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How to Play a Bounty Poker Tournament

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“Bounty tournaments” are a relatively new form of poker tournament that place a “bounty” on each player’s head, thus changing the dynamics of the tournament. This article will explain how to play a bounty poker tournament, including the buy-in differences, strategy differences, and payout differences from a normal MTT.

Bounty Tournament Buy-Ins

When you buy in to a bounty tournament, a large portion of your money goes to a central prize pool, while a smaller portion of your money goes into a side, “bounty pool”. For example, a $200 buy-in bounty tournament may put $175 of your  buy-in towards the main prize pool, while the remaining $25 is placed on your head as a bounty.

Each player receives a “bounty chip” when they buy-in to the bounty tournament, and when you are eliminated from the tournament you give your bounty chip to whoever busted you. Likewise, whenever you eliminate someone from the tournament, you receive their bounty chip, which is yours to keep. At the end of the tournament you can cash in all of your bounty chips for real money – in this case, $25/chip.

Bounty Tournament Strategy

Some players choose to play more aggressively in all-in situations because of the additional money placed on each player’s head. However, we recommend sticking to your normal poker tournament strategy and letting the other players beat up on each other while you slowly accumulate chips. Feel free to get all-in or call another player’s all-in, but only if you would make the same move without the bounty in play.

By sticking to your solid tournament strategy and letting the other players knock each other out, you give yourself a great shot at going deep in the tournament and winning a huge payout. Keep in mind that the final table payouts will put the bounty payouts to shame, so your focus should be on making a deep run and not on collecting other player’s bounty chips.

Bounty Tournament Payouts

Bounty tournaments usually use the same payout structure as normal multi table tournaments – the only difference is that the payouts will be slightly less than what you would expect from a normal MTT with the same buy-in, because a portion of the pool is going towards the bounty payouts and not the normal payout structure. The best way to explain this is that a $200 bounty tournament with $25 bounties will have similar payouts to a normal $175 tournament with no bounties.

Again, though, it is best to win a $200 bounty tournament that only pays out like a $175 tournament than to spend all your time pursuing bounties and busting out before the money.

Play Bounty Tournaments Online

If you would like to play real money bounty poker tournaments online, make sure to check out – the site runs bounty tournaments several times a day, and if you happen to knock another player out, you will receive the bounty money instantly. To find bounty tournaments in the Full Tilt Poker lobby, look for any tournament with a “K” next to it (which stands for knockout bounty). If you do decide to sign up, make sure to use referral code BPSORG to receive an exclusive 100% up to $600 deposit bonus. Good luck!

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Written by Bill Nye

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