The Full Tilt Online Poker Series XIII kicks off on August 5th with a slate of 25 tournaments with buy ins ranging from $109 to $2,620.
This will be my 4th FTOPS and I've done very well in the past with the highlight being a second place finish of 1,100 or so entrants in the $256 PLO knockout event in FTOPS X.
Despite my past success I'm going to tone it down a little this time around. Partly because it's not easy getting more than a few thousand dollars into fulltilt and also because the WCOOP is right around the corner in September and I want to make sure I (and my backers) have enough in reserve for the $20,000 in tournaments I want to play in that series.
My plan is to take $3,000 and see what I can do. If I win a few grand early on I'll put that back into play and enter every event on the schedule that works with my real life plans (my son is turning 2 on the 9th so no tournaments that day for me). If I brick early then I'll mis a few tournaments I might otherwise have played at the end.
For now here is my tentative schedule:
9/5 18:00 PT $216 NL hold'em
9/6 11:00 PT $322 NL hold'em 6-max quadruple shootout (that's a mouth full!)
9/7 11:00 PT $216 NL hold'em with 1 rebuy and 1 add on
9/7 18:00 PT $216 7-Card Stud
9/8 13:00 PT $109 NL hold'em with rebuys
9/10 11:00 PT $216 half NL hold'em half pot limit Omaha
9/11 11:00 PT $322 NL hold'em triple shootout
9/11 18:00 PT $535 HORSE (Yeah baby!)
9/12 11:00 PT $256 PLO knockout
9/13 18:00 PT $216 limit hold'em 6-max
9/14 11:00 PT $216 NL hold'em 6-max
9/14 18:00 PT $322 Razz
9/16 11:00 PT $129 NL hold'em knockout
9/16 13:00 PT $535 NL hold'em
If you add it all up (counting projected rebuys) that's $4,094. Now that I look at it and add it up I have to say I'm surprised that there are 14 tournaments on my schedule.
So what is this whole mini FTOPS thing anyway? Well at the same time as the regular FTOPS events fulltilt is running tournaments of 1/10th the buy in. So at the same time as the $535 horse there will also be a $55 HORSE that goes off at the same time. With the exception of the August 9th tournaments I plan to play all of the mini FTOPS tournaments. Here is the full schedule for those of you who are interested. The mini FTOPS could be fun or a colossal waste of time that bores me out of my mind. We'll have to see. At least I know the competition will be super duper, duper weak and if I can win one it will still be a pretty good sized pay day despite the low buy in.
Fulltilt is also offering a few goofy promotions to go along with the FTOPS that I thought were worth mentioning. First and foremost they will give anyone who cashes in at least 17 of the 25 events $1,000,000. No chance of that happening for me or anyone else, but still interesting. Can you imagine making the money in 16 and having one tournament left to go? Pure terror.
There are also leaderboards for the main FTOPS and the mini FTOPS. Every time you finish in the top 72 places (regardless of the number of entrants) you earn leaderboard points. You get 1 point for 72nd and 200 for 1st with everything else in between (10th is 105 points and 30th is 43 points just to give you a better idea). If you win either the main FTOPS or mini FTOPS leaderboard you win free entry into every event in the next FTOPS (worth about $10,000). Based on past results it looks like if you end up with 400 points you have a good shot to win. Of course it's VERY remote that I'd be in contention and the prize money dwarfs the extra $10,000, but still fun. Maybe an over under bet on the number of points that I earn in the mini FTOPS would keep me interested. Matt, E.B., Jake? Any one want to set a line or make me an offer?
Now on to the really goofy promotions! If you double your starting stack in any two FTOPS tournaments you win an entry into a $10,000 prize pool freeroll. Do that 3 times and there is another $10,000 freeroll, plus another one for doing it four times and another for five times. I expect I'll double my starting stack at least 5 times in 14 tournaments so I should get entry into all 4 of those. Whether it will be worth my time to play them remains to be seen. I expect the first one will have so many players that it's almost worthless, but there can't be too many people who double up 5 times so the last one might be worth $20 or $40 or whatever.
Similarly if you survive to level 10 of 2, 3, 4, or 5 tournaments there are another set of $10,000 freerolls. This should mean another 4 freerolls for me.
Then there is the "zero to hero" challenge. Here is what the website says about that:
1.Start by playing in any FTOPS Super Satellite and win a seat in a FTOPS Satellite.
2.Play in that FTOPS Satellite and win your entry to the FTOPS event.
3.Cash in that event and win a $50 bonus.
4.Make the final table in that event and win a $500 bonus
5.Take down the tournament and win a $5,000 bonus on top of your 1st place prize money!
I can say for sure if you make a final table of any of the FTOPS events you aren't going to give a shit about the extra $500! Let's see I won $50,000 for my third place finish and oh yeah I get an extra $500 because I won my way in by playing a $3 satellite to a $30 satellite to this $300 tournament!
Lastly the goofiest of all! Here is what it says about the "Hold'em challenge."
Put your Hold ‘em skills to the test by mastering at least three of the following tasks in a single No-Limit Hold ‘em FTOPS event. Please note that you must accomplish each task when at least five players are dealt into the hand:
1.Win a pot worth at least 20 big blinds with AA or KK at least once.
2.Bluff with Ace high or less on the river and win the pot at least once.
3.Win 30 hands without a showdown.
4.Steal the same player’s big blind three times.
5.Reraise all in preflop with a pocket pair at least once.
The more tasks you accomplish in a single event, the more Freeroll entries you win:
FTOPS Hold ‘em Challenge
Complete three tasks to win a $10K Hold ‘em Challenge Freeroll 1 entry
Complete four tasks to win a $10K Hold ‘em Challenge Freeroll 2 entry
Complete all five tasks to win a $10K Hold ‘em Challenge Freeroll 3 entry
Hopefully people will do some stupid shit trying to accomplish these goals.
I'll keep you posted on my results!