Poker Bots Can Bluff

New Scientist has an article about some researchers that have created a bot that has learned to bluff in a game called lerpa (here’s a link to the detailed theory behind the experiment and how lerpa is played). Since most bots can’t bluff effectively this is a major advancement.

Now, I’m not a fan of people using bots but the reason I pointed out this article is because of one of the quotes from Clément Sire, a physicist at the CNRS (the French national research organisation).

“Given the current state of poker bots, if you are losing to them you should be ashamed,”

And that’s pretty much been my thinking when people complain too much about bots. Yes, bots are bad for the game and I think the people who develop and use them are unethical but they’re built so poorly that if you can’t beat them then you’re a really, really poor player.

In fact, several of the more recent bot scandals are basically affiliates who launch a bot ring so they can make the money on the rake the bots generate. The bots simply need to be breakeven or lose less than the affiliate MGR percentage for them to be profitable.

Bill Rini
Bill Rini is currently the Head of Online Poker for WSOP. He has been working in the online poker industry since 2004 and has held management roles at Full Tilt Poker and PartyPoker.