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Satellite Challenges

Those who have read over the years know I don't shy away from projects and challenges when it comes to poker. I've started many a self imposed challenge in the past, but unfortunately I almost never finish them. It's not that I'm lazy or lack drive, it's just that poker is a hobby and life typically ends up getting in the way of my plans on the felt. I've had challenges that I was running red hot on that I ultimately didn't finish, simply because something else came up. If my play had a more set structure, I think things would be different, but these days I basically just play the blonkaments and a few other tourneys here and there.

The last time I was truly excited about a challenge I created for myself was when Mansion Poker was running the nightly 100/100 ($100 buy-in, 100k Guarantee). That tourney always seemed to have overlay and was very soft (just ask Chad), so I was really excited about the prospects of running that one for as long as possible. I even had a couple of deals with backers to cover a portion of the costs, but unfortunately Mansion pulled out of the U.S. right around that time. I felt bad 'cause some of the money from my backers was stuck in Neteller, but thankfully I was eventually able to get that back to them. I ended up playing two of the tourneys before they shut me down. As for that challenge, the UIGEA really took the wind out of my sails, taking away a tournament I was excited about as well as the ability to transfer easily to and fro.

I felt the need to write the above, since I plan to start another challenge that I hope I can keep at this time. It's really less of a challenge and more of an overall plan for my upcoming play. There are two things I really want to try and do in the near future.
  1. I really want to try and play more of the bigger weekly and monthly guarantee tourneys on Full Tilt and PokerStars. I know, I know, I should just go ahead and drive a nail directly in my head and save myself the stress.
  2. I want to try and build my bankroll using satellites into the bigger buy-in tourneys.

This is something I've thought about for a while and have started to see others utilize in their daily gaming. I love the idea of the satellite challenge that Full Tilt has incorporated into their FTOPs and big guarantee tournaments. In essence, once you win your buy-in to a large guarantee tournament, any subsequent satellite wins into that particular tournament puts the buy-in directly into your account.

What I love about this is not only do satellites tend to be donkfests, where people make entirely wrong moves in certain situations, but you also don't have to play down to a winner. If the satellite pays 1-100 a seat, then you can finish up the tourney quicker than normal. Granted the bubble tends to be tighter than an fleas asshole in big satellites, but it is still better than having to make a run for a final table.

I also love the idea of building a bankroll with consistancy and having a direct plan, instead of what I currently do which is log on and just play whatever is next up on the list that I think looks good.

So if you've made it this far and have done, or are doing, something similar, let me know the deal. Some of the things I'm interested in...

  1. What major tournament are you satelliting into?
  2. What satellite is the best option for the tourney (offers the most seats and best chance)?
  3. What are the differences in the opportunities on Full Tilt vs. Pokerstars (or another site)?
  4. Are there tournaments that don't have actual satellite challenges that you can still use to incorporate this type of strategy? I know Stars has some form of points or cash system, but I just don't know enough details about it.

I would prefer to stick to the guarantee tournaments that are in the $100 - $300 range as my current bankroll can probably support satellites of those tourneys better than anything else. However, if a great satellite towards a bigger buy-in guarantee tournament ($300 - $500) is available and requires $26 or $75 tokens for the satellite, I could just do a ton of up front work loading up on those first.

So let me know what you think. I'm very interested to know more about what PokerStars offers since I haven't played there in a while, but I also want to get a better idea of what others are doing at Full Tilt as well.

Giddy up.

May the felt be with you .

posted by TripJax @ 11:36 AM,


At 8:35 PM, Blogger Chad C said...

I won 3-4 seats to Event 9 and I think 6-7 to the ME this FTOPS. I would suggest MTT sats, they just seem softer. For the $750K though I would accumulate a bunch of $75 tokens if I were you and play the $75 1=table satellites. There are three seats that are fairly easy to win, I mean you pretty much can just fold to a seat sometimes the play is so bad.

At 10:30 PM, Blogger JL514 said...

Dunno if you read, but I targeted the $100 rebuy FTOPS, event #7. I played single table sit and goes, $38 entry and top 3 pay $100+9 seats.

Pretty easy to win a seat in those, and everyone you win after Bam, $100. Then there's the satellite challenge that will give you 1-2 more buyins if you win the most.

SOunds like you're looking for something thats weekly or daily and a little bigger, but its not a bad starting point.

At 10:13 AM, Blogger HighOnPoker said...

Reading Chad and Jordan's comments are giving me second thoughts, but I originally thought that this sounds like a bad idea. It sounds like you are trying to win a big sum to build your roll rather than work your way up. The problem is, for every Satellite you win and don't cash, your roll will drop. Maybe I'm not working the logic out correctly in my head, but it seems like this would be a drain on the roll, rather than a roll builder. Whatever the case, good luck. I'm curious to see how this goes.

At 12:25 PM, Blogger TripJax said...

Thanks guys for the comments.

Actually, J, I feel I'm doing the opposite of trying to win a big sum. Actually playing in the big buy-in guarantee tournament is ancillary in the whole scheme of things.

My main goal is to play in the satellites that I feel I can exploit and thus build my bankroll from the "flat payout" structure.

~ Many players don't know what they are doing in these satellites and make terrible plays at the exact wrong times they should be making them. My track record on the multi-table sng tokens has been pretty solid so I feel comfortable trying to transition to the MTT Sats.

~ I like the idea of being able to play satellites where I can save time by just making it into the satellite money seats, instead of worrying about making it in one of the top paying spots.

~ For whatever reason, I really like the "flat payout" given the right structure and strategy.

~ I feel like this can truly be a bankroll builder in the long run if you work it the right way, have focus on what you are trying to accomplish and exploit the weakness of other players (that's poker in a nutshell right there,eh!).

I remember back in the Party Poker days when they had the Steps tourneys towards a WSOP seat, there were certain players who straight up crushed those things because, once they got their first seat, they would just buy-in to the larger Step and crush all the other players who had built it up from Step 1 and were playing really tight in hopes of making their seat. I'm not saying I can crush it like that, but on a certain level, once you have your first seat, if you can have a decent in the money rate, you can build your roll pretty well with them. Just my thought since I haven't actually done it yet.

Getting the seat to the guarantee tournament would really just be gravy and give me a chance to play more tournaments that mean a little more when ITM.

I think it boils down to how you look at it from the start. I probably should have listed them in opposite order in my post to truly show where my focus is.

Follow-up thoughts?

And I didn't re-read this comment so I probably flubbed it up and made all kinds of errors...


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