Tourney T2000 Tournament structure comments welcome (1 Viewer)


Nov 14, 2014
Reaction score
Washington, DC
I've always run some variation on this for flop games but thought I'd get some outside opinion. I keep a similar structure for stud games I just make the levels much, much longer.

T2000 with one re-buy allowed if busted, one add on allowed anytime. 8 players max. I want it to be skilled but it does need to move. At or under 4 hours is ideal. It's slow and steady up, but the blinds are big relative to the stacks. 20 minute levels.

Ante/Small Blind/Big Blind




Woah, starting at 40BB is really short stacked, especially if you want to run for 4 hours. Normally you start T10000 at 25/50. Even if you have everyone add on for T2000 (you didn't specify the size), and half the players bust and rebuy you only have T40k on the table total. Even a T10k stack won't last too long at 250/500.
Using BlindValet, and assuming 4 rebuys of 2k each and 8 add-ons of 1k each, and also assuming 25 is the lowest denomination on the table, this will finish in 4 hours for 8 players with 20 minute levels and no breaks... although given how short stacked everyone is to begin with I'd guess you will finish well within 3 hours. My regular sit-n-go crowd would be through with this structure well within 2 hours.

LevelSmall BlindBig BlindAntes
You asked, so...

Only 40 BB? That's not a poker tournament; that's a luck fest! You need at least 150 BB, and 200 BB to start. Your blinds schedule seems fine if you have a lot more in chips.

Forget antes. Way too much trouble. That means you can avoid repeating two blind rounds.

20 min blinds work fine. I use 20 min blinds and with 10 players, you should be able to do a complete orbit at that blind level.

There's a science behind determining how long a tournament will last. I'll try to post it later, but generally, when the total of blinds and antes = 5% of the total pool, the tournament should end. A second formula is when the BB = 5% of the total pool, the tournament will end. While those two formulas yield different results, reality should be between the two inclusively. I don't use tournament software, but follow this, and 80-90% of the time, the time falls within that range.
TexRex's method to determine how long a tourney will end, hits the nail on the head. Once there's 20bb in play, that's when your tourney will almost certainly be done by. 8 players x2000 chips = T16000. T16000 / 20bb = 800. Your tourney will end at the 400/800 level, maximum. Based on your structure, that's 4 hrs, but I find most tourneys end before this. I used to go by 50bb instead of 20bb and I found it was a good indicator. So knowing that people can rebuy and add-on, I'd say that your tourney structure is fine for a rebuy tourney.

One thing I'm curious about is, how you use a similar structure for stud games?
OP's structure is solid, and will typically last 3-1/2 hours or less for eight players -- although nearly everyone will be severely short-stacked after just two levels, when starting with T2000 stacks (40BB).

Personally, I wouldn't use the antes, because the gain/pain payoff just isn't there -- 1) players are forced to deal with antes, and 2) players are forced to deal with T25 chips for the entire tournament. Both will slow down the event, and likely counteract any real time saved by 'promoting action' through the use of antes.

A simple bump to T3000 stacks (60BB) without the antes helps a little, staving off the short-stack issue until after four levels, while still keeping the tournament length at four hours or less.

A better solution is to use the structure as-is (without antes) but with T5000 stacks (100BB) and 17-minute levels. The tournament still finishes in under four hours, and most players won't face shove-fest conditions until after six levels (or even later, as some players should be gone by that time). Drop the second 300/600 level and add 600/1200, 800/1600, 1000/2000, and 2000/3000 levels to the end. Most of the time, the event will end at L14-1000/2000 (4 hours) or earlier.
Here's some more info.

First, I'm going to change what I said about it being a luckfest. It isn't as much of a luckfest as it first appeared to me, but a little tweaking could make this a really nice tournament.

This is not original to me. There are five main factors in tournament design.

  1. One factor is the is the ratio of starting chips to the big blind (SC/BB). A tournament is deep stacked if over 150, very short stacked at 100. A player is considered to be competitive at 50 BB, short stacked at 30 BB, seriously short stacked at 20 BB, and desperately short stacked at 10 BB.
  2. One factor is the blind times. 1 hour or more is considered slow; 30 minutes about average, 15 or less very fast, and under 10, lightning fast.
  3. One factor is the blind increases – how rapidly they go up (most increases should be 1.33-1.6 – 2.0 or higher is considered too high).
  4. One factor is the skill factor (SF). Generally there are 6 skill levels of tournament. A 1 is a total luckfest; 2 is mostly luck; 3 is some skill; 4 likely requires some skill to win most of the time, but even a poor player could have a lucky night; 5 requires skill to win and rarely would a poor player win it; and 6 requires a high skill level to win (generally poor players simply have no real chance of winning and are dead money in these tournaments).
  5. One factor is the patience factor (PF). A patience factor is the square of the time it takes to be completely blinded out if you never played a hand. The higher the patience factor, the higher the skill required to win. SF and PF don’t measure the same thing, but there is a high correlation between the two.

A player who never plays would be blinded out in about 2:12. The formula above shows your game has an SF of 3 and a PF of 4.85.

If you didn't do re-buys, but just made it 5,000 to start, the SF is 5 and PF is 9.92, which is a significant improvement! A player playing no hands would last about 3:09.

If you went to 5,000, SF would be 6 and PF would be 11.06. "That" player would last about 3:20. That would be much simpler to run than using antes.

I still prefer deeper stacks than 5,000 would give you, but that would be a great tournament.
Thanks for the input all. I was pondering the T5000 move last night. The T2000 format has worked ok for some time but was predicated on the idea that almost all players did the add on and several would to the rebuy, but it is probably more elegant/efficient just to up the starting stacks. If I went to T5000 that takes starters to 100BB and if I allow re-buy that puts more in play and I would guess keep pretty close to the preferred ending time. The four hours is not hard and fast just preferred for working folks/dads/etc.
A lot of your antes are way too small. If you're going to use antes, I suggest you make the antes 1/4th the SB. If 1/4th isn't possible, then 1/5th and if 1/5th isn't possible then 1/3rd.

You might want to read this article about antes in tournaments:
The standard ante should represent 25% of the small blind. If the chips don't divide like that, you should veer between 20% and 33%, but no less than 20%.

Also, a lot of players don't like it when blinds double after a single level. You might want to cut out 25/50 and start at 50/100 (with a bigger starting stack) to avoid doubling. I do prefer blinds to never double but if they only doubles once at the beginning like you have it, it personally doesn't bother me.
Last edited:
Interesting article on antes. In my game though it's not a mathematic reason, it's texture. It's one table, frequently with non regular poker players so it think it's creates a better feel for there to be more chips on the table, even if they really are window dressing.


Create an account or login to comment

You must be a member in order to leave a comment

Create account

Create an account and join our community. It's easy!

Log in

Already have an account? Log in here.

Top Bottom