It's tight at the top of the DW-WORLD Kick-Off betting game league where the leadership is tied. Here, "RickDeckard", one of the top players, reveals a little more about the player behind the pseudonym.
The rise of "RickDeckard" to the top of the league isn't science fiction
Take a glance at DW-WORLD's Kick-Off betting game this month and one may be forgiven for thinking the league table has been hijacked by characters from the world of science fiction.
While "aenjii" sounds like a master tipper from another galaxy, joint leader on 156 points "RickDeckard" could be a human out of a possible future. We talked to the man with the Blade Runner fascination about his out-of-this-world predictions.
Sitting pretty on top of the Kick-Off league this month is a player who operates under the pseudonym "RickDeckard". Fans of the film Blade Runner will know the name from the lead character played by Harrison Ford. But Mr. Ford is not the brains behind this assault on the DW-WORLD betting table. Richard Mackenrodt, a 41 year old scriptwriter from Munich, is.
The film is a favorite of Mackenrodt, whose writing credits include the German television shows In Aller Freundschaft and Marienhof. However, his passion is not only reserved for the silver screen. Mackenrodt is a confirmed fan of soccer betting games and has been since the 1992 European Championships when he first set up his own. He has organized and played in betting game communities based on every Bundesliga season since.
A Stuttgarter in Bavaria
Tippspiel Rick Deckard
Despite living in Munich, his player profile raises a few eyebrows. Mackenrodt puts down his favorite team as VfB Stuttgart and his favorite player as Aliaksandr Hleb, the VfB playmaker. "I was born and grew up in Stuttgart," Mackenrodt admitted in an interview with DW-WORLD. "I saw my first games in the Neckarstadion (Stuttgart's home before they moved to the Gottlieb Daimler)."
With his mother also a successful tipper, it seems that the talent for predicting score lines runs in the family. And this season, so far, has been his most successful. Mackenrodt shares top spot in the Kick-Off league this month with rival tipster "aenjii" -- both on 156 points. A methodical thinker, he has tried a number of approaches including typing a 2:1 score line for every game, just to see what would happen. "It wouldn't be a bad way to start but you wouldn't win (the league) with it."
A combination of science and luck
He has since applied a different approach, dwelling less on the possibilities, viewing the match day as a whole and mixing up his results. "I've just got into the habit of deciding either victory of defeat. If I am not convinced, I'll decide on a home victory. One can say there is a science to it but I must admit there is also a lot of luck involved."
With great power comes great responsibility and as the leading tipper of a worldwide competition featuring 3700 rivals, calls for help and advice flood in. "For the past two weeks I have had mails from a participant from Thailand who contacts me every Friday to ask about my predictions. He has seen I've got the lay of the land and wants to know who I think will win. So I tell him."
Mackenrodt has no qualms about helping out other tippers who can profit from the expertise of the league leaders. Others have also seen the benefits of having a master tipper's influence on their own game. A week ago, a call came in for "RickDeckard" asking if he wanted to join a team. He did and now applies his skills to Karibu, which sits in 25th place in the Kick-Off team league.
World game with global community
Mackenrodt is a big fan of the DW-WORLD game, rating it highly against the other betting games available. "The fact that there are tippers from all around the world, this global feeling gives the game something very special." He also finds the gaming community a fun aspect to the competition and enjoys the camaraderie shared through mails between tippers.
So what predictions does "RickDeckard" have for the coming weekend when his beloved VfB meet Hertha Berlin, the most efficient away performers in the league? "A narrow victory for VfB!"