There were rumors floating around that PokerStars was going to roll out its 6+ Hold’em Spin & Go’s worldwide. Those are no longer rumors as the online poker room has now made that a reality. PokerStars launched a Short Deck version of its lottery-style Spin & Go on July 25, with up to $1 million in first-place prize up for grabs.
The game is now available across PokerStars’ dot-com player pool and can also be played in jurisdictions where the online poker site is offering 6+ Hold’em, such as Belgium, Estonia, Bulgaria, Denmark, Russia, Romania, and the UK. It is also available on PokerStars’ .COM, .NET, and .EU play-money clients. The game was first tried in Denmark before it the worldwide launch was rolled out.
Details of the New 6+ Hold’em Spins
The latest offering from PokerStars comes with five different buy-ins: $1, $3, $15, $30, and $100, with the highest one offering a potential top prize of $1 million. The game follows a three-handed, hyper-turbo, winner-take-all format just like the regular Spins, and the prize pool is randomly determined at the beginning of the game. Players can take home payouts of between 2x and 12,000 times the buy-in.
6+ Hold’em Spins are also charged with the same rake rate as the regular Spins. The smaller buy-ins of $1 and $3 are charged an 8% rake, the $15 and $30 buy-ins are raked 6%, while the $100 buy-ins are raked 5%.
The game also follows the reformed payout structure recently launched by PokerStars in a bid to lower the variance. There are currently no 4x and 6x frequencies as they are now replaced with 3x and 5x multipliers. The probability of winning 2x multipliers has also been drastically lowered. No further changes were made to the rest of the multipliers.
While the game is essentially played in the same manner as the regular Spins, 6+ Hold’em Spins follow a different blind structure. It adopts the “Button Blind” structure wherein players pay an ante, with the button paying an additional live ante. Cash games and tournaments follow a similar structure.
PokerStars’ sit and go games currently have four formats – the regular version, Max, Omaha, and now 6+ Hold’em.
Short Deck Poker
The poker community in general is aware of 6+ Hold’em or Short Deck as the poker variant has been around for several years. A lot of players and poker fans started to develop huge interest in the game when it first appeared on TV during the 2018 Triton Super High Roller Series in Montenegro. Jason Koon and Phil Ivey emerged victorious in two separate Short-Deck events during the series. Ivey became the winner of the first live-streamed Short Deck event for $600,000, while Koon took home $3,579,914 after taking down the second Short Deck event at the tournament.
Since then, Short Deck has quickly grown in popularity and featured in a number of major tournaments, both online and live. The game has now become a staple of some of the world’s high stakes live tournament series.
The game is played much like the Texas Hold’em, only that the deck is reduced from 52 to just 36 cards by removing the deuces through fives. As there are fewer cards, the hand rankings are also different from the traditional Texas Hold’em: in Short Deck, a flush beats a full house and three of a kind beats a straight.
The reduced deck makes it harder to make a flush than a full house, while it is easier to hit a straight than a set or trips. As a result, there is a lot more luck involved, with hands like AK and JT now of equal value pre-flop.
The game originated back in 2014, played by high-stakes gamblers in Asia because of its high variance. It’s now gaining increased recognition worldwide and a number of poker operators including partypoker have rolled out this format.
PokerStars becomes the first-ever operator to release 6+ Hold-em in three-handed, fast-structured randomized prize pool format. Back in January, PokerStars introduced its own Short Deck version in cash game format. From there, the game spread to tournaments in both Sit & Go’s and MTTs. It made its way to the European Poker Tour in Monte Carlo, with Dario Sammartino becoming the winner of the first live 6+ Hold’em event at the festival.
6+ Hold’em even became part of SCOOP and the MicroMillions series which is currently underway.