The world’s second largest online poker room, partypoker is certainly among the top major online poker rooms that are expected to go live in the Pennsylvania market. However, as it stands, the room is still waiting for the approval from the state regulators and is unlikely to launch its services on the go-live date—July 15.
While partypoker may not be present on the first day in Pennsylvania, the room has the potential to become a big player in the burgeoning US market. It was recently approved to operate online poker in the state of Nevada. It already operates in New Jersey, sharing its player pool with Borgata and MGM’s playMGM online poker room.
Once it goes live in Pennsylvania and Nevada, and should the Keystone state join the Multi-State Internet Gaming Agreement (MSIGA), partypoker will become the only second operator in the country after WSOP/888 with a three-state network. Its rival PokerStars is unlikely to be approved in Nevada and so it will only be limited to Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Partypoker’s parent company, GVC Holdings, applied for igaming privileges in Pennsylvania back in March, and so far, the operator has not been given the green light to operate in the state. As per state laws, online poker rooms must partner with one of the local brick-and-mortar casinos to be able to operate just like in its neighboring state of New Jersey.
While there has been no official announcement made, partypoker is likely to go live in the state through its potential partnership with Valley Forge—one of the seven casinos approved by Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) to offer online poker. The casino is owned by Boyd Gaming, a company that has a long-standing alliance with GVC/partypoker.
Meanwhile, MGM Resorts in conjunction with Borgata in New Jersey has also been approved to offer online poker in Pennsylvania under the Qualified Gaming Entities provision which allowed casino operators outside of Pennsylvania to submit a petition for igaming in October 2018.
GVC Holdings has a 50/50 Joint Venture partnership with MGM “to create a world-class sports betting and online gaming platform in the United States.” Hence, it would not be surprising to see partypoker share its player pool with Borgata in the near future.
partypoker Welcome Bonus
As seen in the New Jersey market, partypoker is also expected to offer several new player bonuses including free money and freerolls to Pennsylvania players.
In New Jersey, partypoker offers $25 for free without a deposit through tickets to SPINS and MTTs. It also offers a high-valued First Deposit Bonus matching 100% up to $1000 which the site claims it to be “easiest bonus to clear” in the state.
Similar welcome bonuses can also be expected to be seen once it goes live in the Pennsylvania. Along with its deposit bonus and free money offers, partypoker may also run dozens of freerolls to welcome the PA players.
Over the past one and a half years, partypoker has made huge strides towards improving its software. It rolled out its biggest upgrade across its dot-com player pool, introducing a new dark-themed lobby, new table and card design, a new time bank, improved bet slider as well as improving game navigation.
The new software has now been rolled in almost all of the markets in which party operates, and so players in Pennsylvania can expect to see the new improved software once it goes live in Keystone state.
Partypoker is also expected to be available on mobile devices including both Android and iPhone devices along with the desktop version.
Hand Histories and Third-Party Tools Policy
partypoker recently banned all kinds of tracking tools including HUDs and prohibiting players to download hand histories. Instead, the room has introduced “My Game”, the operator’s new in-built virtual poker coach tool that helps players improve their poker skills by analyzing all aspects of their game. Players can review their recent hand histories through a hand history replayer available on partypoker client.
It is expected that a similar policy could also take place in Pennsylvania once it launches. As per Nevada gambling regulations, use of any third-party tool is prohibited and hence WSOP.com, partypoker’s competitor in the US market has disallowed all HUDs across all its US markets. Even downloadable hand histories are not available.
partypoker PA Poker Games
partypoker offers some of the widest game offerings in the industry. Besides the regular cash games and Sit & Go and tournaments options, it also runs fastforward—the operator’s fast-paced game variant, SPINS—a lottery-style Sit & Go variant, bounty tournaments, and several game variants including Stud and Omaha games.
The operator also recently launched a Short Deck variant across its global player pool, although it is unlikely to be launched in PA.
When partypoker goes live in the state, a similar slate of game offerings is expected.
Along with poker, party could also launch its slate of casino games, including table games, slots and video poker.
partypoker PA Promotions
In addition to offering lucrative deposit bonuses, partypoker is also expected to run several limited time promotions. In New Jersey, the room from time to time runs Happy Hour promotion where players receive double points (loyalty) for the game of player’s choice. It also regularly runs leaderboard for Sit & Go games and tournaments, gives extra cashback for certain tournaments, etc.
A similar slate of promotions could also be seen in partypoker’s PA room.
partypoker PA Rake
The rake on partypoker’s cash games is on the higher side compared with its competitors in the US market when considering the rake cap factor. Pot Limit and No Limit cash games have a rake percentage at 5.56% while Fixed Limit games are charged 5.25%.
However, partypoker charges no rake on the bounty portion of all its progressive knockout (PKO) tournaments, making it one of the cheapest offerings in the industry.
A similar rake policy is expected to be implemented in partypoker’s Pennsylvania room.
In the New Jersey market, partypoker claims to have designed its loyalty program so that is not only easy to understand but also easier to earn rewards with.
Everyone enters the rewards program and starts off at Bronze—the entry-level—and as they earn more points they move up in tiers. There are currently four monthly tiers—Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Palladium.
Players earn 2 points for every $1 rake contributed in tournament fees or in cash tables.
Each of these tiers except for Bronze has monthly points requirements. The highest level—Palladium offers the highest rakeback with up to 30.7%. Players are required to earn 2000 points per month to achieve this level. Gold which has a requirement of 750 points per month offers up to 20.5% cashback, while Silver gives maximum value up to 15.4%. The entry-level Bronze offers up to 6.7% cashback.
Players are rewarded with both tournament tickets as well as cash prizes in the points store.