It's hard to believe now but there was a time in online poker history that multi-day, multi-event tournament series weren’t a thing.
It wasn’t until 2002 when PokerStars ran the first-ever World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP) – to recreate the vibe of the World Series of Poker online - that the online tournament series became a central part of online poker's playbook.
Since then, well … it’s safe to say that online poker players have taken to online tournament series like ducks to water.
Millions to Win in Online Poker Series
The just completed 2019 SCOOP – the Spring Championship of Online Poker, now the WCOOP’s counterpart at PokerStars – offered over $75 million in guaranteed prize pools and paid out over $1m to Italian Gianluca ‘Tankanza” Speranza for the SCOOP Main Event title.
Amazingly, it was back-to-back crowns for Speranza as he also won the 2018 SCOOP Main Event for over $1.1m.
Needless to say there is a ton of money to be won in online poker tournament series across multiple poker sites. PokerStars may have been the first but now every major poker site from 888poker to partypoker to Unibet Poker to William Hill has their own signature tournament series – and often multiple times per year.
If you want to get in on the non-stop action of online poker tournament series, here’s all you need to know.
PokerStars – WCOOP, SCOOP, TCOOP, Micro Millions
It’s hard not to consider PokerStars the benchmark for successful online poker tournament series.
From the initial 9-event 2002 WCOOP, which awarded over $730,000 in prize money, it has continually set the bar for how big and how lucrative online poker tournament series can be. As of 2019 PokerStars offers these major series every year:
- TCOOP – Turbo Championship of Online Poker (Feb)
- SCOOP – Spring Championship of Online Poker (May)
- Micro Millions – MicroStakes Tournament Series (July)
- WCOOP - World Championship of Online Poker (Sept)
WCOOP – World Championship of Online Poker
- # of Events: 65+ at three different buy-in levels
- Total Prize Pool: $75m-$115m
- Time of Year: Fall
- Buy-in Range: Low, medium and highwith entry from $2.20 to $25,000
- Main Events: $55 buy-in with $1M GTD; $5,200 buy-in with $10M GTD ($1M for first place)
If there is a granddaddy of online poker tournament series it’s decidedly the WCOOP as it’s not only the first and most famous online series, it’s also the most diverse.
Begun in the spirit of the World Series of Poker, where poker players are tested across all sorts of games and variations to prove their acumen, the WCOOP offers tournaments in dozens of variants.
Just a small sample based on the 2018 WCOOP Schedule:
- No-Limit Hold’em
- No-Limit Hold’em 6-Handed
- No-Limit Hold’em 8-Handed
- NLHE Progressive KO
- NL 2-7 Single Draw
- Fixed Limit Omaha 8
- Pot-Limit Omaha 6-Max
- PLO 8-Max
- No-Limit Hold’em Deep Stack
- 5-Card Draw
- NLHE 3-Max, Turbo, Progressive Zoom
- Stud Hi-Lo
You get the idea. In 2018, in a move to diversify even further, the WCOOP adopted the SCOOP-inspired, three buy-in level model – Low, Medium, High – and offered corresponding tournaments at each buy-in level. All told there were:
- 185 WCOOP events
- Over 1 million entries
- Just under $100 Million in prize pools
That’s a phenomenal amount of players and money. The list of players who have won WCOOP bracelets is long and storied, filled with famous names from both the live and online poker world. Notable WCOOP Main Event winners include:
- JC Tran (2006 WCOOP)
- Carter King (2008 WCOOP)
- Yevgeniy Timoshenko (2009 WCOOP)
- Tyson Marks (2010 WCOOP – At $2.2m still biggest WCOOP payout)
- Fedor Holz (2014 WCOOP)
- Steven Van Zadelhoff (2017 WCOOP)
It also, of course, includes several amateur players who made their own history with big wins in the Main Event, much like Russian Marat Sharafutdinov, who famously declared ‘I wont million” in the chat box when refusing a deal and went on to win just over $1m in the 2012 WCOOP Main Event.
With so many opportunities at some many different buy-in levels, there is no online tournament series quite like the WCOOP. Register to play the 2019 WCOOP on PokerStars right here:
SCOOP – Spring Championship of Online Poker
- # of Events: 65+ at 3 different buy-in levels
- Total Prize Pool: $75m-$115m
- Time of Year: Spring
- Buy-in Range: $5.50 - $50,000
- Main Events: $11.5M GTD across three Main Events ($109, $1,050 and $10,300 buy-ins)
- Pot Limit Omaha Main Events share $1.75M GTD ($109, $1,050 and $10,300)
When you’ve found something as successful and lucrative as the WCOOP, how else can you follow it up than with a virtual carbon copy of it – except this one plays out in the Spring rather than the Fall.
It took them a few years to latch on to the idea as the first-ever SCOOP wasn’t held until 2009. Different from the WCOOP, the SCOOP began offering three different buy-in levels – Low, Medium, High – from the beginning.
While a SCOOP title might not have held quite the same esteem as a WCOOP bracelet, the model clearly worked and thousands of players flocked to the lower buy-in events alongside the Championship level events.
Pro names were scattered at all levels of buy-ins but the Low and Medium events really opened the door for amateur players to get a taste of major online poker tournament success. Notable winners from the first-ever SCOOP in 2009 included:
- Isaac Baron
- Matt Affleck
- Hevad Khan
- Michael Mizrachi
- Jason Koon
- Michael Binger
- Terrence Chan
- Benny Spindler
- Andrew Lichtenberger
- JC Alvarado
From 22 events at each level in 2009 to 38 in the next few years to 40 and then 44 by 2013, SCOOP attendance and prize pools increased every year. By 2019 overall guarantees have reached $75m and the SCOOP Main Event – High champion can bank on pocketing well over $1m.
SCOOP Main Event – High Champs include:
- Jude “j.thaddeus” Ainsworth (SCOOP 2009)
- Ryan “toetagU” Fair (SCOOP 2010)
- Sami “Lrslzk” Kelopuro (SCOOP 2011)
- Nicholas “GripDsNutz” Grippo (SCOOP 2012)
- Viktor “Isildur1” Blom (SCOOP 2013)
- Ivan “vandir4ek” Soshnikov (SCOOP 2014)
- Mustapha “lasganaaaammm” Kanit (SCOOP 2015)
- Talal “raidalot” Shakerchi (SCOOP 2016)
- Charlie “Epiphany77” Carrel (SCOOP 2017)
- Gianluca “Tankanza” Speranza (SCOOP 2018, 2019)
Speranza is the first player to win back-to-back SCOOP Main Event titles. The 2020 Spring Championship of Online Poker will play out in May 2020 on PokerStars. Register and play right here:
TCOOP - Turbo Championship of Online Poker (Turbo Series)
- # of Events: $100+
- Total Prize Pool: $25 Million
- Time of Year: February
- Buy-in Range: $11 - $1,050
- Main Events: Two Main Events with $55 and $1,050 buy-ins; $3,000,000 in total guaranteed prize money
Founded back in 2017 the Turbo Championship of Online Poker (TCOOP) has now been replace by the Turbo Series, but it’s still a very similar tournament series. It runs for two weeks during February and offers dozens of action-packed, high-speed Turbo and Hyper Turbo poker tournaments in different variations.
If you’re unfamiliar with a “Turbo” tournament, it’s simply a tournament where the blinds are sped up and levels change very quickly. This cuts down on the overall time it takes to play the tournament to its end. It also affects your overall strategy.
Super fast and super fun, the buy-ins are very accessible for all bankrolls and the series is capped by a very popular Main Event. If you don’t have a lot of time and you prefer the gamble it up a bit in your poker tournaments, Turbo Series may be for you.
Register to play in 2020 on PokerStars here:
PokerStars MicroMillions Tournament Series
- # of Events: 120+
- Total Prize Pool: $1 Million+
- Time of Year: Summer
- Buy-in Range: 11 cents to $11
- Main Events: $11 buy-in; $1M GTD & $100K+ to 1st!
The MicroMillions is one of PokerStars’ most popular annual tournaments as it offers super small buy-ins, massive fields and ridiculously big prizes given how little the buy-ins are.
Buy-ins start as small as 11 cents (!) but because participation is so huge the prize pools can work out to be quite large, Sure, you have to navigate through a gigantic field to get there, but the reward at the end is well worth it.
Despite the small buy-ins millions have been paid out in the MicroMillions series and it truly is one of the most egalitarian online poker tournament series ever created. Literally anyone can play, and anyone can win.
The 14th edition of the MicroMillions runs July 16-29 with a diverse lineup of tournament formats and buy-ins from 0.11 to $5.50. Hyper Turbos, Zoom, Progressive KOs and Spin & Go's are all part of the mix.
Over 120 events are scheduled with $1m guaranteed in the Main Event and $100,000 for first. Over $50,000 in free MicroMillions tickets will also be awarded to players leading up to the MicroMillions Qualify via satellite or buy right in via PokerStars here:
PokerStars Turbo Series, NJCOOP & NJSCOOP
For its legal online poker site in the US in New Jersey PokerStars has of course adapted its famous online series to a localized version. The PokerStars NJCOOP plays in the Fall,, similar to the WCOOP while the SCOOP plays in the Spring.
- # of Events: 45+
- Total Prize Pool: $1.5 Million+
- Time of Year: Spring/Fall
- Buy-in Range: $50 to $500
- Main Events: $500 buy-in; $150,000 GTD
Events run the gamut from Progressive KOs to Hyper-Turbos and everywhere in between. The NJSCOOP runs in the Spring with a similar Low/Medium/High buy-in structure and the regular SCOOP. Also included in the PokerStars NJ online tournament series:
- Multiple chances to win $30K Platinum Pass packages to the PokerStars Player’s NL Hold’em Championship at the PCA in the Bahamas
- Depositor freerolls with $10,000 in Main Event seats added
- Daily Second Chance freerolls with over $20K in tickets added
- Special Spin & Go’s awarding Main Event seats for just $4
The PokerStars Turbo Series runs in late Winter and offers Turbo and Hyper-Turbo versions of the most popular poker formats. Guarantees typically run to about $200,000 with a $25,000 GTD Main Event. Buy-ins start from $15 but you can win your seats for less in low-cost satellites.
888poker XL Series – Blizzard, Eclipse, Inferno
- # of Events: 35
- Total Prize Pool: €1.5 Million
- Time of Year: 3 times per year
- Buy-in Range: $5.50 up to $320
- Main Events: $250 buy-in, $500,000 Guaranteed
Originally launched as a single Super XL Series back in 2015, 888poker’s signature online tournament event has since expanded to a three-times a year offering under three different monikers:
- XL Blizzard
- XL Eclipse
- XL Inferno
What’s the difference among them? Time of year, mostly. As you might have guessed the XL Blizzard runs in the Winter/Spring, the XL Inferno in Spring/Summer and the XL Eclipse in the Summer/Fall. That’s pretty much it for differences.
Otherwise, they all offer a pretty spectacular and diverse array of tournaments over a two-week period with big guarantees, tons of variety and a showcase Main Event.
Guarantees over 34 or so events usually hit $1.5 million or so although that number has grown in recent years as 888poker becomes more and more grounded in the top traffic sites of the online poker industry.
You can expect to see many of the 888poker pros and ambassadors at the seats in the XL series tournaments, including Dominik Nitsche and Sofia Lovgren in particular, but this is truly a poker tournament series for the people with low-to-mid-level buy-ins and lots of No-Limit Hold’em.
Online qualifiers and satellites for XL Series events also start as low as 1c so literally anyone with an 888poker account can get in on the action. Create a new 888poker account and get $88 free just by using the link on the right.
partypoker PowerFest, partypoker Millions Online
Few online poker sites have gone through as big of a makeover as partypoker has in the past few years. Once the king of online poker sites before the passing of the UIGEA in 2006, partypoker retreated from the American market and settled into a role as a second-tier poker site for many years.
Over the past few years, though, partypoker has reemerged in a big way with a huge push to regain that number one spot. Principal among its resurgence has been:
- Completely redesigned software and rewards program
- Massive investment in partypoker live tour
- Huge boost to guarantees and expansion of partypoker Million Online and PokerFest
It’s clearly working as partypoker is now the 4th-largest online poker site in the world in terms of traffic behind on PokerStars.com, PokerStars.eu and Asia-based IDNPoker. partypoker has a few signature online poker tournaments/series it runs every year:
- partypoker Powerfest
- partypoker KO Series
- partypoker Monster Series
- partypoker Omaha Series
- partypoker Christmas Series
- partypoker Millions Online
All told the tournament series offer about $150 million in guarantees across the board in so many formats and varieties it’s hard to keep track.
- # of Events: 250
- Total Prize Pool: €30 Million
- Time of Year: 2-3 times per year
- Buy-in Range: €5.50-€25,000
- Main Events: Low, Medium, High
Based on partypoker poker’s weekly Power Series of tournaments, Powerfest is an amped up version of series that runs 2-3 times per year with around $30 Million in guarantees over around 250 events.
Buy-ins are split into three levels (Low, Medium, High) and run from about $5.50 to Championship level ($1k-$5k) events. With the new push for the partypoker Live tour, better software and a bigger pro team there are even some high-profile events like a $25,000 High Roller that draws the world’s best players.
All levels draw huge fields of amateurs and pros alike. The schedule is nice and diverse with all kinds of poker variations (6-max, 8-max, Mix-Max, Progressive KO, turbo, hyper-turbo, Deepstack, etc) but plenty of core No-Limit Hold’em and PLO to satisfy any poker fan.
Prize pools are juicy and the skill level at the lower buy-in levels is moderate. It’s a fun and lucrative time on partypoker.
partypoker Monster Series
- # of Events: 100+
- Total Prize Pool: $3.4 Million
- Time of Year: Summer
- Buy-in Range: $1-$55
- Main Events: 4 Championship events
Targeting the more recreational poker player the Monster Series is a shorter series usually about a week long. Buy-ins are again spread over three buy-in levels but the spread is much tighter.
“Low” buy-ins start around $1 and “High buy-ins are around $55. About $2.5 Million is guaranteed over the week making it super high value for amateur players. Around 100 events are on the schedule capped by four “phased” championship events on the final Sunday.
Special edition SPINS games are also available for cheap and easy satellites into events.
partypoker KO Series
- # of Events: 225+
- Total Prize Pool: $10-30 Million
- Time of Year: Spring
- Buy-in Range: $1.10 and up
- Main Events: $300k
The partypoker KO Series is another shorter series that runs over about a week. The total guarantee is usually around $10-$30 million, though, so it can be quite lucrative. There is also NO rake on bounty wins.
All events in the KO Series are naturally progressive knockout tournaments, which means you get paid a bounty whenever you knock out another player. For every player you bust, though, your own bounty increases and makes you more enticing to knock out.
About 220 events are played with buy-ins starting at only $1.10 and guaranteed prize pools up to a peak of around $300,000.
partypoker Omaha Series
- # of Events: 160+
- Total Prize Pool: $2 Million
- Time of Year: Spring
- Buy-in Range: $11 and up
- Main Events: Four $50k GTD events
Spinning off the success of its Daily PLO Power Series partypoker ran its first-ever Omaha tournament series in 2019 and it was likewise a nice success.
Offering $2 million guaranteed over 8 days the Omaha Series had both PLO and PLO8 variants in lots of different formats (turbo, hyper-turbo, deepstack, Progressive KO etc). Buy-ins ranged from $11 to $530.
Four $50k GTD events capped off a 160-tournament schedule. Given the response you can expect the Omaha Series to become a partypoker staple.
partypoker Christmas Series
Apropos of the season, over the winter holidays partypoker tends to throw a pop-up Christmas tournament series made up of entirely Freezeout-style evnets.
Last year they offered $10m guaranteed over the series with about 200 freezeout tournaments to play. Buy-ins are as small as $3.30 and again multiple formats are available from Mix-max and 6-max to turbos etc in both NLHE and PLO.
All tournaments run in the evening and have daily satellites from 55 cents as well.
partypoker Millions Online
When you talk about signature online poker tournaments the partypoker Millions is at or near the top of the list. It also holds the record for the biggest online poker tournament ever.
Run over 9 days the 2018 partypoker Millions Online had a staggering $22m prize pool. The main event had a buy-in of $5,300 but hundreds of steps satellites ran for opportunities to get in much cheaper.
The 2018 winner, Portugal’s Manuel Ruivo, won $2.3m while the third-place finisher from Slovenia turned his $22 seat into $1.3 million. The partypoker Millions is back for 2019 as par of an even bigger festival of events and now has a $10,300 buy-in and $20 million guaranteed. Expect more records to be broken.
Sign up and play any or all of the partypoker Tournament Series here:
partypoker Garden State Super Series
Just like PokerStars, partypoker has also adapted its tournament series for the local New Jersey online poker market. In collaboration with its online partner in New Jersey, Borgata, the Garden State Super Series runs a few times per years.
- # of Events: 24
- Total Prize Pool: $450,000
- Time of Year: 2-3 times per year
- Buy-in Range: $35-$1,060
- Main Event: $320 buy-in, $100,000 GTD
Satellite qualifiers start at as little as 25 cents and run around the calendar year. Series events run in a variety of formats but predominantly No-Limit Hold’em six-max, turbo and bounty tournaments. There's also a 6-Max PLO tournament.
iPoker Festival – formerly iPOPS Tournament Series
- # of Events: 50-55
- Total Prize Pool: €400,000
- Time of Year: Spring (April-May)
- Buy-in Range: €10 to €50
- Main Event: €100 buy-in, €100,000 guaranteed
The iPoker Network traditionally ran a €1 million guaranteed festival called the iPOPS but recently scaled back to the iPoker Festival with a more modest €400k guaranteed or so.
The reduced guarantee reflected its overall shift towards microstakes and low stakes players.
Most of the buy-ins in the iPoker Festival are between €10-€50 and is capped by a €100 buy-in Main Event with a €100,000 guaranteed prize pool.
About 50 events run in the Spring with none of the events in the standard freezeout format. Up to three re-entries are usually allowed with some events just traditional rebuys.
Most of the skins on the iPoker Network brand the series with their own brand and also run “Spring Festival Missions” that award freeroll entries or tickets to iPoker Festival tickets.
Check out our reviews of poker sites on the iPoker Network and sign up below:
Unibet Online Poker Series
The Unibet Online Poker Series has been around for 5 years now and has consistently grown its prize pools and traffic.
- # of Events: 84
- Total Prize Pool: €400,000
- Time of Year: Spring (April-May)
- Buy-in Range: Nano (€0.10 to €1), Low (€2 to €25), High (€25 to €100)
- High - €100 buy-in; €100,000 guaranteed
- Low - €25 buy-in, €15,000 guaranteed
- Nano - €1 buy-in, €2,000 guaranteed
Main Events have player-friendly structures and run two days. Every player that wins a Unibet Online Series event get a seat in series-ending Unibet Online Series Showdown Tournament.
Unibet Online Series Leaderboards
Top 35 per cent of finishers receive leaderboard points; €25,000 is split among the most consistent players with most points for each buy-in level.
Get an exclusive Unibet Poker sign-up bonus via our review page here: