Tournament Auto Detection

PokerTracker 4 version 4.0.x
October 8, 2019
  • Overview

    PokerTracker 4 has a Tournament Auto Detection mechanism which automates tournament classification and ICM calculation for populating the Overlay Net Adjusted graph .  Tournaments are analyzed both as they are imported as well as after the tournament is completed; the tournament type, buy-in, results and prizes are detected automatically where possible and populated in the database for you.  Tournament Detection does not work on every tournament type, generally speaking PokerTracker's Auto Detection mechanism can only support commonly known Sit'n'Go tournament formats, if your tournament is not detected then you may submit a hand history example to our support team for analysis to see if we can add this new format to the detection engine in the future.

    In some cases tournament summaries will no longer be necessary unless detailed result data on opponents is required.  You now have complete control over tournament types and can change them however you like.

    Important Note on Tournament Auto-Detection

    Auto-Detection is a process that will be continually improved. Not all tournament types can be supported in the auto-detection process, and as sites change their tournament structures the rules will need to be updated.  For some sites and tournament types results will be very accurate but for others the information in the hand history files does not allow full automatic detection. Detection rules will be automatically updated each time you start PokerTracker 4.

    We urge you to help us improve these results by reporting incorrect detection results.

    Please attach hand history (and summary) files for tournaments which are not detected correctly to a Support ticket and tell us exactly what type each tournament actually is.

  • Tournament Detection Overview

    The Tournament Auto Detection mechanism analyzes tournaments as they are imported and automatically determines what type of tournament it is, what the buy-in is and what your winnings are.  There are a large number of built in tags and descriptors and you can add your own for any other types you might play.

    You can filter tournaments based on these tags to see any combination of types.

    • Table Types

      The "Table Type" is now in the format:

      STT|MTT [x-Table] (x max) [Turbo|Super-Turbo] [Flags]


      STT - Single Table Tournament
      MTT - Multi-Table Tournament

      x-Table - If the tournament has an exact number of tables, that is specified here. This normally applies to Sit'n'Gos.

      Turbo - Blinds are increased about every 5 minutes
      Super-Turbo - Blinds are increased about every 3 minutes or less

    • Flags

      Flags can be any combination of the following:

      • SNG - Sit and Go
      • DON - Double or Nothing (a.k.a. "Double up", half the players win.)
      • BOUNTY - (a.k.a. "Knockout") Bonuses are awarded for eliminating players.
      • SHOOTOUT - A multi-table tournament that is played in phases of single-table events
      • REBUY - Players are allowed the option to rebuy upon elimination during the initial phase. This initial phase is typically an hour or a half-hour for turbo events.
      • MATRIX - Structured as a group of Single-table events played simultaneously. Bonuses are awarded for placing on multiple tables.
      • RUSH - Players are instantly assigned to a new table when they fold or upon the completion of a hand.
      • POF - Push or Fold. Only Push or Fold options are available.
      • SATELLITE - Players compete for entry into another tournament.
      • STEPS - Similar to SATELLITE but are structured as a series of satellites leading up to a grand prize.
      • DEEP - Starting stacks are at least 2x normal leading to longer, usually slower-paced games.
      • Multi-Entry - Tournaments where you can enter multiple times (not to be confused with a Rebuy).
      • Fifty50 - SNGs where 5/10 players get paid their buy-in + the equity of their chips when the tournament ends.
    • Examples

      A typical single-table 6 seat Turbo SNG tourney now has the Table Type: "STT (6 max) Turbo SNG"

      A single-table Double-or-Nothing tournament now has the Table Type: "STT SNG DON"

      A Multi-table Bounty (a.k.a. Knockout) tournament: "MTT BOUNTY"

      A 45 player SNG with 9 seat tables: "MTT 5-Table SNG"

  • Detection of Existing Tournaments

    If you have existing tournaments in your database from before Auto Detection was introduced, or if you have tournaments which were not detected for some reason (maybe you stopped Auto Import before the detection was triggered) then you can begin detection manually for any tournaments you choose.  To do this, go to the View Stats page, select Tournaments (T), and click Edit Tournament Results from the Results tab.  

    Edit Tournament Results

    This will open the Tournament Results window.  Below we'll review each section of this window:

    Tournament Results Window

    1. This lists all of the tournaments in your database which you can select for futher inspection.
    2. This lists the tournament summary information from the selected tournament.
    3. Here you can find and edit information about the selected tournament.
    4. Tick Only Tournaments Needing Results to bring up tournaments that require more information.
    5. Here you can filter for various tournaments.
    6. The Auto Detect option allows you to update existing tournament information for more complete results/data.

    Use the Filters button and/or Only Tournaments Needing Results option to narrow down the list of tournaments displayed and then select the tournament(s) that you want to Auto Detect. You can select multiple tournaments by shift-clicking or control-clicking, or click the Select All link.  When you have the appropriate tournaments selected click the Auto Detect button.

    Auto Detect MTTs PT4

    On the Auto-Detecting Tournaments window there are three options which determine what will be updated and what existing data (that might have been already filled manually or from hand histories or tournament summaries) will be protected.

    • Update Finish and Amount Won: If this option is enabled and the detection process can be determined, the place and prize for a player will be assigned automatically.  This will not overwrite any non-zero information, nor place/prize information which has already been changed.
    • Update Table Type: When this option is enabled, the detected table type will be updated and stored in the database - otherwise it will just display the detected type in the dialog. If you want to see what type PT4 thinks the tournament is before updating it you can disable this option. If 'Protect filled Table Type' is enabled too, then only tournaments which are currently N/A will be overwritten.
    • Protect filled Table Type: When this option is checked, the system will not overwrite any Table Type value except "N/A". If you have already set the Table Type and only want to Auto Detect results information then tick this option.

    Tip! The default "safe" option is to have all 3 options ticked - this will mean that no data that is already set will be changed, and that any new information which is detected will be saved to your database.

  • Updating Tournament Information Manually

    It is not possible to auto detect all information for all tournament types - for some there just isn't enough information available in the hand history files. For these, or any which are detected incorrectly, you can update the information manually using the Tournament Results window.

    To open the Tournament Results window either right-click the selected tournament(s) and choose Edit Tournament or click the Edit Tournament Results button in the sidebar when viewing the Results page.

    Use the Filters button and/or Only Tournaments Needing Results option to narrow down the list of tournaments displayed and then select the tournament(s) that you want to change. You can select multiple tournaments by shift-clicking or control-clicking, or click the Select All link.
    When you have the appropriate tournaments selected make the required changes and the click Save.

    You can change the Buy-In and Rake/Fee amounts, the number of entrants (for MTTs this is often not included in the hand histories), the Tournament Type (Limit, Pot Limit or No Limit will nearly always be set correctly from the hand histories) and the Tournament Description.  Only the information which you change will updated on all of the selected tournaments - unchanged values will not be changed for any tournament (although you can optionally apply all settings to all tournaments).

    • Adding New Table Descriptions

      If the correct tournament description is not yet in the list then you can add your own choice of Tournament Description with any label or tags that you like. Click the wrench icon next to the table description to initiate this.

      Adding Table Types PT4


      In the Add Tournament Description window you can define exactly what you want the tournament label to consist of by selecting the following options:

      • Seats per Table: The number of seats at each table. You can specify from 2 to 8 explicitly, or "Full" for 9 or 10 seat tables.  Anything other than "Full" will add a (x max) tag to the tournament definition.
      • Total Tables: The number of tables in the tournament. For single table tournaments use 1 - this will start the label with "STT". All other tournaments are "MTT". For scheduled multi-table tournaments with no fixed number of tables use 0 (zero). For SNGs with a fixed number of tables/entrants specify the relevant number of tables - this isn't necessary but will allow you to identify and filter these specific tournaments.  Any value other than 0 or 1 will add a x-Table tag to the tournament definition.
      • Blind Speed: Select Normal, Turbo or Super-Turbo.  Anything other than "Normal" will add a tag to the tournament definition.
      • Flags: Tick the appropriate flags to add tags to the tournament definition.

      Should you want to add a tournament description which isn't possible using the existing options you can type directly into the text field at the bottom to create any label that you want.  When you have defined the new type that you want, click Add to close the window.

      Your new description will now be available to select in the tournament description drop-down list.

    • Updating Player Results

      In the Tournament Results window you can also enter or update individual players' results where they have not been imported or detected. For single table tournaments, PokerTracker 4 should Auto Detect all finishing positions and prizes (if the entry fee and payout structure is known) but for most tournaments with more than one table it is not possible to determine finishing positions or prizes unless this information is imported from hand histories or summaries.

      If you play MTTs at a site where this information is not provided in the hand history or summary files then you can enter any player results that you know in the lower section of the Tournament Results window. Select each player in turn and enter their results on the right hand side - be sure to click Save for each player you change.

      Edit Results