WCOOP 2020 Schedule Revealed: What Makes PokerStars' Prestigious Series Unique This Year WCOOP 2020 Schedule Revealed: What Makes PokerStars' Prestigious Series Unique This Year

Earlier this week, PokerStars unveiled the full schedule of its most prestigious Championship series, the World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP).

Taking place from August 30 to September 23, the annual fall series this year guarantees more than $80 million spread over 75 events. It tops all the previous 18 editions of WCOOP both in terms of total guarantees and the number of tournaments.

The $5200 buy-in Main Event accounts for the $10 million of the record-setting $80 million guarantee, scheduled to take place on September 20 alongside two more NLHE Main Events.

Buy-ins for the rest of the schedule start at $2.20 and go up to $25,000 for the Super High Roller Event.

The schedule promises the same gamut of PokerStars offerings, including PKOs, Zoom, Freezeouts, and Win the Button tournaments, plus more niche offerings such as Limit Hold’em, NL Omaha, Razz, Badugi, 2-7 Single Draw and other mixed formats.

They will be running every day except on Fridays until September 21 (the Main Event concludes on September 23).

Standout events other than the Main Events include three Phase events, with combined guarantees of over $3 million. Day 1s are already underway with the standard buy-ins of $2.20, $22 and $215.

At least 23 tournaments will feature guarantees of seven-figures.

Qualifiers start at $1 and players can qualify via WCOOP special Spin & Go’s available for $4 and $22 buy-ins.

The Player of the Series Leaderboards return with $100,000 in combined prizes spread across four different leaderboards, the winner of each taking away cash prize and a trophy.

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Highlights of the WCOOP 2020:

  • Runs from Sunday, August 30 to Wednesday, September 23
  • Guarantees over $80 million
  • 75 WCOOP events totaling 225 tournaments
  • Buy-ins range from $2.20 to $25,000
  • Three NLHE Main Events with combined guarantees of $13.25 million
  • Qualifiers start from just $1
  • Player of the Series Leaderboards
  • WCOOP Special Spin & Gos

WCOOP 2020: What’s New this Year?

This year, the WCOOP festival comes with various new perks never seen before including a $1.5 million WCOOP Sweepstakes, new Sunday Slam tournaments offering tickets to next year’s online series, daily “cards-up” livestream coverage on Twitch, Fast Track satellites and much more.

$1.5 Million WCOOP Sweepstakes

$1.5 million in WCOOP tickets will be awarded in the all-new daily “WCOOP Sweepstakes” promotion in which three WCOOP Main Event seats worth $5200 will be given away each day from August 30 to September 20. Furthermore, six players will receive an entry to the $25,000 buy-in Super High Roller.

All players have to do is opt-in to the WCOOP Sweepstakes challenge and play at least one WCOOP tournament to win entry into the day’s giveaway. The bigger the buy-in of the WCOOP tournament entered, the more entries players will receive for that day’s sweepstakes drawing. Winners will be picked randomly.

New Sunday Slam Tournaments

Another new addition this year is the 15 Sunday Slam events which, in addition to their guaranteed prize pool, will award special 2021 Slam Packages to the winner. These packages include full buy-ins for next year’s SCOOP, WCOOP and Stadium Series Main Events.

New Medium Tier Main Event

The $80 million guaranteed prize money is spread over 75 events, each divided into three buy-in tiers: Low, Medium and High.

While there is nothing new about the three different buy-in levels, as WCOOP has been using the SCOOP three-tiered system for the past few years, this year, for the first time, there will be three tiers of Main Events.

The new addition includes a $530 buy-in, $2 million-guaranteed tournament alongside the standard $5200 buy-in, $10 million guaranteed High-tier and the $55 buy-in, $1.25 million-guaranteed Low.

More Freezeouts

As many as 78 WCOOP tournaments, representing nearly 40% of the schedule, will be played as freezeouts this year, meaning players will have a single shot to reach in the money.

Daily Cards-Up Livestream Twitch Coverage and $100K Twitch Giveaway

Much like the recently concluded Stadium Series, the WCOOP 2020 festival will utilize cards up coverage, meaning that viewers can see the hole cards of all players at the table with a 30-minute delay.

The coverage will be livestreamed daily on the PokerStars’ Twitch channel, featuring a variety of A-list commentators and players.

Furthermore, $100,000 in WCOOP tickets will be given away to viewers for watching streams on Twitch.

Fast Track Step Satellites

As seen in Stadium Series, the Fast Track step satellites make a comeback, allowing players the chance to win their way to the $10 million Main Event for as little as $1. Every day until September 20, five Main Event seats are being awarded.

As per the operator, “Fast Tracks may well be the cheapest way to gain entry to the WCOOP.”

Fridays are Days of Rest

For the first time, Fridays will be a day of rest as no official WCOOP events will kick off on that day. Instead, the operator will run special side events on those days.

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“Though the team is extraordinarily busy putting the finishing touches on the tournaments themselves, we can’t wait to see what legendary moments WCOOP 2020 brings,” wrote Luke Staudenmaier, Head of PokerStars Poker Operations in a press release announcing the series.

“2020 has been a truly historic year in a lot of ways, but we hope WCOOP 2020 delivers the player experience we know you expect and deserve,” Staudenmaier added.

The promised overall guarantee of the three-week-long schedule is $5 million more in prize money than last year. In 2019, there were 219 tournaments and the total prize pool – which was guaranteed at $75 million – ended up exceeding a staggering $104 million.

The operator touts that at least $200 million will be awarded to players via daily scheduled tournaments across the network during the month of September.

The WCOOP 2020 festival will partly coincide with GGPoker’s WSOP Online Bracelet Series and partypoker’s $100 million-guaranteed WPT series.

WCOOP 2020: By the Numbers:

  • $81.637 million total in guarantees
  • 225 tournaments
  • $10 million guarantee for the High Main Event
  • 23 tournaments with guarantees of at least seven-figure
  • 17 different tournament formats
  • 150 NLHE tournaments
  • 78 freezeout tournaments
  • 69 progressive knockout tournaments
  • $937 average buy-in
  • 23-day schedule (August 30 – September 21)