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Romes
Romes
Joined: Jul 22, 2014
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September 3rd, 2014 at 10:08:12 AM permalink
First, Id like to thank the Wizard for both of his sites. I've been referencing WoO for years and very oddly enough never even knew WoV, or this forums existed. I enjoy every mathematical breakdown of every game, side bets, playing conditions, etc. You are a true hero for solving many, many questions of which the masses would mostly let go unanswered.

Ill give a little background... Im a red chipper and have been counting (using hi-low) for about 8 years part time with some years getting more hours than others. I dont plan to make this my full time profession. I do it because I enjoy using my brain to overcome an entity that preys on the lesser minds of our society. I also love games in general, and I also do it to get a little bit of extra cash here and there, and I love the comps (not that I get a whooole lot at my level) its the irony of the situation. The Wizard could not have nailed me anymore in his definition of most counters on the radio show (http://wizardofodds.com/audio/). Overall though, Im proud to report that I have been a winning player of the last 7/8 years (nasty 6+ month swings of variance!). Im a computer engineer with a math minor so I've also programmed simulators for my exact play / playing conditions. I plan to release an opensource JavaScript simulator, as a way of giving back to these forums, whenever I get around to adding the functionality to program in your own spread, playing conditions, etc Its all hard coded to my personal experience as of now. I also plan to release another thread I'm finishing working on that is Card Counting A-Z for all of the new/beginner/intermediate people who post a lot of the same questions, don't know where to start, etc.

Fun fact: The few potential counters I've ever encountered we either got out of each others way, or they did something insane that made me believe they weren't a counter (unless they were hole carding or something). So suffice to say, I've never met up with any other counters to chat, trade stories, team play, etc. I was a member on the blackjackinfo forums before they were shut down; they were/are still a plethora of fantastic information.

Another fun fact: I've never 'officially' been backed off. I've received a lot of pretty extreme heat (lots of phone calls, POINTING at me while on the phone, 4 pit bosses coming over to watch my table) but I've ducked out before getting backed off I guess. Yes, I know youre instantly thinking Im doing something wrong or not spreading enough, but youll see below I spread a lot (1-20 at my local shop 6D) and Im very aggressive on my trips to Vegas, etc. I use a some cover and personally believe I have a great ploppy act. Also, recall I'm a red chipper and rotate shops. Im sure Ill get this cherry popped at El Cortez during my upcoming Vegas trip =P.

I've read almost every thread on both blackjackinfo and WoV forums in regards to their Blackjack or Card Counting categories, including interviews, etc. Yes, all 99 pages of 20 threads per page with every other page having the repeating thread What % of the time will I get X hand? Or, how often will the dealer bust with X upcard?? I've also read Thorp, Wong, and Revers books. Wong is definitely the best for numbers, but I enjoyed Thorp's 'coming of age' blackjack stories on how he got started, the heat he got, the offers he got, the cheating, etc.

Lastly, Id like to already give a shout out to kewlj, 1BB, and others as I believe they were posters on blackjackinfo and I've loved the fantastic advice they've always provided since then. I always find another small thing to make my game better through your posts, thank you! Also, AceOfSpades your trip reports are always a fun read (even if you use SC and somehow dont eat seafood lol). I think theyre great because theyre a little bit more real time, with pictures, etc. Which has inspired me to do the same style of reporting for my upcoming trip to Vegas =D, and a couple of my recent weekend trips. In fact, I just posted a recent trip report here.


Vegas Trip
As mentioned I have an upcoming Vegas Trip. I decided that I would document everything for what I'm hoping to be an exciting trip report. Below you'll find a "pre-trip" report that I haven't seen anyone give and I'm hoping people are interested in.

Live thread/updates will be made Sep. 23 Sep 28th (I'll make another thread for the live TR)
Trip Bankroll: $3,000 - 4,000 (Not 100 big bets, but a decent TRIP br)
Hands to Play: ~3,000 hands 6 hours/day at an avg of 80 hands per hour.
Trip Duration: 6 Days
Expected Value: ~$1,000 (pending which games are played the most).
Shops to Visit: Id rather not say, but several not on the Vegas Survey and several on it as well.
Limits: $5-$15. If my brother and I combine bankrolls for an evening perhaps well play a $25 game, but we probably wont. Ill be looking to play mostly DD games. Also, a couple buddies of mine who've over the years asked/know about my game have actually offered to be "investors" in the upcoming trip. I didn't say anything to them about anything like that, they approached me, but I'm thinking it might not be the best idea unless it's enough to comfortably jump limits. We'll see.
Bet Spread:

$5 DD 10 to 1 (two hands starting at TC 2)
$10 DD 8 to 1 (two hands starting at TC 2)
$10 6D 20 to 1 (two hands starting at TC 2)

Expected Gain Per Hour:
$5 DD - $25.06
$10 DD - $38.06
$10 6D - $34.50

Im following Kelly Criteria for my bankroll on this TRIP. It should be noted that Im aware this is aggressive as with two hands it could be looked at as a little under Double Kelly (as anything over will inevitably lead to certain ruin). Im ~1.5xKelly for Double Deck conditions/expectations. Also, if I lose half my Tip BR I will use bet re-sizing.

((1 * %win) - %lose) / 1= Avg Bet
((1 * .505) - .495) / 1 = 1%

1% of 3K bankroll is $30 avg bet, I have $33.

Standard Deviation = 1.15
Variance = SD^2 = 1.3225
Kelly = Adv / Variance

Heres my Benchmark 6D conditions/expectations (yes % change for decks/rules/pen):



Are there any recommendations, tweeks, etc? Note: I will be using some cover, but mostly blasting away as I'll have a lot of options near by.

Thanks for any feedback, comments, etc. I'm glad to have found this great forum =).

- Romes
Playing it correctly means you've already won.
Boz
Boz
Joined: Sep 22, 2011
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September 3rd, 2014 at 11:47:05 AM permalink
I just want to say WELCOME to this forum and its very easy to see you are the real deal. As you have observed there are many great people and posters on here who are willing to help whenever possible. Have a great trip!
odiousgambit
odiousgambit 
Joined: Nov 9, 2009
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September 3rd, 2014 at 11:50:10 AM permalink
Welcome

what's the idea with 1.5Kelly or nearly 2XKelly ?
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell! She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
Romes
Romes
Joined: Jul 22, 2014
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September 3rd, 2014 at 11:58:09 AM permalink
Quote: Boz

I just want to say WELCOME to this forum and its very easy to see you are the real deal. As you have observed there are many great people and posters on here who are willing to help whenever possible. Have a great trip!


Thanks Boz!

Quote: odiousgambit

Welcome

what's the idea with 1.5Kelly or nearly 2XKelly ?


Generally most professionals (from what I've seen/read) recommend 1x Kelly for bet sizing. Kelly Criteria can be found a lot of places. It basically tells you what you should bet (as noted in my post above). The more aggressive approach is to run upwards of 2x Kelly for bet sizing. This approach will lead to more fluctuation in the short run, but is of course more profitable (if you can stand the swings) because you're betting even more when you have the advantage. The issue comes after 2xKelly that the fluctuations become so great it almost doesn't matter your bankroll size you will inevitably dip down below 0, i.e. go bust.

I like to be rather aggressive on my trips, putting as much in the circle when I have the highest advantage as possible (with respect to not basically asking to go bust by going over 2xKelly). Thus, for my spread above you can see I'm more than 1xKelly, but less than 2xKelly... Where as defined above Kelly defines my average bet should be ~$30.

Example:

At TC +2... my advantage is: .5%, or .005. Applying that to the Kelly formula below:

((1 * %win) - %lose) / 1= Avg Bet

We get:

((1 * .505) - .495) / 1= Avg Bet
((1 * .505) - .495) / 1 = 1%

So for this 'level' (TC = +2) My bet for 1xKelly should be 1% of my bankroll. If my bankroll is 3K, then my bet should be $30. You'll note that I have my bet spread at $40 for a TC = +2. So this is slightly over 1xKelly.

This is also just a benchmark. If I end up taking $5k to vegas, then 1% of $5k is $50, so I need to rework my spread pending my bankroll.
Playing it correctly means you've already won.
odiousgambit
odiousgambit 
Joined: Nov 9, 2009
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September 3rd, 2014 at 12:55:27 PM permalink
Seems like I heard in some thread here to do exactly Kelly only. However, if your bankroll is larger than what you actually take to the casino, which is the case with me, fudging upwards on a Kelly based on what you take makes sense.

Don't ask me why I care, the only time I get into AP situations are brief short-lived things based on coupons or whatever.
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell! She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
aceofspades
aceofspades
Joined: Apr 4, 2012
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September 3rd, 2014 at 12:57:48 PM permalink
I enjoyed both your trip report and your introduction thread herein
I know I am using SC and many want me to upgrade BUT, if I do so, it will be in my own time when I feel I want too.
I thank you for the compliment of my trips reports inspiring your own. Yours was excellent and will indeed light a fire under my a$$ for my next trip report.

Welcome aboard!!!
Romes
Romes
Joined: Jul 22, 2014
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September 3rd, 2014 at 1:17:05 PM permalink
Quote: aceofspades

I enjoyed both your trip report and your introduction thread herein
I know I am using SC and many want me to upgrade BUT, if I do so, it will be in my own time when I feel I want too.
I thank you for the compliment of my trips reports inspiring your own. Yours was excellent and will indeed light a fire under my a$$ for my next trip report.

Welcome aboard!!!


Thanks AOS! I look forward to you burning AC down =P.
Playing it correctly means you've already won.
Uranium235
Uranium235
Joined: May 22, 2014
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September 3rd, 2014 at 2:23:23 PM permalink
Welcome Romes!

Sitting here 14 hours' flying time from Vegas, I yearn for my next trip but it's unlikely to be in the near future unfortunately. Hence I love reminiscing by reading trip reports from good folks like Ace and yourself who take the time to post (thanks a lot).

Silly questions: where is your latest trip report and when are you planning this new trip to Vegas?

Cheers,

U 235
Romes
Romes
Joined: Jul 22, 2014
  • Threads: 28
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September 3rd, 2014 at 2:28:22 PM permalink
Quote: Uranium235

Welcome Romes!

Sitting here 14 hours' flying time from Vegas, I yearn for my next trip but it's unlikely to be in the near future unfortunately. Hence I love reminiscing by reading trip reports from good folks like Ace and yourself who take the time to post (thanks a lot).

Silly questions: where is your latest trip report and when are you planning this new trip to Vegas?

Cheers,

U 235


Hey Uranium235 (shouldn't it be 238 =p)... Thanks for the feedback! If you're referring to the latest trip report location on the forums I linked the TR in my opening post. As far as the casino(s) I was at, in the TR I state that I'd rather not mention =/.

I also denoted in the opening post that I'd be in Vegas from Sept. 23rd - Sept. 28th. =)
Playing it correctly means you've already won.
beachbumbabs
Administrator
beachbumbabs
Joined: May 21, 2013
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September 3rd, 2014 at 7:07:20 PM permalink
Quote: Romes

Hey Uranium235 (shouldn't it be 238 =p)... Thanks for the feedback! If you're referring to the latest trip report location on the forums I linked the TR in my opening post. As far as the casino(s) I was at, in the TR I state that I'd rather not mention =/.

I also denoted in the opening post that I'd be in Vegas from Sept. 23rd - Sept. 28th. =)



Welcome, Romes, great TR and intro! Hope you have a great time in Vegas. Some good stuff happening that weekend around Vegas - some of the flyers have been very tempting. You might PM the Wizard and see if he's going to be around; he tends to know who from here is in town any given time.
If the House lost every hand, they wouldn't deal the game.

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