Clay Poker Chips

 

Custom Poker Chips

 
Search:
Poker Chip Sets Poker Chip Sets
Custom Poker Chips Custom Poker Chips
Poker Table Supplies Poker Chip Cases
Customized Poker Chips Personalized Poker Chips

Quick Navigation
View Product Index
View Category Index

Popular Resources
Free Poker Table Plans
Learn About Poker Chips
Las Vegas Casino Chips
Custom Tokens Drink Chips
Poker Resources
Why Cheap Poker Chips Suck

Casino Chips Casino Chips

Email Exclusives
Special offers and discounts

How to Set Up a Home Poker Tournament

The tournaments you see most commonly on TV, like the WSOP or the World Poker Tour, are termed “Freeze Out” tournaments, meaning you’re eliminated once you lose all of your chips. This is by far the most popular tournament structure for home games and in casinos.

Buy-ins

In a poker tournament, every player throws X dollars into a tournament pot, and gets Y number of chips. It doesn’t matter whether its $10 or $10,000 in starting chips for each player, so long as everyone starts off equal. These chips are your tournament stake, not to be confused with your buy-in, the actual amount of money you threw into the tournament pot. The buy-in amount can be, and typically is, completely unrelated to each player’s tournament stake. It doesn’t have to be, but it just seems to work out that way because everyone likes to play with stacks and stacks of chips (say a $5000 tournament stake per person), yet the typical home game buy-in is probably $20.

Set your buy-ins to suit your crowd, and keep in mind that tournament poker games are more like Monopoly than craps, which is part of the reason they have become so popular in home games. Feel free to set the buy-ins low enough so everybody can participate without feeling too much pain when losing. You can have fun playing Monopoly even if there’s no money game involved, because it’s all about survival and competition. Craps is different. If you’re not playing for money, it gets boring pretty quickly. Tournament poker is more of a game than pure gambling.

Re-buys

On TV, you rarely see re-buys allowed, but these are common in home games and casinos. Re-buys allow players to buy additional chips during the course of the tournament according to a pre-determined re-buy structure. Re-buys are added for three primary reasons. First off, they alleviate the disheartening feeling associated with a player getting knocked out of a four or five hour tournament right off the bat. Secondly, they loosen up play because players know they can always get back in if they go all in early on and lose. Lastly, they sweeten the final payouts.


The progression of the blinds

The structure and progression of the blinds is the most important element of a poker tournament. Unfortunately, it’s also the most difficult part to put together for inexperienced tournament players. Symptoms of bad blind structure are tournaments that run on a lot longer than anyone really wants, or conversely tournaments with blinds so steep that virtually all skill is removed from determining the winner. A perfect tournament structure moves the action along, yet gives everyone a chance to be patient and still get in on the action.

Blinds are typically increased based on a time table, but can also be increased each time a player is eliminated. The time table provides the most control over the length of the game.

Here is a great chart to help you structure the blind progression for single table home tournaments. The bright green line is the recommended blind level where re-buys are no longer allowed. The yellow blind levels are where the tournament will typically end.

 

Chips with buy-in
$20
$50
$100
$1,000
$5,000
Chips with re-buy
$10
$25
$50
$500
$2,500
           
2 Hour Game
3 Hour Game
5 Hour Game
Blind Progression (Big Blind / Small Blind)
0:00
0:15
0:00
0:20

0:00

0:30
25¢ / 50¢
50¢ / $1
$1 / $2
$10 / $20
$50 / $100
0:15
0:30
0:20
0:40
0:30
1:00
50¢ / $1
$1 / $2
$2 / $4
$20 / $40
$100 / $200
0:30
0:45
0:40
1:00
1:00
1:30
$1 / $2
$2 / $4
$4 / $8
$40 / $75
$200 / $400
0:45
1:00
1:00
1:20
1:30
2:00
$1.50 / $3
$3 / $6
$6 / $12
$60 / $125
$300 / $600
1:00
1:15
1:20
1:40
2:00
2:30
$2 / $4
$5 / $10
$10 / $20
$100 / $200
$500 / $1K
1:15
1:30
1:40
2:00
2:30
3:00
$3 / $6
$7 / $14
$15 / $30
$150 / $300
$750 / $1500
1:30
1:45
2:00
2:20
3:00
3:30
$4 / $8
$10 / $20
$20 / $40
$200 / $400
$1K / $2K
1:45
2:00
2:20
2:40
3:30
4:00
$8 / $16
$20 / $40
$40 / $80
$400 / $800
$2K / $4K
2:00
2:15
2:40
3:00
4:00
4:30
$15 / $30
$40 / $80
$75 / $150
$750 / $1500
$4K / $8K
2:15
2:30
3:00
3:20
4:30
5:00
$30 / $60
$75 / $150
$150 / $300
$1500 / $3K
$8K / $15K
2:30
2:45
3:20
3:40
5:00
5:30
$60 / $120
$150 / $300
$300 / $600
$3K / $6K
$15K / $30K

 

Player Seating

Most informal home games leave player seating up to the whims of the players themselves, or dole out seating in a first come, first serve fashion. If this works for you game and everybody is pretty laid back about it, go with it. Keep in mind that this leaves the door wide open for savvy players to gain advantage before the first hand of the night is even dealt. Positioning oneself to play in front of aggressive players and after tight players can give a player a considerable advantage.

If you find seating disputes flaring up, which will happen more and more the better your players become, it’s best to draw straws for position and starting dealer button position.

Bounties

An interesting twist that you can throw into your tournament is to put cash bounties onto the heads of a few or all players. Whoever knocks them out of the tournament gets a small cash bounty, which comes out of the tournament pot. This can be used to handicap particularly good players. It can also be used to place an incentive on knocking out players, which benefits all players at the table, often at the peril of the one attempting the elimination.

Payouts

Payouts are pretty easy to determine, and we suggest the best course of action is to put it up to a popularity vote of your players before the tournament starts. You can experiment with a few different payout structures and come to an agreeable one after only a few games. If you need some guidance, use our payout structures outlined below as guidelines.

 

Less than 5 players – Only pay one place
6-8 players – Pay 2 places in a 70:30 percent ratio
9-12 players – Pay 3 places in a 50:30:20 percent ratio
13-20 players – Pay 4 places in a 40:30:20:10 percent ratio
21-30 players – Pay 5 places in a 40:25:20:10:5 percent ratio
31 or more Players – Pay 8 places in a 30:20:14:10:8:7:6:5 percent ratio

Shop for chips and start your own tournament!

 

Online Poker Rooms
Bovada Online Gaming
Try New Casinos

High-end Poker Tables
Stine Game Tables

Poker Accessories
BlackAce Poker T-Shirts

Poker Related
Deals- Top15Poker.com
Play at
Pokersites.com
Get Poker Rakeback
Cardschat Poker Forum

see your company here


Over 25,000
Satisfied Customers!

"This is the way internet business should be."

-James Merriwether
South Bay, FL

"I placed a very complicated order with different quantities of each chip in the line. I promptly received exactly what I ordered. Oh yeah, the chips are awesome!"

- Alan Campbell
Brookline, MA

Read testimonials from hundreds of other satisfied customers!

Shop with Confidence

SSL Encryption Secure Shopping
100% Guarantee 100% Guarantee
Easy Returns Easy Returns
Free Exchanges Free Exchanges
Privacy Policy Privacy Policy

American Express Cards WelcomeMasterCard and Visa Cards Welcome