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Online Casino Tournaments
News Date: December 19, 2008

Currently only Microgaming and Vegas Technology offer online casino tournaments and this give them a significant competitive advantage. This is because tournaments give players an opportunity to compete against each other, which not only provides a change from playing against the house but also is more exciting. It also engenders a community spirit in the online casino.

After the player enters a tournament he is given the starting stack of chips. These chips are only playing money and cannot be cashed. The player is also given a fixed time for wagering. The player then plays as many rounds as he can during the time allotted. If he loses all his chips then he is out. The rules of the game played in the tournament remain the same as in the normal course. The objective of the player is to end up with more chips than the other players. Theoretically he can win the tournament even if he has fewer chips than he started off with, provided the other players lose more. What makes online casino tournaments interesting is that the casino puts up a leader board indicating the present position of the players. Hence players play aggressively to reach a high position in the leader board so that they are entitled to cash prizes. Tournaments have a prize pool that is shared among a designated number of leaders with the winner getting a larger proportion of the pool. To enter a tournament a player must be logged in. He should then go to the tournament lobby and select the tournament he wants to play. The entry fee will be deducted from his account and he will be taken to the game that is being offered. His balance will show the starting stack. At the end of the designated time the game will automatically shut down and the player will be listed on the leader board depending on his closing balance.

Online casino tournaments can be classified in different ways. One is according to the game played. Most online casino tournaments are online slots tournaments, though some tournaments are offered in other casino games like blackjack, video poker and roulette as well. Tournaments that have no entry fee are known as freerolls. These are offered as incentives to play at the online casino. Tournaments are also classified according to the nature of prize pool. In some online casino tournaments the casino puts up a guaranteed prize pool and in others the prize pool consists of the pot of combined entry fees. Scheduled tournaments are announced well in advance and require pre-registration. Sit and Go tournaments commence as soon as the required number of players sign up. Some online casinos arrange private tournaments that are restricted to friends of the host.

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