User Centric examines online tells

The Chicago-based user experience consulting firm User Centric took an interesting look at the question of online poker tells and how to read these in an article this week at

As psychologists and professionals in usability and user interface design the company was curious to see if additional behavioural cues can be gathered from an online poker site's user interface (UI) aside from how players use the betting buttons.

Is the rest of the UI purely for aesthetics or can players obtain a "read" on opponents based on how they use the various features on the site's UI, they asked?

The conclusion was that these elements can assist players to assess online poker tells.

"In particular, avatars could be a valuable source of information for players," the company suggests. "For online poker companies, this might be an opportunity to enhance the features and functions of avatars during game play.

"In the gaming world, avatars are used as physical representations in the virtual world. Avatars provide an extra layer of entertainment for gamers and allow gamers to embellish their gaming identities. It is not uncommon for individuals to create avatars that draw on some of their real-life physical traits."

However, gamers sometime create alter-egos or represent themselves in ways that are otherwise not possible in real life. In a recent paper by Hussain and Griffiths, 57 percent of gamers were found to have engaged in gender swapping. Over two-thirds of females engaged in gender swapping when creating avatars, it was claimed. Reasons for gender swapping included different opportunities afforded by choosing an opposite-gendered avatar. The study also noted that females believed they would encounter less online harassment when assuming a male avatar. Overall, the authors' major conclusion was that choosing an opposite-gender avatar may affect the gamer's style of play and interaction with other gamers.

However, User Centric points out that the motives for selecting an avatar in online poker games may be quite different from those in other online games. Do players select an avatar that suits their poker style (e.g., selecting an ATM machine because the player is a loose player) or do players select avatars to induce opponents to make incorrect assumptions about the player and their style of play that equate to positive gains, whether it be play chips or real money? From a strategic vantage point, a poker player may select a specific type of avatar to suggest a loose style of play when, in fact, the player's style of play is tight and aggressive.

The article discusses various avatars with graphic illustrations, and the development of emotional displays introduced by major sites like Full Tilt It concludes that while poker avatars may have been traditionally thought of as a fun UI element, they also introduce simulated tells and bluffs to the game, and add richness to the online poker experience in ways that can't be done in a real life environment. The authors ask whether avatars could be developed further to enhance the user experience, and opines that this is possible.

"There is a clear opportunity for poker game developers to provide additional avatar features and functions that will appeal to both the novice and seasoned players," the authors state. "For example, future avatar enhancements we hope to see included are:

* Additional emotions: Given the gamut of emotions we've experienced at the poker table, one emotion that immediately came to mind was the feeling of intense nervousness. Perhaps avatars could show signs of sweating or having a rapidly-beating heart.

* Stealth mode: After making a bet, players could change their avatar to Stealth mode where the avatar puts on a pair of sunglasses, a branded baseball cap, or perhaps looks like Phil Laak in a hooded sweatshirt.

* The stare down: While waiting for an opponent to act after a bet or raise, players can engage a stare down feature. For example, the avatar's eyes could incrementally increase in size.

* The headphones: We had an internal debate about this suggestion, but it still has merit. What if an avatar had headphones on to signify they were playing on multiple tables? The headphones would symbolize the sometimes frustrating experience in casinos when players are too busy listening to their music to pay attention to the game. Headphones would provide a visual cue about a player's level of distraction, and since this information is already available on poker sites, we still think it is useful information for the other players at the table. It still won't make delayed play (due to multi-tabling) okay, but at least it allows players to provide a possible reason for their delay.

* Chip stack organization: Provide players the option of selecting from a variety of chip stack organization. Players sometimes use their chip organization to provide cues in the casino setting. At the online poker table, players could choose to have a "messy" chip stack or a very even symmetrical chip stack. Personally, we like to stack our chips in one tall pile to intimidate our opponents!

"These enhancements would appeal to the competitive nature of poker players, and we believe that sites that offer these kinds of features will attract both novice and seasoned players. For the novice player, a more interactive avatar simply adds to the overall experience. While recreational poker players play to win, there's also a "fun" component to playing. For the seasoned player, any additional layer of information that can be provided in a virtual environment helps narrow the gap between online poker and poker in a casino," the article concludes.

Live activity feed

  • Luis
    " halibaker wrote: aymenpronet wrote: Hi, Is this bonus still available or not ?? I want to register on the casino. I registered yesterday they said only Germany Switzerland Finland Austria will get no deposit bonus via SMS, other countries could claim on live chat but are now not eligible (since 10 october) double check those counties I gave though, this is just from memory from my 2 min chat with support.  Thank you halibaker for your quick answer.. I will check with live chat support..If they will not give me no deposit bonus I will not register."
  • Avatar
    "I had 5 spins on Fairytale Legends today"
  • Index
    "check rewards for 5 free spins on new slot fairytale legends   GLA :)"
  • Koi
    "Check mails or accounts   They added 17 Free Spins for NetEnt latest Fairytale Slot."
  • Avatar
    "Sms 10 spins on Fortune Teller (play&go)"
  • Photo
    "I do not understand if they told me in supporting the truth when I now communicate with them, you need between the bonuses, the chips need to make deposits was 1500 rubles (I did not know I had this time the amount is less than 1,500 rubles total deposits my between the chip 585 rubles). That is why they were the first to say, to write about it immediately and everything would be clear and clear and would not have had much time to wait and negotiate and I no longer have to make deposits of up to 1,500 rubles, I'm out of this situation, yet it not afraid to dare make deposits in LimoPlay and make deposits in other casinos. The second reason they could not even if I personally write a letter explaining that so and so to you, I'm not supposed bonus to tie that small sum made deposits between the chip, the more I turn to them not once but several of help and explanations. Third, I do not understand why they gave me and you to show that they have given me the chip, on October 19, if I did not receive not 19, not October 20 and until now I have not received. Fourth me support, they explain, they say one thing while you write something else. To me, they say that I did not give the chip a little as I did need to make deposits and deposits at least 1,500 rubles to get another chip, and at the same time, you write that they gave me the chip and I have played him and kak if I were still $ 0.19, and the chip is active until 26 October. Here are those questions I would like to get answers very interesting to see and hear their opinion about it all, there is not in their actions, reports any logic do not you think? Or is poor awareness or simply banal error occurred and confused me with another person, player. Thank you bye."
Swipe left or right to see more

lcb activities in the last 24 hours

  • 43
    new members
  • 589
    members online
  • 16320
    guests online
  • 122
    new posts
  • 9457
    free games played
Join the club

Highest Community Rated Online Casinos

Swipe left or right to see more

Latest forum posts

Join today and start earning rewards

You will immediately get full access to our online casino forum/chat plus receive our newsletter with news & exclusive bonuses every month.
S logo

Report to moderator

Use this function to inform the moderators and administrator of an abusive or wrongly posted message.

Please note that your email address will be revealed to the moderators if you use this

Select Language
Search Results