PokerStars New Jersey is officially a thing. The world’s largest poker site is back in America, well, in one state, anyway.
Although the site is now officially live in New Jersey, the full launch won’t occur until Monday, March 21. Wednesday marked the first day of the PokerStars New Jersey soft launch, and it has been the biggest topic of discussion in the poker world this week.
PokerStars allowed players to enter real money games Wednesday evening from 4:00 PM Eastern time until midnight, and limited access to a select 500 players. Come Monday, the software will be available 24/7 to an unlimited number of players.
The only requirement for playing on PokerStars in America will be to be physically located in New Jersey when you log on. Residents of the Garden State will not be allowed to access their PokerStars accounts while they are in, say, Texas. And non-residents will be allowed to play on PokerStars when they are located within the Garden State’s borders, which could mean a lot of New Yorkers will be coming across the Hudson River for weekend warrior playtime.
Smooth Day One
Despite a few challenges, and the inevitable complainers, the word on the streets (by which we mean the Internet) is that the majority of the 500 initial customers were satisfied, overall.
PokerStars offered a wide range of games on day one of its soft launch. Players packed low-limit and medium limit ring games, sit & go’s, Spin & Go tournaments, multi-table tournaments, and even the famous Zoom Poker.
The $5/$10 blinds were the highest stakes cash games offered. Spin & Go tournaments ranged from a $1 to $10 buy-in.
The purpose of the initial soft launch, which runs this weekend until the full kickoff on Monday, is to work out the kinks, of course. Some players have reported technical issues in the first two days, but that is to be expected. PokerStars is hoping all the minor issues are worked out by Monday’s big whoop.
In With the New, Out with the Old…Or Not
PokerStars hasn’t operated within the United States since 2011. But they didn’t throw away the records of their American players.
Therefore, old PokerStars accounts can be accessed in New Jersey, but players can also opt for a new account instead, in case you want some fresh juju. However, bear in mind that once you decide to sign-up for a new account, you can’t change your mind and switch back to the old one.
Players should also be reminded that multiple accounts are illegal on all regulated online poker sites. You can get banned permanently from a site after getting caught using more than one account per site, a rule designed to prevent collusion.
The general consensus from social media and Internet forums is that customers were satisfied with the games and software the first couple of days. Of course, there were some who complained on Twitter about user errors, ranging from “computer freezing up” to “unable to access old account.” But when has new software ever gone off without a single hitch?
Poker players in New Jersey will be hoping PokerStars has these issues cleaned up by Monday’s full launch. But, according to the majority of customers, the soft launch has been a success overall.