Poker tournaments can be a good complement to cash games. They give you the chance to win a lot of money quickly. There are large difference between tournament poker and cash games. If you use the same strategy in both types of game play then you will end up loosing a lot of money. Tournaments require you to play more aggressively than cash games.
- If you play a tournament as a cash game then your chip stack will slowly erode until you are knocked out.
- If you play a cash game as a tournament you will end up loosing a lot of money as your opponents make the most of your aggressive play.
It can sometimes be hard to adjust your game play when you move between tournament poker and cash games poker. This is especially true if you multitable and play both cash games and tournaments at the same time.
This is the reason that some player choose to specialize on only one type of play. Some choose to only play tournaments and other to only play cash games.
To specialize on tournaments will often allow for a more stable rise in the bankroll without heavy fluctuations. Once you become a more skilled tournament player you should be able to place in the money in a large percentage of all the tournaments that you enter.
A more aggressive tournament player might see larger fluctuations since they will be more likely to be knocked our early in a tournament. They will also get larger pay days when things go their way.
It is possible to make a living playing both cash games and/or tournaments. This is true both online and offline. The selection of tournaments to play will always be bigger online and it is easier to build a bank roll online. Once you built a large online bank roll you can start entering large offline tournaments as well.
There are a number of different types of tournaments you can choose to play. The most common types are:
Free rolls are free tournaments that give you the chance to win real money. They are an excellent way to start building a bank roll if you have a lot of time but not much money. Most free rolls have a small prize pool but there are some tournaments that give you the chance to win a little more money. Free rolls with large prize pools are often weekly or monthly tournaments. Small free rolls are usually held every hour. It is also very common that poker rooms give you tickets to special beginner free rolls when you register. These free rolls often give you a chance to win a part of a bigger prize pool.
Free rolls are an excellent way to gain some initial tournament experience. You get a chance to learn how tournaments work. They will however not give you a proper idea of how it is to play in a regular online tournament. Players will play a lot more aggressively in a free roll that they will in regular tournaments. You will have to expect a lot more skilled opposition in regular tournaments.
Single Table Tournaments (STT)
Single table tournament are tournaments that are played on a single table. The tournaments are very popular online. They start as soon as a table is full. The winner of the tournament is the last player left on the table. The top 3 players usually win money.
These tables are an excellent option when you don’t have a lot of time. They are also a good way to increase your bankroll. A skilled STT player will be able to consistently make money playing STT tournaments.
Multi Table Tournaments (MTT)
Multi table tournaments are played on a large number of different tables. A tournament can have 1000s of players. They can have very big prize pools. There are a number of different tournaments that are held weekly that award the winner more than $100 000. Some large online tournament series have more than 50 million in guaranteed prize pool.
There is no limit to how many tables that can play a mutli table tournaments. Some tournaments will however limit the amount of available seats in the tournament. MTT tournaments are played until one single player has all the chips. The tables are regularly balanced to make sure that you always play at a full table.
The WSOP and other offline tournament tournaments you see on TV are multi table tournaments.
Multi Table knockout Tournaments
These are multi table tournaments that are played as a series of single table tournaments. The winner on each table moves on to the next level of the tournament. The winner is the last player standing on the last table. Knock out tournaments are not very common and considerable less popular then regular MTT tournaments.