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Wednesday, 18 October 2017
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Poker Stars

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Overall impression

Graphics - 95%
Gameplay - 80%
Bonuses - 75%
Value - 85%
83%
Casino Information
Name: PokerStars
Site URL: https://www.pokerstars.com
Established: 2001

pokerstars-button

PokerStars has a larger than life reputation, one that not only makes it the top ranking online poker room in the industry, but also one of the most innovative gambling portals today. Players do not just flock to the poker room without a reason. PokerStars makes it worthwhile for them in every way! If you consider the peak hour player traffic, which can go up way beyond 200,000 players at the cash tables and tournament games, you wouldn’t need more testimony to its popularity.

Established in 2001 and licensed in the Isle of Man, the online poker room did not take long to be noticed. With slick software, fabulous promotions, wide selection of cash games and tournaments, the online poker room has everything to offer that players look for in a great online poker room. Advanced features make game play quick and fast as well as fun and rewarding at PokerStars.

Software:

PokerStars uses proprietary software, one of the best in the industry. It comes with advanced features like customizable skins and a massive filtering system that allows you to quickly find the cash games and tournaments you wish to play. Themed tables and an ability to upload an avatar of your choice are also offered by the software.

Other prominent features include resizable tables, unlimited multi-tabling, auto buy-ins, session management, view for ring game lobbies, preferred seating, hand re-player and instant hand histories that can also be emailed to you, graphical table view and hotkeys. Internal transfer of funds to a fellow player is also possible.

An exclusive feature is the Home Game facility where players can invite other members or friends to play at their own private club at PokerStars. They can choose to play tournaments and cash games in any variants. Time tournaments, zoom tournaments and “run it twice” are also some other interesting features.

For beginners, there is heaps of information on how to play poker. From poker rules to poker strategies and hand rankings, you can find everything you need to know about poker here. A poker dictionary is also offered where you can learn poker terms and their definitions.

If this is not enough, the online poker room has a poker school to offer as well. Here you can find interactive tools, video tutorials, live training and guidance from poker professionals along with the ability to view real time table action for a proper feel of the game and how to go about it.

The PokerStars software comes in a downloadable format and has a Mac compatible version as well. It takes minutes to download and install, after which you can create your account and begin to play. You can take the software tour on the PokerStars website so that you know where to go when you have downloaded the software.

Also available is a mobile version for iOS and Android phones for use on the go. You can enjoy the latest poker shows, live streams, clips from live online events and full length TV shows through PokerStars TV on your mobile device. PokerStars Clock is a tournament manager app that offers easy and exciting tournament from anywhere, right from your smartphone.

Games:

PokerStars has an exceptional range of poker games on offer, much more than that available at any other online poker room. Games include Limit, No Limit and Pot Limit Texas Hold’em, Omaha High, Omaha Hi/Lo, 5 Card Omaha, 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo, Courchevel, Courchevel Hi/Lo, 7 Card Stud, 7 Card Stud Hi/Lo, Razz, 5 Card Draw, 2-7 Triple Draw, 2-7 Single Draw, HORSE, 8-Game Mix, Hold’em/Omaha, Triple Stud and Badugi.

Games are always populated at all limits, so you are bound to find something that suits you, no matter what time of the day it is. Use filters to find games that you want to play. No Limit Hold’em games are the most sought after with stakes starting at micro levels of 1c/2c and going up to a massive $1000/$2000. This is followed by Pot Limit Omaha games.

Another very popular format is “Zoom Poker”, a unique feature offered only at PokerStars. This is the fastest-paced cash table format available online. Here your opponents change at every hand, as players move tables at a click of a button. If you don’t like a hand, all you need to do is fast fold and you will be dealt a new hand.

One may believe that more players means that table games would be loose and easier to win because of the high concentration of fish. However, this is not the case at PokerStars. Although there are loose players around, the online poker room has a lot of professional players at most of the tables and getting past them can be really tough. So if you are thinking of setting out bait, you could be surprised if you hit a shark instead.

PokerStars has a massive line-up of tournaments to choose from with tournaments beginning every few seconds.

Like the cash tables, there are Zoom Tournaments too where once you fold you are moved to another table with players from the same tournament who have finished their hand. When the tournament reaches the final table it will resume the regular playing style until the tournament concludes.

Apart from these, there are a multitude of special tournaments running through the week that are highly rewarding and can even get you seats to larger weekend guaranteed tournaments.

An example of such tournaments is the Daily Bigs, which runs several scheduled guaranteed tournaments every day including The Big $55 with a guaranteed prize pool of $75,000. MicroMillions is another online tournament series that is designed specifically for low stakes players, giving them a chance to win millions in guaranteed prize pools and compete for Championship titles as well.

Then there are the Hot Turbos, which are a set of guaranteed tournaments that run 7 days a week and have buy-ins suitable for all types of players. The daily Omania tournaments are yet another attraction with guaranteed prize pools of more than $35,000 and buy-ins starting as low as $5.50.

The Spin & Go tournaments are the fastest way to make up to 3,000 times your buy-in. These have randomly assigned prize pools of up to $180,000 that can be won within minutes. Buy-ins for these tournaments starts at just $1.

Thousands of dollars in prize money is paid out by PokerStars for the Multi-Table Tournament Leaderboard. It awards the top players across all buy-in levels with cash prizes each week, month and year. It is the largest tournament of its kind in the world.

It would be unfair if we didn’t mention PokerStars weekend mega tournaments. There are 9 major tournaments held every Saturday with buy-ins ranging from $2.22 to $330 and a wide choice of games including Omaha and Heads-Up No Limit Hold’em.

Sunday comes with a series of mega tournaments that are simply the greatest in the industry. Starting with the guaranteed $400,000 Sunday Warm-Up, followed by the $250,000 guaranteed Sunday Storm with a direct buy-in of $11 or via a seat won through qualifying satellites and then the Sunday Million.

The Sunday Million has a guaranteed prize pool of $1,000,000 and a buy-in of $215. You can even get a seat through satellite qualifiers played through the week. If you are interested in winning a share of the billion chips offered in the Sunday Billions, you could play the qualifiers for an entry to the tournament or buy-in directly by paying 1M chips.

PokerStars also has an exclusive Women’s Sunday Tournament with a guaranteed prize pool of $7,500 with a direct buy-in of $55 or via a seat secured through qualifying satellite tournaments.

The fun does not end here! Besides these mega tournaments, PokerStars also offers numerous other guaranteed events each Sunday such as Sunday500, Sunday Second Chance and so on. Also offered are league tournaments and major annual tournaments that players can participate in by playing the qualifiers for these tournaments.

Bonus and Promotions:

With the reputation that PokerStars holds, it is hardly likely that it wouldn’t have a gigantic promotions list too. You simply need to glance through the promotions page to see what lies in store for you.

New players can take advantage of the 100% bonus of up to $600 in total on their first deposit and consecutive two deposits made within 60 days of the first deposit. They can also get $20 worth of free play on a first deposit of $20 or more plus a ticket to the $100K Privilege Freerolls, meaning they can play up to 4 tournaments daily for 1 whole month. Also, they will be credited with 1M free play money chips.

It would take a whole review by itself to mention each of the grand promotions that PokerStars has on offer, so we’ll just move on to their royal loyalty program. By the way, PokerStars also has regional promotions for players from specific countries! Also there are live poker events across the globe that you can qualify for.

Players get rewarded with points for playing real money games at PokerStars. There are two types of reward points that they can earn, VIP Player Points (VPP’s) and Frequent Player Points (FPP’s). VPP’s determine your VIP status while FPP’s can be redeemed for cash, buy-ins to tournaments or purchasing merchandise from the VIP Store.

VPP’s can be earned for each raked hand and your contribution to the pot or via tournament fee. For every $1 spent on tournament fee, one can earn 5.5 VPP’s. In cash games VPP’s are awarded based on VVP rate, which varies on number of seats, stakes and currency of table, multiplied by the total rake taken. The total VPP’s are then divided among the players depending on their contribution to the pot.

FPP’s are awarded depending on your VIP status. The higher your status level, the more FPP’s you can earn for your VPP’s. There are 7 VIP levels, 5 achieved monthly, Bronze Star, Chrome Star, Silver Star, Gold Star and Platinum Star and 2 accomplished yearly, Supernova and Supernova Elite. FPP’s per VPP’s awarded for each of these levels is 1 for Bronze and Chrome Star and 1.5, 2, 2.5, 3.5 and 5 for the other levels.

Players can also earn yearly VIP Steller Rewards that are redeemable for cash starting with $10 for 750 VPP’s to $1,200 for 100,000 VPP’s.

If you can cross the 1M VPP mark and get to 5M or 10M VPP’s in lifetime achievements, PokerStars will place you in the VIP Club Hall of Fame. You will also be rewarded with exclusive gifts and benefits over and above the rewards that you earn from the VIP Club program.

Deposit & Withdrawal Methods:

Deposits and withdrawal options vary depending on your country of origin. While some countries may have a large selection of options, others may have fewer methods to choose from. However, popularly used options such as VISA, MasterCard, Skrill, Neteller and Wire Transfers are available to almost all countries. Again, cash outs could be restricted to certain methods. You can check out your options by clicking on the country you hail from.

Customer Support:

Every available category that needs to be addressed has a detailed FAQ section at PokerStars. If you still do not find your answer listed in these FAQ’s, you can contact support via email. Support is available around the clock.

PokerStars does not really need much to be said about it. It is the best online poker room in every possible way, be it its software, cash games, tournaments, promotions or loyalty program. You simply get addicted to it and although you will find more pros here, it is the ultimate platform for small stake players too. Sadly, US players are no longer accepted at PokerStars after US placed a restriction on its players on participating in online gambling activities.

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