How much is too much vp?

Sep 25, 2006 4:52 AM

Just when the offers in the mail start to get even more interesting and lucrative, I’ve called it quits for the year having met my 2006 profit goal. Some may question why I wouldn’t keep on playing just to get all these freebies — a few have even asked me if they could somehow use my promotions, and still others think I’m just plain nuts for not playing any more this year. Let’s see who’s right!

First, what’s the main reason people play the game of video poker anyway? Is it to see how many points one can accumulate? What about slot club status — should one be playing to see how many top-of-the-heap colorful cards he or she can collect? Or is it most important to get oodles and oodles of freebies to fill a spare room just to impress visiting non-casino players?

Well, all that stuff’s just plain crazy. The only way to be successful at this game and show respect towards its volatility is by doing the same thing today as you did way back when — and that’s to play to win money.

Who in the heck cares, really, about anything else? I’ll tell you who — losers, that’s who. When they constantly hand over their cash they need an out, and the slot clubs never fail them with their "something for nothing" pitch. The oldest trick in the book, right?

We know there are gurus running around town, chasing promotions, "Chairman" or "Presidential" or "Seven Stars" status at the slot clubs, and agonizing over end-of-the-year gift giveaways.

So, who am I to be talking about excessive play and chasing casino temptations? I learned my lesson 10 years ago, and that’s exactly the reason why I go out and help as many players as I can understand just what they’re up against.

It starts out as an exciting pastime. Next is seeing an unexpected winner that builds confidence. Finally, the casino throws out its net and they’ve got you.

But the whole problem is exacerbated by the fact that without looking, suddenly you find yourself at the machines hours and hours every day or trip, and something has now taken over your life like nothing else.

Unprepared for such a powerful drug-like feeling, most players are helpless as they enter a brand new world of long hours of play, wide-eyed promotion-chasing, and exciting casino atmospheres created to keep your mind occupied just as the casino wants.

I often hear some players say they’ve got it all "under control" while playing six hours every day — or 16 hours a day when they come in from out of town. Most try to minimize the issue by saying "I’m only a recreational player" while those who say they’re ”˜pros’ explain it away by saying "I win and I enjoy it."

Sorry guys, no one wins by playing directly into the casino’s hands. You lose money and you hand over your souls at the same time.

What all this boils down to is putting together a plan for your play at the beginning of every year, and it has to make sense. That’s why I place so much emphasis on setting goals for a session, a trip and a year, and walking away from the machines once they are reached.

You’ll find you’re in casinos far less time than before, you’ll discover you can actually have time to enjoy that which you used to enjoy before video poker entered your life, and you’ll breathe a great big sigh of relief that you can once again go on a vacation without video poker being involved in any way — even your desire play will diminish greatly.

Another plus? If you change your strategy from optimal play to one of my strategies that give everyone a chance to win every time they sit down, you’ll have a lot more money to go on those vacations. You’ll feel a whole lot better about yourself by not playing so much, and that hook you feel has been placed into your back by the casino will be gone for good. You will play on your terms now and not theirs.

How much video poker is too much for players? When it gets to the point that you can’t ever stop and do something else; when it becomes the driving force in life, it’s time to stop and take a step or two back.

No excuse is good enough for rationalizing playing almost every day, or for the better part of each day you’re visiting a casino town. That type of life produces denial, and denial pyramids into greater problems. Think about it.