Various Types of Online Poker Tournaments.
Poker tournaments offer a good opportunity for poker players to show off and test their playing skills and also win some good money.
Over the years, these tournaments have increased in popularity among professional and recreational poker players.
This is due to the large prize pools and high media coverage of high-stakes poker tournaments such as the World Series of Poker and other weekly tournaments on the World Poker Tour.
What is a Poker Tournament?
A poker tournament is a competition where players compete by playing poker and everything in the game is predetermined. This includes the buy-ins, blinds, antes, stack-sizes, time-limit etc.
The prize-pool is usually determined by the number of players registered in the game and the total buy-ins.
The winner is the player that wins every chip in the game while the other positions are awarded according to the time of elimination.
There are a lot of poker games that can be played in a tournament, but, the most popularly played poker variant is Texas Hold’em.
Common Types of Tournaments
- Freezeout tournament: – This is the most commonly played tournament. Every player is given the same number of chips in which to play with until they run out. When your chips run-out, you get eliminated from the game. The winner is the player who has all the chips.
- Re-buy tournament: – In this tournament, a player can buy more chips for a set number of times during the first stages of the tournament. During the rebuy period, a player can buy more chips whenever he runs out. However, after the end of the rebuy period, the tournament continues as a freezeout.
- Satellite/Super satellite tournament: – This is a tournament where the prize is a seat to a more expensive/ high-value event.
- Turbo/Super Turbo tournament: – In this tournament, the levels and the blinds are much faster and shorter than that of a normal tournament.
- Guaranteed: – In this tournament, the prize pool is guaranteed regardless of the number of players that would register. In case the players don’t make up the prize pool, the room would fill in.
- Bounty/ Knockout: – This is an interesting type of tournament where you pay a slightly bigger buy-in; a part of which becomes your bounty. Then, if you knock out another player from the tournament, you get their bounty, but, if you are knocked out, your bounty is given to the player that knocked you out. The more players you knock-out, the more your bounty prize goes up.
- Freeroll Tournament: This is a type of tournament that has no buy-in and therefore costs you nothing to enter.
- Shootouts: – With this type of tournament, the players play in single tables until there is only one player left in each table. The winners of each table then play on a final table where the tournament winner is determined.
- Deep Stack:- This is a tournament where players start with a higher number of chips than a normal tournament.
- Timed tournaments:-These are tournaments that run for a set period of time. When the time runs out, the tournament ends and the prize pool is divided amongst the surviving players.
Major Tournament Events and Series
- World Series of Poker (WSOP)
This is the largest and most popular poker event in the USA held annually in Las Vegas since 2005. It consists of over 74 events where the winner of each event receives a bracelet and cash prize based on the number of entrants and buy-in amount.
- World Poker Tour
This is an internationally televised gaming brand that was started in 2002 in the United States of America. It holds a series of poker games and tournaments events where the main tour event buy-in ranges from $3,500-$20,000. Winners of the main event are awarded WPT Championship cup where they can have their names engraved.
- World Championship of Online Poker(WCOOP)
This is an online championship tournament series sponsored by PokerStars. It is played in September at PokerStars official website and has over 60 events and over $70 million in guaranteed prizes. It is the largest of its kind on the internet with buy-ins to the events ranging from $ 2.20-$25,000.
- Spring Championship of Online Poker- All Stakes
This is another online tournament series by PokerStars. Unlike the World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP), this one has three different stakes: Low, medium (10 times the low stake), and high (100 times the low stake). Winners walk away with awesome cash prizes.
- European Poker Tour
This poker tournament series is one of Europe’s most popular and high-value poker tours. It was created in 2004 by PokerStars and is held in different venues around Europe.
- Asia Poker Tour
This poker tour was founded in 2008 and hold major and small tournaments in the Asian-Pacific Region.
Best Sites for Online Poker Tournaments
PokerStars.com:- This poker giant is the largest online poker site with a huge selection of tournaments ranging from those with small buy-ins to high buy-ins. Check out our PokerStars detailed review.
888Poker:- There is a wide selection of tournaments in this poker site. The stakes vary to cater for recreational and amateur players. Here is a more detailed review of 888Poker.
PartyPoker.com:- There is a lot of tournament on offer mostly ranging on lower buy-ins of $3 to $22. These tournaments are usually focused on NL Holdem and Omaha. Here is our expert review on PartyPoker.
Advantages of Playing Poker Tournaments
Playing in poker tournaments is a fun and more exciting way of playing poker. You get a chance of going home with a significant amount of money from a single buy-in.
Whatever your level of expertise is, you cannot fail to find a tournament that best suits you.
If you are a newbie, we recommend that you start off with playing in Freeroll tournament- where you can get a hang of things without losing money.