I have disappeared from my journal because I've been coming home from work every day and immediately launching the Cake Poker client and playing until I can't keep my eyes open anymore. I've put in approximately 6-8 hours each weekday and 12 hours each weekend day in playing on this site. I'm earning around $64/hour muli-tabling mostly $1/$2, $200 max, and occasionally $2/$4, $400 max NL HE.
This site is completely amazing. The closest game I can compare it to is what you find in the $1/$2 NL HE games in Atlantic City. These games can be beaten by the clueless. Indeed, the would-be other “sharks” on the site are actually very weak players who simply hold money for me and one or two other strong players to get.
I think there are a few factors that make this site so amazing:
The Sports Book Players: Cake poker has a skin arrangement with with an online sports betting site. Most of the players (based on chat comments) are actually coming through the sports betting site, not Cake Poker. These players are truly horrible, and have virtually no textbook knowledge of the game and minimal playing experience. They don't even know what hands particular bets represent, let alone figuring out if the other players hold the represented hand or are bluffing.
Lack of Poker Tracker Support: A lot of otherwise strong online poker players are not that smart. I once knew someone who has been a losing player for years who told me there was
no reason to play on a site that didn't support Poker Tracker. He said this during the hey days of Pacific, when the limit games there were the best ever seen on teh Internets. Pacific then was much like Cake is today. This fellow, who was struggling to do well at limit games, would only play on the shark infested waters of Party and elsewhere, losing steadily, while I was cleaning up on Pacific. At the time, I was probably only a little better at limit HE than he was, but I was a consistent winner and he was a consistent loser, because of his stupid Poker-Tracker-only game selection criteria.
Of course I'm annoyed that my hand histories aren't imported and I have no heads-up display on the players. Thing is, I started playing online poker before Poker Tracker and like systems were even available. I know how to beat the game without it. Anyway, the opposition on Cake Poker is so bad, even someone who is completely spoiled with the Poker Tracker crutch should be able to beat the games with ease. These players are horrendous; a trained monkey should be able to at least break even in these games.
Frankly, I am heavily rooting for Poker Tracker to not support this site. Once that happens, many sharks will give it a try. I recall that six months after HandGrabber came along and made PT work for Pacific, the games started to decline. Now, Pacific is nothing special — just another crappy software poker site.
I am so amazed at the near-exact parallels between Pacific and Cake Poker: another gambling site sending players over (888 and Sports Book), bad software, no Poker Tracker support. In poker, you have to live where the fish live, even if it puts you out of your comfort zone.
Completely readable, loose passive players: This is key here. They slow-play when they shouldn't, and min-raise with monsters. They just call down with any top pair, but let you manipulate the pot size. They stack off every time with any two-pair or better holding. You basically have to be a moron to get a lot of chips in the pot bad against them, since they are trivial to read.
Profitable Promotions: They have this “gold card” thing where you collect cards from their vault. They are used for a number of their promotions. The most interesting one is the weekly “GC 500”. There's a lot of luck involved, but if you play every day for five hours or more, odds are you are going to win an average of $250 in the thing a week.
You may note that this post was originally friends only. I didn't initially want to tell the whole Internets about the fish pond. These days, it doesn't matter as much.
Anyway, I might not be posting a lot, as I want to suck down this money before it runs dry!