PokerStars

PokerStars Review

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Site Name PokerStars
Site URL www.pokerstars.com
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PokerStars Review

PokerStars is THE online poker room among online poker rooms. It has the world’s largest player base, guaranteed tournament schedule, unparalleled software, global player acceptance and a download poker client for both PC and Mac users. In fact, the only thing PokerStars is lacking is an abundance of loose, juicy competition. Even the freeroll competitions can get thorny towards the final table, and the lowest micro-limit stakes may take some time to find a truly soft table of 40% viewed-flops or more. You will, however, find some of the most challenging games of your poker career, with the option to take on extreme poker pros like Daniel Negreanu, Greg Raymer and Barry Greenstein.

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PokerStars Welcome Bonus

PokerStars just recently upped its welcome bonus to a generous 1005 up to $600 over 1, 2 or 3 deposits – a significant contrast to the past few years of the 100% up to $50 welcome bonus PokerStars was infamously ridiculed for. As of mid-2009, new players can now deposit up to $600 over their first three deposits. You can mix it up however you want. Deposit $100 to start, then $300, then $200; or even deposit a full $600 on the first deposit. You could deposit $100 + $100 + $100 and receive a $300 bonus overall. However you wish to do it, a maximum 100% up to $600 bonus is available, so long as all qualifying deposits are made within 90 days of each other. Be sure to use the PokerStars Marketing code “PSP1828” on all qualifying deposits to receive the bonus(es).

Read more about the bonuses and promotions.

PokerStars Games

PokerStars has an extensive game variety of Texas Hold’em, Omaha Hi and Hi-Lo, 7 Card Stud Hi and Hi-Lo, Razz, 5 Card Draw, 2-7 single and Triple Draw, HORSE, 8-Game Mix and Badugi. PokerStars was the originator of micro-limits, offering the lowest stakes of $0.01/$0.02, as well as plenty of high stakes action in all limits.

Most game variants are available in heads-up, short-handed and full-table action. Note that NL and PL games apply 9-player seating, while FL games have up to 10-player seating.

PokerStars Tournaments

PokerStars has the world’s best online poker tournament schedule, paying over $13 million in guarantees alone each week. The payout structure is based on the number of entries, and being home to the world’s largest player base, you can expect a lot of participants to be pocketing their share of the action. Just last year, the traffic had reached such a high level that PokerStars increased its famous Sunday Million guarantee from $1 million to $1.5 million, as the entries often exceeded this amount anyway. In fact, Sunday’s guarantees include two $200k GTDs, a $250k, $300k, $750k and $1.5m GTD, plus about 100 or more guarantees worth $3k to $80k GTD – and that’s just on Sundays!

If you like Freerolls, you’ll find plenty value here as well. PokerStars has lots of traditional Freerolls with small prizes, plus daily 500 Freerolls with a 10-point entry, and $1k Freerolls with a 20-point entry.

Tournaments come in all game varieties, from Holdem and Omaha to 7 Card Stud, 5 card Draw and others. Live event satellites are perhaps the most popular of all, and PokerStars is famous for sending the most players to the widest range of live events around the world, including the WSOP, WPT, EPT, APPT, Aussie Millions and lots more.

PokerStars Traffic

Once again, you can’t beat PokerStars in the player traffic department. The online poker room has more active real-money players than any other poker site. As of September 2009, there is an average of 177,500 players online at peak hours. As I type this on a Friday afternoon (1pm ET), there are over 215,000 players online. That’s an awesome number for a poker room that does not share its player base with any other network.

Tournaments attract the most players, averaging 155,000 in MTTs and SNGs combined. Ring games draw around 22,500 at peak hours. That translates to constant activity in all game variants, virtually all stakes and at all times, day or night.

What you won’t find much of is soft competition. Even the cheaper tournaments and cash game stakes are only moderately loose, getting much stiffer as the price tags climb.

PokerStars Support

PokerStars has an elite customer support staff, on hand 24/7. Knowing this, you might be surprised to find support is available via email only, but the rapid, reliable responses are impressive, none the less.

PokerStars Payment Methods

Visa, MasterCard, Diners Club, Solo, Maestro, EC ELV, ClickandBuy, Click2Pay, NETeller, Moneybookers, PaySafeCard, WebMoney, Instant E-Check, Online Bank Transfer, Local Bank Transfer, Direct Bank Transfer, Cashier’s Check, Money Order and Personal Check.

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