Joined: Feb '08
Location: United Kingdom
Age: 30 (M)
I asked you the other day if you ever run short on time when playing mtts and most of the poll responses indicated that you only play if you have enough time. But how do you know if you have enough time? How do you go about figuring out if a tourney will last 3 hours or 8 hours?
I find quite often I reach a final table and I'm thinking I'm on the home stretch only to have the mtt go on another hour. Interestingly my mate organizes tourneys for our university poker society and last week we run a tourney, which he predicted would end by midnight at the latest. That's cos by this point he calculated that if everyone took the optional add-on at the first break, there would be just 40 bb left on the table by midnight and that would surely lead to the final two players. But what he didn't reckon on would be that the final 4 players would be playing incredibly tight not to bubble (top 3 paid) and some players folding a big blind with less than two blinds in their hand only for them to come back in the next hand. I was actually in this top 4 and when I was shoving I wasn't getting called and other players were just flat calling preflop, never raising. The game went on and on. Eventually I came third.
So how do you calculate when an mtt will end without checking what time the same tourney finished the previous day?
I usually go by the blind structure and antes. That gives me a good indication how fast one is going to have to play. Obviously the faster the blinds increase the shorter the tournment will be. The only other variables are the late registration times and number of entrants. In otherwords if one has a good chip lead and takes a hit or is crippled then for all intents and purposes it's that much harder to recover. People tend to exit quicker in these types of MTT's. As one brm'er put it some time ago one needs to win the flips to stay ahead. As for an actual time...that depends on the variables mentioned above with the addition of starting stack size...deep/shallow. With larger fields 10k+, I'd plan on 4-6 hours and at times 7-8 hours. Hard to be exact here.
I tend to compare to other tournaments. When I need to know how long a certain tournament is going to last (in order to see I have enough time), I look up other similar tournaments and you can guess how long it's going to take. Of course when you get to the final table, it can go really fast or take forever the beauty of poker
Joined: Apr '09
Age: 39 (M)
Instantly you will have an idea of that just for looking at the size of the field and the time of the blinds. The bigger each one of these two points is, the longer the tourney will take. A while ago i went to an MTT with 111 players and 8 minute blinds and it took three hours to get to the paid places, which was to the 76 players remaining. And it took 2h30 more until there was a winner. The field was small, but the starting chips was high, so as the blind levels. And i already played in 10,000 fields which took 2h30 to have a winner found (ok, it was a freeroll, but it's a good example for what i want to say), because the blind level was 2 minutes.
Joined: Feb '08
Location: United Kingdom
Age: 30 (M)
Posted by jessthehuman:
Posted by awood88: I find quite often I reach a final table and I'm thinking I'm on the home stretch only to have the mtt go on another hour.
An hour for a final table is a relatively quick final table.. Quite often in deeper games the FT will be a good 2-3hrs. I've sometimes had the heads-up go for over an hour.
Of course I have been on final tables that take well over an hour, take for instance the tourney I described above, there were only two tables starting and it took 5/6 hours to finish despite the fact it was quite a turbo structure for live poker (15 min blinds) and the final table took up half the tourney.
But I was referring to tourneys that have been going on for 5-8 hours when they get to the final table and by this point everyone is short-stacked. You don't then expect the tournament to last that much longer when you can only shove or fold but to my surprise they still do end up taking another hour or two, usually cos the blind increase is slow and players are really tight when the prizes are this steep in the final stages.
I think there are so many variables that determine how fast a tourney will end that you can't predict it. At least not until you run it a few times and then note when it ends. It should be as easy as looking at how big the blinds will be in proportion to the average stack/number of players but it's not since a number of factors determine how short-stacked players allow themselves to be. For instance, lower buy-ins will result in more donks who nit-up at the bubble not taking in the bigger picture, the payout structure also determines how tight players are, short-handed tables will also play looser as they see the blinds more despite the fact the chip average remains the same. I think that turbos don't necessarily finish any faster as players go down to lower stacks and many counter the extra aggressive players by being tight but super-turbos will finish sooner as players know they have to be aggressive or literally run out of chips.
Joined: May '08
Age: 34 (M)
without checking same tourneys that have ended previous day, week etc. i think any estimate would be just pure guessing- sure you can think of arguments that would make your guess look an "extremely accurate" decision- but in truth with no previous data you are in the dark. unless it's a time tourney of course
Joined: Oct '12
Age: 32 (M)
I have never played the final tables in MTT,but often reached the babble stage.Usually it takes me 3-4 hours to reach babble stage.At this stage of the tournament,i usually had only 7-12 big blinds,ang quickly got out of the tounament