Future of poker – Predictions and innovations on the horizon
Poker has seen massive evolution, from the earliest card halls to the online boom and rise of esports. Poker adapts to technology, formats, and media.
More advanced AI opponents
In just a few years, AI poker bots like Pluribus have reached expert levels in Limit and No-Limit Hold’em.
- Bots will master mixed games like HORSE, outplaying top pros in those formats too. They handle all poker variants.
- Using massive training databases, bots will develop more human-like behaviors and balance to be even tougher opponents.
- AI identifies new optimal strategies overlooked by human theory, forcing adaptations by elite pros.
- Online sites offer AI opponents for training. Bots with adjustable skill levels will help beginners learn through practice.
While lacking human psychology, advanced AI will force poker bandarqstrategy breakthroughs in new formats. They will boost training.
Increased mainstream popularity
Poker exploded after the 2003 WSOP but declined some after 2011. Recent trends like live streaming suggest:
- A new poker boom emerges as exciting young stars and influencers inspire new players through platforms like Twitch and YouTube.
- Televised final tables of huge tournaments like the WSOP Main Event will draw bigger audiences again, exposing millions to the game.
- Legalization of online poker across more US states (and eventually nationwide) would also spur renewed interest and participation.
- Poker finally shed its seedy reputation as sports leagues and media embraced it. ESPN airing the WSOP is a major milestone.
Rising stars and influencers could make poker “cool” again. Increasing mainstream exposure would accelerate poker’s revival.
Virtual and Augmented reality
Virtual Reality (VR) allows immersive simulated experiences. This could enable:
- Players to practice and train poker skills in realistic simulated environments and situations. VR training would be highly educational.
- VR chat spaces where players interact, discuss hands, sweat big games, etc. in virtual casino environments. Great for the community.
- Actual VR poker games where you sit at virtual tables with other people represented by avatars. Offers digital experience with human psychology.
Augmented Reality (AR) overlays graphics onto real environments:
- AR glasses could display HUD stats and equity data for players during live games, creating a cyborg-like advantage.
- On poker streams, AR graphics could enhance viewing with real-time odds calculations, highlights for key betting spots, etc.
VR training and community plus AR game enhancements could attract new players while revolutionizing poker engagement and advantage.
Changes to live tournament structures
Live tournament formats have been fairly stagnant for decades. Evolutions in structure could include:
- Big blind ante instead of small blind/ante speeding up structures while ensuring constant action.
- Allowing one or two rebuys at the beginning to reduce variance from early busts.
- Starting all players with shorter stacks, like 15-25BB. Would encourage more play early.
- Using shot clocks at all tables to reduce stalling and encourage action.
- Smaller starting flights so players don’t have to survive huge fields just to cash.
- Scheduling first-day dinner breaks earlier, like after level 6, so players don’t bust late and exhaust themselves.
The new structures would reduce bubble factor and variance and energize gameplay.