For most players, pokies are a solitary experience. Sure, there are some pokies that offer multiplayer capabilities, but for the most part, it’s you against the machine – not a competitive endeavour where you’re hoping to beat your friends (or enemies). Hit the jackpot and win, or go bust and lose – those are ultimately your options.

But pokies tournaments add a whole new element to the popular game. In a pokies tournament, you’re not only trying to beat the machine, but you’re also up against a field of competitors who are also looking for a high score. It’s a tough task, but the rewards for coming in first can be huge!

How Real Money Pokies Tournaments Work

In a real money online pokies tournament, you won’t spend money on every spin. Instead, you’ll pay a single, flat fee to enter at the start of the tournament. This fee may be split into a buy-in (which goes into the prize pool), and an entry fee, collected by the casino as their commission. This is similar to a Texas Holdem tournament where a $10+1 tournament would put $10 into the prize pool, and $1 goes to the house.

Once the tournament begins, you’ll be given a predetermined number of coins to use for all of your spins. These coins don’t represent real money, they’re just a way of keeping score. You’ll have a certain amount of time in which to play all of your coins – this time limit can range from just a few minutes, or hours or even days during a major event.

The object, as you might expect, is to win as much as possible during the allotted time period. The more credits you collect, the better you’re doing in the tournament.

At the end of the tournament, the players with the most credits will win real money prizes, with the largest prize going to the overall winner. The prizes are drawn from the money collected from players when they entered the tournament. In many cases, there may be added money in the prize pool that comes from the casino itself. Other pokies tournaments feature guaranteed prize pools that ensure a certain level of prize money regardless of the number of entrants.

Types of Pokie Tournaments

Here are a few of the most common types of pokies tournaments you can play for real money.

Scheduled Tournaments vs. Sit n Go Tournaments

Scheduled tournaments are what they sound like—they’re pokies tournaments that are scheduled in advance. If you arrive late to a scheduled tournament, you won’t be able to participate.
Sit n go tournaments are a little more flexible than scheduled tournaments. They usually have a low number of entrants, and they start as soon as an arbitrary number of entrants have registered. Many times a sit n go pokies tournament will only have two players–you and a single competitor.

Re-Buys and Add-Ons

If you’re playing in a tournament with a re-buy option, you can buy additional chips once you’ve run out. Players will often do this when their score is too low to have a chance of winning. This option is also sometimes called a “continue” option. When you do a re-buy, you start over from scratch and get a brand new score.

An add on tournament is similar to a re-buy, but you get to start where you left off. If you’ve triggered a bonus game just as the time ran out, then this is a great option, because it will usually mean a lot more points and a better chance of ranking on the leaderboard.


Freerolls are tournaments which don’t require an entry fee. They’re free to enter and free to play in. Some casinos offer several freerolls per day. Some of these free pokies tournaments offer cash prizes, but many also offer free entries to the higher paying tournaments. Those are called “satellites” or “feeders”.

One Shot Tournaments

Pokies tournaments with no re-buy or add-on option are called “one shot tournaments”.

Survivor Tournaments

Survivor style pokies tournaments have multiple rounds. The top players during each round “survive” and move forward to the next round of the tourney. The winners of the final round receive the prize money.

Extender Tournaments

Freerolls are tournaments which don’t require an entry fee. They’re free to enter and free to play in. Some casinos offer several freerolls per day. Some of these free pokies tournaments offer cash prizes, but many also offer free entries to the higher paying tournaments. Those are called “satellites” or “feeders”.

Daily Pokie Tournaments

Daily pokie tournaments are tournaments that run each day. Each one will have specific entry fees, playing structure, and prize pools. We advise that you make sure you’re aware how daily tournaments work before you take part. The casino you choose will have more information.

Pokie Tournament Freerolls

Freeroll tournaments are the most popular type of pokie tournament because they’re free to enter. Freeroll pokies tournaments give you the chance of actually winning a cash prize or an entry into a bigger and better paying tournament. There are two main types of freeroll pokie tournaments.
The first type is network-wide freerolls which happen across a network of games (usually one specific software provider)
The second type is standalone or exclusive freeroll tournaments. These are only available to play at one particular casino. You will need to be a member of that respective casino to take part in one of these. If your score is high enough, you’ll get listed on the tournament leader board.

90-Minute Freerolls

The most commonly found freeroll pokie tournaments are the 90 Minute Freerolls. These are available to play several times a day. As the name suggests, they take 90 minutes to play.
These freeroll tournaments have five prizes of $10.00 each. The default for these tournaments is to offer those prizes in U.S. dollars, but their software automatically converts into AUD or your currency of choice.
Once you register and enter the tournament, you’re given up to 10 minutes of play time and up to 18,000 tournament credits. Be aware that this time allocation and credit allocation will change depending on which tournament pokie game you’re playing.

Survivor Freeroll Pokie Tournaments

The Survivor Pokie tournament is a feeder or satellite tournament. You don’t win a cash prize in this type of tourney. If you finish in one of the prize positions, you win an entry to another tournament–the 3 Day Survivor Tournament, which offers a large prize pool.

This tournament is free to enter, but players have the options to re-buy or continue for a fee if they run out of credits.

How to Take Part in Freeroll Tournaments

If you’re interested in giving freeroll pokie tournaments a try, we have a few words of advice that will allow you to play seamlessly and effortlessly.
Make sure you register an alias to take part in the pokie tournaments well in advance of any freeroll tournament beginning, this is a one-off registration which will allow you to access a network of freerolls as well as the pay-to-enter tournaments. Registering early ensures you’re prepared to go as soon as the freeroll tournament begins.
When you are playing a freeroll, you will want to play as many spins in a short amount of time as you can. As such, it is recommended that you close and unused programs or browsers on your computer. You do not want the connection to lag when taking part in these tournaments.
Finally, as mentioned above, always make sure you register to take part in any freeroll as early as you can. If you take too long to enter you may find that the tournament is full.

Tips for Winning Freeroll Tournaments

Pokies tournaments rely heavily on luck. However, there are a couple of tips we can give you to improve your chances to win.
First, make sure to use all of your available credits. There’s nothing worse than leaving a few credits in the bank at the end of a pokies tournament. A prize on those last few credits could make the difference between winning and losing.
This doesn’t mean mashing the buttons as fast as possible. It means that you’ll want to know exactly when the machine allows you to start the next spin, and hit the spin button at that precise moment. In some tournaments, this isn’t a concern (you’ll easily make it through your coins with time to spare), but in others, speed is critical.
Online pokies tournaments often use the more complex video pokies to determine a winner (unlike live tournaments, which usually use large banks of more basic machines). Make sure you’re familiar with the game being played, as you’ll want to make the correct decisions to increase your chances of winning. For instance, if there are two bonus game options, they might offer different returns to the player.
More frequently, they may offer a choice between a safe option that gives reliable returns, and a second game that has more variance. Depending on how you’re doing and how many credits you expect you’ll need to win, one of these options may make a lot more strategic sense than the other.

Choosing When to Play Pokie Tournaments

You should carefully choose the time at which you opt to play pokie tournaments. All tournaments will have both a minimum and maximum number of entrants allowed to take part in each tournament. Once the minimum number of entrants has been reached then that tournament will begin.
By playing at the quieter times, or at an under-populated casino site, you will get a much larger chance of picking up one of the cash prizes on offer. This is due to fewer players online.
Be prepared to log on and double check how many entrants have registered for up and coming tournaments. If you find one with few entrants then that tournament will be worth entering. You will get a much better chance of bagging one of the prizes as opposed to playing one which has the maximum number of entrants taking part.

Can You Buy Your Way onto the Leader Board?

Yes, but it involves some strategy. You may see that some pokie tournament player’s alias’s are constantly being awarded a cash prize. This is due to those players simply buying their way to the cash paying prizes on offer. These savvy players simply start playing in certain tournaments the minute they open and then utilize add-ons to allow them to continue playing for the duration of that pokie tournament.
By purchasing add-ons, they get to carry on playing. The longer they play, the bigger score they will amass. Even when taking into account the initial entry fee and all of the subsequent add-on fees, the prizes they can win are greater than their overall cost. As such they keep on taking add-ons and can bag a prize on every tournament they take part in!

How to Pick Bonus Features

The majority of tournament pokie games award a standard type of bonus game. In some pokie games, when you trigger the bonus round you will be given the option of picking one of several different ways which that bonus round will play out.
When playing any tournament pokie, you have to remember that speed is paramount. As such, you will need to rattle through as many games as you can. This is true for all free spins bonus games. So when playing pokies in a tournament format, you should be choosing the lowest number of free spins with the biggest multiplier attached.
One additional thing to bear in mind when taking part in a pokie tournament is that as soon as the timer reaches zero then your entry into that tournament will end. This rule is also attached to any free spins you have remaining. This is why we suggest you opt to play the minimum amount of spins, as you do not want to end up missing out on any remaining free spins when your timer has reached zero.

Register Early for Freerolls

You need to register for freeroll tournaments as quickly as possible once the registration period has opened.
Within minutes of these freeroll tournaments opening up, thousands of players tend to register within minutes. If you do not react quickly enough you may find the tournament fully booked before you get around to it.
Playing in freerolls does have many benefits—obviously allowing you to win at no cost a cash prize or an entry into a main event—the actual odds of you bagging one of the prizes is slim. If you do take part, expect to have to play in lots of them before you actually win something, unless of course you are very lucky! So get in, register early, be patient, and one day you will end one of these freerolls in a prize paying position on the leader board.

Online Pokies Tournaments FAQs

Back to top