Tourney TEAM Poker Tournament - your thoughts?

bsdunbar1

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I tried a few searches and didn't find anything except for the Tag-Team WSOP event, so -

I am thinking of having a tournament playing some poker with 3-person teams.
3 tables works best for me to confidently have a full 8 teams
$$$ Amounts can be changed to whatever. $450 per team is close enough for me to figure things out
playing down to 3 instead of 2 per table makes a better final table, but waters down the individual pay back.
(This would be fun at a Meet-up as well)

Have you done this or something similar?
Pick this apart .......


Team Poker Tournament
  • Each team consists of 3 players.
  • 3 table tourney / 8 teams maximum / 1 team member at each table
  • Buy-in $150 per player ($450 per team of 3)
    $100 from each player goes towards the team payout, $50 goes towards the individual payout
  • $15k starting stack, no rebuys no add-ons
  • Each player competes at his own table, playing down to the final two competing for the Individual $$.
    The two left at each table split $50 from each entry at their table. ($400 for 8 players = $200 each)
  • The final two from each table move to the final table of 6 playing for the team $$.
  • Final table clock restarts and each player starts with $50k
  • The final table of 6 plays for the Team $$.
  • 8 teams x $300 per team = $2400 payout to the top 3 finishers
    $1200 / $720 / $480
    Each Final Table pay spot divides the winnings among the 3 team members
    Teams can collect multiple pay spots if they place multiple team members in the top 3.
 

BGinGA

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I bounced this idea around with my players for at least 10 years. No matter how it gets structured, it always boils down to "encouraging collusion" at some point. I've given up on it as a viable poker format.
 

bsdunbar1

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No matter how it gets structured, it always boils down to "encouraging collusion" at some point.
Yes, that issue with this format is a concern. And there are many factors to try and avoid.
I'm probably still going to try it though.
 

bsdunbar1

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Thinking about the type of play this might encourage what are the negatives??
Obviously collusion wouldn't be encouraged/acceptable in general but if it has nothing to do with a hand in play, what "team" strategies would be discouraged??
 

Mr Winberg

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I've not given it much thought, admittedly, but wouldn't team collusion be a fun touch to a team event? Trying to signal each other, trying to pick up on the other teams' signals, etc...
 

bsdunbar1

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I've not given it much thought, admittedly, but wouldn't team collusion be a fun touch to a team event? Trying to signal each other, trying to pick up on the other teams' signals, etc...
I don't think you would want to allow any type of collusion during a hand, but everything else??
 

rrb2005

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Have you seen the Doubles Poker Championship?
They were playing it on the PokerGO page of YouTube a couple of weeks ago.
Players take turns playing a different street, with a couple of time-outs for discussing the hand.
To me, makes it feel more like there's a strategy/team component.
 

bsdunbar1

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Have you seen the Doubles Poker Championship?
They were playing it on the PokerGO page of YouTube a couple of weeks ago.
Players take turns playing a different street, with a couple of time-outs for discussing the hand.
To me, makes it feel more like there's a strategy/team component.
The doubles thing doesn't appeal to me because if I take time out to play poker I want to PLAY. I don't want to sit around 1/2 the time.
The format in the OP has every player playing every hand.
 

Mr Winberg

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Like, let's say you're on team A in the small blind with rags. The massive chipleader from team B raises, it folds to you. In the big blind is a really short stack, also team B.

With the "no collusion rule" you can safely fold. But if the shorty shoves and the chip leader folds, there's gonna be a whole lot of discussion on whether or not they were chip dumping.

If you allow collusion, you know they will strategically and legally chip dump if you fold, so it puts you in an interesting position. Do you take one for the team and get involved? If think decisions like these might be fun in a team event.
 

bsdunbar1

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Would chip dumping even be so bad?
Since the money spots are divided amongst the team members, the more team members who cash the more the team collects.
If we dump all our chips to one player he can only collect 1 money spot. It may pay off with a 1st place payout or it may only lead to 1 min cash. Is that "cheating"?
 

Mr Winberg

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I agree. In my scenario, the chip leader is about to dump to his short stack teammate, not the other way around.

Which is my point: Things that would normally be considered colluding and cheating should maybe be allowed since it adds a fun, strategic dimension, and also eliminates accusations which would otherwise most likely be thrown around.
 

Natskule

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Switch it around in your shootout format. Playing down to 2 spots per table awards the team portion of the pot. The Final table only awards the individual part. Then there wouldn't be any collusion.
 

BGinGA

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One viable format that works involves a series of heads-up matches. Round-robin format perhaps, with best-record teams advancing. Several ways to structure it, but only separated play can eliminate the collusion issues.
 

bsdunbar1

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I think another factor is we aren't talking about life changing money between a bunch of people that don't know each other.
These are 90% people who play with each other regularly - for gamblin money.
 

Natskule

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I think another factor is we aren't talking about life changing money between a bunch of people that don't know each other.
These are 90% people who play with each other regularly - for gamblin money.
If it's only going to be a once a year type thing, don't worry about it. Obviously no table talk or signal, but it changes the strategy up for 1 game a year and could be a lot of fun.
 

SnowManStan

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This is a cool idea. Having multiple tables with teammates playing at the same time might be an issue. Maybe look into adopting a similar style to the World Cup of Poker when that was around. Just a thought.
 

BGinGA

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Only one way to find out how much "collusion" is a real issue is.
#runit
I think you at least need to publicly address the issue beforehand. All players need to be on the same page as to what is acceptable behavior and what isn't.

The worst case is when some think a particular set of conditions exist while others don't -- potentially causing major conflict.

Some suggestions (beyond simply don't do it):
  • completely abandon the 'one player to a hand' rule
  • allow table-talking during hands, including references to hand strength and suggested actions
  • allow open collusion between players
  • allow chip dumping/transfer and open raise squeezes
Not my cup of tea, but ymmv. If everybody knows the rules -- or lack of rules -- up front, there will be far less conflicts.

But you cannot realistically run an event with no-collusion rules in place yet structure it in such a way that pays enormous benefits to those that do it (undetected or not). That's a recipe for disaster.
 

Mr Winberg

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If everybody knows the rules -- or lack of rules -- up front, there will be far less conflicts.

But you cannot realistically run an event with no-collusion rules in place yet structure it in such a way that pays enormous benefits to those that do it (undetected or not). That's a recipe for disaster
This ^

I vote for complete anarchy!! :D
 

CrazyEddie

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There are a number of traditional trick-taking (and similar) games played in various countries where signalling to one's partner is not merely tolerated, but in some cases even codified and thus have become part of the game.

For example, in the Swiss game Kaiserspiel:

There is a system of communication to enable partners to plan their play and decide when it is appropriate to bet. Most of the important cards have signals associated with them, and players are allowed to use these signals to try to tell their partner which cards they hold when the opponents are not looking. Normally the captain will only signal kings (so that her partner knows which suits to keep when discarding two cards), while the other player will attempt to signal all of his good cards, so that the captain can direct the play.

It is legal to signal cards you do not hold in order to confuse the opposition, but you are not allowed to depart from the code of recognised signals. It would be illegal to have secret arrangements with your partner about other unofficial signals or about which of your signals are going to be lies.

The allowed signals are:

Mugg (banner of bells)puff up one cheek
Five of trumpswink
Joos (under of trumps)put out your tongue
Other king-beatershrug your shoulder
Low trump (ober-beater or under-beater)make sign with finger as though writing
Seven of the trump suitsilently mouth the word "seven"
King of flowerswrinkle your nose
King of shieldslook to the side
King of acornslook up
King of bellslook down

And here's an even more free-wheeling approach found in Truc, a Spanish game distantly (very distantly) related to poker:

While the game is in progress, conversation is allowed without restriction, provided that all four players can hear it. So partners can instruct each other about what card to play, the convenience of betting, bluffing, try to confuse the opponents, and so on. Also, signals are allowed, by which players can communicate to their partner what cards they hold. Naturally they will try to do this while the opponents are not looking, but as the signals do not need to be true, you can also try to confuse the opponents by passing misleading signals, at the risk of confusing your partner as well. The signals which are allowed vary somewhat between players. Here is a typical set:
  • Close one eye: means you hold a three.
  • Pout your lips: means you hold a two.
  • Show the tip of your tongue: means you have an Ace.

You can find many other examples. Heck, even modern bridge signalling conventions (e.g. playing high then low underneath a suit's top two tricks signals you're now void) could be considered a form of this same kind of thing. Given my background I find signalling via cardplay natural and signalling via sticking out your tongue and tapping the table and so forth just silly and dumb, undercutting the actual skill of playing the cards well.

But as a novelty, I think it would be an absolute ton of fun to introduce this kind of shenanigans in a "partners" game of poker! It would add a new layer of skill and strategy, one which is in line with standard poker (the psychological game of bluffing, reading, and manipulation) but played between partners and partnerships, something which can't ever happen in a normal poker game.

@BGinGA has it absolutely right, though - the rules of how to break the normal rules need to be stated plainly up front or there will be trouble, the kind of trouble that gets a man shot. :)
 

CrazyEddie

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For a super-extra challenge, make it a Worm-And-Mike simulator. Assign partnerships beforehand, but keep the partnerships secret, known only to each other! Everyone knows not to trust anyone, because everyone in the game is a dirty stinking cheat... but nobody knows for sure who's working with who.

The winning team is whoever does the best job snowballing everyone else without anyone catching on.

Make sure to stipulate that false dealing is not allowed, though, unless you want @Windwalker and his partner to sweep the tournament. :)
 

ES_Threeper

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Maybe play each table down to 1 winner giving that member's team $800 or give the team $750 with a $50 bonus to the individual team member that won. Then take all 3 tables top 3 finishers to the final table for an individual winner of $400 or even a $300/$100 for top 2. Then there would never be team members playing at the same table.
 

pltrgyst

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This has been done annually at BARGE events, but organized a bit differently.

Fixed entry fee for each team. Eight teams of n players, each player plays a different game -- thus n tables, one for each game. Team placings at each table are added, low team score wins, first three teams paid 50-30-20%.

Everyone enjoys it...
 

bsdunbar1

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I played in a 40 person 4 per team event last weekend.
$800 per team, so there was a pretty decent prize pool and a large enough crowd where plenty of people didn't know each other.
The comradery from the teams and the heckling of other teams/players was fun.
Zero Collusion issues (YMMV), just players playing poker, it was a blast.

I have 8 teams locked in to do a 3 person 8 team event March 6.
We'll see how it goes from the side of running things, but I don't expect any issues.
Should be fun
 

Jz44

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One of the card rooms here used to run a team shootout type event one a year here, bit I can't find the details on it anymore.

IIRC it was 5 player teams. You start 10 handed, sit every other, played down to last man standing and the team the winner represents moved on to the next round.

I never played in it, but my understanding is table talk was allowed as long as you weren't discussing hand specifics.
 

shorticus

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Why not have the 3-person teams, but allow some strategical things that would normally be frowned upon in regular games such as checking it down when teammates are in the same pot, etc.

Without cheating allow teams to implement strategies that allow their teammates to benefit.

You could assign points to finishing places and the team with the most total points wins. Id try it for a couple events and then if it’s a hit, maybe make it a league thing. Could be fun.
 

moose

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I bounced this idea around with my players for at least 10 years. No matter how it gets structured, it always boils down to "encouraging collusion" at some point. I've given up on it as a viable poker format.
And yet you run the SQM draft pool which encourages the exact same thing.
 
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