New Online Gaming Options – Duplicate Poker & Ujogo

by , Oct 11, 2007 | 11:15 am

With the U.S. government having done some serious harm to the online gaming industry over the past year, entrepreneurs have been looking for ways to looking for ways to fills the void left by so many online sites as they fled the U.S. for safer ground. Two sites are stepping up their efforts to be the chosen alternatives to major Internet poker sites – Duplicate Poker and Ujogo.

DUPLICATE POKER was first introduced to Pokeratizens back in late August. I recently had the chance to speak with Dan Goldman (VP of Marketing) and Nolan Dalla (Director of Communications) when I was doing an article for Poker Pro Magazine about Duplicate. The article will come out within a few weeks, but for now, a few important notes:

1. The offer to receive $5 with no strings attached when signing up is almost done – limited time remaining on the offer.

2. I didn’t realize that this game was designed based on duplicate bridge. Interesting.

3. Long-time poker pro and coach Bob Ciaffone is the primary poker consultant for the site.

4. Banks support the site, and players can use Visa, MasterCard, or American Express to transfer funds. The corporate office is even located right in New York City, a choice that shows utter confidence in the legality of the site.

UJOGO.COM is different. It’s basically a poker site that only allows free play, no money can be deposited to play. However, there are big prizes being given away for cash and prizes, and as more people sign up, the site is supposed to be offering buy-ins to major tournaments. Susie Isaacs is now being sponsored by the site, and a few notes on it all:

1. No download is required to play. Just log in and begin playing.

2. This may be the first free-money site to sponsor a pro player. And I know Susie – she did a lot of research before signing a deal, as she’s been offered deals before but didn’t have enough confidence in the sites to do it.

3. This is a legal site as well, since customers don’t deposit money to play.

SO, there are alternatives in this online poker market. Have you signed up or will you try them out? Can these sites be successful? I’d love to read your thoughts.


24 Comments to “New Online Gaming Options – Duplicate Poker & Ujogo”


  1. Ed
    says:

    Just the thought of playing free poker online makes me cringe.

    Ed


  2. New Online Gaming Options - Duplicate Poker & Ujogo
    says:

    […] The Poker Enthusiast wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptWith the US government having done some serious harm to the online gaming industry over the past year, entrepreneurs have been looking for ways to looking for ways to fills the void left by so many online sites as they fled the US for … […]


  3. Steve Horton
    says:

    I just have a hard time believing Duplicate Poker is legal, just because they say it is. Do they have a court judgment to back up their claim? Seems like a loophole to me.


  4. Karridy
    says:

    How about a description of how Duplicate Poker works.


  5. California Jen
    says:

    The concept is that players compete against other players at other tables with the exact same cards. You’re trying to win more or lose less than people playing the exact same cards as you. I’ll attempt to break with some help from their website:

    1. There are always two or more tables of players with the same number of players seated at each table.

    2. An identically shuffled deck of cards is used at each table for each hand played. Hole cards and community cards are the same at each table.

    3. Each player begins each hand with the same number of chips, regardless of the outcome of the previous hand.

    4. The winner of each hand is determined by the number of chips at the end of the hand as compared with those held by other players at other tables with the same hand.

    5. Winners of that session go on to another session until the sessions are over and the best players at the end split the prize pool.

    To tell you the truth, it’s very hard to comprehend until you actually sit down at a table to play, but I hope this helps.


  6. California Jen
    says:

    Steve, I understand your concern. But the way this duplicate poker game is set up, it relies heavily on skill rather than luck. It matters more that you use skill to maximize your wins or minimize your losses in the hands rather than sucking out on the river to beat your opponents.

    Dan Goldman explained that since banks tend to be conservative on these issues, the fact that they have examined the game and are willing to do business with the site only solidifies their belief that the game is skill-based. Banks are not considering this a gambling site.

    Duplicate Poker has sought legal assistance to ensure that they are on the good side of the law here, and they are confident that they are.


  7. DanM
    says:

    ***This is a legal site as well, since customers don’t deposit money to play.***

    The state of Illinois might disagree … at least if people are drinking while they play.


  8. donkey
    says:

    “An identically shuffled deck of cards is used at each table for each hand played. Hole cards and community cards are the same at each table.”

    If you think about it, the outcome of the Flop, Turn, and River is predetermined even before the cards are dealt, unless the cards are dealt simultaneously on both tables. This would suck as a player if you have to wait until the other table completed its round of betting before the next card is dealt. it also opens doors to colluding if you can play multiple accounts and can see action on both tables. And if the cards are not dealt simutaneously, then table 2 has to F/T/R the same cards that table 1 dealt, which just proves my theory. They should call it FixedPoker.com. I deposited $50, played one tournament, was so confused and cashed out after the tournament. Don’t waste your time.


  9. Karridy
    says:

    Donkey… You mean to tell me that it’s football season and you still have money left to gamble?


  10. donkey
    says:

    ummm…no, that’s the real reason why I cashed out, to pay my book…lol. but look on the bright side, if the cowboys go 16-0, i’ll make $6 mil from $100. Start with $100, and reinvest the whole winnings into next week’s game, and voila…$6 million large!


  11. California Jen
    says:

    Donkey:

    Yes, the cards are dealt simultaneously. That’s what creates the slower pace. The game is constantly telling you that it’s waiting for the other tables to complete action on that hand before it can deal the next card. As for collusion through multiple accounts, I honestly don’t know what they do – if anything – to prevent that.

    I’ll admit that I was confused, too. It’s tough to follow at first, and it requires lots of patience. Many people play online to see a certain number of hands per hour, and there are a lot fewer on Duplicate because you do have to wait for other tables before the next card is dealt.


  12. Sommer
    says:

    You can search 2+2 for dozens of stories about how awful Duplicate is, from rampant cheating to wretchedly slow play. On every thread there’s an employee/affiliate-monkey/blogger trying to argue otherwise, but sadly just like here, ad-dollars and affiliate programs power the responses far more than actual journalism or research.


  13. California Jen
    says:

    Oh, please don’t misunderstand. I’m not defending Duplicate Poker – only trying to answer questions and play devil’s advocate to further the discussion.

    I’ve read some of the negative feedback about the site. The play is very slow. There aren’t many games available due to the very low number of players on the site at any given time.

    I guess I’m looking to see if anyone feels that the skill factor outweighs luck on Duplicate. And I’m curious if anyone really likes either of the sites mentioned in my original post. It would be nice to have alternatives to Stars, FTP, UB, and Absolute, but it seems that no one has come up with an idea that will be successful yet.


  14. DanM
    says:

    Sommer, you can also find lots of threads on 2+2 about how online poker is rigged. Puh-lease.

    And just to be clear, Jen’s post (and comments) are in no way powered by any ad on this or any other site. Whenever we do sell out our content here at Pokerati, we will be sure to let you know. Drink Milwaukee’s Best Light!


  15. Tim B.
    says:

    hmm. ive heard about duplicate poker here and there over the last few months, and mentally wrote it off as a novelty… but maybe ill drop a little money on there and at least give it a whirl this weekend. if i do, ill share my thoughts here…


  16. The Gambler » Comment on New Online Gaming Options - Duplicate Poker & Ujogo by …
    says:

    […] pokerroomreview wrote an interesting post today on Comment on New Online Gaming Options – Duplicate Poker & Ujogo by …Here’s a quick excerpt…But the way this duplicate poker game is set up, it relies heavily on skill rather than luck. It matters more that you use skill to maximize your wins or minimize your losses in the hands rather than sucking out on the river to beat … […]


  17. Comment on New Online Gaming Options - Duplicate Poker & Ujogo by …
    says:

    […] Admin wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptpokerroomreview wrote an interesting post today on Comment on New Online Gaming Options – Duplicate Poker & Ujogo by …Here’sa quick excerpt…But the way this duplicate poker game is set up, it relies heavily on skill rather than luck. … […]


  18. Bobby
    says:

    I am surprised that UJOGO is generating the buzz that it is, but then again maybe that’s because to me it’s old-hat.

    Prizewagon.com does EXACTLY what ujogo does and has been doing it a lot longer (we started development in 05. No download, ad-revenue based, free poker for prizes.

    I hate it when someone rips off an idea.

    Keep watching them and watching us. They’ll follow our every move, step-for-step.

    LOL…and we are a mere 5 man team.


  19. DanM
    says:

    interesting. But if you’re gonna play the who-came-up-with-it card, I think Dutch Boyd can show proof of the same idea in 2004 at rakefree.com.

    just sayin’.


  20. California Jen
    says:

    Bobby, the reason that Ujogo came across my radar is because it’s marketing itself directly to the poker community by signing Susie Isaacs as the site’s endorsing player.


  21. Bobby
    says:

    California Jen — no offense meant. We are below everyone’s radar. We really don’t have the million dollar angel investors ujogo has and subsequently no funds to generate hype. When we conceptualized this in the summer of 05 (before the ban)we thought it’d be a great solution to the dismal choices for free poker play online and the way it’s played.

    Unfortunately, when the ban DID come, no one in the US would touch poker with a 10-foot pole so…you can guess the rest.

    We have plugged away though, and while ujogo may have the hype, the silicon valley golden boy and a noted professional’s endorsement, I feel we have a vastly superior product.


  22. Online Poker » Comment on New Online Gaming Options - Duplicate Poker & Ujogo by …
    says:

    […] New Online Gaming Options – Duplicate Poker & Ujogo wrote an interesting post today on Comment on New Online Gaming Options – Duplicate Poker & Ujogo by …Here’s a quick excerptThe Poker Enthusiast wrote an interesting post today onHere’sa quick excerptWith the US government having done some serious harm to the online gaming industry over the past year, entrepreneurs have been looking for ways to looking for … […]


  23. Poker Games » Comment on New Online Gaming Options - Duplicate Poker & Ujogo by …
    says:

    […] The Gambler » Comment on New Online Gaming Options – Duplicate Poker & Ujogo by &ac… wrote an interesting post today on Comment on New Online Gaming Options – Duplicate Poker & Ujogo by …Here’s a quick excerptpokerroomreview wrote an interesting post today on Comment on New Online Gaming Options – Duplicate Poker & Ujogo by …Here’sa quick excerpt…But the way this duplicate poker game is set up, it relies heavily on skill rather than luck. … […]


  24. Poker FAQs » Blog Archive » New Online Gaming Options - Duplicate Poker & Ujogo - Pokerati.com
    says:

    […] Pokerati.com […]