October 16 2013, by Eric Danis

Johannes Levermann on the Birth of PokerSnowie

PokerSnowie LogoPokerSnowie co-founder and head of research and development Johannes Levermann took some time to discuss the arrival of his revolutionary poker training software on the market. In this edition, Johannes gives us an inside look at PokerSnowie:

The people at PokerSnowie have built a AI-based World Class no-limit hold’em poker player that can teach you, the student, optimal game theory and help you develop a long-term winning strategy. PokerSnowie comments on every single move you make in the game, it assigns an EV (expected value) factor for every possible action and informs the user exactly how to play.


PokerSnowie GPIIt all began back in 1998 when Levermann and his team developed Backgammon Snowie, a learning and analysis tool for the popular and extremely competitive game of Backgammon. BG Snowie was based on neural networks where the program learned the game’s strategy by gaining experience, like a human. What’s different than humans is that neural networks have the ability to be better than humans and that is exactly what Backgammon Snowie’s system did. The program was recognized as the best on the market soon after it was originally released.

Levermann provided this great quote: “I was a professional backgammon player myself, once ranked #3 in the world, but I could never beat BG Snowie in the long run.”


The development have since moved to develop the BG Snowie of poker, enter PokerSnowie. Just like its backgammon brother, PokerSnowie is also based on neural networks. “It’s strategy is “Game Theory Optimized” (GTO), that is the mathematical model of an unbeatable strategy, no leaks can be exploited” Levermann added: “There was no public training algorithm for GTO Poker available, so we had to do a lot of our own research in order to discover and to refine a solid and stable learning algorithm”

The program analyzes a no-limit deep stack full-ring poker game which is, according to Levermann, the most complex variant, so it took years to train the neural networks, in fact, training and learning is still ongoing.

“At this stage, we believe PokerSnowie is stronger that the best human players”

Stay tuned as we will have more for you from the good people at PokerSnowie in the coming weeks!

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About the author

Eric Danis’ passion for poker came at a very early age but it’s when writing about and covering the game he loves that Danis is most in his element. Danis is better known for creating www.PTPRpoker.com where he spent a few years covering poker events. Danis is also known for having worked on the poker shows Poker Eh! and The Pulse on the Quad Jacks Network.