Texas Holdem Poker Tournament

A Texas Holdem Poker Tournament can come in many different forms. I will go over them but first the basics. A poker tournament is when you play with all players receiving the same amount of chips to begin with. Then play while the stakes increase. Dictated by an increase of the small and big blind. Sometimes antes are also used. But the blinds will be used in every texas holdem tournament I have ever played. The only way to stay alive in this type of tournament is to get chips by beating other players throughout. Or you will surely run out of chips. This will be continue until only one player remains as the winner.

You don't have to win the tournament to come out ahead though. Usually prizes are paid for the top finishers. Depending on how many entrants began the tournament. In a 10 person tournament usually the top 3 get paid. With 100 player the top 30 and so on.


Common Texas Holdem Tournament Rule Variations

Needless to say any of the following can change the tournament strategy. A Texas Holdem Poker Tournament can be played with the following rules on top of the above overview.

  • Bounties extra money for knocking out an opponent. Some of these are only on certain players like maybe a celebrity pro sponsored in the game. But typically are used for everyone. The bounty is typically paid to any player whether or not they finish in the paying places of the tournament. So if a player knocks someone out. They receive the bounty even if they are eliminated the very next hand.
  • Re-buy tournaments where if a player loses all their chips in the first hour or so depending on the rules. They can re-buy back into the tournament. All original buy-ins and re-buys go into the prize pool making them very juicy games. You can knock out the bad players over and over as they come back for more. And if you are just unlucky one hand you can get back into the game too.
  • Deep Stack tournaments are where players get a substantially larger amount of chips to start then what is typical tournament play. Making it less likely to just have to start gambling to stay healthy in the tournament.
  • Tournaments can be played limit, no limit, pot limit or even spread limit. No limit and limit versions being the most common. The other two are rare. So are the kind of tournaments that go back and forth using more than one structure throughout. Usually changing at time intervals. Or after so many rounds of the blinds.
  • One of my favorite are the double or nothing texas holdem poker tournaments popular on the internet. Typically ten players would start the game. And when five remained the game was over. Everyone remaining would get twice the money they bought in for. Whether they had one chip left or almost all the chips.

This really changed up the strategy allot. I wont go into detail but I found myself a couple times with me and another opponent having almost all the chips. And only six players left. I had pocket kings and the opponent who had just as many chips as me raised it huge. I just folded as I was already guaranteed to win the maximum I could in the tournament. The other four players barely had enough for the blinds and there was no chance for them to survive. As soon as just one of them is gone the game would be over. So folding was actually the correct tournament play for that game. I couldn't win any more money by gambling there. If I lost I got nothing. I have much more texas holdem poker tournament strategy. As I have played over forty thousand online poker tournaments and won consistently.

  • I have also played rare poker tournaments that finish on a time schedule. Where the game is over after two hours. Or whatever was established before the game begins. The money would either be paid out like a normal tournament. Where the prize pool is divided up and the top finishers would receive a higher percentage based on their ending chip count.
  • Other versions that are often called shootouts are paid out similar to a cash game once the time is up. Everyone who still has chips will get the dollar amount that they originally paid for them. These are my absolute favorite structure as a professional. Everything I like about a cash games in tournament form.

Note that any one rule or combination of them can be applied to texas holdem poker tournaments. And there are many more different types of tournament rules possible. Anything that can be invented by someone will surely be used at some point.

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