Default HUD statistic values in Poker Copilot 5

Play a single hand of poker with Poker Copilot’s HUD, and you’ll learn that your adversary has a VPiP (Voluntarily put money in pot) value of 0% or 100%. Clearly both values are wrong and yet those two values are the only possibilities after one hand. This is why Poker Copilot makes the values grey until you’ve played 25 hands. After 25 hands, VPiP will have converged to a reasonably accurate number, and we then show it in full colour.

The problem is much worse with a stat that we can only measure in certain situations, such as “Folded Big Blind to Steal Attempt.” On a full ring table, a player is only on the big blind every 9th or 10th hand, and in most of those hands will not be facing a blind steal attempt. You may need to play hundreds of hands against a villain until you have accurate data for “Folded Big Blind to Steal Attempt.”

tl;dr version: convergence is a problem.

In Poker Copilot 5 we are adding a new approach to solving this problem: default values. This means that for a player you’ve never played before, instead of assuming that their VPiP is unknown, we’ll assume it is a preset default, say 20%. So after one hand, instead of seeing 0% or 100%, you’ll see 19% or 23%. Until you have 25 hands of data, we’ll fill in the missing hands with a value of 20%. After each hand, we’ll use the default value less and actual data more.

This will be much better for “Folded Big Blind to Steal Attempt”. Even though I designed and coded most of Poker Copilot, I still find myself looking at this statistic after just a couple of rounds around the table, and using it to make decisions. It is quite likely that the villain had only low hands in the big blind, and folded wisely. Or had great hands and re-raised the blind steal attempt. So I’m using the data incorrectly.

Instead we’ll use a default value of maybe 50%. Only after a significant amount of hands against a player will I now see the correct value. “Significant amount” here means we could measure the statistic 25  times.

  • “But wait”, you say. “Isn’t that giving me wrong values?” Yes, and no. Yes, the values are wrong, but that’s the nature of statistics – in a dynamic setting they are always partly wrong, but we make them as accurate as we can. And I believe that the default values are less wrong than the current approach.
  • “I don’t like this. Is it optional?” Of course. In fact, by default this feature will be disabled.
  • “Do we have to use the default values you choose?” No. You can choose your default value for each statistic. Or none for certain statistics. You can make the default values work for any number of hands, so that after, say, 10 hands, you see the measured values only.

We conceived this feature with the help of a online pro.