Single-Table Tournament Reviews
The following are reviews of the single-table tournament (STT) offerings at a few major online poker rooms:
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Ease of Competition: A-
When Party Poker was the largest online poker room, their STT offerings were hands down the best on the internet. Today, that is no longer the case, but their STTs are still pretty darn good. At buy-ins of $22 and lower, the action is always plentiful. Higher stakes players will have a tougher time being able to multi-table. The popular STTs on Party Poker are their "Speed" tournaments that use a faster blind structure of five minutes per level. These now dominate the "normal" STTs in terms of popularity. It's advisable to stick to the $11 buy-in and higher tournaments on Party Poker since the entry fees in the smaller tournaments tend to be quite high as a percentage of the total buy-in.
Ease of Competition: B+
Titan Poker is on the iPoker Network which has now firmly surpassed Party Poker in terms of size. For STT players, that is a good thing as it means there is a larger player base to help fill tournaments as quickly as possible. For years now, Titan Poker has been home to Progressive Jackpot STT tournaments that remain very popular. Players must win six specially-designated STTs in a row to claim the jackpot. It is advisable to avoid these tournaments. Titan Poker charges a considerably higher entry fee for their Jackpot STTs. Unless the progressive jackpot is significantly higher than its seed amount, spending extra money on entry fees to chase the lump-sum is inadvisable since winning six tournaments in a row takes a lot of luck. Aside from these sucker-bet STTs, Titan's STT offerings are quite good. The most popular tournaments right now are six-handed "double-up" events where the top three finishers double their buy-in and the bottom three finishers washout. One criticism of Titan's "double up" STTs is that they charge the same amount of entry fee as regular STTs. "Double-up" STTs at other sites have a smaller entry fee.
Ease of Competition: A+
Pacific Poker is a truly great place for small stakes players to enjoy STTs. Their STTs with buy-ins of $10 and below are plentiful and the competition is awful which mitigates the downside of higher entry fees. Unfortunately, the action is pretty limited at stakes above $20. New players looking to build a bankroll from a modest initial investment would be wise to check out the STTs at 888 Poker.
Ease of Competition: A
PKR is the only online poker room with video-game graphics. The graphics are primary reason why you would choose to play STTs at PKR. This is not the best site for players looking to multi-table STTs and grind their bankroll skyward. However, if you are a casual player who just wants to have some fun, it's hard to go wrong with PKR. Their STTs fill pretty quickly at the small stakes and the competition is generally terrible. One criticism of PKR's STTs is that the graphic-heavy software causes each hand to take some time. So while their structures are fine on paper, they're not so great in practice. You won't play as many hands per level as you will at other sites.
Ease of Competition: B+
Everest Poker offers the smallest STTs online with a buy-in of $0.04+$0.01. These are great for players who don't really want to risk any "real" amount of money, but want a playing experience that isn't as ridiculous as play-money tables. The big knock on Everest Poker's STTs is that they take a while to fill. But if you've got the patience, every other facet of their STTs are pretty good.