Sports-Betting Traffic Helps Keep The Betfair Poker Games Famously Soft.
Choice Of 5 Welcome Bonuses Up to $2500 Max, Huge List Of Promotions
Betfair Poker – OnGame's Crazy Tables + Big Betfair Perks
Planet Mark's Summary: Betfair are a huge brand when it comes to sports betting, and their poker room benefits from a lot of people crossing over from the betting area to try out the games with little or no strategy knowledge – making the tables on this small network some of the easiest to beat anywhere.
It is the generous bonuses and unique promotions which prompted me to start covering this site here at SNG Planet. This includes a choice of welcome bonuses up to $2500 and a list of ever-changing promotions which seems to get longer every week. At the moment these include a WSOP experience challenge which sends the winners to Las Vegas, $60k in SNG extras, $60k 'Natural Born Grinders' and 77 ways to boost your bankroll. Keep a close eye on the Betfair website for some great promo deals.
From the gaming standpoint you get the best of both worlds at OnGame. The peaks of 20k are plenty enough to give you a great choice of cash, tournament and Sit N Go poker. At the same time the smaller and friendlier games have far fewer pro 'grinders' than the larger sites- which helps to keep the games famously easy to beat. I will be spending a lot more time at the OnGame tables in 2013 – I highly recommend that you do too.
Important Update: Betfair have announced that they will offer games from both the iPoker Network and the OnGame network from later this month. I will give the new system a quick test-drive and let you know how it works out as soon as the update happens!
Here is my detailed site review for Betfair Poker. Here I will do more than just cover the games, bonuses and software – I'll give you a flavor of why this site is different from the masses of others and show you why mid-sized site attached to sites with sports-betting action are the place to be for big profits in 2013!
OnGame, the network which includes Betfair, Red Kings and several other big brands, is the 5th largest network by volume of traffic – with peaks of around 20k players. Each brand pools together their players to give more choice, branding the software with their own colors and logos. Betfair made their name by giving people the chance to 'be the bookmaker' and take bets of other punters in one huge marketplace – their poker offering is far from a 'side show' with many of the promotions here even bigger than those of larger rivals.
Betfair Poker Review 2013 - Spotlight On Cash Games
After playing cash games for a while I had the feeling that the games are both more loose and more passive than those at larger sites. Putting the lobby side-by-side with Pokerstars showed this to be correct. There are far more tables with 40%+ average players per flop and the pot sizes are larger too… there are even tables with 50%+ players seeing every flop if you look for them. Imagine the recreational players without the 16-tabling grinders you find at the larger sites… this can be a very profitable combination!
No limit holdem starts with 2c / 4c blinds, with 5c / 10c, 10c / 20c, 15c / 30c then 25c / 50c all very busy. Things trail off a little at $2 / $4 blinds ($400 buy-in) though you still get a choice of tables up to $5 / $10 blinds. Table sizes are 2, 3, 6 and 9 players for cash games – a smaller selection of fixed limit holdem and pot-limit holdem also run.
Other cash games include Pot Limit Omaha (which has equal blinds – for example 50c / 50c) and a big choice of tables to pick from. Omaha Hi-Lo, 5-card draw and 7-card stud all run, though you will not find too much action outside of peak times (EU evenings and at weekends).
Betfair Poker Review 2013 - Spotlight On Tournaments
I will cover the 'Sunday Major' first – then get on to the day-to-day tournaments which are more interesting for most of us! The 'Champion Chip' actually has a bigger guarantee (at $250k) than the Sunday tournaments at Party or Titan ($200k each). With qualifiers via Steps SNGs or tournaments starting at $1 and the buy-in a round $200 this is a popular game – running at 18:00 CET every Sunday.
Now, the regular games… deep breath time – there are a lot to get through! Ok, you can look at the schedule for yourself on the Betfair client and I'll just give you the highlights. Let us start with $12 Million in guarantees each month – spread through a ton of smaller $2 to $33 games each with their own mini-guarantees between $500 and $20,000. You can expect smaller fields than at Stars, which is great for those of us who do not want to spend 9 hours just to get a small prize! Turbo games are available (with 10 minute blind levels, so these are not too crazy) as are rebuys and qualifiers to both live and online events.
The tournaments I played were loose and passive, with a huge skill difference between this site and some of the larger ones. One small gripe is the lack of 'Synchronized Breaks' which ensure all the tournaments pause at the same time – though this does help to keep a lot of the online pros away!
Red Kings Poker Review 2013 - Spotlight On Sit N Goes
I cover Sit N Goes separately for all sites in my unique SNG reviews – you can read the Betfair SNG review here.
Red Kings Poker Review 2013 - Software And Playability
At first view the tables look crowded – with small chip counts and lots of avatars to distract you from the betting action. I managed to solve this in 2 simple clicks. First switching off the avatars and then switching to a 4-color deck of cards which are much bolder and easier to follow. The bet amounts are still a little on the small size… though this certainly improved the table view a lot.
Betfair's lobby is already very good. You will find big buttons to find your games and even a table preview which shows you where the empty seats are to help you choose the table (for example you might not sit with big stacks to your left and short stacks to your right). The tournament lobby view is fine, though this could be clearer as to when each game starts without clicking.
I'll give the Betfair software an 'average plus' and note that a non-download version is also available.
Betfair Poker Review 2013 - Bonuses, Incentives And Promotions
This has the potential to be a long section, with an ever-growing list of promotions making Betfair one of the best on the OnGame network.
Starting with the welcome bonuses, you get a choice of 5. These clear in increments, which depend on the amount you choose (meaning the smaller ones clear faster). Here is the list:
|Bonus Amount||Bonus Code||Release Requirement||Days To Clear|
|$50||WELCOME50||$5 per 40 Points||90|
|$250||WELCOME250||$10 per 80 Points||60|
|$500||WELCOME500||$25 per 225 Points||60|
|$1000||WELCOME1000||$100 per 1000 Points||60|
|$2500||WELCOME2500||$500 per 7000 Points||60|
That's the best welcome bonus offer I know of… and that is even before we get to the promotions and special offers.
Of course, the promotions change every month. What I will do here is list the more permanent ones, then give you a flavor of some of the weekly and monthly ones. You can check out the Betfair Poker website to make sure you do not miss out on the latest offers.
First leaderboard and race type deals are a fixture of Betfair. These include $110k between the 2 rake-race promotions (at the time of writing!) and $10k a week in SNG leaderboards. With the competition a lot softer than elsewhere, you can accumulate a lot of profits while you take a shot at this big extra bonus cash.
A lot of the promotions center around 'Team Betfair', these currently include WSOP qualifiers and seats for the GSOP grand final in the Dominican Republic. You will also find freerolls, the 'completely free' ones are pretty small – however the 'players club' tournaments which work with the generous Betfair loyalty scheme are actually pretty good!
There really are too many promotions to list in a single page – so make sure you keep a close eye on the Betfair website to make sure you do not miss out.
Betfair Poker Review 2013 - Summary And Planet Mark's Verdict
I will admit to being pleasantly surprised by the easy games at Betfair. Cash games and tournaments both demonstrating the fact that there are far fewer 'pro grinders' compared to fun players at this leading OnGame site. The software was a little cluttered at first, though solved with a couple of clicks.
What stands out for me on this site is that you get big-brand benefits at the same time as some very soft games. A choice of 5 big welcome bonuses is just the start – the promos really will keep you nicely topped up at Betfair – I strongly recommend this site in 2013 – make sure you check them out for yourself now!
More Reviews And Comparison Articles
- Red Kings Poker 2013 Review (Another Cool OnGame Poker Site)