Patrik Antonius Says He Can't Beat High-Stakes Games Due to Poker Software

Date: 2015-09-05
Author: Jason Glatzer

Third-party poker software has revolutionized the way many poker players view online poker.  In live poker, you can get reads on players not only based on their actions on the poker felts, but also their behavior, body movement, and facial expressions.
While poker players are unable to get those types of reads in most forms of online poker, poker software such as HUDs can help you get reads on your opponents based on how they have previously played hands.  Likewise, there is a ton of analytic software on the market to help players improve their knowledge of the game.
Patrik Antonius became one of the most recognizable professional poker players not only for his play in live games, but more notably in online games.  For many years, he was one of the big-name professionals on Full Tilt Poker.  Antonius, however, has slowed down his online play, blaming poker-related software as the main reason for doing so.
PokerListings recently sat down with Antonius to discuss a bit about his personal and poker life.  When the site asked Antonius why he is no longer playing much online, Antonius responded,  "You know, it's a little sad, but it looks like the technology has advanced so much that it's become a totally different game… Nowadays, players use software that gives them so much information and so much data that it has become more of a game of numbers. I never used any of these programs. I've never used technology to get an edge. I'm more of a feel player who's living in the moment."

He added, "The players today know what they're doing. They are basing their play on what the software tells them to do so it feels like you're playing against a computer these days. Software has changed the high-stakes game. If you don't use poker software, it's not a fair game anymore. But I still like to play Mixed Games."
Antonius elaborated further on why he is playing Mixed Games, saying, "Well, I'm sure some smart people are already working on it and that there will be programs for Stud poker or heads-up 2-7 Triple Draw. As much as I know, Limit Hold'em is now basically solved."

He explained, "I actually had to quit Hold'em and PLO online. I lost about a million straight and then I realized that I couldn't beat the ring games anymore and that was largely due to tracking software. I would take my chances against any high-stakes player live but online I don't like my chances anymore, unfortunately."

While Antonius is blaming poker software for his losses, many believe he should have attempted to keep up with the times and also use poker software himself to be on a more level playing field.
PocketFives member Brandon "tedSTRETCH" Merrill commented after reading about this story, "Maybe if he played correctly, he wouldn't be able to be exploited. Way easier to blame software than fix leaks.""
Also of note is that Antonius might not realize there is already open-source software that can be used to track many games if players put the time in to configure it and there is straight-out-of-the-box software such as Stud Indicator that provides players not only an in-game odds calculator, but also a HUD for Stud, Razz, and Stud h/l.
Not everyone feels Antonius is off-base.  PocketFives member Michael "u shove i call" Howard commented about Antonius' statements, "(It) takes a smart person to admit he isn't good enough. Why does he need to battle with better players who also use software that clearly enhances their performance when he already has made his money and can play in softer live games?"

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Member Comments's Comment

2015-09-08 07:04:51

Is is irresponsible for a professional to not keep up with advancements in his/her profession, and chalk it up to "Oh, I have never believed in that type of play". As far as U_shove_I_call's comment that Antonius is a "smart person" for taking this position, I disagree with the comment and the context for which he presented it as being valid at all. It takes an ignorant person, or a lazy person, or an incompetent person, to avoid the hard work and dedication it takes to stay current in your profession, even if it consists of learning new trends not conducive to your current lifestyle or job title. I feel that the pro who refuses to learn the technology that is helping to advance the game is no longer a pro at all. I consider Antonius as a former poker pro and his lack of desire to learn new things will certainly catch up to him at the live tables sooner or later. So, if you can't play online, can't play live, don't come to me washed up and broke wanting to be my coach because I want someone who knows how to use a HUD. - moneymakerspy


Dan "deilegend"Deilgat's Comment

2015-09-16 04:59:54

I've been banging my head against computer assisted players for over a year now. I have been a no limit Hold'Em mid stakes live player for years, my games are usually $2/5 or $5/10. Online I'll play the 0.05/.10 up to the $1/2 tables. Live I have an ROI over 25% for the last ten years or so. I''l play fast and hard most of the time and I limit myself to four to six hours of play. Online I keep about the same time frame. I've been an avid critic of computer assisted players for the past year and it isn't because I lost. My losses online for the past two years in cash games don't amount to an average winning sessions of live $5/10. In short I've made money- over thirty five thousand this year taking my online losses into account. I don't agree with Brandon "tedSTRETCH" Merrill when he writes "Maybe if he played correctly, he wouldn't be able to be exploited". Players without the software are the ones being exploited. I have never been told by any online player that they were using software. I have never read a warning by the poker site that some players might be assisted by GTO software. If it is so widely accepted that players use software to help them make a decision they should be straightforward about it and the sites should warn unsuspected players. But neither sites or players are honest enough to at least tell unsuspecting players. So I disagree with Antonius about the unfairness and raise him with lying players.


Dan"deilegend"Deilgat's Comment

2015-09-16 05:16:25

You gotta be kidding ""... you say: "It takes an ignorant person, or a lazy person, or an incompetent person, to avoid the hard work and dedication it takes to stay current in your profession" Ignorant? Lazy? Incompetent? You realize that what you wrote is so wrong on so many level right? Poker is about one's abilities to play the game not one's abilities to watch his software make the right decision. In live poker if you had aa advisor whispering you decisions for all the other players to see, well, I let you guess what could happen to you...


Barkeater's Comment

2015-09-16 06:05:23

Well, I can tell you that if you look at chess, the reason no one plays for money online is that computers can beat 99% of live players, and it would take a fool to assume that the person on the other hand is not using one. So with computer's skill so far exceeding that of live players, and with it so easy to use them, money based competition becomes impractical. Poker is not chess, but the reason that it has remained a popular online money based game is that there is the perception at least that the game is based on personal skill. You can argue that being able to configure and use software rapidly and accurately is a skill, but at the rate tools are advancing, online poker will either have to take steps to eliminate some of them, or the player base will decline as recreation players start to feel more and more outgunned.


PKRNemesis 's Comment

2015-09-18 13:07:19

Dan "deilegend"Deilgat, you say "Poker is about one's abilities to play the game not one's abilities to watch his software make the right decision." or "I have never read a warning by the poker site that some players might be assisted by GTO software." I consider both afirmations to be dead wrong and i will explain why. There is no such software that makes the decision for the player, these kinds of softwares are prohibited, not to mention GTO software that makes decisions in real time (actually at this point this kind of software would be almost impossible to exist due to computational limitations). What does exist is Hold'em manager 2 and Poker Tracker 4, which store data and provide a HUD overlay with statistics. Now if I were to give you today an advanced HUD with 700 statistics to chose from, you wouldn't know what to do with it, why? because you wouldn't know what they mean or how to use them. Someone else instead has bothered to learn and so can draw conclusions from these statistics. Both HEM and PT huds offer statistics, it's up to the player to interpret them and improve their decision and a player has to learn in order to do that. Some choose not to. Those who don't use huds are not necessarily missing something, they could attempt to learn off the tables how to attempt to play a GTO aproximation, rendering any hud from their opponents useless, as their play cannot really be exploited, as it is balanced.Of course common sense tells you that someone who doesn't want to learn how to use something relatively simple as HEM, won't exactly be someone who will use GTO software to perfect his game off the tables. I think it is also quite sad generally about the psychology of people, who tend to want to find guilty 3rd parties for their failures. I suggest trying to improve that psychology.

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