WRGPT.org - World Rec.Gambling Poker Tournament

WRGPT Frequently Asked Questions

We welcome any suggestions for the FAQ.    


How to play:




What is WRGPT?

WRGPT stands for Worldwide Rec.Gambling Poker Tournament or something very similar. It is a poker tournament played for exactly no money using email as the communication method. Why play? For fun, of course. Where else could you enter a tourney with over 1000 players from all around the world that lasts for most of a year?

How long has this been happening?

WRGPT is starting the 19th annual tourney in November of 2009.

Who started it?

The first tourney included only 30 players and was dealt by hand by Will Hyde (?) who then sent email messages to each of the players telling them what cards they had. The players would return the email telling Will what action they would like to happen.

The next year a poker program was written that understood email commands directly. This program was written by Ron Duursma. Actually, it is a collection of programs and scripts that run WRGPT. Later, other people contributed to the collection. Ken Anderson wrote scripts to handle "live redraws", another topic in this FAQ.

Who runs WRGPT?

As mentioned above, WRGPT was originally run by hand by Will Hyde. Later, Ron Duursma ran it alone for a while. Mike Northham helped for a while. Then Ken Anderson helped. Then Jeff Woods and Ken Anderson ran it. Now Ken Anderson and David Widder run WRGPT.

Where is WRGPT?

WRGPT19 is being run on a virtual private server. Previous WRGPTs have been run in a garage in Cupertino, CA, in a server room in North Carolina and whereever Ron Duursma was running it.

How to play:

How do I get in WRGPT?

Each year, about October, notice is given to the previous year's players and posted to rec.gambling.poker about registration for WRGPT for that year. The news also travels through various poker related mailing lists. When the announcement is made each player needs to go online to a designated page and fill out a registration form. Everyone is allowed to play. It is encouraged that players use real names or at least initials as it is more fun to play against Chris Ferguson than zenith444. Nobody is allowed to play more than one stack in the tournament. This is enforced absolutely when noticed.

How does it work?

The dealer emails cards to you. You email commands back to the dealer. The dealer sends everyone at the table status messages when action occurs. There is a manual that explains the commands online.

How do I start now that I am in it?

You will need to issue a BACK command to start in the tournament. Everyone is started on vacation because some people actually will be on vacation and couldn't tell the dealer themselves.

I see that the hand started but I didn't get my cards. Why?

Email is not strictly ordered. I can send message A then message B with significant time between the two and still have message B arrive first. This is the most common cause of this problem. The cards will usually come in a few minutes. If not, issue a WHAT command to ask the dealer to send you complete status including your cards.

I get cards and reminders but don't get any table action messages. Why?

This could be a similar problem to the above problem. Mail messages sent seconds apart could be delivered hours apart. Usually messages sent about the same time are delivered about the same time as well. But, not always. The remedy is to wait or send in a WHAT command.

Another cause of this problem is SPAM filters. Table action messages have a lot of recipients. Messages also come from a mail address named "dealer" which triggers many SPAM filters. The remedy for this is to check your SPAM filters that are either setup for your account or setup by your ISP or email provider. If this cannot be resolved you may need to use a free email provider online for WRGPT. Many companies block email from the dealer.

I am not getting any email from the dealer. Why?

Several problems can cause this symptom. Your email could have been entered incorrectly. Your email could be bouncing. Your email could have a SPAM filter catching messages from the dealer. The WRGPT server could be down or inaccessible.

If you have never received dealer email you may have registered incorrectly. If you had email but it stopped it could be one of the other problems. Check the server at www.wrgpt.org. If you can get that page the server itself is up and accessible. If that works check if you are getting email from other outside places? If that is ok check for SPAM filters that may be catching the mail. If all of those fail send email to the floorman to investigate.

Why do I get "? Error: missing bet(perhaps forgot $-sign)" returned from my bets?

You either have issued an ill formed command or you are sending formatted email messages. If you can set your email to different sizes, fonts or colors, there is a good chance you can send HTML or formatted email. The dealer can handle some of that but has real problems with most of it.

You will need to set your email application to send text only messages to the dealer.

If you are sending clear text only messages, check the manual to make sure the commands you send are formatted correctly. Some common mistakes are:

Incorrect Correct Comment


$ not needed with *
CALL 50 CALL $50 $ needed with a number
CALL $100 /S CALL/S $50 modifers go next to the word and before the amount

Why don't I get any response from the dealer to my messages?

Most likely you forgot to put the ID=xxxxxx in the subject line of your response. This is common as players often reply to the table action message instead of the "my cards" message which contains your ID.

Either that or the dealer server is down. Check www.wrgpt.org to see if it is down or not.

Can I play my friend's hands while he is on vacation / out of town / etc.?

You can only play one entry ever per tournament. So, you CANNOT play your friend's hands while they are gone.

I busted out so can I now play my bored friend's hand?

You also cannot play your friend's hands after you are eliminated because they are bored with the tourney.

Why? Because it is not allowed in real life tourneys. If it was allowed a top notch player could play a lot of cheap satellites to the WSOP Championship event, win a lot of entries and put friends in all the seats. Then they can play their own hand way over aggressively hoping to make a monster stack or bust out. Busting out now has a less painful consequence as they just goes to the friend with the biggest current stack and takes over for them.

Busting out of a tourney means that the tourney is over for you.