surrender88s
surrender88s
Joined: Jun 23, 2013
  • Threads: 20
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May 1st, 2016 at 11:35:33 PM permalink
Hi all, after taking about a year and a half off, I am back into my trivial pursuit of low stakes advantage play. I have 6 sessions under my belt in 2 months. My first session I won $500, my second I lost 440, and I'll walk you through tonight's visit below.

I came in to the undisclosed casino to pick up my WHOPPING $10 of free play. I was hoping I could use it on the $5 HD-screen electronic blackjack machines with the models for dealers. I managed to stay alive on the machine for about 45 mins and broke even. The dealer got a curiously high number of 10s showing and the free play earned was terrible. It was worth checking out but I don't think these machines are worth anyone's time. This reinforces my theory that staying away from smiling women showing cleavage is +EV.

My $10 free play would end up in a 8-5 JoB progressive along with $40 that I lost in about 15 minutes, hitting nothing better than a full house.

On to Vent-et-un.

I put $200 down on an empty $15 table and wanted to come out swinging. The Hi-Lo true count meandered between 0 and 2. To my misfortune, the dealer caught most of the breaks. She turned a 5 into a 5+5+10 two hands in a row, for example. In about 20 minutes I was down $300, or -$340 for the trip.

I found a $15 minimum table with a seat open and I invested the last $100 I had on me(cashed out from electronic blackjack earlier). Lady luck returned and I left that table with a profit of $160.

I hopped over to a $10 minimum table where I bought in with $160, playing 2 hands the whole time. Towards the end of my third shoe, at a true count of +3, I had 2x25 out there and got a 14 and 6+6 vs a dealer 6. 14 stands. 6+6 split to 6+5 and 6+6. 6+5 doubled to become 6+5+2 = 13. The 2nd 6+6 split to 16 and 6+3. I had to buy in for my last $100 in order to fund the double down which became a pathetic 6+3+7. So I had $50 on a 16, $50 on a 13, $25 on a 16 and $25 on a 14. I stopped breathing as I watched the dealer flip two beautiful paint cards to give me the +150 swing that would be the hand of the night. I left with a $260 profit here, resulting in a $40 profit for the night.

A rough estimate of my expected value for the night would be -$10 for my first hour on machines +$10 free slot play, and then $20/hr for my 2 hours of blackjack, so with the -340 and +380 swings, I ended up right around expectation.

I hope to keep putting in about 2 hours a week. I'll write trip reports if the stories are worth telling, and will try to be more active in the forums overall. Thanks for reading, -S88
"Rule No.1: Never lose money. Rule No.2: Never forget rule No.1." -Warren Buffett on risk/return
phendricks
phendricks
Joined: Aug 1, 2014
  • Threads: 6
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May 2nd, 2016 at 1:30:33 AM permalink
It's okay to "pursue low limit recreational play". That's what makes trip reports so entertaining to read.

You are dreaming if you think you earned $20/hr playing 8 deck blackjack with a 1 to 2.5 spread.
Greasyjohn
Greasyjohn
Joined: Dec 8, 2013
  • Threads: 130
  • Posts: 2129
May 2nd, 2016 at 3:14:54 AM permalink
Quote: surrender88s

Hi all, after taking about a year and a half off, I am back into my trivial pursuit of low stakes advantage play. I have 6 sessions under my belt in 2 months. My first session I won $500, my second I lost 440, and I'll walk you through tonight's visit below.

I came in to the undisclosed casino to pick up my WHOPPING $10 of free play. I was hoping I could use it on the $5 HD-screen electronic blackjack machines with the models for dealers. I managed to stay alive on the machine for about 45 mins and broke even. The dealer got a curiously high number of 10s showing and the free play earned was terrible. It was worth checking out but I don't think these machines are worth anyone's time. This reinforces my theory that staying away from smiling women showing cleavage is +EV.

My $10 free play would end up in a 8-5 JoB progressive along with $40 that I lost in about 15 minutes, hitting nothing better than a full house.

On to Vent-et-un.

I put $200 down on an empty $15 table and wanted to come out swinging. The Hi-Lo true count meandered between 0 and 2. To my misfortune, the dealer caught most of the breaks. She turned a 5 into a 5+5+10 two hands in a row, for example. In about 20 minutes I was down $300, or -$340 for the trip.

I found a $15 minimum table with a seat open and I invested the last $100 I had on me(cashed out from electronic blackjack earlier). Lady luck returned and I left that table with a profit of $160.

I hopped over to a $10 minimum table where I bought in with $160, playing 2 hands the whole time. Towards the end of my third shoe, at a true count of +3, I had 2x25 out there and got a 14 and 6+6 vs a dealer 6. 14 stands. 6+6 split to 6+5 and 6+6. 6+5 doubled to become 6+5+2 = 13. The 2nd 6+6 split to 16 and 6+3. I had to buy in for my last $100 in order to fund the double down which became a pathetic 6+3+7. So I had $50 on a 16, $50 on a 13, $25 on a 16 and $25 on a 14. I stopped breathing as I watched the dealer flip two beautiful paint cards to give me the +150 swing that would be the hand of the night. I left with a $260 profit here, resulting in a $40 profit for the night.

A rough estimate of my expected value for the night would be -$10 for my first hour on machines +$10 free slot play, and then $20/hr for my 2 hours of blackjack, so with the -340 and +380 swings, I ended up right around expectation.

I hope to keep putting in about 2 hours a week. I'll write trip reports if the stories are worth telling, and will try to be more active in the forums overall. Thanks for reading, -S88



Nice read. It's always a good day when you win your big bet.
surrender88s
surrender88s
Joined: Jun 23, 2013
  • Threads: 20
  • Posts: 291
May 2nd, 2016 at 4:37:17 AM permalink
I gotta tell you, living the dream feels pretty, pretty, pretty good!
"Rule No.1: Never lose money. Rule No.2: Never forget rule No.1." -Warren Buffett on risk/return
TwoFeathersATL
TwoFeathersATL
Joined: May 22, 2013
  • Threads: 37
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May 2nd, 2016 at 5:53:26 AM permalink
Welcome back S88.
Thx for the trip report, I like reading trip reports.
I think most here like them, at least those that comment.
I suppose that those that don't like, well suppose they don't read them, and so don't comment?

I remembered your handle quite well, Surrender88s, it sticks, but not much else, so I scanned thru the list of threads you had started in an attempt to refresh/reboot my failing memory.

Read thru a couple, one another trip report, one a 'humans need not apply'.
I watched the video clip on the robot thing, thought provoking. Liked Tanko's hawk attack clip there as well.
Several of your threads had large numbers of views and responses, good job.

Your writing reads easily, nothing fancy but held my attention.
Did I mention I like trip reports ;-? 2F
Youuuuuu MIGHT be a 'rascal' if.......(nevermind ;-)...2F
MrGoldenSun
MrGoldenSun
Joined: Apr 1, 2016
  • Threads: 3
  • Posts: 252
May 2nd, 2016 at 6:20:12 AM permalink
Hi there, I enjoyed the report. How did you get $20/hr as your blackjack estimate? That seems far too high to me.
surrender88s
surrender88s
Joined: Jun 23, 2013
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  • Posts: 291
May 2nd, 2016 at 9:03:01 AM permalink
Quote: MrGoldenSun

Hi there, I enjoyed the report. How did you get $20/hr as your blackjack estimate? That seems far too high to me.


I worked the numbers a while back. Also, my play is not as rigid as most blackjack players. People will say that you bet your progression no matter what, but really, when the count is good, you are getting +EV whatever you put into the circle. In this situation, I reduced my bet vs. my progression based on the fact that I only had $200 on me and wanted to make it through the end of the rich shoe. I realize this gives up some EV, but it also smooths variance, which I value(as I report my gains and losses directly to the queen of the house).

On the low end, I sit out hands or bet 1 spot, or wong out completely. On the high end, 2 spots that rarely climb to 100 each, depending on circumstances. On average, my spread is 10-2x35, with wonging out occasionally.
"Rule No.1: Never lose money. Rule No.2: Never forget rule No.1." -Warren Buffett on risk/return
Romes
Romes
Joined: Jul 22, 2014
  • Threads: 27
  • Posts: 5490
May 2nd, 2016 at 10:36:01 AM permalink
Hey surrender, thanks for the trip report! Always fun to read these =).

I do have a question about your blackjack EV/spread... You stated at one point that the TC was +3 and you had 2 hands of 25 (from 2 hands of 10)... this is essentially a $20-$50 spread, which isn't even a 2-1 spread. Most "break even" spreads are about 3-1 or 4-1 pending rules/etc. Unfortunately I find it very very unlikely that you could expect $20/hr with a spread anywhere near this.

IF you have a good game (6D S17 LS) for example, you'd still need an aggressive 15-1 spread to make $20/hour.

HE -.36%... this involves wonging out ANYTHING less than TC -1... assuming 75% PEN, and 100 hands per hour...

TC -1 = 10
TC 0 = 10
TC +1 = 30
TC +2 = 60
TC +3 = 90
TC +4 = 120
TC >= +5 = 150

This comes out to a hair over $20/hour...
Playing it correctly means you've already won.
surrender88s
surrender88s
Joined: Jun 23, 2013
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  • Posts: 291
May 2nd, 2016 at 11:03:54 AM permalink
Thanks Romes. What about a $10-$100 spread with 87% penetration on 8 deck? Assuming big bet at TC3 and above?
"Rule No.1: Never lose money. Rule No.2: Never forget rule No.1." -Warren Buffett on risk/return
MrGoldenSun
MrGoldenSun
Joined: Apr 1, 2016
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May 2nd, 2016 at 11:10:54 AM permalink
Maybe we are comparing apples to oranges here.

I think Romes (and others) are thinking about expectation under a given strategy and given conditions. I think Surrender88 is saying he calculated $20/hr EV based on the amounts he actually bet under the counts he actually saw. Surrender88, is that correct?

So in other words, if I have a system where I bet $10 unless it's TC +10 or better, and then at TC +10 or better I bet $300, I won't have +EV in the long run because I won't get to bet big often enough. But for a single shoe, we might be at +10 far more often than expected, so when I look back, I got to bet $300 a bunch of times with an edge, so my bets made it such that I had a "positive expectation" on that specific shoe, if you simply added the EV of each starting hand you were dealt.

If that's the case though, I am not sure how you'd do this backward-looking calculation so precisely. Also, if you're thinking about it like that, there's a big problem of trying to define what expectation really means looking backwards.

EDIT: Romes, you said $20-50 "isn't even a 2-1 spread"...but isn't it 1-2.5? Am I misusing the terminology here?

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