think they’re going to be jacked about me releasing this one? Maybe I should have kept this one a little closer to the vest?

Darkoz: When they find out---last time I was at Parx Casino, it was $250 for one point, so---

Mission146: (Laughing) Maybe it wasn’t fifty points. Maybe it was five points, I don’t know. All I know is you got a candy bar.

Darkoz: I know because the Parx was one of the first casinos I went to outside of New York. All the New York casinos were $5 or $10 per point.

I saw an advertisement, it was a gradual cycle, the more points you got, the more free play you got with the maximum being $1,000 free play, same day. I went there prepared to get my same day free play---and I found out it was $250 per point!!! I think I lost $600 and had, like,

four points...it was just a disaster.

Mission146: Oh yeah. If you want to get $1,000 free play, you have to cycle $250,000 through that day?

Darkoz: Yeah, I even went to (not a slot machine) and figured that would be a guaranteed way to earn points. It didn’t earn any points. I went back, and they’re like, “Yeah, you can’t get any points at (not a slot machine)!” I’m like, “No points!?

(Both laugh)

Mission146: Yeah, well, what the hell difference would it make if you could get points on that? $1,000 free play for $250,000 coin-in is, like, 0.4% percent.

I believe, and I’m not a math expert, I’m not a gambling expert---but I believe that the game you said has a house edge of more than 0.4%. I think they’re pretty safe to allow that game on that one.

Darkoz: Yeah, I think it’s 5.26%.

(Mission146 and Darkoz discuss which game variation.)

Mission146: Yeah, 5.26% on that variation of the game.

Darkoz: I’m not a mathematician. I’m an advantage player with a few math skills, but nowhere near the mathletes on Wizard of Vegas forum.

Mission146: I wouldn’t worry too much about running on par with the mathletes there. That’s what you have mathletes for. I’ve met many advantage players---and in terms of them when it comes to math skill---I think a few only know two plus two equals four by virtue of rote memorization.

(ADDED: This is a joke, just meaning some advantage players have trouble with even slightly advanced mathematical concepts.)

(Both Laugh)

Mission146: But, these guys don’t need it. They can look at a play and see angles that even you and I would never dream of. There’s an angle behind everything--

Darkoz: Yep.

Mission146: There’s a hidden logic behind everything...but 2 + 2 = 5. It’s amazing!

The different skill sets are amazing, so then you have teams where one guy does this and one guy does that. Or, sometimes I get asked for help.

Let me ask a little about your background---your homeless period was circa 2012--what was your experience with casinos before that? Did you just have the experience of a, “Normal person,” did you not go to them at all, were you aware of the concept of advantage play?

Darkoz: I wasn’t aware of advantage players at all until my second year of actually being one, around 2013. Before 2012, I just figured everyone lost money at casinos. I didn’t set foot into a casino until I was 27 years old, I had no interest in gambling.

Mission146: And, what would that be? Don’t say an exact year, but 27, that’s what? Mid-2000’s, something like that?

Darkoz: I’m older than you think. That’d be 1994.

Mission146: No way! Really!? (He looks much younger)

That’d be over fifty---well, I guess you have a grandkid.

Darkoz: Yeah, I’ve got grandkids. I’ve got a teenage granddaughter.

So, when I was 27, I didn’t even want to go into a casino. What I was into was amusement parks, so I was running around, all these different amusement parks.

Someone told me they built all these virtual reality rides up at Foxwoods, so I went up to Foxwoods just to go on these virtual reality rides. When I got off the bus, they’re like, “Here’s $60 in free play, it was free table bets actually, here’s $60 in free table bets.”

After I did the virtual reality rides, I’m like, “Let me just get rid of this,” and I ended up winning, like, a hundred bucks. I was playing the big wheel. That’s how much of a ploppy I was, I went right to the Big Six wheel. I got lucky and so, the next week I came back, then the

week after that I came back…

(Someone) was like, “Wait, you went on all the virtual reality rides already. Why do you keep going?”

I’m like, “Yeah! I’m going up to gamble!”

I found out the hard way about systems and gave all the money back. I remember coming back from the third trip with a few pennies in my pocket and a subway token. Only reason I got home.

Mission146: Wait, so your first time walking into a casino-I don’t think there are many people who can say this-literally the first time in your life you walked into the casino you were doing an advantage play.

Darkoz: Right. Not even understanding it. I wasn’t even trying to gamble. I was just going up there to try out the rides.

Mission146: Yeah. That’s the fundamental tenet of advantage play, right? LIke, “If you’re going to give me something for free, I’m (darn) well going to take it, right?”

And then, we have to identify those things that are not free, but still have value.

Like, at the hotel in (omitted) when people had only enough cash to pay for the room for the night---I’m like, “Hey, have you ever been to (casino name omitted)? Just go in and get a players club card and you’ll get $20 in free play, go in and they have an (omitted) there for nickels.”

“You know, just play it in (way guaranteed to result in money) and get the hell out of there. BOOM! You have enough for dinner tonight. You’re welcome.”

(Discussion about the play)

Yeah, well, it’s disallowed at this point. I also know that the (omitted) does not earn points at the same rate that penny slot machines, or whatever, do. That used to be the case. That was good by itself on multiplier days.

Darkoz: Yeah.

Mission146: But, I know that there are games of that type that probably still do. So, that’s all getting redacted. There are probably some that still do. I’m not including it. All of those people will be more ****** at me.

Darkoz: I think the casinos have almost all moved off of that. I’ll give you an example: Bally’s, Caesars, Harrah’s Atlantic City, it’s $5/point at slots. It’s $20 point at (non slot game) and, if you sit at the (non slot game) it’s $200 per point!

So, they’re saying if you want to earn the same number of points as slots, you’re going to play 40x the amount of coin-in in order to get it.

Mission146: Right.

I think that’s good advice for even recreational players: If you are going for something where you have to go for a particular amount of points in a day, play it, if you think you should have earned one point, make sure you got one point.

The point is the points can be different. And, ask three players club representatives. Because, if you ask three of them and two say the same thing, there’s at least a 50% chance that’s right.

Darkoz: Yeah, they usually don’t know anything.

Mission146: LIsten, all three of them aren’t going to say the same thing, you can forget about that.

I put the probability of three players club representatives all being asked the same question and all responding with the same answer at about 2%.

Darkoz: Yeah, exactly.

Mission146: Let’s talk about, without too many specifics, the thread that has made you so popular, and I don’t know if you read my first article on it---

Darkoz: Yeah, I did.

Mission146: Yeah, so you know what I said. Your thread is not what I would have said, it’s not something I would talk about, but I defend his right to talk about it.

Without getting into too many specifics, that play ended when?

Darkoz: I personally stopped doing it in 2014. I couldn’t even train people because it was too complicated for them. I realized they would (screw it up) if I didn’t do it.

I moved on. There was an instance I’m going to detail in another post---people are probably going to kill me for that--

Mission146: Just stay away from the, “How tos,” and I think you’ll be fine. Like, I wouldn’t offer too many specific numbers and I wouldn’t offer how-tos. I think you can convey the information you want to convey without how-tos.

I think it’s the numbers that are really the problem. When you have a certain number of digits, and then there’s the other number with a different number of digits, I think that’s going to cause people to go, “Oh (censored).”

Darkoz: The problem is, I think most APs are ostriches. They have their heads in the sand thinking they have a secret, but meanwhile, their big pink @$$3$ are sticking up in the sky for everyone to see.

If a casino executive read that, they’re not APs, they don’t really think like AP’s. Do you really think they’re going to call and be like, “Hey, this is a dead play, let’s look into it.” When the play’s in another state?

Mission146: No, no, no. That’s not what I’m talking about. Because what it does is---see, you went and detailed a specific play, right?

Darkoz: Mmhmm.

Mission146: The thing is that (omitted) is a very general concept, so I think people don’t want to talk about that concept. I think that’s where a lot of the feedback you received came from.

It’s a concept---and some people who sent me some very, very lovely messages. I think what they were worried about was that I’d go into detail on (omitted).

Darkoz: Again, (omitted) is precisely where the APs are ostriches. I could show you every casino’s (literature) that has verbiage about not (omitted) and that (omitted) will happen if you do it. They’re basically saying not to do it. Nobody tells you not to do something if they

don’t know about it.

They all know it and many of them have methods in place to prevent it. A good AP will get around those methods. I’m sorry to tell them the secret’s out already.

Mission146: Well, no. You can’t. Listen, they can get to a point where they can make it impossible to do the thing we’re talking about. To make it less lucrative for the AP’s themselves, it’s as simple as. (Prevention that we are both aware of casinos doing).

Darkoz: Yeah, I got around that, and it was easy.

Mission146: Yeah, but that (counter method) costs more, so the play isn’t as good.

Darkoz: Right.

Mission146: Yeah, so ideally you only have expenses once. Sometimes twice in certain situations, but you don’t want to have expenses every time you go to the casino.

---I have to figure out a way to convey this without using a lot of the words we’re using---

(Both laugh)

But, (casino near me), they instituted the policy I was talking about. It only affected it 60% of the time, it’s not like it affected it every time, but it killed the numbers. It killed the profitability of the play.

It effectively killed the entire deal. It was too expensive to not get full value every time.

You work with your family, so I think that helps out a little. You work with your friends, you work with their friends, everyone knows everyone…

Darkoz: Right.

Mission146: So, what you have to understand is, that’s not everybody’s situation. Not everyone works with people that they know really well. I think it’s more expensive when it’s people you don’t know, or might not be reliable, so that can kill it.

(Mission146 details how people you don’t know can go into business for themselves if they know too much)

Darkoz: Well, I guess I just handle my stuff differently. I tell people exactly how it works. Not exactly! I couch it in complicated terminology.

(Darkoz goes into detail)

So, it doesn’t have to screw up the play.

Mission146: Well, no, I know that. I get that people can fix problems. I’m just saying you don’t want extra expenses that are going to cut into your own profits. Maybe YOU do, but you’re working with people you know fairly well or people you know know fairly well.

You know, people you don’t really know are a lot more likely to rip you off.

Darkoz: I’ve had maybe problems with 2% of people. I’d say 98% of people are loyal, and it’s not even people that I know, it’ll be like, third-party people.

I let them know basically how it works and that there are future considerations. We can work together in the future and then they’ll make more money. So, 98% won’t screw me over. The 2% who do will call me like a year later and say, “I’m sorry, can you take me back?”

Mission146: So, all of the people engaged in the play that will not be spoken---

(Both laugh)

All of the people engaged in the play that will not be spoken are, in your case, essentially, part of your crew?

Darkoz: Yes. I have (network description).

Mission146: I think that’s always the case. I think where you have different markets, there’s a bigger degree of separation in what a lot of markets are doing. You can trust your own crew. It’s tough to trust people who are not your crew.

I think you have a more direct chain to the top, so the plays are easier to manage.

***

Darkoz: I think its dangerous to use (AP move) from people you dont’ know or haven't explained it too properly. I was questioned by police once and they not only asked if I had people's permission but if those people understood what I was doing. They were clearly trying to go down the road of my defrauding or misleading my people in order to pull me in on anything. They ended up contacting several of my people who all stood behind me.

(Mission146 and Darkoz have a discussion about the differences)

Darkoz: Well, the thing is that you have to be adaptable. Plays change, and you have to just be ready for that.

I’m not saying you should try to end a play. But, if you’re not adaptable, you won’t be an AP for very long.

For me, I’ve yet to see a play ruined by the Internet. Every play I have seen ruined has had to do with a casino employee noticing something or someone catching something off. I’ve never heard someone say, “Hey, there was an article on WoV, let’s go investigate!”

Mission146: I guess that’s what my concern is.

I guess what I’m saying is, if they did read an article and it ended a play, I don’t think the person is going to sign into WoV and say, “Hey, thanks for writing this article, man! This was awesome! My casino was just bleeding money and you have no idea how much money you saved me,” you know, I think they would just want me to keep talking, right!?

Darkoz: Yeah.

Mission146: Kind of like, if you have a cop on the phone, your line is being tapped...perhaps you reveal something you ought not have revealed. But, then you discover your line is tapped, you know, you’re not going to say anything about the crime anymore.

So, I think, that’s the first component.

I think the second component, honestly, when you talked to me---did you say you remembered talking to me in PM about this a couple years back, or--I know you said it didn’t influence your decision not to talk about it---but do you remember actually talking about it (with me)?

Darkoz: About the move that was--

Mission146: Yeah, the move that was the subject matter of your thread.

Darkoz: I don’t remember talking to you directly. I seem to recall, in the original thread, you didn’t seem to think it would last for very long because the casinos would (catch on to it quickly) and it would be easy to stop.

You didn’t even say that much, because it was in the public forum thread. But, you said it wouldn’t last that long because the casinos would get wise to it. You didn’t say because of (omitted).

Mission146: I guess my second point is when you talk about the sheer volume of it all. When you talk about the terminal digits of numbers changing---When you talk about how many digits a number has changing.

I think that’s where they get a little worried, like, “Hey, man, can we take a look at this, can we make sure we don’t have anything going on where this number of digits is becoming this number of digits because of (omitted)?”

Because, there are certainly plays out there where it does that.

I think the casinos could shut down those plays very easily if they all knew about them. Again, it’s not telling you what to write, it’s just saying why I wouldn’t have. You know, I’ll defend---

Darkoz: It didn’t affect what (the machine) showed. It didn’t affect the numbers on the---

Mission146: No, just the general concept of (omitted)...and (omitted)...you put those things together and the expected gains exceed the expected loss of a proposition.

I honestly think there are cases where they don’t know. (The general concept)

Darkoz: Yeah, I don’t think this particular casino---I think they didn’t know, didn’t understand---

Mission146: Yeah, well, I think that’s the concept that people don’t want getting out. Just the general concept.

Like, the (promotion) exceeds the expected loss by such a ridiculous amount, so the casino says, “Maybe we should (change the promotion)?”

(Mission146 lists a bunch of countermeasures)

Darkoz: There are a number of places that do that, and they’re still beatable, even though they’re looking for it. I won’t get into that because I don’t need anymore enemies.

Here’s the thing about APs: If they know the secret, they’ll get mad if I say it, but if they DON’T know the secret, they’re practically begging me to say it so they can do it themselves.

The tax day thing on the forum---that debacle wasn’t that the casino would end the play, but that other players would find out about it, so---

Mission146: Right.

Darkoz: If you’re the player who doesn’t know about it, you’re not unhappy someone said something, you’re happy someone said something.

Mission146: Listen, I take your side 100% not just in your right to say something---but on that one, I take your side 100% in concept---like they artificially flagged down your post and I was an administrator of the forum at the time--

Darkoz: Yeah.

Mission146: Yeah, and I agreed not only with your right to say it on that particular occasion, I agreed with saying it. It’s a God**** promotion, you guys don’t own promotions.

We’re talking about something here---I would say it’s different because it is something that the casinos are not advertising.

Darkoz: Right, right.

Mission146: I would say it’s a very subversive concept. It’s a concept that, unless you’re doing the thing in question, it’s not like anyone who is not an AP---even if they knew how to do it---they couldn’t do it for a massive profit.

Darkoz: Right, right.

Mission146: Yeah, they could profit off of it, but they couldn’t do it massively unless they get the two really important concepts.

(Discussion about Darkoz’ specific play and how he figured it out---impressive!)

I don’t think that’s the way it usually works, but I’m not surprised because I’ve never seen a host go up to someone (playing without a card) and say, “Man, buddy, you sure are losing a lot today, let me give you a free dinner, let me give you a free room here, even though you’re out of money and we’re never going to (make anything off of you).”

It’s always the guys who are hitting jackpots like, “Hey, man...why don’t you stick around awhile? You got the right side of a ten percent house edge this time, let’s see how long it lasts (@$$****),” you know?

Darkoz: In Foxwoods defense, the second time I was there, I did some research and came across the D’Alembert method (betting system)--

Mission146: Mmhmm.

Darkoz: And, I went up there, and I was up a thousand dollars using it.

It was a system and the pit boss came up to me and didn’t stop me because she probably recognized it and figured I was going to give it back if I kept playing.

To her credit, she said, “I suggest you stop doing it now and go home with your winnings.”

I was too green to realize she was trying to help me, because a week later, I ended up penniless and handed it all back. But, to her credit, the pit boss at Foxwoods tried to get me to leave with my winnings, that time.

Mission146: That’s pretty cool. I don’t know if they would do that anymore, how long ago was that?

Darkoz: That was ‘94..

Mission146: Okay, I can’t say for certain that Foxwoods is cool now---but anybody reading this---Foxwoods was pretty damn cool 26 years ago.

(Discussion about the year)

Darkoz: Mid-90’s, let’s just say that.

Mission146: Foxwoods was cool when I was a kid. It might still be cool. I’ve been there once, but there was nothing interesting or unusual about the experience, I’ll put it that way.

You know, us machine guys, we try to blend, man. We don’t want to interact. We’ll interact if we have to, but we just want to blend.

Mission146: Do you feel like---the position that I took is not necessarily that you were getting insulted on the forum, but like, you ride a bus, right? So what? I think you explained that it’s quicker than driving to Atlantic City? You’ve never driven in your life, right?

Darkoz: Yeah, I’ve never taken a driving lesson and I’ve never driven a car. My parents did not drive cars, so that’s probably part of---by the time I was eight years old, I knew the whole New York City subway system. So, for me, it’s just second nature to take public transportation.

Mission146: Right, so it would be kind of like me, like if I was to go to New York and get on the subway, I imagine there are very loud bumps, right?

Darkoz: No, they’re just loud in general. No bumps. Actually, sometimes there are loud whistles. Turning corners, you’ll hear a loud piercing whistle. It’s kind of annoying, but not scary.

Mission146: Would it be if you weren’t on the subway before? Like, do you see anyone who gets scared and jumps 90 degrees around almost?

Darkoz: Nah. Not really. You’re in a car with, sometimes there are empty cars, but you’re in a car with dozens or hundreds of people surrounding you, so nobody’s freaking out. It’s rare.

Most of the time, people are freaking about the homeless people begging people, but not about anything the train is doing.

Mission146: Do you think it would be weird if---say you started driving all of a sudden instead of the subway system---the trains, the buses---do you think it would be weird being in a car by yourself? Like, just the act of driving would be kind of uncomfortable since anytime you’ve been on a mechanical means of motion you’ve been surrounded by people your whole life?

Darkoz: I would be uncomfortable. It wouldn’t be because I’d be alone. I’d be uncomfortable because I’d have to concentrate on driving. I get lots of stuff done when I’m traveling to AC, or whatever. I’m reading books, sitting there calculating AP Plays, writing stuff down, ogling girls….

(Mission laughs)

There’s lots of stuff I do, I’d have to concentrate on the road if I started driving.

Mission146: Well, that makes sense too. Maybe if you gamble online at all when the promotions were still good---maybe there are good ones now---

Darkoz: Not me. I’ve never done anything online. I’ve been strictly land casinos since I started.

Mission146: Nice.

Darkoz: Online is an example of how executives don’t get AP things, don’t have the same fear APs do. You’re aware of the Ocean Magic online thing where they got killed when someone was a new player?

Mission146: Yeah, the initial machine state was an advantage. There were a ton of (different bets), a game state for each one, but there were a lot more than you would see in a land casino…

Darkoz: Right. They did the play, a lot of people made money, the casino put an end to it because suddenly a lot of payouts are happening. So, they investigated and took away Ocean Magic.

Mission146: Yeah, that gets us to---I think that is what they are worried is going to happen, you know?

Darkoz: Yeah, but the thing gets killed, not because anyone read about it, but because people did the play. It became national attention, even now if you Google it, you’ll see big articles with the Ocean Magic thing.

So, what happened? A month later APs found another game, and killed another game, because the executives didn’t have the wherewithal to think like an AP. They didn’t know the games themselves and didn’t bother to take down another game with the same type of variable state issues.

That’s what I mean. The executives are not going to think like APs. They’re not going to go on WoV and say, “Ah, let’s think of 20 possible ways this can happen.”

Executives don’t know ****, they get too much credit where it isn’t due.

(Conversation related back to Darkoz play and a similar play Mission146 did on his own)

Darkoz: There’s a way around almost everything.

Mission146: There’s not because (easy solution that they miss) then it’s going to (long explanation about changing the value)

(Protracted debate that won’t make it into print)

Mission146: I can tell you about getting pinched at a casino. How about the most recent casino where I got pinched, I haven’t written about it yet. I was just playing on my card and my fiance’s card. Just playing on them!

Second time in my entire life I ever walked into that casino and I got pinched.

But, that’s not happening everywhere. Some casinos you can play on your significant other’s card. But, at some point, they’ll stop even that.

(My end of the conversation above was altered significantly)

Mission146: I don’t think casinos have to be smart to prevent things. I think they just have to NOT be stupid. Because the fundamentals, when you actually know a play exists, they’re not difficult to grasp.

And then if everyone starts doing it, it becomes more of a problem.

Darkoz: I think most of the casino executives are stupid.

Mission146: I think they’re stupid, but I think even a stupid person can achieve a pavlovian response eventually. I think if you keep ringing the bell, they eventually respond to it. I think if information is out there about the specific---not even play you were on---but type of play---you’re ringing the bell to the public at a certain point too.

But, I defend your right to say it.

Anyway, was this, I don’t want to call it a vendetta---but I do know that advantage players who do different things and hint at things going on---it’s almost universal---it’s like betting systems, but the difference with betting systems is that people who argue against betting systems are mathematically provably right.

With advantage players---there’s always going to be someone out there, “Oh, you’re exaggerating. Oh, you’re lying. Oh, you’re beefing up your numbers.”

But, I can see where that can be an annoyance, more so when it comes from another advantage player. So, is that in any way a part of, you’re going to go ahead and make this opening post?

Darkoz: No, actually, I was actually kind of surprised anybody got upset. To me it was a dead play. Usually, my intent is just to add interesting content to the website. I wasn't thinking about killing plays, or anything like that.

Want to know what the problem with WoV was six months ago? There was nothing to talk about because everybody stopped talking about politics.

I think they did the right thing to get rid of the politics, but now we’re talking about...how much they got comped at their hotel suite, what chips they collected...so I said, “Let me put up this interesting information about a play that is dead.”

So, I got surprised that people started yelling about hypotheticals if someone reads it and it hurting plays in the future.

MIssion146: Are you saying you didn’t understand the implications of what the overall play was? Do you think possibly, if you have other plays to call about where the specific play was dead...would that be a future consideration in deciding to talk about something?

Like, if a specific dead play refers to a general concept that would be better not discussed?

Darkoz: It might. Every situation would be different, I’d have to look at---

MIssion146: You can pass them by me if you want to! I’ll be like, “Yeah, I’d talk about that. No, I wouldn’t talk about that. Maybe I’ll even learn a couple concepts I don’t know and turn that into some money.”

Darkoz: My plays are pretty much---I specialize in (concept) plays. The plays I would talk about would be how to do this type of (variation of concept) vs. that (variation of concept), but pretty much, that’s my play.

If they don’t want me to talk about (concept) basically, they’re telling me I can’t talk.

Mission146: That’s fair. I can understand that. You can learn about other types of AP. I mean, I’ve learned stuff that I will definitely never use, but it was interesting to learn, you know?

I think someone with the logic to discover the type of plays you did in the first place. I think you definitely have the capacity to learn and discuss other plays, even if you haven’t done them you can offer good perspective.

(Concept) is tough to talk about because I don’t think the cat is out of the bag. I think you and I think the cat is--you know---I think just the cat’s nose is showing and you think all but its tail is out of the bag---

Darkoz: I think the cat’s out of the bag. I think the executives may not understand it well-enough that they’ll let some stuff go because they don’t know about it. But, the information I gave, they’ll be like, “Oh, people use (concept) they’re not going to figure out maybe they’re

playing (machine) or maybe they are doing something else.

They’re just going to look out for people. That’s why they have a system in place. If they don’t have a system in place, they just don’t know what they’re doing.

Mission146: It doesn’t have to be they’re not looking. Have you considered for some casinos they say, “Prevention is going to cost us more than just letting it happen or trying to prevent it with what we already have.”

Because, all these things cost money. Like, a new (casino system) costs a ton of money. So, they say, “Well, we can’t be getting tanned that badly on this to justify an entirely new system.” But, when we talk about specific numbers, I think a casino might look at it and say, “Are we sure we’re not getting tanned badly enough that this would be a good solution? Are we sure it wouldn’t save us more money than it costs?

Darkoz: I’ve had about five casinos completely overhaul the (systems) and, at first, I’m like, “Oh, horrible, horrible,” but then I realize that the new (system) is just as vulnerable as the old system, so it just doesn’t phase me. It’s become part of the routine.

I’ve found when they change it, once you figure out what the changes are, you’re in Fat (Stack) City. They’re confident they just just got rid of you so they’re not worried, then you’re in there killing it for the next couple years.

Mission146: I’ve got to tell you, that’s a solid counterargument. I have to go: Point Darkoz on that one. I can’t even rebut that. That’s solid.

If they figure out your means of exploiting a particular thing, just find a new way.

I’m just worried that they could (redacted)

(Discussion of a specific incident)

Mission146: I think if there’s just one casino that you can get another six months out of, I almost think it’s worth not talking. You know what I mean?

Darkoz: I agree with that sentiment, I just don’t think what I am discussing is really going to affect anybody. Everyone has that paranoia, but I’ve never seen a system affected by something that happened online. I know the causes of my plays that have come to an end, and it’s never been something on the internet.

Mission146: I think the Latin is, “Cui bono,” who benefits?

Well, we know you wouldn’t post something unless you thought it benefits you, or maybe you’re trying to teach other people how to do these kinds of plays--I think what people really want to know is, who do you think talking about this benefits? If it benefits you, how does it benefit you? Other than being a conversation piece for the forum?

Darkoz: Well, I guess that’s what it benefits. It’s pretty much a dead play, so not talking about it wasn’t benefitting me, either.

Mission146: Yeah, well, it’s a dead play, but not a dead concept. It’s a concept that’s perhaps dying, and it’s death can be---

Darkoz: You just said something very important. You just said it’s dying. It ain’t dying from an article two days ago.

Mission146: No, it’s got Stage 1 cancer that can go into remission and I think people are thinking that silence is chemotherapy on this one, or can be, when it comes to individual casinos.

Like, maybe they don’t know about it yet.

Darkoz: I’m going to argue this: Any casino that doesn’t know about it yet is not a casino that is reading the Wizard of Vegas forum.

Mission146: That’s a good argument.

Darkoz: Because, if they’re that clueless about it, they just have no interest in going online and looking for posts on gambling forums.

Mission146: I would agree with you that there are some casinos preventing the perceived problem as much as they can.

(Specifics dicussed)

Darkoz: My feeling is, “If they’re not looking at you, they’re not looking at you.” What I mean is, once they’ve gotten suspicious---it’s all over. They’re looking at you, they’re following you around. If they’re not following you around, they don’t know what you’re doing.

Mission146: Makes sense.

Darkoz: Most of the time you don’t get caught because they saw you. It’s someone in a different department who notices and that’s when they’ll look at the cameras to see who is doing what. They didn’t catch you because they noticed you originally, someone in the background figured

out what was going on.

Mission146: Right. I think that’s where they’re saying, that’s the side where their terms benefit them. If they had other terms it could bite them in the @$$. They want to have it both ways.

Do you know I got backroomed once and, the word that came out of the security supervisor’s mouth was, ‘Wire Fraud?’

Darkoz: Yes.

Mission146: I said, “Sir, you do not know what wire fraud means. (Darkoz laughs) If that is the word that is going to come out of your mouth.”

Darkoz: I’ve heard, ‘Fraud,’ ‘Scam,’ ‘Theft,” I didn’t get backroomed, but I got kicked out of a casino two or three weeks ago and the guy said, “We’re kicking you out for theft and fraud.”

I said, “That’s illegal.”

He said, “Yeah, you’re lucky not to go to jail.”

I said, “Okay, I’ll wait. Call the cops."

MIssion146: Yup. (Laughs)

Darkoz: He refused. He said, “I’m not calling the cops. It’s not my job to call the cops.”

I said, “You caught a criminal and you don’t want to call the cops?”

He’s like, “No, I’m not calling the cops.”

“Yeah, because we both know it’s not illegal.”

“It is illegal.”

Exasperated, “Then, call the cops!!!”

I really kept yelling at him to call the cops. I told him to have security call the cops, because I know it’s not illegal, what I do.

Mission146: Right.

Darkoz: They want to keep saying it but that doesn’t make it true. I can argue that paying $5 for a Coke in a casino gift shop is highway robbery, but that doesn’t make it robbery.

That’s the price, if you want to pay it, it’s not robbery. They can say I am doing theft and fraud, and scams, that’s fine. I’m not breaking a law. I know it’s not.

Mission146: Yeah, did you know it’s also illegal to be in a casino without an ID?

I want every reader to know it is illegal to not have your ID in a casino, according to a certain security supervisor, but I’m not naming the casino.

Darkoz: You’re saying that’s what the security supervisor said?

Mission146: Yeah, the same one that told me I was committing wire fraud. The same one told me it is illegal to not possess my ID when in a casino, I told him he was full of ****.

I said, “Where are your compatriots at, at every possible entrance---so let me understand this: It’s illegal for me to be in a casino without my ID, but if I come in here and lose money, all of a sudden it’s fine, right?”

Where are your people at to card to make sure everyone walking into this building has ID so you can prevent the activity you are claiming is illegal? Where are the signs telling people this?

I was just trying to get out of there without giving ID. I’ve got longish hair and a beard right now, I’m going to go to the barbershop, I’m going to grab a razor...I’ll see you tomorrow, right?

(Both laugh)

Darkoz: Well, I’ve kind of got to go. Do we need to do more?

Mission146: I’ll see if we missed anything and so can you. If you want to add anything at the end, after reading everything, you can. Just add notes and that’ll be put in verbatim.

Darkoz: Sounds good.

Mission146: Thank you for your time and for conducting the interview. It’s been fun talking to you, I hope we can talk again outside of the context of an interview. Our different perspectives are interesting.

Anything you want to add?

Darkoz: Not at the moment, it’ll probably come to me just as I pay my fare on the subway. (Both laugh)

Mission146: Before we go, do you agree with one of my first Commandments of being a hustler: Don’t be stinky, nobody likes a stinky person? Smelling good will make it more likely you remain in the casino longer.

Darkoz: (Chuckles) Yes, that’s very true.

Mission146: Awesome, man, thanks again!

CONCLUSION

Hopefully, everyone enjoyed learning a little about the backstory of DarkOz as well as what led up to him discovering the world of advantage play! If anyone else has a story to share about what led to you doing advantage play (without revealing any plays) feel free to shoot me a PM and let’s make it happen!

Comments

FleaStiff
FleaStiff Jan 18, 2020

A brief. Comment on Hollywood and on homelessness.

In Hollywood, nothing kills your chances like desperation. Its all appearance. Even your car has to be repeatedly washed so as to prevent anyone thinking things aren't going well for you. Producers want to back "winners" not "losers".

Long ago there were best selling "where to go" guides for major cities in the world. Exact directions to restrooms in hotels, etc. and things like the second floor unmarked doorway in a department store that lead to a ladies room.

Mission146
Mission146 Jan 18, 2020

Fleastiff,

Could be on Hollywood, I have no idea. I guess it reminds me of that quote from American Beauty where the king of real estate says one of the keys to success is projecting an image of success.

That's pretty neat about those guides! I think I may have seen one once for Pittsburgh a few decades ago when I was a kid.

odiousgambit
odiousgambit Jan 19, 2020

I did have to read half of that and come back to finish, but there's some gems in there, like: ..................................
Darkoz: I’ve heard, ‘Fraud,’ ‘Scam,’ ‘Theft,” I didn’t get backroomed, but I got kicked out of a casino two or three weeks ago and the guy said, “We’re kicking you out for theft and fraud.”
I said, “That’s illegal.”
He said, “Yeah, you’re lucky not to go to jail.”
I said, “Okay, I’ll wait. Call the cops."
Darkoz: He refused. He said, “I’m not calling the cops. It’s not my job to call the cops.”
I said, “You caught a criminal and you don’t want to call the cops?”
....................................................... that was ballsy 

Mission146
Mission146 Jan 19, 2020

That it was!

AcesAndEights
AcesAndEights Jan 20, 2020

I very much enjoyed this interview, thanks Mission and darkoz.

Mission146
Mission146 Jan 20, 2020

Thank you for reading and for the comment, AcesAndEights!

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