At the end of 2011 we talked about PokerStars switching to the weighted contributed rake model. With the new rake model a lot of players at PokerStars were upset because they were going to earn fewer rewards from the VIP program. PokerStars was going to make an extra 1.5% on ring table games with the changes, but players at PokerStars weren’t happy with those changes.
Initially at the time when the rake model was switched, PokerStars were also going to change the rake structure and fees. After it was clear that players weren’t happy with the rake changes PokerStars cancelled the changes at the time. Several poker reps from the 2+2 Poker forum were chosen to meet with PokerStars to figure out a new rake structure that was suitable for everyone. These changes do effect pokerstars rakeback rates so please take a look at the new vip table.
The meetings were just finished up last week and the new rake changes are beneficial for most players. Micro limit and low limit players at PokerStars will pay less rake now, but high stakes players are going to pay more rake. PokerStars have increased the rake on tables at the $25/$50 NL, $25/$50 PL and $15/$30 FL levels.
Overall PokerStars has reduced the rake that they’ll make by just under 3%, but not everyone will see a decrease. PokerStars feel that the higher limit tables need to pay a slightly higher rake because they take more resources to monitor. The rake increase won’t go into the pockets of PokerStars, but it will go towards lowering the rake on the micro/low limit tables.
PokerStars implemented the rake change on February 1st 2012, so you may have noticed the difference this week. PokerStars will also be releasing poker tables at the $.03/$.06 and $.08/$.16 levels. Several changes were also made to the VIP program in order to try and keep some of the grinders happy.
Now players only need to earn the required monthly VPP’s for the Supernova and Supernova Elite VIP levels 10 months of the year, as players are allowed to miss the monthly target two months each year. Players that earned Supernova and Supernova Elite last year will be able to maintain their VIP level by earning 50% of the required VPP’s until 2013 to make up for the rake changes.
Many players are still upset about the rake changes on poker forums, but overall the changes will benefit a lot of players. Unless you play high staked poker you should see a small decrease in the rake you pay while playing. The decreased rake will make up for the fact that many players will earn less VIP rewards.
The new WC model rewards active players that play a lot of pots instead of simply rewarding players that play a lot of volume. I’m sure PokerStars is going to lose some players over these changes, but only at the higher staked tables. Micro and low limit players will actually be able to make more with the new rake changes.