PokerStars Launches Phased Tournaments

Date: 2014-05-23
Author: Dan Cypra

The largest online poker site in the world, PokerStars, has launched Phased tournaments. You might have seen tHEM already in the lobby, but if you haven't, open up the PokerStars client, click on the "Tourneys" tab, and then click "All." To see a list of only Phased tournaments, go to the "Search" filter and type in "Phased".

The concept behind a Phased tournament is pretty simple, but we'll let the site's Blog explain it in detail: "These tournaments allow you to play a Phase 1 on one day and, if you last through a certain number of levels, you move on to Phase 2 with the stack you had in Phase 1." They were formerly called Flighted tournaments.

You might have deduced that a Phased tournament closely mirrors the concept of a live event or a multi-day online event. If you make it past Day 1, you advance to Day 2 and get a break in the middle to rest, research opponents, and review your play. As a matter of fact, playing Phased tournaments on PokerStars will likely give you a leg up on the competition when it comes to playing multi-day events both online and offline.

Phase 1 tournaments run three times per day from Monday to Saturday: 10:25 ET, 13:25 ET, and 19:25 ET. Phase 2, as you might have guessed, takes place weekly at 12:25 ET on Sundays. There are also satellites pointing to each Phase 1. When you open up a Phase 1 tournament in the PokerStars lobby, the "Tournament Info" area will clearly state what Phase 2 tournament it feeds into. It'll also say how many levels will be played during Phase 1 so you know how much time to budget.

More Phased tournaments will be rolled out in the future, but in the meantime, you can only qualify once for each Phase 2, so it's probably wise to try to generate as large of a stack as possible during Phase 1 in order to be sitting pretty when Phase 2 starts.

During the initial rollout, according to PokerNews, only $11 Phased tournaments will be offered. Additionally, "Each Phase 1 tournament has a 5,000-chip starting stack and a fast structure with eight-minute blinds."

PokerStars is the busiest online poker room in the world, according to PokerScout, and has a seven-day running average of 19,500 real money ring game players with a 24-hour peak of nearly 27,000. It's almost 10 times as large as the next busiest site, 888 Poker, and offers some of the largest weekly poker tournaments around. If you don't already have a PokerStars account, sign up today.

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