Tournament Basics for Beginners

For many poker players, competing in single table and multi table poker tournaments provides the ultimate challenge. Single table tournaments - or Sit and Go tournaments - are starting every minute or so at 32Red Poker and our multi table tournament schedule is truly astonishing. Please read through the article below so that you can get to grips with some of the basics about online poker. Alternatively just click one of the links below:

What's a Sit & Go?
What does $10 + $1 or $0.75 + $0.25 mean?
What's a Single Table Tournament?
What's a Multi Table Tournament?
What's a Freeroll?
What's a Satellite?
What does Heads Up mean?
What's a Bounty?
What's an Add-on?
What's the difference between a Freeze Out and a Re-buy tournament?
What's a Guarantee?

Beginner's Guide...

Taking part in an online Poker Tournament is great fun and a good way of budgeting your spending as you know your exposure before you start. If you choose a Single Table Texas Hold'em Tournament with a $10 buy in, plus a $1 entry fee - shown as $10+$1 - then you know that's all it's going to cost if you do not manage to get in the prize money. Poker Tournaments are knockout competitions where, usually, when you lose your chips, you are out. Each player at the table gets an equal amount of chips to begin with - say 1000 - with the winner ultimately acquiring all the chips at the table. These types of tourneys are usually contested by 10 players, with the winner taking 50% of the total buy-ins (10 x $10 = $100. 50% of which is $50). The runner-up gets 30% of the pool ($30) and the third placed player would get 20$ ($20). As you can see the pool gets distributed to the players with just the $1 being kept by the House in exchange for facilitating the competition.

Typical Single Table Prize Funding...

10 players buying in for $10 +$1 each
Total prize pool of $100
Winner gets $50
Second gets $30
Third gets $20

Single Table Tournaments start when every seat at the table is occupied by a player.

You can take part in tournaments at 32Red Poker playing the whole range of Poker games and bet limits. So if your favourite is No Limit Texas Hold'em Poker or Fixed Limit 5 Card Stud, there's a game starting at 32Red right now!

View our single table tournament schedule here and click here for multi table games.

Tournament Essential Information...

If you are new to Poker Tournament play, then you may want to get familiar with the basics. Don't forget that, as with our Ring games (or Money games), you can play with fun chips only without risking real money before becoming a tournament ace at the tables.

Sit and Go...

These are single table tournaments where the participants around the table are the only players in the contest. The prize structure is almost always 50% for the winner, 30% for finishing second and 20% for finishing third.


This is the cost of entering a poker tournament. For instance, a $20 + $2 tournament will cost $22 in total. $20 goes to the prize fund, all of which is distributed to the winner(s), whilst the $2 entry fee is the charge levied by the House.

Single Table Tournament...

Single Table Tournaments are the same as Sit and Go's. You can play all the different varieties of Poker in all the different betting formats at the 32Red Poker Room. Our range of single table tournament buy-ins suits all pockets with entry as low as $0.75 + $0.25 right up to $200 + $10.

Multi Table Tournament...

Multi Table Tournaments are more exotic than Sit and Go. With more players taking part, the prize is much harder to win. It's not unusual to see a multi table tourney have as many as 10,000 players entered. However, 200 players is more common with prize money going down to 20th place. The objective of the multi table tournament player is to fight their way on to the last remaining table as opponents gets knocked out, in the same way as they do in single table games. As the number of players left at a table reduces, players are moved to other tables where the same thing happens until all that remains is one table. The winner comes from these remaining 10 players.


We have daily Freerolls at Freerolls are great fun as they are multi table tournaments with no entry fee, but still usually have a Guaranteed Pot of $1000. In most cases there will be a qualification requirement of each player having played a number of hands for real money elsewhere within the 32Red Poker Room.


Through our network partner, Microgaming Poker, 32Red offers exciting Satellite tournaments including entry into contests such as the Grand Prix de Paris and the Monte Carlo Millions.

Heads Up...

Heads Up describes just two players competing against each other at the table. A Heads Up tournament is real knockout contest. As one player beats their opponent they move on to the next table until it's just the two last players standing who fight out one last Heads Up match to find the winner. For an interesting twist, check out our Heads-Up Rounders tournaments.


A Bounty tournament involves cash prize rewards for players who knock-out any of the appointed Bounties playing in the tournament.  We currently host a ‘Be the Bounty’ tournament every Saturday in which the winner of the tournament gets a chance to defend his Bounty the following week. Click here for more info.

Freeze Out and Re-Buys...

Freeze Outs are simply tournaments where players are allowed to buy-in just the once, at the start of the game, as opposed to Re-buy tournaments, where you can buy in again on one or more occasions when your chips balance reaches 0.

Add on...

Add ons are where players get the opportunity to pay a further entry fee for a tournament in which they are playing. Unlike a re-buy-in, which can take place a number of times, but only when you have a zero balance of chips, An Add on is permitted just once and does not depend on you having no chips left.

Guaranteed Prize Pools...

Prize funds are often made up of the buy-ins paid by the participating players in any given tournament. On occasion, the 32Red Poker Room and our network partner Microgaming Poker, offer Guaranteed Prize Pools whereby the winners are assured a large prize irrespective of the level of funding from the players. Click here to see our Guaranteed Tournaments, including the $200,000 Guaranteed Tournament.

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