PKR Poker Review
PKR Review and Overview
It's clear that PKR Poker is doing something right.
To put this into perspective, most rooms cannot generate more than 3 to 5,000 players during peak hours. This is while allowing players from the USA to play for real money on their site.
PKR, on the other hand, does not allow players from the US to play on their site for real money. Yet, they have managed to continuously grow since their start back in 2006. As of today, they see somewhere around 10,000 players or more spread across over 1,500 tables at peak hours (12pm PST). This is at least a 50% growth in just the last couple of years.
Ok, so what does PKR do so well?
Well, I'll go into further detail below. But to summarize, PKR has created a 3D poker experience that has yet to be matched by another site. You're able to create a fully customizable avatar with tons of options in regards to clothing and accessories. And then you sit down to play where you can express emotions, show facial expressions, taunt players and peek at your cards -- all as often as you want. This provides you with a realism that you can only have by playing at a home game or by visiting a brick and mortar casino.
This is such a small fraction as to what PKR's software is capable of, much less their room as a whole.
The software is what sets PKR apart from any other site. Everything is in 3D. This is probably why the interface has a video game feel to it. This isn't entirely a surprise considering that the people behind the scenes come from a video game background.
Since there are so many different software options and details, I'm just going to cover what stands out the most and separates PKR from the other poker sites.
Your Avatar at PKR
So, as I mentioned in the intro, one feature is the ability to create your own avatar. You can choose from being a man or woman, your ethnicity, what clothes to wear (shirts, pants, shoes, etc), what kind of voice or accent you have and what chips tricks you're able to perform at the table.
When you first get started, these options will be limited. However, once you start to earn and save up PKR points, you can use those in the shop to purchase more items for your avatar.
One of the software features that I enjoy the most about PKR is their lobby. It's very clean and the navigation is intuitive. I had absolutely no problem starting several different games. What I found that I liked the most was the "game finder." This is a filter designed like an accordion. You start off by choosing whether you want to play for real or play money, then a new option will slide up. You then choose what format you want to play, then the variation, stake and what sized table. It's the easiest and quickest way to start a game. PKR also has a traditional lobby and filter system as well.
PKR Game Play
Once you have chosen your game, then you'll have the opportunity to see where PKR really shines. In fact, it might be difficult to focus on playing poker with all of the different things that you can do.
The first thing I noticed is that you have several pre-selected emotions, actions and tricks to choose from. Many of these will affect how your avatar acts when doing something as simple as putting chips in the pot or verbally declaring a play. For example, if you're "angry," you'll have an aggressive posture and will throw your chips in the middle while (almost) yelling, "I call" or "I raise." It's a night and day difference from when your mood or emotion is "happy" or "casual."
Actions might include clapping, laughing hysterically or taunting your opponent by flapping your arms and clucking like a chicken. Several actions can be preselected. There are many chip tricks that can be preselected too, although only 3 will be available until you earn PKR points and buy more.
Everything else that you may need to find or use while playing is easy. Camera angles can be manually set or chosen from 8 different preselected angles. It's also very easy to chat with other players, auto post blinds, look at previous hand histories -- just whatever. PKR made this simple to do.
This small overview of the software at PKR really does not do it justice. You'll have to check the site out for yourself to get a true understanding of what it looks and feel like as well as how well it functions.
PKR Poker Bonuses
PKR offers players who are signing up for an account and depositing for the first time a deposit bonus. This bonus is a 100% match up to $800. Players can deposit as little as $10 to as much as $800 and it'll be matched dollar for dollar.
To clear the bonus, you'll need to earn points by playing real money games. PKR awards points at the rate of 1 point per $.01 in rake generated. So, for tournaments and SNGs, players will receive 100 points for every $1 spent in fees.
Cash games are a little harder to keep track off, especially since PKR calculates rake depending on what you contribute to the pot. For example, if the rake in a pot is $3 and you contributed 50% of the total pot, you'll be credited with contributing $1.50 of the total rake. In doing so, you will have earned 150 PKR points.
The number of points needed to unlock your bonus is 225 points for every $1 of the bonus. PKR will only release it in one lump sum -- there are no partial bonuses given out. You'll have 60 days to complete your bonus requirements.
In addition to the deposit bonus, you'll also receive 4 tickets to freerolls with $1k prize pools. And you'll be given 1,500 PKR points. That way you don't have to wait long before you can customize your avatar.
Don't forget to check out our PKR Bonus Code section to learn more about the bonus.
PKR VIP Program
The VIP program at PKR is a bit of a catch 22 -- there are a few good things and there is one small downside. How much you play will determine how (un)affected you are by these.
The best feature of the VIP program is that once you reach a status, you'll never drop down due to a lack of play. The benefit to this is that you can reach a status, such as gold or maybe platinum, stop playing for a couple months and then still reap all the rewards of reaching said status when you come back. This is virtually unheard of at any other poker room online.
There are 6 different levels to the VIP program: member, bronze, silver, gold, platinum and diamond. You'll need to at least make one real money deposit to become a member. From there it's a matter of earning PKR points and climbing the VIP ladder.
The perks will get better as you move up. As a member, you'll receive things like free tourney tickets, point boosters (to help move up in ranks) and special freerolls. On the higher tiers, you'll receive increased deposit limits and VIP access to PKR events.
The one downside that I can see from a player's perspective is the inability to earn cash bonuses or exchange points for cash. I suppose this could be balanced though by the free gifts, tourney tickets and the ability to buy electronics and such from the gift shop. I'd still like to have the option though.
PKR Games Available
At this time, PKR only runs hold'em and omaha games. For most players though, this won't be a problem. You can even say it's made up for by all the unique game variations they have.
For cash games, players will be able to sit down at hold'em and omaha games with buy-ins as low as $.01/$.02 up to as high as $100/$200. The levels $10/$20 and below are what see the most action.
Tournaments and SNGs will start out as low as $.25 and peak around $1k for SNGs and typically around $250-$300 for MTTs, although this may fluctuate some due to any promotion or satellite that PKR might be running.
Most of the common formats are offered too. You'll find formats such as speed (turbo), heads up, multi table, deep stack, short and full handed. I noticed several cool variations as well. Here is a short list with description of each one:
- Break Thru: Everyone who cashes earns the same amount except the winner who receives 25%.
- Double Thru: Outlast half the field and receive double your buy-in back.
- Double and Triple Chance: This is similar to a rebuy tournament except the extra chips are covered by the initial buy-in. Any extra chips not used before the first break is automatically credited on the first break.
- Phases: Phases are step tournaments either played in heads up or 10-handed formats.
- Terminator: These are bounty tournaments. There are two different versions, one being a heads up format and the other being 10-handed. These have no prize pools. Any money earned is by bounty only.
There are plenty of guaranteed prize pool tournaments too. Here are just a few to give you an idea:
- The Masters: This has $100k GTD with a $270 buy-in. Satellites are available.
- The Sunday Open: This has $12.5k GTD with a $27.50 buy-in.
- The Bounty: The Bounty has an 8k GTD prize pool and $22 buy-in.
- The High Roller: Play for $3-10k GTD and buy in for $150.
- The Prestige: This has an 18k GTD prize pool. You can buy-in for $109 or satellite your way for $11.99.
There are tournaments running every day of the week. PKR has a full tournament schedule on their site that you can check to find the tournament you want to play and when it runs.
PKR Poker Promotions
PKR runs a few different promotions in addition to their new player sign up bonus.
The first one is their refer-a-friend program. For every player that you refer, you will receive $50 once that player earns 1,000 PKR points. The player being referred will receive $50 too. A minimum of $50 will need to be deposited by the referred in order to qualify.
A few other promos that PKR is running include:
- freerolls that run daily.
- $.10 giveaways: These cost nothing to enter and run daily.
- Premium freerolls: These have $100-$1,000 prize pools. Just use your PKR points to enter.
- $.25 MTTs and SNGs. These are a great way to build your bankroll.
While it's not your traditional promo, PKR has what they call, "Raise Your Game." This is something like a poker school where they give away free information that you can use to improve your game. There are 'how to articles,' beginner strategy and MTT, SNG and cash strategy covering both hold'em and omaha. There is content posted on a regular basis, about every 5 days or so on average.
PKR Deposit Options
There is a $10 minimum deposit required at PKR. Keep in mind that all deposits will have a $1 fee if they're less than $25.
The deposit options you have include: Visa Delta, Maestro, Switch, Visa Electron, Solo, Visa, MasterCard, pre-paid MasterCard, wire transfers, Neteller, PayPal (UK and Danish only), Moneybookers, PaySafeCard, Click2Pay and Ukash.
PKR Poker Withdrawal Options
The minimum withdrawal amount at PKR will be $20 if your balance is $20 or more. Anything less and you'll have to withdrawal your remaining balance.
The deposit options you have include: NETeller, Click2Pay, Visa, MasterCard, Maestro, Switch, Solo, Moneybookers, iDeal, Entropay and check.
PKR Poker Customer Service
For support, PKR can be contacted one of two ways -- a contact form found on their site or by live chat. They have support available around the clock, so you should expect a response within 48 hours if you use the form. However, from my experience I have found that the live chat is a much better option. I contacted PKR through their live chat and received a response within a minute or two. I had answers to my questions only a few minutes after.
Ready to Try Poker in 3D at PKR?
If you are ready to give 3d poker a try, then make sure to visit PKR here to pick up a free 100% match bonus on your first deposit up to $800.