In this installment of our Gimmick of the Week series we're taking a look at the new multiple-entry tournaments on Full Tilt Poker.
We'll explain it in detail right here and tell you whether it's worth your time.
The concept of multi-entry tournaments is pretty straightforward on its surface but, as we'll see when we look a little closer, the logistics and consequences are anything but.
Play Multiple Seats in the Same Tournament
Multi-entry tournaments allow you to register more than once in the same tournament. Unlike a rebuy tournament you're actually going to get multiple seats, at different tables.
Each seat costs the same and is subject to the same tournament fees, and depending on the tournament you'll be allowed anywhere from four to six entries.
There are a few important rules to note:
- You will never have more than one entry at the same table.
- You will never be allowed more entries than there are tables in the tournament.
To deal with these restrictions Full Tilt uses what they call "Player Merging".
When the total number of tables becomes less than your number of entries, two of your entries will be merged. The bigger of the two stacks will merge into the smaller, and the bigger entry will be eliminated, receiving the payout corresponding to its finish.
Let's look at an example:
There are 11 players left and you have two entries. One is chip leader and the other is last in chips. When the next player goes bust your chip leader stack will be merged into the last-place stack, and you'll get 10th place money for the eliminated entry.
Consequences of Player Merging
While player merging does solve the problem of one player potentially having two entries at the same table it's not without its drawbacks.
The biggest problem is that it's impossible for two entries to make it to the final table. The best possible result you can have with two entries is a first and a 10th place finish. If you have three entries you can get first, 10th and 19th, and so on.
With so much of the prize pool locked up for the first few spots this throws your equity way out of whack.
Consequences of Multiple Entries
The second big complaint players have with multi-entry tournaments has to do with the way different kinds of players are likely to approach these events.
The basic premise is that the great players, with the bankrolls to back it up, will tend to buy in for the maximum number of entries, while amateur players who are taking a shot or sat'd into the event will tend to play just one entry.
That means that the ratio of seats controlled by good players to bad players skyrockets. Whether this prediction will prove true remains to be seen, and the equity considerations in the section above may moderate the number of solid regulars who max out the entries.
The Bottom Line
While the concept isn't perfect it's important to remember that this format will only applied to a select number of tournaments.
It seems like something more tailored to the lower stakes, and will give people a chance to get a lot more play out of their favorite tournaments.
That said, because these tournaments seem to have higher rake than normal, and because with player merging you're simply not getting the same equity as you would buying into four separate tournaments, we don't see it becoming anything close to the norm.