PowerUp Card Reviews: Upgrade

“Draw a third hole card, then discard one.”

What it does (for you in hands normally):

This card has come up with basically every PowerUp card entry we’ve done. And for good reason. At least for now – this is one of the lynch pins of the Alpha version of the game. This is because – until pokerStars decided to change the fact that the board ‘locks’ when a player is all in, PowerUp will stay more weighted towards creating strong pre-flop holdings rather than being a game of manipulating the board.

In comes Upgrade, what we call here the ‘endgame’ card. This is the end of most combos, and unlike Reload functions fairly well independently of other cards as well. You can get a head start with Intel, Engineer or Scanner to see what you’re going to be receiving as your 3rd “upgrade” to know when to use it or not – and if you have the holy grail of hole card creation combos, things get even better.

What is the holy grail, you ask? Intel (or in lieu, Engineer or Scanner) → Upgrade → Clone → second Upgrade. Creating twin upgrades while also seeing what your upgrade will be is, admittedly, best used in high stakes situations – optimally when your opponent is all in and hasn’t EMPed himself into relative safety. In this case you have an all you can eat buffet in front of you. The other big option(though rare) is holding 2 Clones and an Upgrade, which allows you 5 cards worth of chances to make a monster pre-flop even without added info.

This is (or should at least) be your bread and butter in PowerUp. Who needs information when you can just optimize your hand and lock the board with one tap of the all in button? Who needs last second bail outs when what you’re shooting for is almost exclusively made hands and world draws?

Upgrade is possibly the only other card whose name isn’t a euphemism or an empty promise. Low learning curve, one of the highest benefit tiers, and a super cool effect to boot (yeah yeah, we know. Disintegrate is a distant 1st – shut it.)

Is it good?

It’s the cream of the crop. Use it, love it, hope you get it every time you draw a new PowerUp card and enjoy your Upgraded life. Just make sure to fold when you miss.

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