Global Poker overview
Launched in February 2017, Global Poker is an innovative online poker room licensed by Malta’s Gaming Authority. It’s advertised as a social platform, but its unique $weeps Cash model gives every player a chance to win real money. This approach allows Global Poker to offer legal games to US citizens, as the laws pertaining to sweepstakes differ from regulations that govern traditional online gambling.
Unfortunately, while the site can be accessed globally, real-money prizes are available exclusively to poker enthusiasts from the United States and Canada, except for Quebec. Global Poker currently supports cash games and poker tournaments for Texas Hold’em and Omaha.
How to sign up for Global Poker
Creating a new Global Poker account is significantly easier than signing up with a typical real-money poker platform. In fact, you can even use your Facebook account during the registration process.
It boils down to filling out a simple form and confirming your email address. You’ll be required to provide some basic personal information, including your name, address, and date of birth. You’ll only be asked to verify your account when you request your first real-money cash-out.
What’s more, Global Poker doesn’t require customers to download any poker software because the client app is 100 percent browser-based. All in all, the unique legal status of Global Poker makes it the most accessible real-money platform available to Americans these days.
Global Poker business model
Global Poker is based on a virtual currency called Gold Coins. This currency is equivalent to play money dollars that you can find at many other online poker rooms.
When players purchase additional Gold Coins, they are awarded bonus sweepstakes tickets by way of $weeps Cash. As stated earlier, $weeps Cash is available exclusively to players from the United States and Canada. $weeps can be used to buy into tournaments and ring games, where winners are awarded even more $weeps. It can also be exchanged to real cash by means of an authorized payment processing service.
From a legal standpoint, this means Global Poker is engaged in hosting sweepstakes and, as such, isn’t a real gambling site. Similar sweepstakes promotions are offered by numerous international corporations. We, therefore, conclude that the chances of the US government taking action to close this loophole are reasonably low.
Global Poker traffic overview
While detailed traffic data is unavailable, a brief inspection of the poker room tells us Global Poker is a medium-sized platform when it comes to $weeps Cash games.
The number of active cash games is significantly higher than in the case of smaller sites operating on fenced state markets in New Jersey or Nevada. The numbers seem to be comparable with casual Europe-facing platforms, such as iPoker or Unibet, which see between 350 and 1,100 active players, depending on the day and hour. It should be noted that, unlike many other poker rooms, Global Poker is consistently expanding its player base, which should lead to even better traffic in 2019.
The average number of cash game tables exceeds 120 throughout most of the day and rises considerably during peak traffic hours.
Most of them are six-max tables, but finding a full nine-max game shouldn’t be much of an issue, even during odd hours. Texas Hold’em makes up about two thirds of the overall cash game traffic on Global Poker, and Pot-Limit Omaha accounts for the rest.
As you’d expect from a predominantly social platform, the level of competition is very soft. If you’re a PokerStars veteran, you’ll be surprised by the number of fish sitting at most tables.
Global Poker is still undergoing rapid expansion, so any new major tournament tends to attract more players than the previous one. For example, the March 2018 Global Poker Madness drew a field of 419 players, who put up the SC$540 buy-in. This created a final prize pool of SC$209,500, exceeding the $200,000 guarantee. The winner went home with SC$40,194, which corresponds to the same number of real US dollars.
Standard weekly tournaments are significantly less popular, but you should still expect about 200 players for tournaments like the Sunday Teaser or Sunday Scrimmage.
Global Poker games
Global Poker’s software isn’t as polished as the client packages offered by well-established poker rooms, such as PokerStars, 888, or even PartyPoker. However, it’s definitely serviceable, and the table interface is as convenient as any.
Multi-tabling is also supported, but because the client is browser-based, you won’t be able to use any professional tracking software such as PokerTracker or Hold’em Manager.
Global Poker cash games
As mentioned earlier, cash games on Global Poker are all about Hold’em and Omaha. The software also supports Crazy Pineapple poker, but this variant isn’t available for $weeps Cash play and can be accessed only in play money (Gold Coins) mode.
Both No-Limit and Fixed-Limit tables are available, with stakes ranging from SC$0.02/SC$0.04 to SC$10/SC$20. Full-ring play is supported, but players tend to congregate around six-max tables because they offer faster gameplay. The competition is very soft, and all stakes are populated most of the time.
You won’t have problems finding SC$10/SC$20 NLHE tables here, which is a big advantage Global Poker holds over local, state-regulated poker rooms, such as 888 NJ or WSOP NV. Fixed-Limit games are a different story, as the number of active tables rarely exceeds 10, even during peak traffic hours.
PLO is the only Omaha variant offered by Global Poker, and the player base is big enough to sustain 24/7 action. Just like in the case of Hold’em, the stakes range from SC$0.02/SC$0.04 to SC$10/SC$20.
Finding a table during peak traffic hours shouldn’t be an issue regardless of your preferred stakes, especially on the weekends. It should be noted that Omaha players seem to have an even stronger preference for six-max tables on Global Poker, as finding a full nine-max game is borderline impossible for anything beyond the micros.
Global Poker multi-table tournaments
Global Poker doesn’t host awe-inspiring tournaments, with $100,000 guarantees every week. Instead, it gives you access to a wide range of smaller events, with buy-ins ranging from SC$0.11 to SC$33.
On the weekends, you’ll get to play a few bigger events, such as the aforementioned SC$218 Sunday Scrimmage (SC$50,000 guaranteed) or SC$110 Sunday Teaser (SC$20,000 guaranteed). It is possible to win a seat in one of those tournaments via satellite qualifiers, but the tickets aren’t cheap. They range from SC$22 to SC$33.
Most of the tournament action on Global Poker is all about No-Limit Hold’em, but Pot-Limit Omaha and Fixed-Limit Omaha fans get to enjoy a few smaller events each week.
Other poker offerings on Global Poker
Aside from cash games and MTTs, Global Poker also gives you access to classic single-table tournaments for both NLHE and PLO.
Sit & Go tournaments
NLHE S&Gs are available in both six-max and nine-max formats, and some support up to 27 players. Ticket prices start at SC$0.5+SC$0.05 and go all the way up to SC$200+SC$18. Turbo and Hyper-Turbo games are also available, and tournaments with the lower ticket prices tend to start quickly.
PLO S&Gs are always played in a six-max format. Ticket prices range from SC$1+SC$0.1 to SC$6+SC$0.6. Omaha S&Gs aren’t popular on Global Poker, so we recommend playing them exclusively during peak traffic hours.
Global Poker promotions
Global Poker doesn’t offer a welcome bonus or standard promotions due to its business model. However, many of the tournaments hosted there can be considered promotional in nature due to the reasonably large guaranteed prize pools.
Other than that, players also have access to challenges and leaderboards, which allow the best performers to earn additional $SC and other accolades.
Global Poker deposits and withdrawals
Global Poker isn’t a traditional poker room and, therefore, doesn’t accept direct USD deposits. In order to play for $weeps Coins, you must purchase Golden Coins via PayPal. Then, you’ll be awarded your $sweeps for free. As soon as you click a GC+$weeps Coins package, you will be taken to your PayPal log-in screen.
Unlike every other iGaming platform, Global Poker doesn’t support Neteller payments or e-Banking transactions.
As briefly touched on above, you must verify your account before you’ll be allowed to cash out. Verification entails providing Global Poker’s staff with a scan of your passport, driver’s license, or a government-issued ID. You’ll also be required to send a scan of a supporting document, such as a lease agreement form or a utility bill.
Withdrawals are also handled via PayPal. Please note that you’ll need a minimum of 50 $weeps Cash prizes to cash out.
Global Poker support
Global Poker support is available 24/7/365 and can be contacted via email at [email protected]. In most cases, you will receive a very quick response, often in as few as 12 hours.
That quick turnaround is definitely necessary because Global Poker’s FAQ section is very limited in scope and usefulness. In fact, it deals predominantly with legal issues and the differences between Gold Coins and $weeps Cash. On a brighter note, the website also features a “How to Play” section, which does a decent job explaining the rules of Hold’em, Omaha, and Crazy Pineapple.
Global Poker is an excellent alternative for US-based poker aficionados who would rather stay away from offshore sites, such as BetOnline or Bovada. The player pool is significantly bigger than in the case of local poker sites licensed in Nevada or New Jersey, which guarantees a better experience for mid- and high-stakes players. If you don’t mind the lack of welcome bonuses, and you’re fine with a browser-based client, you should definitely sign up and give Global Poker a try