Full Tilt Poker Review

by Mia Chapman Last Updated
Casino Highlights
  • Great Variety of Games
  • Heaps of Deposit Methods
  • Varied Tournaments
Deposit Options +1
Mobile Capability
Poker Network

Back in 2004, Full Tilt was the place to be for the serious poker player. Glitzy adverts on TV, the site where the likes of Howard Lederer, Chris Ferguson and Phil Ivey played, it was the coolest (or hottest if you want to look at it another way) poker seat in town.

Then their world came crashing down on them when in 2011 and after years of refusing to accept warnings about allowing US players to play there – that came from the Gambling Enforcement Act – the Department of Justice in the US charged the company with money laundering, fraud and violation of federal gambling laws.

Not only were Full Tilt’s management in serious trouble but so were US-based players who were (allegedly) 82 million US Dollars out of pocket. In what was the sort of poker equivalent of the Wall Street Crash, the day they announced they couldn’t be paying back players’ money, became known as Black Friday.

What followed was litigation, and a rescue package that saw Amaya Gaming merge them with Poker Stars and spend the next few years trying to clear up the mess, starting with paying everyone back their money.

It’s important to understand the history of Full Tilt so as to understand how far they’ve come in terms of earning back trust and rectifying past mistakes. These days they don’t accept US players at all and many pro players from other countries have returned to a busy, trustworthy site with plenty to offer. Let’s look at what they’ve done really well and if there are any areas for improvement.

Full Tilt Screenshots

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Bonuses and Promotions

Welcome Offer

So, what are they giving away when you first start out? The answer is an 100% welcome bonus up to 600 AUD but it’s worth explaining that this isn’t completely straightforward.

It’s not like an Online Casino or Sportsbook where you instantly have that money available as soon as you make the first deposit. Rather, you see that bonus being slowly released as and when you play real money games. Five points are given for every 1 AUD wagered and for every 180 points collected, that’s another 10 AUD straight to your account. Crucially, unlike at Sportsbooks and Casinos, that’s cash with no wagering requirements.

So yes, on the one hand it really won’t be easy to get all that bonus money but at least when it’s released, it’s yours. You have four months to keep playing and earn the respective bonus for each deposit made.

Freerolls and Other Bonuses

If freerolls are your thing, then Full Tilt may just be the place for you. They’re mostly multi-table events where the style of play is pretty loose and though playing that way doesn’t always see you rewarded, at least you’re not hanging around all day grinding it out, to earn a few bucks. It can be over and done with within an hour, at times.

One of the cool things about Free Tilt is that they don’t just focus on Texas Hold’em when it comes to these tournaments. We all know that’s the most popular type of poker and therefore the one that has the most freerolls, but the likes of Omaha Hi/Lo certainly haven’t been forgotten about and if you’re a fan, you’ll always have a decent freeroll of that format to enter.

For larger amounts, you can enter some of their freerolls which you don’t pay actual money to enter but instead, use player points. Which brings us to their loyalty program. Playing real money games sees you get 100 reward points for every 1 AUD wagered.

The more points you get, the more chests you open, which give you Stars Coins. The Stars Coins can then be used to purchase Full Tilt merchandise like hats and t-shirts, or entry into tournaments. Just like the ones mentioned above.

In fact, their loyalty program mirrors that offered over at Poker Stars.

Poker Games and Tournaments

Poker Games

Poker games is another area where they really impress. The likes of Texas Hold’em, Omaha Hi and Omaha Hi/Lo need no introduction and are obviously all here but there’s plenty more to look forward to.

The likes of Draw Poker and Razz are admittedly seen at plenty of other sites as well but the same can’t be said of Stud Hi, Stud Hi/Lo or Irish Poker, which are rarely available.

Then there are the so-called Mixed Games where mastering different types of poker are essential; it won’t cut the mustard to just be good at one. The best example of this is HORSE, combining Hold’em, Omaha Hi/Lo, Razz, Stud Hi and Stud Hi/Lo. One for the real all-rounders among the…rounders.

Tournaments and Cash Games

There’s no point explaining how all the regular poker tournaments you see at any self-respecting site work, because you know that already.

It’s more interesting to talk about the somewhat rarer types of tournaments that one doesn’t see or hear about so often.

In ‘Rush Poker Tournaments’, every time you fold a hand, you’re sent away to another straight away so there’s no waiting around. One for the impatient, all-action player.

In ‘Ante Games’ it’s not just the Blinds who pay to play the hand. Everyone has to contribute so the pot is obviously bigger.

When playing ‘Turbo Sit and Gos’ the blinds increase after every three minutes, rather than six. Faster pace, more action.

There are a few more beyond even those so if you want to go off the beaten track a bit regarding your poker, this is the place.

Banking Methods

Deposits and Withdrawals

All the usual deposit methods are available here, except Bitcoin. So that means Skrill, Neteller, VISA, Paysafecard, Wire Transfer, Mastercard, Trustly, giropay and Much Better. In a really good little feature, selecting the country you reside in makes the payment options tailor-made to that country so will instantly tell you whether, say, Neteller is valid for you if you happen to reside in Finland. A couple of the Deposit Options such as Skrill, have a Fast Deposit facility which means that you choose them as your default depositing method and each time you use it in the future, it will go through almost instantly.

Withdrawals are unfortunately not as straightforward as we’d like them to be or as straightforward as they could be. In fact, they have a full page explaining how withdrawals (or ‘cashouts’ as they call them), work.

In a nutshell, you’ll have to request a withdrawal by entering some basic info, including of course the amount you wish to cashout. Requests are then approved and paid, generally within 3-10 business days, though with Visa it could be instant.

There are quite a few other rules there such as those determine what happens when you withdraw more than you deposited or withdraw using a different method to the one you used to deposit. It’s worth spending 10 or 15 minutes reading up on it and understanding how it all works.

Cryptocurrencies

You can’t currently deposit using a cryptocurrency. It’s true that many Sportsbooks, Casinos and poker rooms are embracing the likes of Bitcoin for the reasons we all know but it’s also true that cryptocurrencies aren’t the be-all-and-end-all.

Some people find them a it hard to understand and use, so it’s a lot less of a big deal that they don’t offer them than if they didn’t offer Neteller or VISA. Besides, their policy on cryptocurrencies could change in the future anyway.

Creating an Account

You should get this over and done within a couple of minutes. Select your country of residence, an e-mail address, username and password and you’re almost good to go. That will be your account pretty much set up and then you just need to choose a deposit method.

We always advise players to opt-in to receiving Marketing communications about promos and offers. You’re not going to take them up on all of them, obviously, but it’s good that they’re there in one place when you do want to take advantage.

Customer Support

We’re not fans of card rooms that only use e-mail to contact Customer Support. It makes us feel like you’re a prisoner who has to wait till they’re good and ready before you hear back from them. So sadly, they get a couple of black marks for that. Get yourself a phone service or at least Live Chat and we’ll happily remove those black marks.

We’ve already gone over the history of Full Tilt, Black Friday and the fact that they were merged with PokerStars. When that merger took place in 2016 there were changes in term of software- Full Tilt moved to PokerStars’ platform after Amaya Gaming, who owns both brands, decided that was the way to go. What that meant was that if you had an account with any card site belonging to Amaya, which also included Duel, StarsDraft and Betstars, you could play on any other site on the same platform.

And not only did customers benefit from the extra security provided by the original Pokerstars site but the new management also resolved a lot of unfinished business in terms of old accounts and money owned, at one stage paying back 7.6 million US Dollars to one player alone.

So, we think they’re back to the point where they can be fully trusted.

Frequently Asked Questions about Full Tilt Poker

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