PACIFIC POKER REVIEW
Part of the world-famous 888 holdings group (the company behind Casino On Net), Pacific Poker used to be one of those sites that didn’t exactly offer the most satisfying online poker package out there.
Good to see however, that many of the past problems have been solved, and most of the issues plaguing the operation have been addressed.
One such problem was linked to the software. It used to disconnect unexpectedly, and I have read some pretty unfavorable reviews on it on player forums. Graphics was below average as well.
Another problem issue was the rake. It used to be much steeper than what some other poker rooms applied, so even though there was EV+ in the loose competition, the overall value got ruined by the rake.
Let us see what Pacific Poker has to offer these days though:
The software has been improved. Not only is it loads more reliable now, there are 3D-like avatars, so a visual upgrade has also been done.
Signing up to Pacific Poker is a piece of cake really. You don’t need to toggle back and forth between browser windows to verify your email address or anything. You just fill the form provided and you’re ready to go. Download takes a few seconds and the installation isn’t any lengthier either. From the moment you decide to give it a try, it takes about 4-5 minutes until you’re ready to play away at the table. Nice work on that. Their client also features nice options to aid beginners, like information on hand ranking, tips, rules and other basic aspects of online poker play Another pleasant surprise about the software is, that one can actually give it a try, without ever having to download anything. The instant play feature on their site opens up the flash client and you’re ready to roll in no time.
Something that I hated about their site, were the annoying popups. For heaven’s sake, why do they have to prompt players to download their software every step of the way? I wish they got rid of that.
As far as player traffic is concerned: their site features a live player-counter, and currently there are 2,254 players at 664 tables. Note however, that I’m not writing this review during peak hours. I suppose, later on there’ll be more than twice as many people logged on.
The quality of the competition is said to be very good, in the sense that there are many fish playing here.
The rake that they collect is capped at $4, otherwise they take the standard 5%. In short- handed games (4-5 handed ones) the rake is capped at $2.5.
One good way to beat the rake is to play in tournaments. There, you’ll escape the rake taken on every single hand you play, and apparently most of Pacific’s players know this all too well.
Small buy-in tournaments are bustling with action, and this is certainly one of the strongest points of Pacific Poker. It’s a small stakes tournament paradise. Their tourneys are frequent too, so you won’t have to wait around if intent on joining one.
Promotions-wise, you won’t run into anything overly original at Pacific, however, there could be some great value in their Bad Beat Jackpot, and their Royal Flush Jackpot.
Both these promotions run at tables where there’s slightly more rake collected. That extra rake adds up to form some giant jackpots, like the $15,675 Bad beat one (mind you, this sum increases all the time) and the $14,852 Royal.
In order to hit the BB jackpot, you need to lose on quads bigger than four 8s. In order to hit the Royal Jackpot, you have to get hit by a spade royal flush.
In both cases, players are required to use both of their pocket cards in the hand to qualify.
The support staff that Pacific has working for them appears to be quite knowledgeable, and they sort out basic issues fast, however, they do seem to get bogged down in more complicated matters. Unfortunately, I have found that this is the case with most other poker rooms as well.
E-mails could (and should) be answered a tad faster though.