What are Flipout Tournaments?
Flipout tournaments (currently unique to Full Tilt Poker), is a tournament style where you don’t actively participate in a hand until you have reached the money.
All players at all tables are automatically placed all-in. This essentially creates a coin-flip situation (hence the name of the format). There will be a single winner from each table who move on to the next stage, which is automatically a paying position.
There are various rules at the initial table (depending on the tournament or sit-n-go you are playing) including a double-chance token. When players lose the initial hand, they may have a second set of chips. This creates a bit more drama and excitement at the initial table.
In some cases, you are also able to have two entries into the same tournament or sit-n-go. If you reach a paying position with both entries, one entry is given the last place payout, and all chips are given to the players other entry.
Beating Flipout Tournaments
Flipout tournaments create an interesting final table dynamic. The type of players you are likely to encounter at a flipout final table and a huge mix due to the luck involved in getting there. Every player has an equal chance of making a flipout final table (1-in-9).
If you are a solid, winning player, flipout tournaments can be a gold mine for you.
In a normal tournament, you are generally pitted against very good and solid players at the final table. In a flipout tournament, you are up against gamblers and people just wanting to have fun. You will also meet the occasional good, solid player, but more on that later.
Playing against the gamblers
You will meet plenty of fish at the final table of a flipout tournament. Possibly even the majority of players.
Due to this, there is only one real strategy to take with you. That is to play tight, solid poker. Many of the players are in a gambling mood. They are lucky enough to be at a flipout final table, and have already made the money. They are relaxed, and just looking to have some fun.
You must take advantage of this.
You are there to make as much money as possible. Winning is your ultimate goal. Initially, when you first start playing at the final table, you will see many players see flops and bet aggressively. This is why you need to sit back and wait for your hand. This is a very similar period of a tournament as seen in many rebuy tournaments, right after the rebuy and add-on period are over.
So sit back, play the cards you’re dealt, and let the bad players knock themselves out with terrible mistakes.
Playing against the solid players
You will of course, face solid players at a flipout final table. To gain the biggest advantage here, you need to identify these players quickly.
There will be so much action happening with the fish playing terribly, that you might just assume that all players at the table are complete morons. There will be players like you, who are playing the same way this guide is indicating.
Follow betting patterns of players you suspect of being good players, and develop an opinion.
Once you have identified these players, you need to make sure you adjust your strategy in hands against them. If they are playing similar to you, they probably have a tight and solid plan in mind.
They probably think of you as a fish too, so you need to be careful not to fall into their traps. They will try to trap the weaker players. They will not bet often and let the fish do all the betting.
It should be quite easy to push these types of players off of hands you think are relatively weak. They will only contest a pot with a solid starting hand, so if you are confident they have not not the board, push them out.
If you try to push them out of the pot, and you get any resistance at all, do not continue. They are not putting money into the pot without something, and if they think you are one of the weaker players, they will attempt to set a trap.
Remember, you want to take the chips away from the weaker players, and only from the stronger players when you have the goods.