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Like all modern poker websites,
PokerStars offers a frequent player rewards program which gives out frequent player points to those who play for real money on their site.
As soon as you play your first raked hand in a cash game, or play in any
sit and go or multi-table tournament with an entry fee,
you begin earning VIP player points (VPPs), as well as frequent player points (FPPs), and are immediately promoted to the first tier of the
PokerStars FPP program, known as BronzeStar status. Some players at first find the distinction between VPPs and FPPs confusing, but it really
is pretty simple: VPPs are basically a record keeping tool to determine how much of a VIP PokerStars considers you, while Frequent Player Points are like units
of PokerStars currency in a bank which you can earn, save, and spend in the PokerStars FPP store on items of your choosing. The rate at which
you earn VPPs is directly related to how much rake you pay. In the case of tournaments, you earn 5 VPPs for every $1 of entry fee, and with
cash games the scheme is a little more complex; the rate of earning is similar to 5 VPPs for every $1 raked, with every player dealt in to a
hand earning the same amount of VPPs, based upon the stakes played and how much was raked in that hand.
When you first begin earning points at BronzeStar status, you are able to earn 1 FPP for every 1 VPP you accrue. However, as you
continue earning VPPs and rise through the ranks of the status levels, you begin to earn extra FPPs for every VPP earned at each level
above BronzeStar, up to a maximum of 5 FPPs for every VPP - earned at the highest status level, Supernova Elite. In addition to earning
points at a faster rate when rising through the VIP ranks, you also gain access to a greater selection of items in their FPP store,
access to VIP-only tournaments, the ability to exchange FPPs for cash at higher and higher rates, and more. Also, if you are the type
who likes to show off your high-rolling status to others, you have the option to proudly display your current VIP level to others at the
tables as a series of stars on a colored banner around the bottom of your avatar.
The first four tiers of the PokerStars FPP program: BronzeStar, SilverStar, GoldStar, and PlatinumStar, must be earned and renewed on a
monthly basis. The required VPPs necessary to be accumulated during the calendar month to achieve the levels above BronzeStar are: 1,200
for SilverStar, 3,000 for GoldStar, and 7,500 for PlatinumStar. If you earn enough VPP's to be promoted to one of these levels, your
status will immediately be boosted to the next level. Your new status will continue through the end of the month in which you earned it,
as well as through the following month. However, in order to maintain your status, you will need to continue earning the threshold
amount of VPPs per calendar month to keep it active. For instance, if you earned 3,000 VPPs between April 1st and 20th, you would
achieve GoldStar status on the 20th of that month. If you then went on to earn only 500 VPPs during May, you would remain a GoldStar
through the end of May, returning to BronzeStar on June 1st. These levels are generally for recreational and part time players, and the
FPP boosts they provide come in quite handy when trying to save up for that new autographed Hold’em book, iPod accessory, cash bonus,
tournament ticket, or even a very nice cookie basket in the VIP store. And perhaps more important to those who just love to play are the
daily, weekly, and monthly VIP-only tournaments, which are a great chance to test their skills against other VIPs and often provide
sizeable boosts to their bankrolls.
If you see someone at the tables on PokerStars sporting 5 stars on a red banner, or 6 stars with a black banner, you’ll know that they
have achieved one of the highest two tiers of the PokerStars Reward Program: Supernova or Supernova Elite. To become a PokerStars
Supernova is to really feel like you’ve “made it” in the online poker world, and to actually reach Supernova Elite status (dubbed SNE in
online poker lingo) is an achievement unrivaled in the online poker community. These hardcore levels are not for the meek, attainable
only by those dogged grinders who are willing and able to put in long hours on the virtual felt, day after day. The hefty requirements
to attain this kind of status are 100,000 VPPs per calendar year for Supernova, and a whopping 1,000,000 VPPs for Supernova Elite.
Supernova and Supernova Elite are earned on a yearly basis, and renewed on a month by month basis the following year, until October 1st,
when they expire unless you have earned the total amount again for that year. PokerStars is actually fairly gracious in their renewal
process for their top-tier VIPs, requiring players who have earned Supernova status the previous year to earn only 10,000 VPPs per month
the following year to maintain their status through September, and even allowing them one mulligan opportunity to miss a month and not
have their status removed. Supernova Elite players have the same deal, except in their case, the monthly upkeep is 50,000 VPP's per month.
The rewards really start to ramp up at these levels, with 3.5 FPPs earned for every VPP at Supernova Status, and 5 FPPs for every VPP at
Supernova Elite. In addition, you receive total access to the VIP store, offering a wide range of high end electronics, cash bonuses
worth thousands of dollars, VIP concierge services, and in the case of Supernova Elite, free entry into three major live tournaments per
year, including the $10,000 buy in World Series of Poker Main Event.
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