Poker Tournaments

Poker tournament is a kind of poker competition that continues until one of the players accumulates all the chips. Unlike a common poker game, in poker tournament the players can’t leave or enter the play when it is in progress. Poker tournaments are the most popular kind of entertainment for online and offline poker players that’s why there is a great variety of poker tournaments with specific features for different tastes.

It is possible to divide all the tournaments into real money, freerolls and play money (at online poker rooms) according to the type of payment required for participation.  

Real money vs. Play money tournament

At the real moneypoker tournaments the players invest real money when enter the competition. On the contrary, at play money tournaments, that are typical for online poker rooms, the player gets the set sum of virtual money and he or she can use them for practicing at poker game. As for freerolls, it is worth mentioning, that these poker tournaments are very popular with the players who don’t want to risk much but still want to win the real money. Freerolls are held with no buy-ins, this means that you don’t need to invest any money for participation at the tournaments but you have a chance to compete for the real money prize. At most online poker rooms the players can play at the freeroll tournament only for the number of points awarded by the poker room. Such tournaments are known as FPP (frequent player point) freerolls.

Sit-and-goes vs. scheduled

On the other hand, all poker tournaments may be divided into sit-and-goes and scheduled events. Scheduled tournaments start at a stated time. If you want to take part in such poker tournaments every online poker room offers its visitors the full schedule with exact time, date, type of the game, buy-in amount and prize pool. As the number of players at scheduled poker tournaments is limited you need to sign up beforehand.  As you may understand sit-and-goes (or SNGs) are not scheduled, they start as soon as all the places are occupied (or if there are just enough number of players for the tournament to take place).

Satellite tournaments

Sometimes poker tournaments involve a great number of people all over the world and they are held at the multiple tables. In such case the players take part in satellite tournaments. They differ from the regular poker tournaments by the awarding system. At the regular competitions the players have the chance to win money prizes while at satellites the winners get the entries to the major event with bigger buy-in and prize pool.


Among all poker tournaments it is possible to distinguish re-buys and freezouts. At rebuy (or add-on tournaments) poker tournaments the players can buy additional chips but only during the set rebuy period. As usual this period alternates from half an hour to one hour (or more depending on the rules). On the contrary, at freezouts the players can’t buy more chips and stay in the game until they run out of chips or accumulate all the poker chips.

Single-table vs. multi-table

At last, all land and online casino poker tournaments can be split into single-table and multi-table events. As the name says, single-table tournament is held at one poker table and it is considered to be complete when one of the players wins all the chips. In multi-table poker tournaments a great number of players (hundreds and even thousands) can participate. There is a table-balancing used in such competitions which means that the winners at the separate tables are moved to the vacant seats at other tables until they compete at the last single table for the main prize. Modern casinos offer blackjack game lovers a chance to participate in online blackjack tournaments and see how good they are at using the blackjack charts at live game.