The Complete Guide to Poker Tournaments

The Complete Guide to Poker Tournaments

We invite you to find as much information as possible through our complete file which will necessarily help you to better understand the rules of Texas Hold’em tournaments around the world. Do you intend to participate in tournaments, around real tables and to abandon the virtual and its online casinos a little? Then this file is necessarily for you!

Poker tournaments

We find every day and by the thousands, poker players of all levels who compete around tables and who try their luck against friends, strangers or even their family. Whether it is in intimacy between regulars, in a casino or in clubs and gaming circles, it is a real pleasure to play in these conditions of Texas Hold’em tournaments. But there are however a few rules to know if you are not used to playing in real games of the genre yet. We will now focus more specifically on tournaments. The first thing to grasp is the basic idea of ​​a poker tournament. It’s about understanding that it all starts with a buy in. That is to say that each player then pays a certain amount defined by the organizer (the entry fee, or buy-in), and then receives a certain number of chips in exchange, of a certain value to compose your stack and to be able to take part in the game. Obviously, this is the same number for everyone. It may sometimes happen that an additional “fee” is payable. This is often a little extra, around 5 to 10%, representing in fact a sum intended for the gaming establishment which organizes the tournament, so that it can pay itself and pay its costs.

Course of the game

The course of the game is rather simple since it is played like a standard game. You will therefore be faced with blinds which increase regularly according to intervals pre-determined by the organizers and the game ends when there is only one player left, namely the winner of the tournament, with all the chips in his possession. possession. The stage of the competition where you are eliminated will determine where you finish in the tournament rankings. Then, you should know that 10 to 20% of the audience of players is paid in a standard Hold’em tournament with the bulk of the money made up by the addition of the buy-ins. It is a gain which is reserved for the very first places and which is sometimes supplemented by an amount from the pocket of the room to inflate the prizepool. And we can say that the earnings of this kind of tournaments can go up very quickly, to the point of earning really a lot of money compared to the price of the entry fee. It is for this reason that the big tournaments will necessarily attract both pros and amateurs. All players will be looking to put in a big performance to try to win the jackpot and the competition will then necessarily be fierce.

Tournament rules

Tournament rules may vary slightly at times, depending on venues, organizers or tournament styles. We can only advise you to find out about these before the tournament starts and puts you in a bad position. But don’t worry! We’ll try to explain most of them by outlining some of the more standard rules of tournament poker play below.

Assignment of your seat

Since any tournament requires registration in advance, your seat will then be assigned to you, but also assigned randomly. Usually, the organizers deliver you on the spot, a card with your table number and your seat number written on it. All you have to do is sit there and wait for the game to start. This is a seat that is not final, as tournaments sometimes require players to transfer from one table to another. This seat will therefore be your seat until a Tournament Director asks you to change. Be careful though, because in a cash game game, the opposite happens and there will therefore be no change of seat, unless you wish and request it on your own. Since we have just discussed the passage on the assignment of your seat and the detail of the breaking of tables, it is interesting to understand why your seat will not be definitively assigned during a poker tournament. As players are eliminated from the tournament, the Tournament Director then steps in to begin “breaking” tables in a pre-determined order. If your table breaks, you are then randomly assigned to a new free seat on another of the remaining tables. the Tournament Director then steps in to start “breaking” tables in a pre-determined order. If your table breaks, you are then randomly assigned to a new free seat on another of the remaining tables. the Tournament Director then steps in to start “breaking” tables in a pre-determined order. If your table breaks, you are then randomly assigned to a new free seat on another of the remaining tables.

Your Starting Stack

When you land in a tournament and you have your table number as well as your seat number, you should inevitably find your pile of chips which will already be waiting for you, in front of your chair or armchair. This is the stack, a bunch of chips that have absolutely no tournament cash value. You will therefore not be able to “cash out” at any time, as may be the case in a cash-game game. We advise you to always check your chips against the displayed starting stack amount. It’s a very good way to make sure that you have the right number of tokens, just to leave with the same chances as the others and above all to familiarize yourself with the values ​​which are not always displayed on the tokens.

The blinds

This is also a big difference between tournaments and cash games. The blinds increase over the course of the game in tournament to force to play and especially to perpetuate the action. You can usually find this blind increase timing on an overhead projector or screen, clearly visible to everyone, but you can also ask a member of the organizing committee for the increase schedule. It can be important to familiarize yourself with the structure of the blinds before playing. Also note that the blinds will increase on the next turn in the event that the blinds need to increase while the dealer is cutting the cards. Also don’t be surprised if you are asked to put other bets than the blinds on the table at some stage of the tournament.

Distribution of cards

If there is no dealer at the table, then the distribution of cards is done in the same way as in cash games. We therefore find the small and the big blind with the two players located to the left of the button and after each hand, these are shifted by one player on the left. To determine the button (Dealer) before the first hand, we often make a random draw, most often by each drawing a card from the deck, and seeing the player with the highest card being awarded the button.

Absent Players

All players must receive cards. Just as they must imperatively pose their blinds and put on the carpet, whether or not they are at the table. In the event that a player is not present when their second card is dealt, then their hand will be declared dead. He will then lose his blinds and his game.

The carpet

If you declare to be all-in, you must therefore play the rest of your chips in front of you. If the other player(s) in front of you follow you and have more tokens than you, you can only win once the equivalent of your tokens per opponent. It’s exactly the same for the player who has less than he has to pay for a blind. He will only play for the equivalent of what he bet. With respect to the all-in showdown, both hands must be exposed face up when two players are all in and the action is complete, all before the board’s community card suite is revealed.

Show maps

Intentionally showing a card is illegal in tournament play. We do not mess with this rule which can see your hand being declared dead in this case. You could even receive a penalty which will correspond, most of the time, to a certain number of hands (usually 1 round) during which you will no longer have the right to take part. You can also get a penalty for improper play, i.e. swearing, throwing cards in the air, insulting an opponent, etc.