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Impressive Final Table Features at GGPoker
When we first get involved in real money online poker one of the milestones that we strive for is to find ourselves sitting at a final table. Anyone who plays in online poker tournaments continues to dream about this very experience, and rightly so. Whether it’s a big money tournament, low buy-in event or a Freeroll, navigating your way through the ups and inevitable downs to find a path to the final table is always going to be an achievement.
It should come as no surprise to many that at GGPoker - considered by many to be the most player-friendly online poker room - the playing conditions, features and options change considerably once the competition reaches the final table stage.
Here are the key Final Table features at GGPoker:
- Switch Seats
- This new twist allows you to switch seats
- Deal Making
- A fairer prize distribution using the ICM method
- Chess Clock
- A set time limit creates a more dynamic game pace
- Blind Rollback
- Tweaking the Blinds makes for a better gameplay experience when it matters
These changes kick in once the in-the-money (ITM) phase becomes the Final Table stage. Note that Final Table features do not apply to Freeroll, Satellite and T$ Builder tournaments.
Let’s look at GGPoker’s Final Table experience in more detail:
Before the final table starts, players are given the opportunity to select which seats they would like to sit at, and are given 10 seconds to make their choice. A nice touch is that players make their selections in reverse order of chip counts, so that the player with the smallest stack gets first choice, then the next smallest stack, and so on.
Deal making is a common practice at final tables. Anything can happen in poker, and it’s absolutely possible that a chip leader can be eliminated in just a couple of hands, while the shortest stack can be catapulted to top spot in minutes. That’s poker! With this in mind, deal making can be a preferred option.
Online poker makes the process very easy for everyone, with no problematic horse-trading necessary. Selecting the Deal button in the top right brings up the agreement pop-up (if you wish to cancel, simply click the button again and select ‘Cancel Deal Reservation’).
All players must accept a deal for it to be finalized, after which the prizes are awarded and normal play is resumed to determine final rankings for Tournament Point (TP) purposes.
The Independent Chip Model (ICM) is used and the process is automatic, being calculated according to current chips stacks in order to ensure fair distribution (other methods can produce payout suggestions that can be difficult to agree on).
This is an interesting one. Once the Final Table Features are activated, the Blind level will change so that, instead of time increments, the Blind levels will be based on hand counts (number of hands dealt). Note that the number of hand counts per blinds may differ for each tournament.
A Chess Clock is used to allocate a set amount of thinking time to each player. In this Final Table context it works as follows:
- During pre-flop there is a 30 second action time. However, a player can use a time extension button to use any remaining Chess Clock time.
- After the Flop there’s no need to select this option, and the remaining Chess Clock time can be used.
- Once the Chess Clock expires, the player has only 5 seconds per turn to make a decision.
- Each player’s total Chess Clock time will be a combination of the remaining tournament time bank and the average value of Tournament M
- M is calculated as follows: (Chip Total of all players) / (Small Blind + Big Blind + Total Ante) / Number of Players
- The maximum and minimum Chess Clock values are 15 minutes and 1 minute respectively.
In some tournaments with 100 or more entries the Blind level may be automatically amended once the Final Table stage is reached. This is to ensure a better gameplay experience. For example, if the average chip stack is less than 40 Big Blinds (BB), the Blind level will be rolled back so that the average stack is at least 40 BB for the first hand played. Note that the Blinds may roll back multiple levels if required. The aim is to make sure that, after having achieved a place at the Final Table, players can have more play in the fight for the prizes. Finally, Blind levels may also be rolled forward so that the average stack is no more than 100 BB.
So, there you have it! Not only does GGPoker have a deserved reputation for coming up with player-friendly features generally, but they’ve also put a great deal of effort into optimising and enhancing the Final Table experience!
Meanwhile, discover tasty online poker bonuses and offers in our dedicated info section.
Good luck at the tables, and have fun!