The definitive guide to WSOT

When I first seeded the concept, before expanding it to the Academy and all that came with it, I was basically betting on the fact that tournaments would do for the trading side of crypto what they did for poker : bring it mainstream. In a way, sportify it.

During my first pitch to my teammate Marco Belletti – our graphic designer and webmaster extraordinaire – as I was trying to explain the allure of a trading competition, I went something like this : Imagine the World Series of Poker. Vegas, the bright lights. The competition and adrenaline and the validation of a dream. The physical representation of your victory, the bracelet. That fleeting moment of glory captured in a title. You are crowned World champion.

Now zoom out, dude.

Now the Arena is crypto. Bigger audience. Widespread. Decentralized. Everybody is only one click away, no physical limitations, no borders. The market is on 24/7, no barriers, no entry restrictions. And a levelled playing field. You see what I’m saying now ? And in this avatar commanded, hyperspeed, impermanent world, if you are good enough, you will be crowned World Champion.

Now see, Marco is the only guy in the team that didn’t have a crypto background back then. But just like me, he has been in the poker world for over a decade. He just nodded.

I’m in, he said.

Why am I telling this story ? Well, it seems that the guys at Bybit – read the exchange review here – had that same exact vision. And are now running with it. The crossover with poker is evident with them having people like Mike Mcdonald and Doug Polk as team captains, as well as the narratives chosen and the formats. It’s a very smart move, as the two communities already massively crossover for many reasons. They already announced this is gonna be the very first edition of a biannual recurring series, which we also think is a very smart move : you don’t want to dilute your brand. It needs to be prestigious. They also went, as WSOP does, with tangible gear and swag for the winners.

Oh. Yeah. And a 2 million dollar prize pool.

Rules of Engagement
Now for this first article all we want is to keep it simple and explain the basic rules of the competition as per Bybit’s website. Our very own Dan Cohen did a quick video that explains how to create an account on Bybit and register to the WSOT. So let’s start from here.

And now let’s dig deeper into the tournament’s format.

First of all, some basic data :
Registration Period: 30th July 2020 10:00 AM UTC – 10th August 2020 10:00 AM UTC
Late Registration Period: 10th August 2020 10:00 AM UTC – 14th August 2020 10:00 AM UTC
Competition Period: 10th August 2020 10:00 AM UTC – 31st August 2020 10:00 AM UTC

BTCUSD perpetual contract will be the only contract for this year’s BTC Troop Showdown. The profits earned from other contracts (such as EOS, ETH, XRP or USDT) will not be included. To enter the competition you will need 0.1 BTC in your account by august 10th snapshot. Once you’ve done that, you must join a troop. Aka a team, headed by your favourite captain.
Our Tournament specialist, the one and only Quokka is captain of one flying the securetask Banner. His team is also gonna have many of our coaches in the roster. As a multiple times Binance and Interdax tournament winner, we cannot think of anyone better to lead the charge. He will also have a dedicated telegram team channel, the Quokka’s WSOT den, where together with other coaches and participants he will discuss strategies, play by play analysis and you’ll get to battle side by side with the pros in the biggest tournament arena of the year. And possibly share in their triumph.

That’s right: sixty percent of all winnings in the team competition are going to be shared amongst all team members !
But let’s brake that down into more detail. The BTC Troop Showdown awards consist of the Troop P&L Award, Individual P&L Award and Individual Profit Award. The total prize pool is up to 150 BTC, and 5% of the prize pool will be donated to Unicef, which we think is a very nice touch. So with that 0.1 BTC you’ll have access to all three awards, leaderboards and prizepools. The troop captain shall receive 20% of the prize, 20% to be shared by troopmates ranked in the top 10, and the remaining 60% will be distributed equally within the entire troop. Troopers with zero BTCUSD contract trading activities during the competition will not be eligible for the prize.

This is the troop P&L award. Aka, the award for the best performing team in terms of ROI ( percentage gains ) based on the 10 best performing team members. Up to 600k for first place at today’s BTC prices. Top 10 teams will win prizes. Individual P&L will work the same way, but for the best performing individual. ROI based. Those are incredibly fair and level the playing field, as whatever capital you decide to deploy ( 0.1 and above ) all that will matter is how well you trade it : your ROI. So as long as you have 0.1 BTC and trading skills, you can compete. It’s the closest to how we intend Crypto Tournaments at their very core. A sportlike competition of trading wits.

Finally individual profit is pretty self explanatory : whoever makes the most amount of money in the time allotted. Whale game.

So what now ? Well it’s pretty simple at a glance, but also quite nuanced if you decide to dive deeper into Game Theory and strategy. That 0.1 btc will be the stack you use to trade, as you normally would. Any winnings and losses will apply as per normal trading. If you used our reflink, you will have some pretty juicy discounts on fees ( 20% ) and some extra deposit bonuses, as well as WSOT specific daily bonuses, so there’s value already. But to some extent, you could have the WSOT as a nice extra in the background, “just in case”. Almost an afterthoght.

The money is yours, at any point you can simply decide to leave the competition and withdraw. Kinda like a cash game, if we want to use a poker analogy. So you could simply trade your stack as you normally would and enjoy the benefits. And IF you do go on a hot streak then maybe focus more on tournament dynamics.

Or, you could actually PLAY the tournament. The R/R is pretty clear, and the asymmetry of it is astonishing. That 0.1 could turn into a juicy slice of 2 million dollars. Strategies have been studied for this format, risk adjustments and meta game analysis must be made. That’s what securetask and our coaches are here for. We will be covering the WSOT extensively, with the coache’s journey updates, insights, strategy articles as well as a general overview of the most exciting competition in crypto.

And then of course both our telegram and the Quokka’s trading den will be bustling with discourse on the action. If you want to learn more about tournaments, this is a good starting point.

So good luck everybody, and may you be crowned the new Crypto World hampion. See you in the arena !


Interdax – Our Review

Headquartered in Hong Kong, and with engineering offices in London, Interdax is an up and coming exchange with a strong focus on crypto tournaments. They rely on derivatives, primarily perpetual swaps and futures. Bitcoin only at the time of writing, but ETH products are already available for testnet and will be launching on main net in weeks.

Interdax launch video

They launched in January 2019, a few months after a very successful ICO. Interdax has been coded from scratch in optimized C++ by experienced professionals and is only the second crypto exchange in the world, alongside bitmex, to use KDB+/q, a high-frequency trading technology reserved for elite financial firms hat can handle over 300000 transactions per second. The company boasts a strong team of professionals who came from pioneering crypto projects and well-known financial institutions, and participated in building and deploying stock exchanges like Nasdaq, NYSE, TYO and MICEX/MOEX.

Liquidity is a little bit lacking, as is to be expected for a new exchange, with spreads pretty steep in times of high volatility. The website interface is neat, and easy to navigate although still a bit glitchy on mobile. Learning how to trade on it will be a breeze for anybody with very basic futures trading experience, and they also have a small but lively and helpful telegram community that can guide you through the process.

Trading panel

They offer 2FA protection for your account, which is standard, but always nice to see. Also cool that Interdax follows a maker-taker model with positive rebates for maker.

The fees charged depend on whether the trader is a market maker or market taker: Market makers (who provide liquidity and successfully submit limit orders that are rested on the order book) are paid a rebate of +0.025% of the value of a transaction. Market takers (who take liquidity from the order book by using market orders or limit orders that remove resting orders) are charged a -0.075% fee of the value of a transaction. Fees are charged in the settlement currency depending on the instrument: BTC, ETH, etc.

The most interesting and unique aspect of the exchange is of course clearly the tournaments. Every day you have a 0.025btc entry fee tourney with a winner takes all structure, and a 0.05btc added by the exchange. And then a 0.1 btc weekly tourney with a 0.25 prize pool added, divided amongst the top 3 finishers. These are all prizes added by the exchange, clearly providing a ton of extra value, especially considering fields are pretty small, a few dozens players at most. On top of all this, they regularly have bigger monthly battles, with up to a 100.000$ up for grabs, usually shared among the top 10 finishers.

So how does it work ? Basically once you registered to your desired tournament, which is just two clicks away, a sub account gets created and your “stack” – let’s use the daily 0.025 as an example – is there for you to trade independently from your main account.

Weekly tournament schedule

At this point you’ll just start trading as you usually would on any futures account, except you will be pitched against the other players in the tournament, wich creates a fun sublayer of metagame and strategy. You’ll be able to see how others are doing as well in a simple and effective dropdown infographic, and see if they are long or short, again contributing to the strategy element of tournaments : we are behind and very close to the leader, and he’s long going into the end of the trading day. Do we switch short to try and capture the first prize value, although our bias is still long ? Do we press our longs ? Do we just preserve capital and let the market take its course ? That’s the extra layers to decision making that tournaments bring to the table. At the end of the day, you get to keep any winnings – and take any losses of course – on top of the prizes.

Interdax also has a series of social elements that up the camaraderie created amongst players, encouraging banter and competition, further pushing the gamification aspect of their competitions. As being the very first crypto tournaments focused exchange, with daily choices for tournament grinders, they will have a very big first mover advantage, especially if they polish off those small growing pains that are pretty standard for a new exchange. Overall, we feel like they are doing a great job in filling a small but rapidly expanding niche in crypto trading.

The Market Snapshot 10 Sep 2020

This ‘Market Snapshot’ is going to be an interesting one, as it is sharing some of my thoughts inspired by the markets and my trading rather than market action.

The first thing I’d like to talk about is the correlation between Bitcoin, Altcoins, Gold, Stocks and the USD, as it is definitely a topic many people are discussing and it’s a heated one.

Since the March crash we have seen most assets get much more correlated than they were before, and the main reason is that the USD has become more volatile and it’s importance to markets has become very clear. Due to the fact that the biggest markets in the world are the US ones, most debt is in USD and most assets are traded vs the USD, it is normal for assets to be correlated to an extent just because of that. At the same time, many retail traders are looking at the same things, along with institutions which aren’t focused on crypto. Many of them actually bought the dip this time, and now have a bigger influence in the crypto markets than ever before.

Another thing is that the US stocks are going parabolic, especially the big tech names, while the VIX is near 30. There is a lot of uncertainty in the world right now and one market has gained most of the attention. At the same time, crypto is still flying under the radar and the crypto total marketcap is 50% below its ATHs nearly 3 years later. Eventually things are going to change as this market is maturing and the technology is progressing.

Bitcoin usually starts moving very quickly when something changes in the global picture. We saw that both in Dec 2017 and Nov 2018, March 2020 and also during this correction where Bitcoin started dropping before stocks and bottomed before them. Don’t forget that crypto is still the wild west and a 24/7 market.

In my first ‘Market Snapshot’ I got many of the targets for closing shorts and going long correct (SPX 3300, NDX 10900-11100 & Bitcoin 9500-9800), but then I became overly bearish. On my ‘Weekly Open’ analysis although, Bitcoin and altcoins had dropped substantially, I felt they had more to drop as traditional markets fell further. So why did I get it wrong, what were the signals that I was wrong and what to do next time?

A. Always focus on the chart you are analysing for entries and exits. If an entry is really good, don’t leave it on the table because you think the xyz asset could do something different. Crypto is a different beast and respects TA incredibly well, but also has its own intricacies. For example the diagonal held nicely and the price never even closed below 10k or the 128 DMA. On top of that, the BTCUSD & ALTBTC correlation had started breaking since Sunday. Alts where also not dropping much despite BTC trying to go lower.

B. Always look at both BTC and USD charts for alts. Nowadays USD charts are more important as most trading is going on in USD/USDT pairs. Even though alts didn’t seem ‘oversold’ enough in BTC terms, they certainly were in USD terms.

C. When markets get volatile stick to your initial plan, because during crazy corrections like this one – fastest 10% drop in 3 days in Nasdaq’s history – you could be your own worst enemy by overthinking or, even worse, overtrading.

D. To me it was and still is very clear that we are in a bull market both in Crypto and stocks. NDX could drop to 10200-10600 which I think is possible, yet after such a strong correction it is definitely worth betting with the trend if something is sitting at support. Even if if will be just a dead cat bounce. What got to me was the fear of a March-like crash, which imho is simply not likely to happen anytime soon.

When things get volatile, try to play level by level and go small until you get a clearer picture of the market. Let the dust settle.