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  • jlowery73

    2012 DDC Main Event Champion

    • 2014 FAFC Finalist

    • x3

      2015 FACFC Finalist

    I have seen it in some gpps, but for the past 2 weeks they’ve done this with the biggest college football contest. 150K in prizes, 50k to 1st, then 10, 5, and 2k are the next 3 places. So incredibly top heavy, what was wrong with the 25k at first and flattening it out some?

    Just thought I would ask if you guys and gals actually like this top heavy of a structure. I have seen it for some NFL slates also, I hope it doesn’t become the norm. 10-20 percent of the prizes towards 1st is plenty imo. I honestly think the $9 Slant for NFL has a GREAT prize structure, with a 500k prize pool it pays 50,30,20, 15 and 10 for the top 5 spots with 2x being minimum payback. You can finish in the top 20 or so and still get a good payback.

  • bigez952

    I am sure more people that are grinders and hanging around RG’s forum would agree with you that flatter payouts are better. However everyone I know that doesn’t pay for RG or take daily grinding seriously the only thing they care about is what 1st place pays and the higher the number the more likely they are to play. They love the lottery style milly makers and never miss those even though I think those have the worst payout structures out there. I think it gets discussed on these forums a lot how the payout structures need to change but I believe our opinion which seems loud on here is in the minority of the overall consumer base. The 150 max pros prefer the top heavy lottery style payouts as they only need to win a handful every year to make profit instead of having to be consistently good.

  • jlowery73

    2012 DDC Main Event Champion

    • 2014 FAFC Finalist

    • x3

      2015 FACFC Finalist

    While I understand what you are saying, I guess at least part of my thread was to point out that college football DFS, which is tiny compared to NFL has now trended towards this structure for a few weeks now. The offerings for gpps are very few and I guess it’s tough to see the big mid stakes college gpp go this route.
    At least in the NFL, you have a choice to pick between the top heavy ones and the flatter ones.

  • BigRay

    @jlowery73 said...

    I honestly think the $9 Slant for NFL has a GREAT prize structure, with a 500k prize pool it pays 50,30,20, 15 and 10 for the top 5 spots with 2x being minimum payback. You can finish in the top 20 or so and still get a good payback.

    Contest selection is key for daily low limit grinders like me. I agree these top prizes have gotten out of hand. I just started noticing a third of the total prize money is going to 1st in a lot of these contests. Even some of the $5 single entries have started going this way as well and they are tougher to find ones a little more spread out. I figured once sports betting was legal the DFS sites would start to put more money/time/effort on the gambling side than the Fantasy side just not this quick.

  • Pandamonious

    • Ranked #46

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    • 2020 Blogger of the Month

    DK claims this is what the mass majority of people want. Unfortunately the masses have zero sense of what’s best for them. The data they pull from whatever supports this. They would tell you if it was 25K to 1st it wouldn’t fill and the contest would ultimately be smaller anyway.

    Agree its awful and not sustainable for the player. I avoid those contests like the plague. As long as people play them, they’ll keep doing them and it’ll support their data.

  • Pandamonious

    • Ranked #46

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    • Moderator

    • 2020 Blogger of the Month

    @BigRay said...

    Contest selection is key for daily low limit grinders like me. I agree these top prizes have gotten out of hand. I just started noticing a third of the total prize money is going to 1st in a lot of these contests. Even some of the $5 single entries have started going this way as well and they are tougher to find ones a little more spread out. I figured once sports betting was legal the DFS sites would start to put more money/time/effort on the gambling side than the Fantasy side just not this quick.

    They’ve been doing it for a long while. Whenever they run smaller contests. Either due to a crowded sports day or a not overly popular sport. Its more prevalent right now due to MLB, NBA, NFL and PGA all running congruently.

  • jlowery73

    2012 DDC Main Event Champion

    • 2014 FAFC Finalist

    • x3

      2015 FACFC Finalist

    @Pandamonious said...

    DK claims this is what the mass majority of people want. Unfortunately the masses have zero sense of what’s best for them. The data they pull from whatever supports this. They would tell you if it was 25K to 1st it wouldn’t fill and the contest would ultimately be smaller anyway.

    Agree its awful and not sustainable for the player. I avoid those contests like the plague. As long as people play them, they’ll keep doing them and it’ll support their data.

    I know it probably comes from their data….what I also wonder is what % of new players are continuing to play for awhile after they start? If you are only playing top-heavy contests then normally guys aren’t going to continue to deposit every week. I know two guys who still play DFS after a couple years and play ONLY the milly contests, but have never won much of anything and only play minimal entries each week. It’s like a weekly donation, and they’re ok with that. Their outlook on DFS is far different then mine however. They don’t believe you can actually make consistent money at it. It’s essentially the same as buying lotto tickets to them. I DON’T feel like this is the norm though for recreational players….is it really the majority of players out there who are willing to spend 40-50 bucks a week (or more) playing contests which they have normally just deposit to play each week? It’s not the same as buying a 5 dollar lotto ticket.

    Back to college football though…where news is nowhere near that of pro football news and players could be out for Covid, etc. without prior word on any given week. I am just sad to see these gpps go so top-heavy as there is already some uncertainty out there in even playing it. I will also play college football DFS but I have noticed a big change in the prize structures lately.

  • sochoice

    • 2017 DraftKings FBWC Finalist

    • 2017 FanDuel WFFC Champion

    If the plurality of people didn’t want this, those people wouldn’t play and the contests would overlay. Yet, they all fill. Until the free market changes its desires, the heavy payout to tope finishers won’t change.

  • jlowery73

    2012 DDC Main Event Champion

    • 2014 FAFC Finalist

    • x3

      2015 FACFC Finalist

    @sochoice said...

    If the plurality of people didn’t want this, those people wouldn’t play and the contests would overlay. Yet, they all fill. Until the free market changes its desires, the heavy payout to tope finishers won’t change.

    Do you honestly think the DFS regulars “wouldn’t play?” I get your point, but they’ll always play contests out there, because it’s what they do. Doesn’t mean the contest payouts couldn’t be improved though.

  • rausch180

    @bigez952 said...

    The 150 max pros prefer the top heavy lottery style payouts as they only need to win a handful every year to make profit instead of having to be consistently good.

    I suspect it would be the opposite that the pros would prefer flatter structures as its just less variance and they are pros because they are consistently good. It’s a lot harder to catch 1st than it is a top 10 delivering decent money consistently in a flatter structure. However, the casual players are likely more attracted by a bigger number for 1st and it’s just better for them most likely. They’re going to be losing on average regardless, so catching a random lottery win on the rarer occasion they do hit is probably the best outcome for them.

  • bigez952

    @rausch180 said...

    I suspect it would be the opposite that the pros would prefer flatter structures as its just less variance and they are pros because they are consistently good. It’s a lot harder to catch 1st than it is a top 10 delivering decent money consistently in a flatter structure. However, the casual players are likely more attracted by a bigger number for 1st and it’s just better for them most likely. They’re going to be losing on average regardless, so catching a random lottery win on the rarer occasion they do hit is probably the best outcome for them.

    I am just going off a few of the ones I follow on Twitter that openly say they want as much as possible to 1st place as they know they will hit that x amount of times per year and want it to carry the year. It is so hard to consistently good night in and night out playing 150+ lineups that on the nights you hit you want 1000X or more to offset the many bad days. I am guessing it is not 100% that feel this way but I know at least some do.

  • SkateFiend

    You can’t really grind out profit long term by playing mostly cash games, which was a rule of thumb around 2015. Min cash at most DK contests aren’t 2X the entry fee. I think most players have just have accepted that DFS is a lottery and gravitate towards the big top heavy contests. If you try to focus only on small / SE contests were the top prize is like 20-100 bucks, your bankroll will eventually reach the bottom. I learned this several times in the past. So you might as well go for big.

    Everyone here was real excited about fantasy draft’s no rake approach. That hardly lasted a year and now the site doesn’t exist. The slight edge they provided to normal players were offset by small contests and overly flexible lineup.

    I can take down quarter games twice or thrice a year. That’s out of a 80 or 160 game season. Most mid level players probably know this too. If you’re actually spending 40 bucks a night, then you might as well play contests where the top prize really counts.

  • bigez952

    @SkateFiend said...

    You can’t really grind out profit long term by playing mostly cash games, which was a rule of thumb around 2015. Min cash at most D contests aren’t 2X the entry fee. I think most players have just have accepted that DFS is a lottery and gravitate towards the big top heavy contests. If you try to focus only on small / SE contests were the top prize is like 20-100 bucks, your bankroll will eventually reach the bottom. I learned this several times in the past. So you might as well go for big.

    Everyone here was real excited about fantasy draft’s no rake approach. That hardly lasted a year and now the site doesn’t exist. The slight edge they provided to normal players were offset by small contests and overly flexible lineup.

    I can take down quarter games twice or thrice a year. That’s out of a 80 or 160 game season. Most mid level players probably know this too. If you’re actually spending 40 bucks a night, then you might as well play contests where the top prize really counts.

    This is exactly the sentiment I have seen from the best players I follow. They are good enough to know they will win a couple times per year so want that to carry the entire season with massive payouts vs. trying to be above average every single day over the course of 365 days to grind a profit.

  • hendog

    • 921

      RG Overall Ranking

    • 2017 DraftKings FFWC Finalist

    I’ve posted about this a ton in the DK Community thread over the past 2 years, had some back and forths and even a phone call with the DK Community Manager. It’s correct basically they mainly follow what the data says. On big slates like NFL Main they are able to offer more variety but they prioritize the top-heavy contests.

    One thing I don’t understand about the payout structures though is why some of the 25cent and $1 GPPs are absurdly flat. It’s the opposite problem… This was asked in the other thread but there wasn’t a good answer.

  • theIrrigator

    • Ranked #91

      RG Tiered Ranking

    @hendog said...

    One thing I don’t understand about the payout structures though is why some of the 25cent and $1 GPPs are absurdly flat. It’s the opposite problem… This was asked in the other thread but there wasn’t a good answer.

    I would assume it because most new players are gonna be low stakes players and they want to keep them around. You want to give as many new players as possible a taste of cashing so they come back

  • Zieg30

    • 2018 DraftKings FGWC Finalist

    @hendog said...

    I’ve posted about this a ton in the DK Community thread over the past 2 years, had some back and forths and even a phone call with the DK Community Manager. It’s correct basically they mainly follow what the data says. On big slates like NFL Main they are able to offer more variety but they prioritize the top-heavy contests.

    One thing I don’t understand about the payout structures though is why some of the 25cent and $1 GPPs are absurdly flat. It’s the opposite problem… This was asked in the other thread but there wasn’t a good answer.

    I’ve tried to ask the same questions and make the same arguments over the years. No success.

  • LegiaWwa

    That’s how every tennis GPP is. It sucks until you win one, then it’s awesome.

  • humanash

    I think it is weird that this topic comes up for discussion so often. Me, I love the top-heavy prizes. I will not play any game that doesn’t reward at least 10% to first place, and I much prefer 20-33%. I track and analyze my results very carefully, and these games are where I make the most profit. My graphs are basically a straight line from where 33% to first is most profitable going down to the 10% games at the bottom. In addition to being the most profitable for me they are the most fun, since for me the rush of sweating for a big prize dwarfs the rush of doubling up a $20 bet in a H2H or whatever.

    With that said, everyone is different in terms of what type of strategy they use, what they’re good at, and what they enjoy from the DFS experience. That is why I imagine that DK offers such a variety of games and payout structures. What I don’t get is why people who don’t want a top-heavy first prize and want flat payouts don’t just play one of the many flat payout games? You can play H2H or double ups for a true flat payout, or you can play triple ups or some of the many flatter SE and other GPP styles that are much flatter. People act like just because there are a few games with a top-heavy prize that they have to play them. It just doesn’t compute with me, if you don’t want a massive top-heavy prize, the incentive for the large player pools goes away. You don’t need to play against 20k people to turn your $10 into $25 or $50, you can play in a field of basically any size for that type of payout and DK has a huge array of games that offer it. The only reason to get an enormous amount of players in the same game in the first place is to create a massive pot and first place prize, so if you don’t want that, why would you want to be playing against so many people anyways?

    My last point relates to something I hear all the time, along the lines of – “the top-heavy payout structure makes in untenable for long-term profit, and the only people who like it are casual player fish”. First of all, that is not true. And if the only people who like playing in the top-heavy games are bad at DFS and have a low win expectancy…….. then why wouldn’t you want to be playing against them? If DK started making all the payouts appeal only to a certain type of grinder who wants a sustainable profit via flat payouts, the dead money would dry up real fast and it’d just be a bunch of pros and sharks trying to grind enough out of each other to beat the rake.

  • ryanprzy

    @SkateFiend said...

    If you try to focus only on small / SE contests were the top prize is like 20-100 bucks, your bankroll will eventually reach the bottom.

    If the payout structures are proportionally the same percentage-wise, then this won’t matter. Your bankroll will bleed out at the same rate regardless of the entry fee

  • btwice80

    @bigez952 said...

    The 150 max pros prefer the top heavy lottery style payouts as they only need to win a handful every year to make profit instead of having to be consistently good.

    Every 150 max entry pro that I’ve heard talk about this says the opposite—-they much prefer flatter payouts. But they’re still going to play if it’s top-heavy.

  • Zieg30

    • 2018 DraftKings FGWC Finalist

    @humanash said...

    I think it is weird that this topic comes up for discussion so often. Me, I love the top-heavy prizes. I will not play any game that doesn’t reward at least 10% to first place, and I much prefer 20-33%. I track and analyze my results very carefully, and these games are where I make the most profit. My graphs are basically a straight line from where 33% to first is most profitable going down to the 10% games at the bottom. In addition to being the most profitable for me they are the most fun, since for me the rush of sweating for a big prize dwarfs the rush of doubling up a $20 bet in a H2H or whatever.

    There’s a happy medium. I don’t like playing on contests below 10% either. I just hate playing in contests that are above 20%. 10-20% is the perfect top end range, with 10th always getting 10% of 1st.

  • hendog

    • 921

      RG Overall Ranking

    • 2017 DraftKings FFWC Finalist

    @humanash said...

    My last point relates to something I hear all the time, along the lines of – “the top-heavy payout structure makes in untenable for long-term profit, and the only people who like it are casual player fish”. First of all, that is not true. And if the only people who like playing in the top-heavy games are bad at DFS and have a low win expectancy…….. then why wouldn’t you want to be playing against them? If DK started making all the payouts appeal only to a certain type of grinder who wants a sustainable profit via flat payouts, the dead money would dry up real fast and it’d just be a bunch of pros and sharks trying to grind enough out of each other to beat the rake.

    I agree with most of what you are saying, the nuance (for me personally) is that I don’t want flatter payouts in general, just for the top 10 or so. Beyond that, I’d rather it not be flat. Basically top-heavy but not all to first. Even putting in a massive number of lineups I don’t hit first reliably. But I get close fairly regularly. So if my profits are more correlated with my top-10 rate they will be more stable. If my profits depend only on hitting first I am going to have massive downswings in-between that I may not be able to afford.

  • humanash

    @Zieg30 said...

    There’s a happy medium. I don’t like playing on contests below 10% either. I just hate playing in contests that are above 20%. 10-20% is the perfect top end range, with 10th always getting 10% of 1st.

    10-20% might be the perfect top end range for you, but it is not at all perfect for me. What is wrong with the already large number of games that pay 10% to first? There are so many, especially compared to the number of games that pay 20%+. I just don’t get why every single contest has to fit your (not you personally, the royal “you” of everyone who complains about top-heavy prizes) personal criteria. I have zero problems with the fact that most of the games on DK have payout structure that make them unappealing for me. MLB is my favorite sport to play, and looking at the slate today, there are 8 GPPs that pay 7.5-10% to first, and only one that pays more than 10%. Even on the 2 Showdown slates today, there are 3 total games that pay 20% or more to first and then 15 that pay 10-15% to first. Of course along with dozens and dozen of 50/50s, triple ups, single entries, satellites, etc. Your preferred GPP payout format is already crushing mine 23-4, why isn’t that enough of a happy medium already? How much more lopsided does it need to be? Can’t I at least have a little something too? For example, look at the early HOU/OAK Showdown $1 entry games. There is a mini-max that pays 20% to first, and a 20-max solo shot that pays 10%. We can both play a nice big-field GPP for a dollar that offers a great ROI either way, and each of us can pick the game with the prize we like. I think that is about as good as a “happy medium” can get, so why would anyone need to insist on having both one way and none the other way? On the late slate, the $1 mini-max game only pays 15% to first and therefore isn’t very appealing to me. There is also a different $1 game, the solo shot, that pays 10% to first, so if I want to play a GPP for a buck on NYY/TAM, I can pick from one of the multiple flat payout options that are my least fun and least profitable formats, but I have zero options that feature a prize that fits my preferences. Not a happy medium imo. There is only 1 game on that entire slate that pays more than 15% to first place, and it costs $15 per entry. That’s a pretty stiff game for a regular joe and a big jump from a $1 entry, so for folks like me who want to play say, 20 entries, I either have to pony up $300 or play a game with a weak flat-payout prize. There are such a small number of games in my preferred format as it is, and it really frustrates me to see so many people in this forum pushing DK to get rid of them entirely. I also really just don’t see what the massive issue is with there being one or two games on a slate that don’t align with someone’s personal preferences.

    It’s not really a “happy medium” or a “compromise” if all the games are created to be the same, which is why I imagine that DK offers so many different formats in the first place. My favorite games pay 20%+ to first, and if those went away entirely I would probably stop playing altogether. I play games that give 10-20% to first when there aren’t any better options available for a given slate and I still want to play, but if the games I like best were gone for good the incentive wouldn’t really be there for me to stick around and only play my least-fun and least-profitable formats. Like, I’ll play probably 20 entries in that 15% mini-max game tonight because I’ll be researching the game for Classic anyways and it’s not the worst payout, but if that was the best game I could ever hope for, I most likely just wouldn’t bother at all.

  • Pandamonious

    • Ranked #46

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    • 2020 Blogger of the Month

    Humanash…

    It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see what people are talking about. I’m not sure why you write these long posts while glossing over the most obvious issue people have.

    You play a large-field contest for a large payout. That’s the point. While hoping not to go broke in the process. No one cares that the 4-seamer in MLB is 10% to 1st, or actually less today. No one here is talking about little $1 GPP’s. They care that the big “main contest” is 33% to 1st, which costs $10, $15, $18, $20 to enter depending on the sport or the day.

    These 10% to first contests you’re talking about that exist are like, 2K to 1st or less contests.

    People are asking for a 150K pool not be 50K to 1st, but like 20-30K to first, which is still a lot of money, while also allowing for more money to be won if you finish high, than when there is 50K to 1st.

    They’re talking about the “main contest” or whatever you want to call it. A “happy medium” between 33% and 10%. Not a “happy medium” across every single contest. You’re talking about all contests.

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