Originally Posted by OzExorcist
Personally, I'd start by accepting that you're not going to win a lot of them, or even cash in a lot of them.
Tournament poker is one of the highest variance forms of poker there is. You can play fantastically well for hours, even days, then lose a flip and be out without any money. You can go dozens of tournaments without cashing and you can go a lot more than that without taking down a major prize - and that's if you're a solid, winning player to begin with. The idea is that your occasional big wins make up for all your pre-bubble knockouts and min-cashes.
If you want consistent earnings, my advice would be to play cash games or maybe single-table SnGs. They're games where (again, assuming you're a winning player) you can make small amounts of money consistently rather than large amounts occasionally.
If you're determined to play multi-table tournaments though then study the game, do your utmost to remain focussed at the table, study your opponents carefully and try to select tournaments that offer you good value - overlays where the number of entries don't cover the prize pool guarantee, for example.
I agree with this, also.
It's pretty rare to find tourneys where the guarantee exceeds the final player count. Thanks, in part, to late reg, most tourneys fill up. I'd say look for the tourneys that pay out more than 10%. And avoid ones that pay out less than that. That's why I am all for SNGs -- a 9 person SNG pays out 33%. And avoid the superturbos. Yes, I know they are fun, and some folks do very well in them generally, but that first shove starts the whole thing off with a flip at best. Not +EV. In most tournaments, it is completely possible to avoid flips and allins for all but a very few hands.
Then again, what do I know. I get into the money often, but seldom go deep. There is an ongoing debate about whether getting into the money alone is worth it. IMO, you can't make it to the final table if you don't get into the money. And even big chip stacks can disappear as the blinds get big. There is a lot of game to play after the bubble.