JustALuck
JustALuck
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September 16th, 2015 at 7:26:19 PM permalink
Hello Everyone!

I am new to gambling world...so forgive me for my newbie questions:

1) I wonder can you make a living thru gambling? At LEAST winning constantly at State's minimum wage? Of course, the more the merrier!

2) If yes to question #1, which games are known that players do for a living nowadays?

3) Of those games answered from question #2, what book (or books), website, course, software and/or mentor do you recommend for me to become a profitable player?

Thanks & Good Luck!
AZDuffman
AZDuffman
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September 16th, 2015 at 7:32:35 PM permalink
Every bet in the casino except one has a house edge. It is possible to come out ahead at poker or sports betting. BJ used to be beatable, much harder now.

For poker, read "Why You Lose at Poker" for one. Get a lot of practice. It will still be very, very hard.

How do you get a professional gambler off your porch?
Pay him for the pizza.
All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others
GWAE
GWAE
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September 16th, 2015 at 7:47:51 PM permalink
There are plenty of people on this forum making a living but they aren't going to post the play book here for free.
Expect the worst and you will never be disappointed. I AM NOT PART OF GWAE RADIO SHOW
JustALuck
JustALuck
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September 16th, 2015 at 7:56:45 PM permalink
Quote: AZDuffman

Every bet in the casino except one has a house edge. It is possible to come out ahead at poker or sports betting.


Thanks AZDuffman! When you said poker, did you mean all types of poker games including video poker?

Quote: AZDuffman

It will still be very, very hard.



What is the difficulty to do poker for a living? (Such as: Doing advanced math in your head? Hoping for luck in your favor? Extreme boredom? Etc?)
JustALuck
JustALuck
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September 16th, 2015 at 7:59:05 PM permalink
Quote: GWAE

There are plenty of people on this forum making a living but they aren't going to post the play book here for free.



GWAE, that's understandable...at least there is a hope to make a living =)
AZDuffman
AZDuffman
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September 16th, 2015 at 8:05:30 PM permalink
Quote: JustALuck

Thanks AZDuffman! When you said poker, did you mean all types of poker games including video poker?



Video poker depends. Some people do it but they seem to be basically grinding it out hoping for a Royal. The comps come into play, but this is sitting at an machine on your leather ass for 8 hours a day five or six days a week. Other ways to make a living doing that.


Quote:

What is the difficulty to do poker for a living? (Such as: Doing advanced math in your head? Hoping for luck in your favor? Extreme boredom? Etc?)



Well, the math is fairly easy. Learn to count your outs. If you are playing Texas Hold'em multiply outs by 4 at the Turn and 2 at the River to get your probability of catching. But poker is more than the math. Much of it is feel. I am a very small stakes winner online, It took 100,000 or more hands to get there.

Guys that are winners online are playing 5-6 tables at a time. A few can do it, but in the end never call it a living, Here is a true story:

Girl sits next to me at a job I had. Call center but we have some downtime. Her husband works there and somehow it comes up that he is quitting to play online poker. This was about 2007 and the height of the online boom. Talk a little and I go on about life. About 6 weeks later I ask how it is going.

"Oh, he is back at his old work station!"
All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others
kewlj
kewlj
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September 16th, 2015 at 8:09:14 PM permalink
Gambling??...no you can't make a living 'gambling'. You can make a living as an AP (advantage player) through a number of different games and techniques, and it is probably best to incorporate a number of these rather than focus on one.

Making a living as an AP is very possible, but it is not easy. It is actually work and takes really strong discipline, focus and preparation.

If you are trying to avoid working a job or career, you are out of luck, because in the end, APing is a job and/or career and must be treated the same.
JustALuck
JustALuck
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September 16th, 2015 at 8:17:27 PM permalink
AZDuffman, thanks for your insights! Sounds tough to succeed.
JustALuck
JustALuck
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September 16th, 2015 at 8:25:26 PM permalink
kewlj, ooops...I guess AP is a better term.

Where can I learn more about becoming an AP? Through reading books?

If APing is a job, I'll take it because I couldn't find a second job in this economy :(
MrV
MrV
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September 16th, 2015 at 8:28:56 PM permalink
Quote:

I wonder can you make a living thru gambling? At LEAST winning constantly at State's minimum wage? Of course, the more the merrier!



Great question.

Now, let's ask the man who knows the answer .
"What, me worry?"
JustALuck
JustALuck
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September 16th, 2015 at 8:39:45 PM permalink
MrV, thanks for the link...I wonder why he answered no:

Is it because most players didn't do their 'research/homework' to become an AP?

OR

Is it that even best AP in the world would lose anyway due to the way system works against us?
beachbumbabs
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beachbumbabs
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September 16th, 2015 at 9:14:38 PM permalink
You would be very wise to click on kewlj's name beside his post, then use the links in his profile to read everything he's said in the past 3 years about this. He has posted, in the aggregate, probably the most comprehensive and useful discussion of AP'ing you will find anywhere. There are books you can find that will talk about past plays, and there are other very good AP's on here who will occasionally post good info publicly, but kewlj really gets to the guts of it as it is now.
If the House lost every hand, they wouldn't deal the game.
RS
RS
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September 16th, 2015 at 9:23:16 PM permalink
Advantage Play is alive and well today. It is definitely not easy, especially if you're just starting out and don't even know where to start!

For starters, I'd say the easiest route to start off with is probably counting cards or playing live poker, although I've never played poker (and don't care to). Everything has already been published about card counting in BJ, so it's easy to get into it. Read a few books, learn how the game works, lots of studying and practice, and discipline. I recommend purchasing CVCX and CVBJ from qfit.com, they are card-counting software (softwares?) used for simulating a game to figure out what your expected results are (ie: hourly "wage") as well as fluctuations and strength of the game. CVBJ is practice software, which is where you basically just play blackjack while counting and play....if you make a mistake or mess up on the count, it'll let you know.

I recommend reading THIS FIRST: https://www.blackjackinfo.com/blackjack-school/ I recommend you do a quick read-through of all the lessons first without doing the exercises to get a pretty good idea of what card-counting is really all about. If at the end you think it's something you think you can do, then go back to the first page and read it all in-depth. Read it over several times, even if you think you understand it perfectly -- you're not going to catch all the tidbits on the first read-through.


You can win long-term by Advantage Play (gambling).....but you're going to have to endure some swings. You don't just sit at a table, play for 5 hours, and always end up making $20/hour for $100 for the session. Some days you'll lose $500. Other days you'll break even. Other days you'll win $500. On top of that, you'll go through periods where you'll be losing and losing and losing! That is certainly no fun, but it's the truth. On the contrary, you'll have weeks where all you do is win. It sure is fun when you're winning. But it can be tough to stomach the negative swings as an advantage player.




Every game in the casino can be beaten. Some games are easier to beat than others. Some are very easy to beat, others are pretty freaking hard to beat, since certain conditions have to be met in order to take advantage of the game. You can gain an advantage playing Video Poker and slot machines, but that's going to be EXTREMELY difficult if you're just starting out. It's going to be especially more difficult if you don't know any other APs.

There's a lot of money to be made, but it takes money (and knowledge) to make money.

IMO, if you have plenty of money and don't have a job, give it a shot. If you don't have much money -- FIND A JOB first. In the mean time, learn and practice (AT HOME, not at the casino!)....until you can build up a sufficient bankroll. Keep the job, of course, but on weekends or when you have free time, then go to the casino. Practicing at home is one thing. Playing in a casino is a whole different thing. If you don't like loud music, smoke in your face, old Asian ladies yelling at you (it'll happen), dealing with the pressure you'll get from the floor people + pit boss once they're onto you........advantage play may not be for you. Proceed with extreme caution.
kewlj
kewlj
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September 16th, 2015 at 9:52:04 PM permalink
Quote: beachbumbabs

You would be very wise to click on kewlj's name beside his post, then use the links in his profile to read everything he's said in the past 3 years about this. He has posted, in the aggregate, probably the most comprehensive and useful discussion of AP'ing you will find anywhere. There are books you can find that will talk about past plays, and there are other very good AP's on here who will occasionally post good info publicly, but kewlj really gets to the guts of it as it is now.



Wow, that is VERY kind of you, BBB.

However the fact is I do not have a comprehensive understanding of Advantage Play, I am a real novice on the majority of things that the real smart guys are doing. What I have is a little bit of understanding of one small slice of the AP pie, and really it is the simplest, almost outdated aspect of APing that most won't even bother with anymore. I am more or less a dinosaur, but I am ok with that.

What I have tried to do is put a little bit of my own little spin, on this technique by incorporating many things that I learned from so many others. I have also tried to share my experiences on several sites, just as others did for me when I first joined some of the sites, in the hopes that some others may benefit from my experiences, just as I did from other's experiences.
beachbumbabs
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beachbumbabs
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September 16th, 2015 at 10:30:42 PM permalink
Quote: kewlj

Wow, that is VERY kind of you, BBB.

However the fact is I do not have a comprehensive understanding of Advantage Play, I am a real novice on the majority of things that the real smart guys are doing. What I have is a little bit of understanding of one small slice of the AP pie, and really it is the simplest, almost outdated aspect of APing that most won't even bother with anymore. I am more or less a dinosaur, but I am ok with that.

What I have tried to do is put a little bit of my own little spin, on this technique by incorporating many things that I learned from so many others. I have also tried to share my experiences on several sites, just as others did for me when I first joined some of the sites, in the hopes that some others may benefit from my experiences, just as I did from other's experiences.



You underestimate the value of your posts, kewlj. AP plays come and go. You go deep into bankroll management, working with teams, working alone, goals, day-to-day challenges, success, problems, different games and how they figure into your total plan, a hundred other details. You gave several long, reflective and introspective narratives about how your job choice affects your life, your finances, your time management, your friends and family. Just invaluable information no matter what particular plays people use, and unmatched by anything I've seen on the various boards and other resources. You address the questions he's asking in greater depth than anyone could rightly expect before he even asked them. Maybe you don't see the size of your contribution in your articulate descriptions of all this, but I certainly do.
If the House lost every hand, they wouldn't deal the game.
Neutrino
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September 16th, 2015 at 10:31:16 PM permalink
If you woulda asked for a good AP starting point 2 months ago, I woulda directly pointed you to Bovada. But as of August they pretty much suck now.
kewlj
kewlj
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September 16th, 2015 at 10:44:50 PM permalink
Quote: beachbumbabs

You underestimate the value of your posts, kewlj. AP plays come and go. You go deep into bankroll management, working with teams, working alone, goals, day-to-day challenges, success, problems, different games and how they figure into your total plan, a hundred other details. You gave several long, reflective and introspective narratives about how your job choice affects your life, your finances, your time management, your friends and family. Just invaluable information no matter what particular plays people use, and unmatched by anything I've seen on the various boards and other resources. You address the questions he's asking in greater depth than anyone could rightly expect before he even asked them. Maybe you don't see the size of your contribution in your articulate descriptions of all this, but I certainly do.




Really?? I need to read through some of my stuff.......maybe I can learn something. LOL.

Seriously, though, I do thank you for the kind words and making me feel appreciated.
PokerGrinder
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September 16th, 2015 at 10:45:04 PM permalink
Quote: JustALuck

Thanks AZDuffman! When you said poker, did you mean all types of poker games including video poker?



What is the difficulty to do poker for a living? (Such as: Doing advanced math in your head? Hoping for luck in your favor? Extreme boredom? Etc?)



I don't know anything about Ap for casino games but I can give you some information on what I do know. I have been playing poker for a living (no job, no other income) for 3 years now. I make a comfortable living and enjoy it very much. The notion that you can just decide one day out of nowhere to play poker for a living is just pure crazy. I have been playing this game for over 11 years and I am still learning everyday. The game is so much more than math, obviously the math is important but far from the only thing involved. It takes the ability to read players as was said earlier by someone else but also to be able to deduce players ranges based on many factors including their playing style, betting patterns, history with the players and other tendencies by individuals. This is not something that you can pick up over night.
You can shear a sheep a hundred times, but you can skin it only once. — Amarillo Slim Preston
MrV
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September 16th, 2015 at 11:15:01 PM permalink
In terms of effort in / reward out, I simply don't understand why people try to earn their daily bread by gambling.

It seems it would turn out to be a boring grind, day in, day out, with an uncertain outcome.

We're talking about some pretty smart people here, folks who could probably rake it in if they went down the conventional path.

I understand the allure of "beating the house," but when one has a family to support the risk seems too great.

It would seem to be much easier to focus all that effort and energy on a career, either as a professional, an entrepreneur, or as a skilled tradesman.

As time passes you'd likely have enough money to gamble quite frequently, either focusing on AP or simply for the fun of it like I do, with only your gambling bankroll at risk, and not the well-being of your family.

The ones best positioned to pursue tilting at windmills are those who are single, those without dependents, those who won't take down others with them if they fail.

The last thing a "professional gambler" wants to do is ride the pony into financial oblivion and personal ruin.

It happens.

If you really want to gamble to earn your daily bread, do what the big boys do and play the markets.
"What, me worry?"
JustALuck
JustALuck
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September 16th, 2015 at 11:33:36 PM permalink
BBB, thanks for the direction learning about AP. I'll dive into kewlj's old posts!

RS, wow thanks for the informative post! I've bookmarked bj school link. Also, I'll keep in mind about enduring some swings. Especially losing streaks *gulp*. Speaking of dealing pressure from people at casino, I wonder is there such as APing thru online casino?

kewlj, I haven't read your old posts yet...you might be modest but I want to thank you in an advance ;)

PokerGrinder, congrats being a poker player for a living! I guess it is a long road to success :/

MrV, when you said "do what big boys do and play the markets"...did you mean stock market, forex, futures, mutual fund, etc?
FleaStiff
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September 17th, 2015 at 1:18:45 AM permalink
The "blueis" do pretty well. those are the old ladies who play bingo get meals and drinks, get the retirement checks cashed, get their Rx's filled and come out about one percent ahead at the end of a year.

Poker players take money from each other not the casino so it is irrelevant to a newbie.

BJ is still vulnerable but even that MIT gang of eons ago did a trial run in connecticut and got reamed.

Pai gow tiles has some advantages particularly for occidentals
MrV
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September 17th, 2015 at 1:19:55 AM permalink
Quote: JustALuck

MrV, when you said "do what big boys do and play the markets"...did you mean stock market, forex, futures, mutual fund, etc?



Yes.

Casino gambling is a pleasant diversion, but in my opinion not a viable way to "invest" money with a realistic expectation of making a profit in the long run.
"What, me worry?"
Mission146
Mission146
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September 17th, 2015 at 1:27:41 AM permalink
Quote: MrV

Yes.

Casino gambling is a pleasant diversion, but in my opinion not a viable way to "invest" money with a realistic expectation of making a profit in the long run.



I disagree, but only to an extent. There are a few people out there who make significant money doing it now, but you have to be on a pooled bankroll or have a significant amount of cash free to take advantage of the best opportunities.

I know of many great and current opportunities because people trust me not to share information that they tell me (and, I don't) and I imagine many of these are the tip of the iceberg because no one is going to tell me everything. Also, I think some people only share with me because they know I won't share the information and neither have the means nor opportunity to take advantage of a good many things myself.

With that said, the extent to which I agree is insofar that the future is a very uncertain one. At the end of the day, AP is a math problem, and there may come a time when the casinos simply decide it is in their best interest not to be mathematically beatable for large amounts. I imagine there will still be unbelievable opportunities a year from now, but five or ten years, who knows?
https://wizardofvegas.com/forum/off-topic/gripes/11182-pet-peeves/120/#post815219
AxelWolf
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September 17th, 2015 at 1:49:04 AM permalink
Quote: MrV

Great question.

Now, let's ask the man who knows the answer .

I hope you're not serious referring to that video as an actual source whether or no gambling for a living is possible. We know what he meant by gambling for a living.

Before the term Advantage Player because a thing it was called professional gambler. Most people don't even know the term AP.


IMO if you're making a wager +EV or not, it's still gambling.

According to Wiki an other sources it seems AP fits the definition of gambling. Gambling is the wagering of money or something of material value (referred to as "the stakes") on an event with an uncertain outcome with the primary intent of winning additional money and/or material goods. Gambling thus requires three elements be present: consideration, chance and prize.
-----------------------------------------------------
JustALuck

Yes it's possible. I won't even say it's necessarily hard. There's many factors that come in to play.

Knowledge. Other than the basic how to, you'll never get the knowledge you need from a book. Even if you found a great book things are always changing. A book isn't going to teach you how to think.

You need a bankroll. I'm not saying you need a huge bankroll(if you pick your spots well), but you need a way to survive when there's nothing good going on, or when you're running bad.

There's a huge learning curve, and I'm not talking about the math. That's why many intelligent individuals fail.

If you're happy with minimum wage, you can easily achieve that in value, IF you have the bankroll.

As far as VP/slots go, honestly I don't know anybody who has been successful grinding small edges under 1%. I'm sure there's been a few I just haven't heard about it. Generally if someone has what it takes to do that, they move on to better stuff.

I can imagine if a retired person, someone who is financially set, or a kid who lives with mom and dad, decided they just wanted to learn a few VP games, and not mess around with scouting, networking, researching, learning, thinking to much etc. He could probably grind out $9 an hour( AFTER MANY HOURS OF PLAY).

If you're counting on being able to make your rent and bills each month, you're probably screwed.

Your first step is to really understand why AP works.
♪♪Now you swear and kick and beg us That you're not a gamblin' man Then you find you're back in Vegas With a handle in your hand♪♪ Your black cards can make you money So you hide them when you're able In the land of casinos and money You must put them on the table♪♪ You go back Jack do it again roulette wheels turinin' 'round and 'round♪♪ You go back Jack do it again♪♪
AxelWolf
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September 17th, 2015 at 3:03:41 AM permalink
Quote: MrV

In terms of effort in / reward out, I simply don't understand why people try to earn their daily bread by gambling.

It seems it would turn out to be a boring grind, day in, day out, with an uncertain outcome.

We're talking about some pretty smart people here, folks who could probably rake it in if they went down the conventional path..

Think of it as owning a business that involves something you really love with lots of freedom. Are there going to be days you're not enjoying yourself? Yes. But there are many more days you're enjoying yourself. Are there going to be bad days? Yes. But there are many more good days.
Are there going to be days you don't want to do something, but do it anyways? Yes. There's many days where you can't wait to get down on a play. The possibilities and earnings are only limited by your knowledge, what you can find, and how much effort you are willing to put in.

We have all heard stories of guys like Don Johnson, Phil Ivey and others. I'm certain they probably were not bored.

You're thinking of the worst possible AP situation. It's rare you find someone who grunts off in a corner by themselves day after day doing the same boring plays. There is way more to it than that.

I have meet some very interesting, smart, eccentric, well known, fun people who I wouldn't have otherwise. I have made life long good friends.

When I first started grinding there wasn't a day I wasn't excited to jump out of bed and start my day. I had way more fun APing than just about anything else. There's only a few realistic things I can think of I may have enjoyed more. There was a time I actually really enjoyed scouting casinos. I knew there could be something juicy around the next corner. Almost every casino had possibilities. Most days were a small adventure.

I have been to places, seen and done interesting stuff with interesting stories. I can't imagine following a normal path would've been anywhere near as fun, interesting and educational as AP.

One nice thing about AP is you can also pursue other things if you wish, you decide what you do and don't want to play. It may be a bad decision, but at least it's yours to make.
♪♪Now you swear and kick and beg us That you're not a gamblin' man Then you find you're back in Vegas With a handle in your hand♪♪ Your black cards can make you money So you hide them when you're able In the land of casinos and money You must put them on the table♪♪ You go back Jack do it again roulette wheels turinin' 'round and 'round♪♪ You go back Jack do it again♪♪
FleaStiff
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September 17th, 2015 at 3:59:24 AM permalink
Quote: AxelWolf


There's a huge learning curve, and I'm not talking about the math. That's why many intelligent individuals fail.

well, thanks for calling me intelligent.

>I can imagine if a retired person,....
Precisely. You sit there all day, you play some 1.4 percent vp game, you get lots of free drinks, not too much ice, you get free shuttle buses back to the retirement home or whatever, you make nine to eleven dollars an hour in addition to your social security check and a few times of the year your relatives come to visit you and do the "vegas, baby" scene. You get comped to free buffets, you learn to go to other freebies in town. Occasionally you get comped to a 'staycation room'. Its a good living if you don't mind some wind and rain and high temperatures from time to time.

for a young man to imagine himself a professional gambler strutting around las vegas... it will be like these young men who strut around claiming to be cia agents or undercover drug agents. they hold reunions down at the welfare office. some of them have real memories of lucky streaks, some have mainly fantasy memories. None of them ever really hit it big consistently. None.
Boz
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September 17th, 2015 at 4:35:53 AM permalink
You have gotten a lot of great information here from all sides and from people who are making a living playing. I am someone who is only a casual player but still looks for good plays to make try and have the best shot at possibly making some money.

I see discipline as the biggest problem for anyone who wants to do what you say you do. The thrill of the play and reaching is what takes the bankroll from many people who want to be AP. You can find the best plays and make money on them, but then turn around and make a sports bet, chase a jackpot or any other bad play. It's what breaks so many who come to Vegas with the best intentions.

I wish you well, but I hope you think long and hard about it and have a backup plan.
Dieter
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Dieter
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September 17th, 2015 at 4:49:00 AM permalink
There have already been a lot of really good answers.


Quote: JustALuck

1) I wonder can you make a living thru gambling? At LEAST winning constantly at State's minimum wage? Of course, the more the merrier!



Do you own a casino. card room or a lottery? It's much easier to make money as the house than as the player.

There is no expectation that you will win constantly at a specified rate. If you want certainty, go get a job. There will be upswings and downswings, if you are playing with an advantage, after enough rounds, the upswings and the downswings add together and you probably find yourself ahead.

Quote: JustALuck

2) If yes to question #1, which games are known that players do for a living nowadays?



There are a number of table games, machine plays, and marketing plays. Learning to identify the opportunities and make advantages out of them is the challenge.

Blackjack, Poker, Certain Video Poker base games, plus more opportunistic machine plays.

The best players I know personally have a traditional job - they work for their living. They gamble (or pursue AP) as a side venture.

Quote: JustALuck

3) Of those games answered from question #2, what book (or books), website, course, software and/or mentor do you recommend for me to become a profitable player?



There is almost surely good information wherever you look. Read everything, and figure out how to tell what is good information and what is ... not.


If you're looking to go full-time pro (rather than, say, part-time), do you have enough bankroll?

Remember that gambling is a hard way to make an easy living. You wind up working at least as hard "playing" as you would working a regular job, and you get no benefits, no steady paycheck, and you can still get "fired" if the casinos choose to discontinue your play.
May the cards fall in your favor.
Hunterhill
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September 17th, 2015 at 6:36:36 AM permalink
You have to have a passion and desire for it.At least in the beginning you need to live and breath it.
Otherwise there's a slim chance that you'll succeed.
The mountain is tall but grass grows on top of the mountain.
Tortoise
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September 17th, 2015 at 7:00:37 AM permalink
Most people who make a living at gambling have the educational equivalent of a masters degree in math, statistics, computer programming or some other related field and have held or could easily get decent jobs in those fields.

Usually there's a reason other than money why they choose to be professional gamblers instead of office workers. Maybe they see corporate work as a prison sentence? Maybe they don't get along well with bosses? Maybe they can't stand getting up before noon? It's almost never just about the money because for the skills required it's a hard way to make a living.
beachbumbabs
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September 17th, 2015 at 7:11:59 AM permalink
AxelWolf,

A couple of your best posts ever. I highly recommend a close reading of them by anybody interested, as Axel is another (self-identified: I'm not providing info on him in saying so) successful AP with a team. Thanks very much for taking the time.
If the House lost every hand, they wouldn't deal the game.
Romes
Romes
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September 17th, 2015 at 7:16:05 AM permalink
Quote: JustALuck

Hello Everyone!

I am new to gambling world...so forgive me for my newbie questions:

1) I wonder can you make a living thru gambling? At LEAST winning constantly at State's minimum wage? Of course, the more the merrier!

2) If yes to question #1, which games are known that players do for a living nowadays?

3) Of those games answered from question #2, what book (or books), website, course, software and/or mentor do you recommend for me to become a profitable player?

Thanks & Good Luck!


1) You can not make a living "gambling." You can make a living AP'ing.
2) Every game to some extent is exploitable, but you might not have or see the opportunities at most places. Let's start with the basics, blackjack. While it might be 'harder' to make a living than it was 20 years ago when they had player edge games, it's absolutely possible to beat the game and make decent money doing it.
3) I would encourage you to learn what you can, and then get a book. Start with my 3 articles (first two on top of page 2 and last one at bottom of page 1) found in the Wizards Articles section of this site. I discuss books/etc in there as well.


Quote: kewlj

Gambling??...no you can't make a living 'gambling'. You can make a living as an AP (advantage player) through a number of different games and techniques, and it is probably best to incorporate a number of these rather than focus on one.

Making a living as an AP is very possible, but it is not easy. It is actually work and takes really strong discipline, focus and preparation.

If you are trying to avoid working a job or career, you are out of luck, because in the end, APing is a job and/or career and must be treated the same.


This.... a lot of this.
Playing it correctly means you've already won.
Dicenor33
Dicenor33
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September 17th, 2015 at 8:04:04 AM permalink
It's a challenge. Why people climb mountains, run marathons, concouring opposite sex? Money? Not really. You fight a monster, you are against very smart people like Wizzard or Mission, Ahigh. you have overcome your own weaknesses and that is a real victory.
AZDuffman
AZDuffman
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September 17th, 2015 at 8:52:37 AM permalink
One thing people here have touched on but not gone into real detail is perception vs. reality. "Breaking Vegas" or "21" are not reality. There was a TV show called "Lucky" that lasted a season on cable and was a little closer. Here is some of what I have learned from either books or first/second hand experience.

In the TV show they show the BJ team comped in a 5-star room, in reality it is 12 guys all crammed into a Motel 6.

In the movies they show a poker player making a perfect play and winning the pot. In reality you will get called by lump who make a lucky catch and ruin your perfect play.

On the WSOP every hand is big and has good cards. In reality there were a dozen hands of nothing during the breakaway that were edited out.

Some shows show how to turn free play into a nice, free day. In reality these people have a "route" where free play is ground out over 10 hours and miles of walking to get a stake of $100-150 which you then take to the poker room to spend several hours to trap a tourist and win a pot. If you are lucky, the poker room manager knows you and comps you a meal.

Lots of these guys live night to night and if they are lucky get a "weekly" hotel with every kind of slice of life living in the place.

I was looking to get into a play. It would have involved 10 weeks of once a week travel to the casino. Leave work, break balls to hit a casino 2 states away, play for an hour, then drive back across 2 states, then go to work all day the next day. I was up for it, but that is the reality of how the time is spent.

Then there is sports handicapping. Best time to place bets is the "early line" Sunday night. Means you have to watch everything happening in football all day, hoping to get a bad line the oddsmakers missed on. Of course 500 other guys are doing the same, so the line may move before you get to the book. Remember, you will no longer watch games as a fan, but as a sharp. Watching football is now a job.

Yeah, it all can be done, but it is more than a job.
All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others
Zcore13
Zcore13
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September 17th, 2015 at 11:01:21 AM permalink
Quote: Dicenor33

It's a challenge. Why people climb mountains, run marathons, concouring opposite sex? Money? Not really. You fight a monster, you are against very smart people like Wizzard or Mission, Ahigh. you have overcome your own weaknesses and that is a real victory.



Sometimes I have no clue what you are talking about.

Concouring opposite sex is a challenge equal to winning in a casino? And the opposite sex is similar to fighting a monster? I assume you meant conquering also.
You are against very smart people like Wizard and Mission when you gamble? No. They have no affect on your chances at all.

The facts are.. CAN this person be a net winner playing in a casino? Yes. Will this person win if attempting this. Most likely no. If it was easy, everyone would do it. Why work a regular job if you can just hang out at casinos and make money? Probably .00001 of the population does it. So the chances are slim and none that a random person with no experience or mentor can do it.


ZCore13
I am an employee of a Casino. Former Table Games Director,, current Pit Supervisor. All the personal opinions I post are my own and do not represent the opinions of the Casino or Tribe that I work for.
Wizard
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Wizard
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September 17th, 2015 at 11:35:03 AM permalink
I believe that somebody with 20K and who knew what he was doing could make it as a low-level advantage player and average more than minimum wage. Granted, "knew what he was doing" is a big qualifier. Most who try fail because they either don't know what they are doing, expenses are too high, or over-bet their bankroll.
“Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” -- Carl Sagan
Donuts
Donuts
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September 17th, 2015 at 12:17:01 PM permalink
Quote: Wizard

I believe that somebody with 20K and who knew what he was doing could make it as a low-level advantage player and average more than minimum wage. Granted, "knew what he was doing" is a big qualifier. Most who try fail because they either don't know what they are doing, expenses are too high, or over-bet their bankroll.



Your second to last point is probably the most pertinent to someone with a $20k bankroll.
Expenses are killer.

My partner and I play casually as a hobby with about $20k and can earn between $50/$100 an hour on strong double deck games with just counting.

If you don't live incredibly close to a large cluster of casinos, though, your travel expenses are going to kill you, even if you're getting hotels/food comped. We were up 50% roughly after about 300 hours of play, but over half of that revenue number was wiped out by travel expenses despite receiving RFB comps 100% of the time.

TLDR: You should probably move to Neveda to be an AP for those luscious AP opportunities and disgustingly low real estate prices.
Dicenor33
Dicenor33
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September 17th, 2015 at 12:25:13 PM permalink
Quote: Zcore13

Sometimes I have no clue what you are talking about.

Concouring opposite sex is a challenge equal to winning in a casino? And the opposite sex is similar to fighting a monster? I assume you meant conquering also.
You are against very smart people like Wizard and Mission when you gamble? No. They have no affect on your chances at all.

The facts are.. CAN this person be a net winner playing in a casino? Yes. Will this person win if attempting this. Most likely no. If it was easy, everyone would do it. Why work a regular job if you can just hang out at casinos and make money? Probably .00001 of the population does it. So the chances are slim and none that a random person with no experience or mentor can do it.


ZCore13

Dicenor33
Dicenor33
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September 17th, 2015 at 12:26:38 PM permalink
I have no idea myself, the words came out by themselves.
Joeman
Joeman
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September 17th, 2015 at 12:30:42 PM permalink
Perhaps you meant "concurring" with the opposite sex, which, at times, can also be a challenge? ;)
"Dealer has 'rock'... Pay 'paper!'"
Wizard
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Wizard
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September 17th, 2015 at 12:48:52 PM permalink
Our own Teddys gave it the old college try to make it as a low level advantage player. He told me that in the six months or so that he lived in Vegas he never once paid for a meal. Perhaps that could also be said about lodging -- I'm not sure.
“Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” -- Carl Sagan
Ibeatyouraces
Ibeatyouraces
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September 17th, 2015 at 12:52:21 PM permalink
Vegas is tough with too much competition. And most casinos there know about and know how to defend against the high edge, lucrative player advantages that most out of the way ones don't. You need locations with many opportunities AND little to no competition.
DUHHIIIIIIIII HEARD THAT!
jjjoooggg
jjjoooggg
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September 17th, 2015 at 1:30:23 PM permalink
I still feel like a beginner.
Born in Texas and lived in Texas my whole life.
Wizard
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Wizard
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September 17th, 2015 at 1:37:02 PM permalink
Quote: Ibeatyouraces

Vegas is tough with too much competition. And most casinos there know about and know how to defend against the high edge, lucrative player advantages that most out of the way ones don't. You need locations with many opportunities AND little to no competition.



From what I hear, I agree. Our own MickeyCrimm was doing quite well playing odd-ball stuff in Montana.
“Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” -- Carl Sagan
Zcore13
Zcore13
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September 17th, 2015 at 2:13:15 PM permalink
Quote:

Our own MickeyCrimm was doing quite well playing odd-ball stuff in Montana.



So he said...


ZCore13
I am an employee of a Casino. Former Table Games Director,, current Pit Supervisor. All the personal opinions I post are my own and do not represent the opinions of the Casino or Tribe that I work for.
teddys
teddys
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September 17th, 2015 at 2:26:41 PM permalink
Quote: Wizard

I believe that somebody with 20K and who knew what he was doing could make it as a low-level advantage player and average more than minimum wage. Granted, "knew what he was doing" is a big qualifier. Most who try fail because they either don't know what they are doing, expenses are too high, or over-bet their bankroll.

BINGO!

(See what I did there?)
"Dice, verily, are armed with goads and driving-hooks, deceiving and tormenting, causing grievous woe." -Rig Veda 10.34.4
teddys
teddys
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September 17th, 2015 at 2:32:39 PM permalink
Quote: Wizard

Our own Teddys gave it the old college try to make it as a low level advantage player. He told me that in the six months or so that he lived in Vegas he never once paid for a meal. Perhaps that could also be said about lodging -- I'm not sure.

True. It was more like four months. Never paid for a room either.

I quit doing it because I had to take the bar exam, I lost a lot of money playing craps towards the end, and I got fired from my paralegal job in Vegas (the firm has since gone under -- suck it!). And I really didn't like living in Vegas.

"Low-level" is the operative word. It just wasn't fulfilling financially or psychologically. Too much casino hopping and spending time at the players club -- it is just grating. And Las Vegas is very draining and not a very friendly place. Plus, I was able to come back to Ohio and find a job making over $100,000 a year (which I have since been fired from). But that was very good while it lasted.

DJATC and AxelWolf are doing it. But they really branch out. For a solo low-level advantage player the edges just really aren't there anymore in Vegas. The best you can hope for most of the time is break even with free rooms and food, and not much else. (I still have a hot water bottle I got from the Palms).
"Dice, verily, are armed with goads and driving-hooks, deceiving and tormenting, causing grievous woe." -Rig Veda 10.34.4
AxelWolf
AxelWolf
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September 17th, 2015 at 3:11:02 PM permalink
Quote: Dieter

There are a number of table games, machine plays, and marketing plays. Learning to identify the opportunities and make advantages out of them is the challenge.

+100

And you need to actually find them. Nothing lasts forever. Skyline .50 FPDW perhaps (-;. Rephrase, nothing good lasts forever.

Add that to needing a bankroll, self discipline and emotional aspects and now you're in an uphill battle.
♪♪Now you swear and kick and beg us That you're not a gamblin' man Then you find you're back in Vegas With a handle in your hand♪♪ Your black cards can make you money So you hide them when you're able In the land of casinos and money You must put them on the table♪♪ You go back Jack do it again roulette wheels turinin' 'round and 'round♪♪ You go back Jack do it again♪♪
jjjoooggg
jjjoooggg
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September 17th, 2015 at 4:11:59 PM permalink
With over a year of play, I only spotted maybe three or less AP's playing blackjack. That says something about the game and/or defense mechanisms that the casinos employ. 99% of the players are gamblers.

If you can afford it, try it. Be prepared to lose a portion of your bankroll.
Born in Texas and lived in Texas my whole life.
TomG
TomG
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September 17th, 2015 at 4:38:07 PM permalink
Gambling, Advantage Play, whatever. I prefer to let it all fall under casino games

There is a huge difference between earning an income and earning a living. Earning $200 per month from casino games is far different than earning enough to pay for all living expenses.

The most common ways to earn an income from these games: Video poker, poker, blackjack, and sports

Video poker that pays 100.7% with optimal play is easy to find. For $1.25 per spin that means you are earning 0.875-cents per spin. Even if you get up to 800 spins per hour that's only $7 per hour. The cash back for this game at the casino I go to most often is only 0.025% -- or less than two cents per hour. To me, that's the most straightforward way to consistently earn money. So to beat minimum wage you're going to have to find some of the nuances involved. But there are some people who do learn how to exploit them to earn far more than being a greeter at Wal-Mart

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