Ultimate Bet is an extremely popular site due to the heavy advertising seen on the web and television. It is visually one of the cleaner and more attractive sites on the internet. There are many limit options and types of games available to suit just about any type of player. It is one of my favorite sites to play, even though the cards there have not always been kind.
The first thing that strikes me when I play here is the seating. Of the large poker sites, this is the only one I have seen with a seat at the top and bottom of the table. Also, you are always playing at the bottom in the 6 o’clock position on the table. This is not always desirable for me, but at least I don’t have to search for my player. There is a mini view of the table which lists all players in a line. It is not very easy to use, but you can fit many games on your screen while using it. The options available prior to your turn are one of the best features of the site. Check/Fold, Check, Bet, Check/Fold Any, Check/Call Any, Bet/Raise Any, and Sit Out. The buttons are simple to understand and it is obvious when it is your turn to act.
There are two problems with the interface. First, you cannot tell if you have notes on a player when you see them. When you first sit down you have to click ‘notes’ on every player to see if you have any information on anyone at the table. Second, the slide bar on the no-limit games is hard to maneuver. It is a real challenge to make a bet not equal to the pot or blind.
Signing Up and Depositing Money
Signup is average. There are three screens asking for your basic information such as user name, age, address, etc. Depositing, which is usually instantaneous with Neteller, took a long time. I had no problem making a deposit with my credit card, though it is one of the few that will allow deposits on gambling sites. Waiting for the deposit was one of the few things I was disappointed with, but it turns out the deposit did not go through the first time. The second Neteller deposit I did was very quick.
Game Play And The Players
This is a good site for beginners. The limits are extremely low at some of the tables. The picture above comes from one of my prouder poker moments at a 1 penny table. This fine flop netted me a total of 22 cents. The players are quick, even though there is a lot of time to make decisions. The players I played against were tight before the flop, but went crazy after the flop, even with a low pair. I am sure the players at the higher limits were much better, but it was pretty easy to win at the lower limits.
I did not like the fact that you cannot tell the average pot at a table from the main screen. I like to search for tables with large average pots. That means there is usually a bad player or two at the table. At UB, you get whatever you happen to sit down with.
The Deposit Bonus And Promotions
Ultimate Bet Poker has some good deposit bonuses and they are always sending me new ones. The one I just used to sign up was a 50% bonus on a $200 deposit. You probably won’t find this bonus available on your first deposit though. They are only currently offering 20% for new players, which is very average.
Ultimate Bet Poker does hold some good promotions. They sponsor a World Poker Tour event in Aruba each year and give away prize packages to play in it. They guarantee over $1 Million dollars to the winner of this event. I would give my right arm to go to that party for a week. Okay, maybe just a pinky toe; but still, that would be a blast. They give away many seats a week in their satellite tournaments, but the buy-in for these starts at $100.
The Games Offered
UltimateBet offers the basic poker games of Hold’em, 7-card Stud, and Omaha with High/Lo variations available. Two other games they offer are called Pineapple (Hold’em with three cards) and Triple Draw. Triple draw is a strange online game. Each player is dealt 5 cards, gets to draw three times, and the lowest hand wins the pot. Fun to try and really wild, but no seats were available when I clicked on the game.
No-limit games start at 10 cent blinds. Limit games, like I mentioned above, start at 1 cent. The players at the very low limit games are not good, as you would imagine.
The multi-table tournaments at UltimateBet are average. They only recently started holding tournaments every night, but there are not many and there are few people playing. The sit-an-go tournaments (one table) are plentiful and start at a very low $1 entry, but it took a while to get a table together (just like any site). Way too many of their tournaments were for satellites. I play a tournament when I have time, which is not often, so satellites are a waste of time and money for me.
I really enjoy playing at Ultimate Bet Poker for ring games. Their table is attractive and fairly simple to use. There are some enhancements I mentioned above that I would like to see, but overall it is a pretty good site. There are always lots of tables and players. The tournament structure needs a lot of work before it can compete with the Prima Poker network.
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