If you want to win your way into the WSOP, instead of paying the full buy in amount, the thing to do is to enter a satellite tournament. Satellite tournaments are low buy in tournaments in which the winner, or sometimes the top several finishers, wins entry to a larger event. In this case, that would be a WSOP event.

For example, rather than pay entry for the $10,000 event, you might pay entry into a $1,000 satellite, in hopes of winning a a seat in the larger event. Of course, the same is true of other buy in fees. For instance, you may have to play a $125 buy in to win a spot in a $1000 event, $225 to win entry to a $2,000 event or $325 to enter a satellite to a $3,000 event. It all depends on the event that you hope to gain entry to.

As mentioned above, satellites come at all different buy in levels. They also come in all different game types, though. The most common is 10-handed Texas Holdem, but there are also 8-handed Stud-based games.

Generally, you can play any sort of satellite that you want, as long as the floor staff doesn't already have a group playing. If they do, though, you can expect that the offered game is likely to be Texas Holdem, since it's usually the most popular. The exception would be if a mixed event is coming up the next day or later that day.

Multi-Table Options:
There are also multi-table satellite options, which are especially good for getting into the Main Event. They are called Mega Satellites and they run at specific times. Each one offers several seats to the bigger event. How many seats depends on the size of the prize pool, usually.

Of course, it's important to play the satellite tournament that corresponds tot he event that you want to gain entry to. For example, let's say that you want entry into the $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. event. If that was the case, the only satellite type that could potentially help you is the $5,000 H.O.R.S.E. Mega Satellite.

It's also important to remember that you can join more than one satellite and you may have to, in order to win entry to a big event. Even if you lose the first time or two, though, the over all amount you spend is still likely to be worth it. After all, it will still be cheaper than entry to the big event itself. That's one of the reasons beginner players are especially fond of satellite tournaments.

Trying to find the right satellite tournament can be a bit confusing, especially for a first-time satellite player. Luckily, there are schedules available ahead of time. For instance, at this years WSOP, the Tropical Room will host single table satellites, while the multi-table games will be in the Amazon or Brasilia Room. Also, as a general rule, the H.O.R.S.E. Satellite is almost always held in the Amazon room, since it can accommodate more people at a time.

So, now that you understand satellite play, give it a try. It's an easy and fairly inexpensive way for you to gain entry to the bigger tournaments. Why not take a stab at it? You might find yourself at the Main Event final table!