The month of September is a big one for the online poker sector, with various sites offering tournaments with huge guarantees. Over $150 million is on offer from some of the world’s leading online poker sites, but not everything has been proceeding in the best of ways for these poker rooms.
The PartyPoker, PokerStars and GGNetwork have all been duking it out to bring the largest number of players in to their respective tournaments, and they have all been attempting this by adding more to their guarantees. What could potentially have been smooth sailing for all of them appears to have become a case of “perfection comes at a price”.
A few minor headaches have already risen to the surface with regard to the giant guarantees that each network has placed into their tournaments. The aforementioned PartyPoker for example, struggled to be able to meet some of the guarantees in the early stages of its usually-very-popular KO Series.
While it’s true that interest in the tournament has increased over the proceeding days, the first day was a huge let-down as far as buy-ins were concerned. A shortfall of $250,000 was registered, leaving the brand’s executives looking a little red-faced over the debacle.
PokerStars Suffers Through an Even Bigger Calamity
Even though the buy-ins for the PartyPoker KO Series on the first day were somewhat lacking, nobody could have determined the potential threat to the PokerStars $75 million World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP). On September 15, an unexpected glitch threatened to send the whole tournament into chaos, with players reporting that they were being frozen out of the site.
Support staff from PokerStars claimed that this was due to them experiencing “technical difficulties”, although foul play is also something to consider in this circumstance. PartyPoker’s KO Series from last year was knocked out after experiencing DDoS attacks, so it’s not beyond the realm of possibility for something similar to be affecting PokerStars.
Things managed to get back on track within the hour though, which was quite fortunate for all those players involved in the tournament. That being said, it did leave a lot of them frustrated – and quite understandably so considering how much money is on the line in the tournament. Plus, the lack of information from PokerStars during the blackout wasn’t appreciated by players.
Despite the fact that both PartyPoker and PokerStars were having issues, the GGNetwork proceeded quite satisfactorily with its $50 million Good Game Series. Strong numbers have already been posted for the tournament, with players having banked more than $25 million in prize money at the mid-point of the event. And that’s even with certain events being cancelled after scheduling errors caused some slight disruption.
Yet, with all three tournaments currently running smoothly again, poker players can keep their fingers crossed for a stress-free remainder of the games in operation. On the whole, things are certainly on the up and up for online poker, regardless of those minor glitches and problems.