Americas Cardroom Aiming for Another Record, $5 Million Venom PKO Starts in September

The Venom franchise is going from strength to strength as Americas Cardroom prepares to host a multi-million-dollar PKO event in September.

vendom PKO

The third incarnation of Venom PKO gets underway on Sept. 17 and, this time, Americas Cardroom is guaranteeing $5 million. (Image: Americas Cardroom)

The record-breaking $10 million Venom might have only just wrapped up, but ACR isn’t letting the grass grow under its feet. With the main event well established, the spinoff PKO tournament is gaining a similar amount of traction. Therefore, to ensure Venom PKO III drives the franchise forward, Americas Cardroom has set the guarantee at $5 million.

Venom franchise keeps getting bigger

That’s a lofty target, but Venom and Venom PKO have both shown they’re capable of exceeding expectations.

The original Venom, which is a straight freezeout tournament, holds the title of the richest online event by a US-facing poker site. Sohale Khalili, aka Baby Bowser, won the lion’s share of its $10 million prize pool last month to become the latest Venom champion.

The winner of the Venom PKO event might not collect $1.5 million like Khalili, but they will bank a significant six-figure score.

Venom PKO I and II both attracted more than 2,000 entrants each. That meant their total prize pools were in excess of $7 million. Between the main prize pools and the bounties up for grabs, the two previous winners, Pinguinachica and Rydo, won $751,068 and $738,134, respectively.

If past history is an accurate indicator, Venom PKO III should beat its $5 million guarantee, but Americas Cardroom isn’t taking any chances.

Satellite fever is taking hold

Venom PKO Fever starts on Sept. 3 and will offer a plethora of qualifiers for the $2,650 Main Event. Buy-ins for standard satellites start at $12, but Americas Cardroom will also be running special freerolls and “Blitz Step” qualifiers costing $0.11+.

Of course, players can buy in directly if they wish. There will be four starting days in total and players can enter more than one starting day,  if they wish. The action gets underway on Sept. 17 and will continue until a winner is crowned on Sept. 29.


Venom PKO III Schedule

  • Day 1A: September 17
  • Day 1B: September 19
  • Day 1C: September 24
  • Day 1D: September 26
  • Day 2: September 27
  • Day 3: September 28
  • Final Table: September 29

What is a PKO Tournament?

ACR has described Venom PKO as the biggest progressive knockout tournament in online poker, but what does that actually mean?

Progressive knockout, aka PKO, is a type of poker tournament where everyone starts with a bounty on their head. Typically, 50% of the buy-in is used to create your starting bounty and the other 50% goes into the prize pool. The reason these tournaments are called “progressive” is because the size of your bounty increases each time you eliminate a player.

So, when you take someone’s stack, 50% of their bounty gets paid into your account. The other 50% goes into your bounty. For example, if your starting bounty is $100 and you eliminate a player whose bounty is $300, $150 get added to your bounty and take its total value to $250. The other $150 gets paid into your poker account as cash.

The further you progress in the tournament, the bigger the bounties can get. So, even if you don’t make it to the final table of Venom PKO, you could still win a few thousand dollars just by eliminating a player or two. That’s what makes this event potentially lucrative, and it’s the reason Americas Cardroom is aiming to collect well over 2,000 entries.

Written by
Daniel Smyth
Dan Smyth is a poker media journeyman who politely reminds CardsChat readers that poker is played all around the world, not just America.

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