Headhunter tournaments

At the moment Headhunter tournaments are my favourite type of poker tournaments. They are a lot more exciting than standard tourneys and add several dimensions to the game.
Instead of just paying the top X finishing players, you are also paid for every player you knock out of the tournament. You won't have to go away empty handed when you're eliminated just before the final table. This means that the player who finishes as number one doesn't have to be the one who makes the most money.

How to play

The basic idea of headhunter games is that 50% of the prize pool is paid out as normal while the other 50% is paid through bounties. Every time you eliminate a player, you will receive some cash. So your goal is not only to survive as long as possible. You should try to knock out as many other players as possible while surviving.
The bounty for a player is always visible. When you eliminate a player, you win 75% of that players bounty and add the remaining 25% to your own head. The more bounties a player has collected, the higher value of his own head. The player who wins the tournament also gets the money for his own head.

Headhunter rating

There is one more thing that can be good to understand. There is something called a “HH rating” for each player. This is a number that indicate how good you are as a hunter. It is based on the average result of your 15 last headhunter tournaments. If you haven’t played any of these tourneys before (or if you failed to knock out anyone), then your rating is 10. The higher the value, the more your head will be worth at the start of the MTT. There’s also a leaderboard for HH tournaments that gives the players with the highest HH rating bonuses such as entries into exclusive tournaments. The rating for a single tournament is calculated as: ((Number of heads/Entrants)*1000)+10 (maximum number of 100). And as said, your rating is the average of your 15 last HH games.


  • People tend to get greedy when playing HH. You will get a lot more calls when you go all-in than in standard tournaments. You now know this! Use it to your benefit when you got good cards.
  • Try to get a large stack quickly. Since you can only knock out players that have less chips than you do.
  • Try to squeeze the last chips out of your opponent. If you got the bigger stack, never make a bet that is slightly less than their stack. You don’t want to leave a player with 100 chips left to the other hunters, you’re in it for the head!

Where to play

SunPoker got a lot of tournaments every day in their headhunter challenge. Many of them got a guaranteed prize pool. Sun offers several weekly and monthly tournaments for the top leaderboard players. They also offer up to $1000 free every month to all players!

Use bonus code 1PB500 to get a 100% welcome bonus of up to $500!

Inter Poker offers seven HH tournaments with a guaranteed prize pool every day.

Little Woods got satellites running for their huge $300.000 freeroll!

Offers a $100 new player sign up bonus and a $200 monthly deposit reward. There is of course also a headhunter challenge.