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Cake Poker (www.cakepoker.eu) was founded in June 2006 as the flagship room in the Cake Poker Network. The site quickly gained partners to grow into a powerful online poker network, featuring dozens of sites and a vast player pool. Cake Poker itself quickly gained a reputation for being a great place to play for recreational players and more serious players alike. The recreational players could take advantage of Cake Poker's unusual and unique promotional deals and rewards programs, while the aspiring professionals could take advantage of the loose play and weak competition those recreational players provided.
Over time, the network shrank somewhat, and while the level of competition remained soft, players began to find that games were harder to get going at higher levels, and that payout times for withdrawals had increased substantially. The good news was that players were still receiving their funds, but the site appeared to be going in the wrong direction.
In 2012, Cake Poker entered a new era, as the entire Cake Network was purchased by Lock Poker. The merger created a new network: the Revolution Gaming Network, which is now ranked among the 10 largest online poker rooms in the world. The added stability and increased player base brought by Lock Poker has rejuvenated Cake Poker, making it once again one of the top choices for players worldwide (including in the United States). Best of all, even after the merger, our review team feel that Cake Poker has retained the unique style that has always made it a favorite of players.
Cake Poker uses a downloadable software client that's easy on the eyes and simple to navigate. While the interface might seem a little busy at first, there's a nice flow to the way things are laid out, making it easy to find the games you want to play in through the lobby system and the filtering options available. There's also easy access to the Cake Casino and other games through the same client.
When we reviewed Cake Poker we didn't find the largest variety of games we've ever seen, but the most popular forms of poker are pretty well represented here. If you like Texas Hold'em or Omaha, this is the site for you, as those are the only games you'll find. However, there is a good choice of limits to choose from; for instance, no-limit hold'em starts at $0.02/$0.04, and goes as high as $500/$1,000 - and yes, these games do go off on occasion, though heads-up battles are more common than full ring games at the highest levels. Tournaments are very popular at Cake Poker, with lots of guaranteed events and satellites to live tournaments.
The infamously soft games at Cake Poker have changed slightly over the years. While the games are still very beatable, they're slightly tougher since the changeover to the Revolution Network, as Lock Poker had a generally more serious player base. Still, the lower-limit games are as good as they get, and the tournament play is particularly beatable, making Cake a great place for new players with a solid grasp of poker fundamentals to build their bankrolls.
Unlike most poker rooms, Cake Poker uses a variety of different rewards systems to give players added value for their play. Most of these rewards revolve around the Frequent Player Points program, with players earning points by paying rake and tournament fees. As you earn FPPs, you'll also earn gold chips that can allow you to buy into certain tournaments for free. In ring games, you'll also randomly receive gold cards, which can be individually "sold" for cash or combined to make hands worth even bigger rewards.
To summarize our Cake Poker site review: Cake Poker may not be the oldest or largest poker room around, but the combination of great games and an excellent rewards program should catch your attention. Whether you're a new player who wants to get started in online poker or an old hand looking for some very beatable games, Cake Poker is definitely worth checking out.