BBO 101 - What’s it like?
DIFFICULT AT FIRST BUT WORTH THE EFFORT!
OK all, I’ve been playing ‘Support the Club’ online for a couple of weeks now. And here is what it has been like.
39 duplicates played -- 2 Robot all day tournaments played.
My average so far 46.64% Earned 6.93 Black Master Points. – The Club has earned $164 from my $200 in total fees .
My average at the club through 3/10 was 49%. So the competition on line is a little stiffer for me.
I have met a lot of nice people (a few monsters but it is easy to ignore them). Most will adjust to your Convention Card (Which is just like ours). Since a lot of the players are stuck at home like me (and maybe you) there is a good comradery. Many of your opponents are first rate players almost as good as our own Bruce, Wafik, and Martin. Each person has a rating displayed which gives you an idea of their abilities and experience.
You can deal with the experts’ conventions. I discovered a clever trick. Just google the convention (the Bridgebum site has good descriptions) and keep it open in a separate tab in your browser. When the situation arises just open that tab and you can bid with the best of them. You can also inquire about the meanings of bids and there is an alert system.
MECHANICS OF JOINING TOURNAMENTS This is the ‘gotcha’.
There are three daily duplicates where you need a partner. Since not all club members want to play these events, this means using the BBO Partnership Desk. In the beginning this is potluck. After a few rounds I found some regular partners. This took patience and persistence.
DRACONIAN TIMING CONSTRAINTS.
The BBO system limits games to 600 tables. The 2:10 p.m. game fills up in about 10-15 minutes. You have to sign up 2 hrs before game time period. No early signups. So the 7, 2:10, and 4:30 games register at 5 am, 12:10 pm, and 2:30 pm. Each deal has a 7 minute time limit – three deals each of 18 rounds. If you run over time the board disappears and the Director Rules what the outcome is – this is not just averaging – the directors rule what the likely outcome would be – I have found them very fair. You can request further rulings if you wish but it just subtracts from your time allotment.
DIRECTORS ARE GREAT
There is a button if you need a director. They appear instantly and rule officiously. They are polite, firm and final.
This is true live competitive duplicate bridge, but in an online environment. The scoring is the same as we have at the Club and is instantaneous. All hand records are available for later review. They can be played Bid by Bid and Trick by Trick. You can replay how each winning team played the hand Bid by Bid and Trick by Trick. This is truly educational.
Since I am stuck at home, it is nice to have something with which to be occupied. I wish more members of the club participated, but the online community is diverse and always available.
Give it a try – with a little patience and persistence – it can be very fun and rewarding. Remember Black Points count towards the Ace of Clubs and Mini-McKenney races.
Your fellow Californian Stuck at Home
Just about any question you may have is answered here: https://www.acbl.org/clubsupportonlinegames/