We have heard from some great poker minds so far this week, but if you wanted to see a true master class in action, you needed to come down to Sorrento and see Rob Mariano and Tyson Apostol.
The two did a half-hour Q&A before tonight's episode of Survivor where they openly and honestly answered every kind of question ranging from game strategy to the best way to avoid bug bites.
The bug bite answer is pretty fascinating. Tyson explains that if you wash your clothes with DEET, the active chemical in most bug sprays, it will stay active and effective in your clothes for most of the 39 days on the island.
The bug spray is the easiest part of the game based on what these two had to say. Rob pointed out that now that cast members are regularly invited back to participate in seasons, being a Survivor castmember is kind of a year-round thing.
"The game is always on," he explained. Tyson agreed and talked about how even this season, which he was not involved in, he still had other past cast members calling him convinced he was going to be playing this season.
The two also talked at length about two-time winner Sandra, who has been a strong player in the latest iteration of the game.
These two were surprised Sandra even made it this far, though at the end of the viewing party episode, she got the ax after the tribes were reorganized and she was left in the vast minority of her new group.
"It's hard to play that aggressively from the get go and not get your wires crossed somewhere," Tyson said.
Rob had some advice for the early goings of the game which he equated to GTO decisions in poker. While this is a game being played with people who make decisions influenced by emotions, there are certain parts of the game that are, to some degree, solved.
For example, history has shown time and again that players on teams who win a lot of the challenges early in the season are significantly more likely to survive the merge and make a run at the $1 million prize. So, it is beneficial to you to ensure your team is well rested and physically prepared to compete.
One thing that will not help you out much is having an obvious ally in the game from the jump. Rob and Tyson laughed that no one noticed Coach and Tyson showed up with the same shoes on their season. Even with that obvious hint, the other players couldn't put together they are a team to break up.
Even though Survivor explicitly says chopping the money is against the rules, players still try to round up alliances before filming begins. Tyson and Rob don't plan to combine their powers any time soon though.
"If we were on the show together, I would have to vote him out first," Tyson said. The room laughed, but it wasn't a joke. The two said in order to prove to people you are not in cahoots, you have to prove you are willing to turn on your friend.
Rob doesn't really plan on going back on Survivor. "I mean, they call me a lot," he admitted, "But I haven't heard a scenario where it is possible I could win again."
In the meantime, he can focus on something he can win. He already has one Run It Up trophy, but this week is his chance to make it two.