Ladbrokes Poker Review
In the gaming industry for over 100 years, Ladbrokes is currently one of the largest betting companies in the U.K. and the largest retail bookmaker in the world with over 2,000 retail betting stores throughout the U.K., Ireland and Belgium.
Ladbrokes Poker is one of the most popular online poker rooms in Europe; offering great software, excellent game variety and attractive promotions. Their move to the Microgaming Network in February 2009 has proven to be quite prudent and they certainly have been reaping the rewards. In addition to their online poker room, Ladbrokes also offers a host of other online gaming services; including, sports betting, casino, games, bingo, financial betting, lotteries and backgammon. The poker room attracts many inexperienced gambling poker players from Ladbrokes’ other gaming services making it an excellent place for the experienced player to make some money.
Ladbrokes has recently been investing a good deal into raising its poker profile beyond the shores of the U.K. Their most recent marketing efforts include having provided a blog and video coverage for the 2009 World Series of Poker, sponsorship of several pro players and a plethora of promotions and value-added features for their players. Their efforts have been fairly successful, with the number of online players in their poker room rising to 7,000 players at peak hours.
Ladbrokes hosts a large group of different gaming services from their site. The result of this is very soft competition in their poker room with many tables experiencing viewed flop percentages upwards of 55%.
Ladbrokes’ Poker offers their No Limit, Pot Limit and Fixed Limit games in full, shorthanded and heads-up tables. Most of the traffic at Ladbrokes Poker is to be found in their shorthanded Texas Hold’em tables.
Ladbrokes Poker hosts a variety of different poker games including:
• Texas Hold’em
• Omaha Hi/Lo
• 7 Card Stud
• 5 Card Draw
• 5 Card Stud
Ladbrokes Poker is host to a wide variety of tournaments with buy-ins ranging from $1 up into the low hundreds. The tournaments at Ladbrokes Poker are fairly popular with fast and loose play. While the loose play in the tournaments is primarily due to the gamblers from Ladbrokes’ other services popping in for the occasional Sit & Go, it is also due to the fact that many of the tournaments are re-buy events.
Ladbrokes Poker runs monthly $150K and $250K guaranteed tournaments that draw enormous fields. Ladbrokes Poker runs qualifiers for these tournaments daily with buy-ins as low as $5.50. In addition to their large guaranteed tournaments, Ladbrokes Poker has a fairly respectable number of freerolls including their Daily $100 Guaranteed Freeroll and massive $25,000 freerolls can be entered by exchanging 2,500 player points.
Ladbrokes Poker runs regular qualifiers and satellites to all of the big live poker events such as the European Poker Tour events, the Monte Carlo Millions and the World Series of Poker.
For The Beginner
The instructional material at Ladbrokes Poker is fairly sparse; don’t come to Ladbrokes Poker expecting to learn the game of poker under the tutelage of the legends of the game. The instructional materials at Ladbrokes Poker include simple “how to” written tutorials for each of the games offered in their poker room, directions on how to play Sit & Go tournaments, directions on how to play multi table tournaments, a glossary of poker terms and a couple of very basic strategy articles. There are no video tutorials, no audio tutorials, no podcasts and no lessons available on Ladbrokes Poker.
What Ladbrokes Poker does offer the beginning player are plenty of play money games and freerolls. In addition, the competition at Landbrokes Poker is quite weak so the beginner should have no problem becoming acquainted with poker in the micro limit tables without having to worry too much about it affecting their bank statement.
Software Graphics and Features
Ladbrokes Poker is run on Microgaming Software and is incredibly quick and smooth. A big contributing factor to this quickness is the Spartan graphics offered on the client. There are no avatars, no fancy backgrounds and no multi-colored card decks…strictly poker. That having been said, the software is very stable and offers all of the features that you would expect from a top online poker room.
The lobby at Ladbrokes poker is very well organized and fully filterable according to hands played per hour, viewed flop percentage and pot size. In addition, you will find useful information listed in the lobby such as the rake accumulated from your playing which is very useful when calculating bonus clearance. There are a number of statistics built into the table including the win percentage of the various people seated and their viewed flop percentage.
Hand histories are also available to players at Ladbrokes Poker as well as a graphic replay of hands. Multi table play is supported at up to ten tables simultaneously with tables being viewed in either full view or mini view.
• Smooth play
• Supports 10 table simultaneous play
• Buddy list
• Private tables
• Player statistics
• Food orders can be made from the lobby
• Player notes
• Last Hand feature
• New bet slider
Ladbrokes Poker offers its new players a great sign-up bonus of $1,100 with a minimum deposit of $15. That isn’t to say that you deposit $15 and they give you $1,100, you have to clear your bonus by earning Poker Points by playing in real money ring games and tournaments. 10 Poker Points are earned for every $1 either paid in rake from real money ring games or $1 paid in real money tournament fees. $50 in bonus money is released for every 1750 Poker Points accrued.
Ladbrokes Poker offers their players a four tier loyalty program where Player Points accrued over the course of a month determine a player’s Club Level. Benefits from the different Club Levels include tournament entries, cash and exclusive Club Level Freerolls. Player Points can be used to purchase entries into a variety of different tournaments.
In addition to their loyalty program, Ladbrokes Poker offers a host of different promotions including:
• Easter Mini Festival 2010- Two events will be run each evening between April 2nd and 5th for a total of €250,000 in guaranteed prizes.
• Top of the Dogs- Over €50,000 awarded each month for leaders in 2 MTT leaderboards, 2 weekly cash leaderboards and 2 weekly Sit & Go leaderboards.
• Poker Cruise IV- Win a place for yourself and a guest on Ladbrokes Poker Cruise IV worth ₤4,000. The cruise will be a five day poker festival beginning in Florida and traveling to Labadee; Falmouth, Jamaica and Cozumel, Mexico.
• Irish Open 2010- Play for an all expense paid trip to the Irish Open 2010 valued at €5,000.
• €30,000 Guaranteed – 100 Series- The €300 + €30 buy-in tournament is capped at 100 players. Play for your share of the €30,000 prize pool.
• 2010 Celtic Poker Tour- Play for your chance at an all expense paid trip to the €100,000 Guaranteed Celtic Tour Final at the Dolmen Hotel in Co. Carlow, Ireland.
Ladbrokes Poker offers their players two avenues of customer support; telephone and email. There is no live chat offered at Ladbrokes Poker. The customer support staff is very knowledgeable and courteous and fully capable of handling any issue that comes before them.