Tournament Roulette

Published: 21/08/2012

Much like tournament blackjack, there are two big differences between tournament roulette and normal play at a casino. First, losses and winnings are automatically limited to the cost of the entry fee and the size of the prize pool, not a factor of the bankroll brought to the table. Second, the object of the tournament is to beat the other players, not just the House. For these reasons alone, a very different approach to strategy must be taken when playing tournament roulette.

Most roulette tournaments are divided into a number of rounds. Participants receive a fixed number of nonredeemable chips to play with and either a time limit or a spin limit determines how long play will last for a single round. The goal is to accumulate enough chips by the end of the round to move on to the next round, which typically requires being among the top two finishers at the table.

Signing up for a roulette tournament online is quite similar to participating in a poker tournament or a bingo tournament. The events available will be listed in the web site’s tournament lobby well in advance, allowing potential players to select the time and level of play best suited to their availability. Entry fees or so-called “buy-in fees” must be paid in advance and can vary greatly. The amount charged will be reflected in the size and number of prizes awarded.

Apart from the cost of entry, players should also pay close attention to the tournament’s payout structure when signing up. Some tournaments adopt a winner-takes-all format, while others use a tiered structure to award prizes to top finishers. There may be small prizes for the winners of each round in addition to the prizes given to podium finishers.

Even though the format of the game differs from standard casino roulette, all of the basic table rules, including minimum and maximum betting limits, remain unchanged. One aspect that may surprise new tournament players is the way chips are denominated. It is not unusual for a tournament with a £10 buy-in to issue £10,000 worth of tournament chips to each player as a starting balance.

When a roulette tournament is played in rounds, the chips won in one round do not transfer to the next. Instead, all qualifying players start the next round with the same number of chips as were issued at the very beginning of the tournament. This helps eliminate the luck factor to some degree. It also allows losing players from an early round to re-buy into the tournament, if the rules permit re-entry.

There are many types of strategies that can be applied to tournament roulette. Making a series of cautious small bets during the early spins may allow a player to conserve most of the initial bankroll for big wagers after other players have busted out or established how much needs to be won in order to move on to the next round. On the other hand, big bets made early can pay off and quickly establish a player as the one to beat.

In most roulette tournaments, there is no requirement to wager on every spin. That means anytime a player makes a large win, he or she may stop playing and “sit” on the stack of chips won, waiting to see how other players at the table fare. Re-entering the betting toward the end of the spin or time limit is also possible, so timing one’s play is a critical component of leaving a round on top.

Players can identify where they are ranked in the tournament by checking the leader board that is typically posted in the tournament lobby or, in the case of land-based casinos, next to the competition area. One of the best aspects of tournament play is the risk-reward ratio. A very large prize can often be won for a relatively small investment by those who are skillful in making strategic decisions.

Published on: 21/08/2012

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