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High Denom Tournament breakdown

Discussion in 'Tournament Structures' started by fish72, Apr 15, 2015.

  1. fish72

    fish72 Well-Known Member
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    What's the ideal breakdown and starting stacks for a 200BB, 1 to 4 table tournament?
    I know alot has been written on the subject and of course the answer is somewhat subjective. There is no "goldilocks" chip stack. Some people get annoyed by having too many chips on the table while others are annoyed by having to constantly trade for chips when they run out of a denom.
    The main factor of course isn't the $$ amount of the starting stack, its the step increments in the chip denominations in play. 200BB is 200BB no matter what we choose as our starting BB.

    To me the issue is choosing denominations based on the criteria :
    1) Starting chip counts based on the frequency of use for the denom. (ie more of the workhorse denoms and less of the rest.)
    2) "round' number values that are easy to add up. No $37 chips. (I'm talking to you pltrgyst:)
    3) A 4x or 5x increment between denoms. (ie. not 2x or 10x)

    There certainly isn't much 'wrong' with the common 12/12/7/5 for T10,000 or a 10/10/9/2 (or 15/13/11/1) for T2000. They can work just fine, but I think there is a better alternative.

    Both breakdowns have the 'problem' of requiring too many of the lowest denoms which don't get quite as much use. But yet its a pain in the first few levels when you run out of them in your stack.
    And for the T10,000 breakdown, having both a $500 and $1000 chip in play isn't really necessary. (As a work-around for a one table tourney you can skip the $1000 and go straight to $5000, or in a multi-table you can start with far fewer $500s.)

    I suggest the following T200,000 tourney breakdown using $500, $1000, $5000, $20K and $100K chips.

    $500 : 4 chips (or 6 ) These should not be needed much at all but still their presence allows for more blind levels to be used than if we started with a $1000 chip. Fewer chips means we can wait to chip them up with the $1000's.

    $1000 : 13 (or 12) chips. Effectively this will be the lowest denom on the table but they will be in play longer than the lowest denom in other breakdowns.

    $5000 : 12 or 17 chips based on preference. The workhorse chip for the first half or so of the tourney. (Equivalent to a $250 chip in a T10,000 stack.)

    $20K or $25K : 4 to 6 chips. The workhorse chip for the second half and may never need to be chipped up.

    This scales up nicely too. Then next available denom is a 5x (or 4x) $100K chip. Afterthat, for bigger tournaments adding $1 million plaque would be very cool for the final table.

    The actual blind levels can still be adjusted according to time constraints. Just as many or more possible levels.

    Comments? I'm sure some of you have run tournaments with similar breakdowns?
     
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  2. Jeff

    Jeff Super Moderator
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    I'm terrible at this type of thread as far as numbers, but I think I lean more to having plenty of small denoms to start out with so you don't have to make change less. that means lower on your continuum with the high denoms and higher on your range as you go down. Just a preference.
     
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  3. abby99

    abby99 Admin / Chip Magpie
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    Jeff makes a good point regarding lower denoms. I like at least 12. Also, starting with fewer high-denom chips per person is OK because by the time the high denoms become the workhorse chips, they will be distributed over fewer players, resulting in a higher per-player count than what was in the starting stacks.
     
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  4. Jeff

    Jeff Super Moderator
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    And you chip up, of course.
     
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  5. BGinGA

    BGinGA Banned

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    Agreed, more lowest denomination chips are needed, regardless of the number of tables. I also do not agree with this statement:
    because not having enough lowest denominations is a much bigger problem than having 'too many'. In fact, there are several well-established blind structures use the lowest denominations for four, six, or even eight blind levels before being replaced with larger chips. The lowest denomination chips also have additional value (and are used longer) when antes are incorporated into the blind structure.

    On the high end of the scale, the largest denominations are usually only actually used for the same number of blind levels... the ~last~ four or six levels. However, they usually are NOT the workhorse chips at that point, which typically falls on the shoulders of the second-lowest and second-highest denominations in a tournament chip set (unlike a cash set, but that's a different animal).

    In my experience, the minimum number of lowest denomination chips per starting stack necessary for things to run smoothly is 10 (when using T1, T5, T100, T1000, or T5000 as the smallest denomination), or 12 (when using T.25 or T25 as the smallest). FWIW, I would never use the T500 chip as the starting point of a set, unless that set contained a T2000 chip and no T1000 chips at all. A 2x denomination jump is very inefficient.


    On a related note, a T200K stack tournament with 500/1000 opening blinds (200BB) is rather pointless, since by design it cuts the starting stacks in half to 100BB after only one blind level. There are much better ways to organize a true deep-stack 200BB event. Immediately doubling the blinds is only a wanna-be deep stack tourney, not the real thing.

    Here are some examples of several 200BB events with starting stacks and opening blinds:
    T200 (.50/1) - 12xT.25, 12xT1, 12xT5, 5xT25 (41 chips)
    T800 (2/4) - 10xT1, 13xT5, 9xT25, 5xT100 (37 chips)
    T4000 (10/20) - 10xT5, 10xT25, 12xT100, 5xT500 (37 chips)
    T20K (50/100) - 12xT25, 12xT100, 9xT500, 7xT2000 (40 chips) ~OR~
    T20K (50/100) - 12xT25, 12xT100, 3xT500, 12xT1000, 1xT5000 (40 chips)
     
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  6. pltrgyst

    pltrgyst Well-Known Member

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    Every word gospel.

    And if your chipset pays hidden homage to the New York Yankees, it *must* have a $37 chip for Casey Stengel. So there.
    :razz:
     
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  7. Bloody Marvellous

    Bloody Marvellous Well-Known Member

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    If having 12 T25 chips in a 12/12/3/7 stack is too many, you're gonna run into that problem later on in the tournament again when it's time to chip up.

    By the time you need to chip up you've probably already lost players from the tournament, so now there are even more than 12 T100 chips per player in play. That problem will only get worse as the tournament progresses.

    If having too many chips of a certain denomination is becoming an issue, you can always start chipping them up during the game. Simply take 4 T25 chips out of the pot, and replace them with a T100. Do that as often as it takes to get what you feel is the right amount of T25 chips needed at that point in the tournament.

    Keep in mind that you'll need a minimum of 5 T25 per player for just the blinds at level 75/150. If you're using antes you'll need a lot more than that.
     
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