The Only Trustworthy PKR Review You’re Going to Need
- One-of-a-kind 3D software
- Immersion is light years beyond their competition
- Switched to Microgaming to improve traffic
- Quick-fold games offered
- 2D view mode for quicker games
- Anonymous tables to avoid being tracked
- Significant bonus at 200%
- Real-money apps for iOS and Android
- Instant Play no-download option
- No US players, even for play money
- 3D software is resource-intensive for your desktop
- Updates can take a long time to install
- Fish Rating decreased with move to Microgaming
- Tournament guarantees are lackluster
PKR easily earns a top score for their unique 3D software.
The Conclusion of my PKR Review
In conclusion, my PKR review shows this to be one of the most unique poker websites online. PKR.com is based in Alderney, UK and offers licensed games for PKR Casino as well. I like the newly added 2D app for both poker and the live dealer casino. The 3D virtual reality setting of the tables is great with avatars customized through My PKR. Chracters can give off poker tells, do chip tricks, make expressions, and change body language. No one else in poker really matches the pure fun level of PKR.
- No-Download Instant Play
- The only real-money 3D poker
- New 2D mode for multi-tabling
- Texas Hold'em
I’ve personally played at PKR since 2005. Both the software and payouts have passed my tests for inclusion on Beat The Fish.
If you’re more concerned about the pure fun of the playing experience it’s tough to do better than PKR. Their 3D software is by far the most entertaining in the market and they’ve vastly improved their traffic with the move to Microgaming.
PKR Deposit and Withdrawal Methods Chart
|Available for deposits||Available for withdrawals||Minimum deposit $/€/£||Minimum withdrawal $/€/£|
|PayPal (UK and Ireland)||Yes||Yes||10||20|
PKR Game Limits Chart
|Game||Minimum Limit ($/€/£)||Maximum Limit ($/€/£)|
- 1 The Only Trustworthy PKR Review You’re Going to Need
- 1.1 PKR
- 1.2 Pros
- 1.3 Cons
- 1.4 The Conclusion of my PKR Review
- 1.5 PKR Deposit and Withdrawal Methods Chart
- 1.6 PKR Game Limits Chart
- 1.7 My PKR Impressions
- 1.7.1 It feels like a video game, in a good way
- 1.7.2 PKR is still the only one
- 1.7.3 Who cares if they don’t cater to multi-table ginders?
- 1.7.4 Microgaming update
- 1.7.5 A unique change of pace from the big guys
- 1.7.6 Move to Microgaming has improved almost everything
- 1.7.7 Overall impression of PKR
- 1.8 PKR Poker Deposit Bonus
- 1.8.1 The Bonus: 200% up to €1,000
- 1.8.2 How the bonus is released
- 1.8.3 Essentially 25% rakeback
- 1.8.4 Use PKR happy hours for extra VIP points
- 1.8.5 Keep in mind Slotroll if you play casino games
- 1.8.6 Flush Royale Adventure
- 1.8.7 Other bonus perks
- 1.8.8 Club PKR changes
- 1.8.9 Players must maintain rewards status every month
- 1.9 PKR Bonus Codes
- 1.10 PKR Instant Play
- 1.10.1 The need to cater to multi-tablers brought both a 2D version and Instant Play
- 1.10.2 Mozilla Firefox or (gasp) Edge or IE are necessary
- 1.10.3 How does Instant Play look? Very simple, but effective
- 1.10.4 Smooth gameplay overall and multiple tables supported
- 1.10.5 Using the no-download version cashier
- 1.10.6 The reason Instant Play is so useful
- 1.11 PKR Fish Rating
- 1.11.1 The software still attracts the fish
- 1.11.2 The fish ratio dropped with the MPN switch
- 1.11.3 One tip: Play on weekends and during peak hours
- 1.11.4 Players still gamble more when they’re having fun
- 1.11.5 Greater traffic at the expense of looser tables
- 1.12 PKR Tournaments
- 1.12.1 The standard Microgaming schedule
- 1.12.2 Unbalanced buy-ins
- 1.12.3 My favorite events at PKR
- 1.12.4 The “big” guarantee selection
- 1.12.5 Tournament fields are small, but with more potential cracks in the armor
- 1.12.6 ROI is likely better for skilled players than a site like Stars
- 1.12.7 PKR Sit and Go tourneys and freerolls
- 1.13 PKR’s 3D Software
- 1.13.1 No one else has challenged them for realistic visuals
- 1.13.2 Incredibly immersive experience
- 1.13.3 Software positives
- 1.13.4 As advanced as poker video games, except it’s still real money
- 1.13.5 Customizing your avatar
- 1.13.6 PKR Viewing Modes
- 1.13.7 Emotes can spice up time in between hands
- 1.13.8 Summary of the software
- 1.14 PKR Payouts
- 1.15 PKR Customer Service
- 1.16 PKR Traffic
- 1.17 Strategy for beating the PKR games
Easily, the single biggest aspect that has helped PKR make a name for itself is its 3D software package.
I have played here since I was invited into a closed Beta back in 2005. I was blown away by the experience and, really, haven’t gotten tired of it more than a decade later.
Players can choose their facial structure, hair style, clothing, and other accessories of their avatar.
At the table, you can clap your hands, cry over a bad beat, or egg your opponents into a call.
You can move the camera around the table at will and the graphics really are extremely detailed.
It feels like a video game, in a good way
It feels like a video game, which, of course, you play simply for fun rather than money.
The difference at PKR is that you are playing for real money, which makes it that much more fascinating.
PKR is still the only one
Back in 2005 I remember thinking, “This is too cool not to be the future of online poker. Some giant like PokerStars or Full Tilt is going to gobble them up with a boatload of cash or, at minimum, copy it all.”
Yet, here we are, and no one else has even attempted it, making PKR still one-of-a-kind for 3D-rendered real-money online poker.
Who cares if they don’t cater to multi-table ginders?
PKR has drawn some criticism for not being friendly to hardcore multi-table taskmasters and my response to that is, “So what?”
As I always stress to new players, you need to examine your priorities before choosing an online poker site.
If you don’t need to tile 4 tables around your screen and play 300 hands per hour but do value things like visual experience, realism, and creating a customizable character, PKR should be one of your top considerations.
That’s the demographic you really want to avoid anyway
Besides, do you really want to seek out the preferred home of tightfisted grinders?
I love it when that elitist population dismisses sites. They couldn’t have made it easier for the rest of us.
It seems that PKR has finally given up on their policy of not catering to multi-tabling grinders.
In 2016 the room joined the Microgaming Poker Network, becoming much more grinder-friendly making a standardized 2D software available.
A unique change of pace from the big guys
While playability and, ultimately, your win rate are of paramount importance PKR provides a change in scenery and a unique experience that is so difficult to find in the current online poker industry.
Players can even exchange loyalty program points for the ability to have your actual face rendered onto your avatar.
I’ve had a lot of fun at PKR over the years if only for the ability to give a thumbs-up to the wannabe table bully before I call his all-in reraise with quads.
And yes, that really happened and I loved every second.
Move to Microgaming has improved almost everything
In terms of traffic, PKR made a very shrewd move in early 2016 by joining the Microgaming Poker Network, gaining access to network tables yet maintaining their signature software.
This now puts them in the top 10 in the world for player traffic. The only downside is that the overall player base is now a bit tougher.
New 2D version is an option alongside classic 3D client
One interesting thing is that players playing via PKR software have the ability to switch between the standard Microgaming 2D software and the company’s unique 3D interface, which is somewhat unusual.
In most cases, rooms joining the network simply take on the network’s software and transfer their player pools, but PKR probably did not want to give up on their number one selling point.
Overall impression of PKR
The bonus offerings are also strong with both a 200% initial deposit bonus for our new players as well as a 100% reload bonus.
For larger players with sizable bankrolls the €1,000 initial bonus cap is one of the larger online.
Despite not accepting US players this is a unique poker site that will mostly cater to users looking for something different to fill in the void of pure fun that the bigger sites often leave you with.
In all likelihood PKR won’t be the only poker site you call home, but I think every player should experience at some point what unique online poker software is capable of.
TL;DR - PKR OverallOverall thoughts on PKR.
- Still the most immersive experience in online poker
- 3D-rendered customizable avatars, dozens of emotes, unlockable clothing
- Overall traffic was given huge boost after the move to the Microgaming network
- Multi-table grinders may be more satisfied with greater numbers of cash game and tournaments
- Strong bonus, much more casual lighthearted feel than competition
PKR Poker Deposit Bonus
The Bonus: 200% up to €1,000
One of the benefits of trying out a newer poker room like PKR is the larger initial deposit bonus compared to larger sites.
Our new players receive an increased offer of up to €1,000 free at a 200% bonus rate.
Please note that players must sign up via our links or use PKR bonus code PKRNEW in order to qualify for this exclusive bonus.
By signing up through our site you’re also guaranteed a 100% reload bonus on your next deposit, good up to €600.
How the bonus is released
Bonuses are released by earning PKR Points through ring games and tournaments.
As the number of Points dispersed depends on the rake taken for each hand, larger limits will obviously earn Points at a faster rate.
The maximum number of PKR Points dispersed per hand is 400, representing the €3.00 maximum rake, and each player gets 1 Point per cent of rake that they personally contributed.
Essentially 25% rakeback
For each €1 of bonus players need to each 400 PKR Points.
Essentially you’re earning 25% of your rake back. Playing at €1/2 NL I earned about €1.50-2 of bonus per hour, which is about average compared to other poker rooms.
Use PKR happy hours for extra VIP points
If you’re looking for a way to earn more VIP points faster then you should take advantage of their happy hours.
There are 3 of them every day and playing during these time slots will award you 3x the points. Happy hours are as follows (every day, GMT time):
- From 09:00 to 11:00
- From 16:00 to 18:00
- From 00:00 to 02:00
Extra points are non-cashable
These extra points are non-cashable, which means you can’t turn them into money directly, but you can use them to:
- Buy into multi-table tournaments
- Buy into Sit and Go’s of your choice
- Spend them in the avatar shop, making your player look fancier
The choice is yours and primarily depends on what you value more.
Keep in mind Slotroll if you play casino games
The Slotroll promo isn’t going to interest poker-only players, but most crossover casino/poker players at PKR will probably appreciate it.
The promo awards weekly $500 freeroll tickets to all players who wager at least $/€/£25 on their Bar Bar Black Sheep Slot.
Not enough of a draw to start playing slots
While these freerolls are probably not worth enough to make you start playing slots if you don’t already, those who do might as well try Bar Bar Black Sheep.
The fact you’ll receive a freeroll ticket doesn’t influence your winning chances whatsoever.
As usual, freerolls are insane crapshoots, but player count is low
These tournaments take place on Thursdays and are almost completely based on luck. Players are essentially all in every hand and the luckiest ones end up raking in some extra cash.
Again, this isn’t going to be for the rare diehard grinders at PKR, but if you like to mix it up (and many players here do) the Slotroll promo is something to keep in the back of your mind so you don’t waste the freeroll tickets.
Flush Royale Adventure
Getting a Royal Flush is one of those incredibly rare feats poker that usually take up permanent residence in your memory bank, even if it’s in the smallest game imaginable.
PKR actually has a recurring daily €3.30 rebuy event called the Flush Royale that’s specifically designed around the once-in-a-blue-moon hand.
The prize package if you hit a Royal
Make a Royal Flush using both cards and take it to the showdown in one of these events, and you’ll instantly qualify for an MPN Poker Tour package, including:
- €550 Main Event buy-in
- €100 side event buy-in,
- €250 for travel expenses
I’ve seen plenty of Royal Flush promotions over the years with the main reward usually being something 50-100x the big blind of the cash table you hit it on.
Although obnoxious that you have to play in this specific tournament it’s more unique and probably more profitable for low-limit players than something based on big blinds.
Other bonus perks
In addition to the cash bonus, our new players also receive:
- A free entry into a weekly €1,000 new player freeroll
- 6 tickets to other premium freerolls
- 100 free PKR Points
Even though the actual value of the extra bonus pieces may be small compared to the cash bonus it goes a long way towards making new players feel that their business is appreciated.
Club PKR changes
Besides the deposit bonus they do have a strong promotional system based on the Club PKR system.
It is a tiered system similar to other poker rooms that allows you access to more features as your earn more points.
Players must maintain rewards status every month
In the past, players would retain their achieved status for an unlimited amount of time, which reflected the room’s casual approach.
However, this changed after they joined Microgaming and is now a significant negative.
Players are now moved to a lower tier if they don’t meet the requirements to maintain their current status.
TL;DR - PKR BonusHow strong are the bonus offerings?
- Offers players a choice of £10 instantly for UK residents or 200% play-through bonus
- The small £10 bonus should only be chosen by micro-stakes players
- Average clearing rate, divided into releases at every 1% earned
- Free 5 spins on the “Hot as Hades” slot
- Free rewards points to use on avatar items or merchandise
PKR Bonus Codes
|PKR Offer||Promotion Details||Bonus Code|
|Poker||200% deposit bonus up to €/$/£1,000||Get coupon|
|Poker||100 free PKR VIP Points||Get coupon|
|Casino||100% deposit bonus up to €/$/£100||Get coupon|
|Casino||25 Free Slots Spins Promo||Get coupon|
PKR Instant Play
PKR clearly features one of the best downloadable poker software clients when it comes to graphics and overall pure fun.
If you don’t count the half-baked robotic “3D” avatars from the likes of CD Poker and True P0ker (yes, I’m that old) they were the pioneers in the world of 3D poker for real money.
When they launched in 2006 they attracted a fairly strong clientele of friendlier recreational players who appreciated a sanctuary if you will from the straight-laced big players of the industry like PokerStars.
The need to cater to multi-tablers brought both a 2D version and Instant Play
However, over time they realized that there were many serious players who didn’t particularly appreciate the approach and simply avoided PKR altogether.
Playing multiple tables in 3D can be very tedious if not impossible so PKR developers came up with a 2D client alternative as well.
While they were at it, they also created the Instant Play solution, which is certainly a great addition as they join 888 Poker and Ignition Poker as the only major sites to offer a no-download version.
Mozilla Firefox or (gasp) Edge or IE are necessary
As of now, PKR Instant Play doesn’t work with Google Chrome, which is one of the most used browsers out there.
We expect this will be fixed in the future as it’s simply boneheaded to ignore such a huge part of the market, but at this point in time you’ll need to use an alternative like Mozilla Firefox.
This isn’t a huge deal, but it’s better if we tell you now then for you to spend a very frustrating fifteen minutes clicking on that big Instant Play button, wondering why nothing is happening.
How does Instant Play look? Very simple, but effective
The PKR Instant Play software is simple aesthetically and certainly doesn’t have elements of the 3D downloadable client.
It features all the main options and you can easily navigate between different lobbies (cash games, tournaments, and Sit and Go’s).
Filtering games according to your preferences is also possible so other than a bit simpler graphics you won’t see too much difference between the Instant Play and the regular 2D software.
Smooth gameplay overall and multiple tables supported
Once you’ve joined the tournament or sit at a cash table, you’ll notice that the gameplay is surprisingly smooth for a browser-based solution.
Tables can take a few seconds to load, but once they do you should have no issues playing normally.
Separate windows open for each table
You can also easily multitable since all new games are opened in separate windows rather than tabs, which would be cumbersome.
You can then stack them or tile them just like you’d do with the traditional software.
Using the no-download version cashier
When it comes to depositing cash or withdrawing funds the Instant Play software will let you do everything the full downloadable software supports.
This means that Instant Play players have full access not only to all the games, but also to full account options and the banking section.
Because of that you technically don’t ever have to use the download client if you don’t want to.
The reason Instant Play is so useful
The reason why this is such a key addition is you’ll have access to PKR tables from any computer anywhere.
The biggest use for me is when visiting family or friends and there’s some downtime I can still get in some real-money hands without breaking tech etiquette and eating up someone else’s hard drive space.
You don’t need to download anything or install any software.
So long as the PKR site is not blocked or restricted, which may happen at libraries, workplaces, or educational campuses, you can log in with your information and simply get playing.
PKR Fish Rating
The software still attracts the fish
There is no doubt that the flashy 3D software of PKR still attracts more inexperienced players on the whole than most other poker sites.
The problem is, now these players become a part of the substantial Microgaming Poker Network and the PKR-only player pool is only a fraction of the total player volume made up from many other skins.
The fish ratio dropped with the MPN switch
The fish-to-experienced-player ratio has also decreased significantly so you can no longer expect to find the same soft games from the previous decade on PKR these days.
Microgaming is known for many things, but hosting soft games is not one of them.
One tip: Play on weekends and during peak hours
While PKR may be more populated with grinders nowadays (like all Microgaming rooms), you can still find some soft spots if you carefully select your playing time.
Playing during off-peak hours is not as attractive because most players you’ll encounter will be solid opponents who won’t be easy to beat.
Full time grinders make up a larger percentage of the overall player base during late-night and morning weekday hours simply due to logic: most players with traditional jobs will need to be asleep.
If you only play during peak hours you’ll probably find many more soft spots in your games. Make things easier for yourself and play when you know games are the best.
Weekends provide an underrated rise in recs
This approach is particularly true for weekends.
You’ll get to encounter quite a few happy go lucky players who had (a few) too many adult beverages and are just looking to blow some steam or have some fun. You’ll still find occasional hopefuls trying to bring their three-card flush draw home at all costs.
When you see those things sorts of things happening you’ll know you’re in the right game.
Players still gamble more when they’re having fun
This old title still holds true. There is no doubt that players who came to play on PKR because of its unique software are more prone to gambling and playing loose.
However, they will now have to face a bunch of players from other Microgaming skins who are not there to gamble, but take their money instead.
Greater traffic at the expense of looser tables
While it is quite understandable why the room felt the move to Microgaming was necessary, it’s a bit sad to think that many recreational players will not be able to enjoy the experience as much as before because of much tighter games and more knowledgeable players.
From 2005-2015, PKR used to be one of those rooms where experienced players would go to shoot the fish in the barrel (if they didn’t mind software restrictions), but that time is now behind us.
TL;DR - PKR Fish RatingHow beatable are the games here?
- All players are now part of the Microgaming network
- The network is quite populated with grinders so the games have become tougher
- Improved player numbers offset the lack of fish
The standard Microgaming schedule
Most poker players will be familiar with one or the other Microgaming room as there are really too many to count.
While they never offered too much in terms of tournaments, the daily schedule is pretty decent overall and there are plenty of tournaments to choose from.
One thing that most of these poker networks suffer from is the fact that buy-ins seem quite unbalanced with little middle ground between small and large buy-ins.
Unless you have the bankroll to play any event that kicks off regardless of the entry you will have hard time playing a full tournament schedule on PKR or any other Microgaming room.
My favorite events at PKR
While PKR tournament schedule may not be as rich as the average tourney grinder would like it to be they do have some very interesting and imaginative concepts.
Here are a few that have caught my attention:
- €50 The PLOt (yes, I get it) Thickens Pot Limit Omaha event
- €11 The Most Interesting €5,000 tournament in the world – NLHE 8-max Deep Stack Turbo 1R1A event featuring Big Antes (What? Insane.)
- Tournaments named after slots (e.g. Mega Moolah, Bust The Bank)
- MPN Poker Tour qualifiers
The “big” guarantee selection
The largest daily tournament at PKR is a €10,000 guaranteed event taking place at 19:00, featuring a €22 buy-in with unlimited rebuys.
The largest guaranteed event overall is the €135 Masters tournament, taking place on the 1st Sunday of every month and featuring the prize pool of €50,000.
Other Sundays through the months feature the €215 Sunday Showdown with the guaranteed prize pool of €25,000.
Tournament fields are small, but with more potential cracks in the armor
Being primarily a destination for cash grinders, Microgaming rooms (which now includes PKR as well) don’t attract too many tournament players due to the small-ish guarantees and sparse overall schedule.
For that reason, most tournaments will feature relatively small fields with under a thousand players. Freerolls are the only exception here, as they attract a few thousand hopefuls.
ROI is likely better for skilled players than a site like Stars
The standard of play you’ll encounter is also much lower than what you may be used to at PokerStars if you’re a tournament player.
You’ll find that tournament fields are quite soft and a decent player will have a chance for a really good Return on Investment.
Will the schedule keep you occupied enough?
However, there is the already mentioned problem of filling up your schedule if you don’t have a big enough roll to play all the events.
That said, there is nothing stopping you from running another poker room alongside PKR. That would enable you to play more tournaments there to fill up your screen and prevent attention-span-induced leaks.
PKR Sit and Go tourneys and freerolls
Sit and Go tournaments are also popular at most stakes with tables filling up within a few minutes.
PKR also holds about five daily freerolls with all the events requiring players to play at least one raked hand in that seven-day period. Restricting entries helps to keep the field smaller and the prizes larger.
There is also a €1,000 Guaranteed First Depositors Freeroll taking place once a week, every Wednesday.
TL;DR - PKR TournamentsWhat are PKR’s tournaments like?
- Pales in comparison to the largest sites, but may serve small players well
- The largest guarantees are only €10,000, €25,000 weekly, and €50,000 monthly
- Most buy-ins are under €20 and draw less than 200 players
- A handful of freerolls daily for up to €50
PKR’s 3D Software
There have been several startup poker sites in the past few years who have failed the really add anything different to online poker and thus cannot compete with the established poker rooms.
PKR has succeeded because it is truly revolutionary in at least one major feature: their software.
No one else has challenged them for realistic visuals
This is really the first real-money online poker site to come to fruition that actually offers graphics in line with the HD era.
PKR management also seems motivated to keep the software from becoming stale or outdated over the years as the original version came out more than a decade ago now.
They recently released an upgrade that improves multi-table functions and overhauls the graphics engine with improved textures.
Incredibly immersive experience
I was very impressed by my first experience with the software as the graphics are truly light years beyond anything else available for real money right now.
Instead of feeling the need to open another window to keep me entertained during extended playing sessions, I can have fun dabbling with the software instead.
There’s a whole lot to dive into with this software package, which is easily the most unique anywhere for online poker right now.
- Advanced 3-D rendering, shadows, and detailed textures
- Customizable avatar facial structure, skin tone, hair color, eye color, etc.
- Customizable clothing, jewelry, and accessories
- Moveable camera, multiple camera modes
- Highly detailed background environments
- Avatars physically act out desired actions (e.g. cry, cheer, dance, boo)
I also have a few minor gripes, which take away from the overall experience slightly:
- Character voices (some might enjoy this, but I found it obnoxious after a few hands)
- More to distract you from actual strategy
- The large resource-heavy 3D mode won’t run well on older machines so you’ll likely be stuck in the lightweight 2D mode
As advanced as poker video games, except it’s still real money
Instead of the utilitarian software that is industry-standard for online poker play, the PKR software is as advanced as popular poker video games with a few extra (and fun) features.
The graphics are superb and it really does make the game more realistic and more enjoyable at times.
Customizing your avatar
When you first create your account and log on, I suggest that you visit the “ME” tab to create your avatar.
You’ll first have the ability to choose your gender, facial structure, hair, and can even waste time on minutiae like nose bridge, chin height, and eye width.
Next, you can click the “CLOTHING” tab and dress yourself up with shirts, jackets, suits, trousers, track suits, and plenty of other options.
Then, of course, you can wear ties, hats, watches, various shoes, rings, and other accessories. Be sure to click “SAVE” to save your changes.
I’ve lost plenty of perfect combos because I forgot to save.
PKR Viewing Modes
Overview is the most traditional birds-eye view
When you’re ready to hit the tables at PKR, you’ll first be seeing the default “Overview” mode. This is an overhead view that lets you see the entire table.
The camera is fixed and you cannot move it in this mode. All cards appear both in scale on the table and zoomed in, similar to television poker coverage.
Orbit allows you to custom the angle
In the bottom left corner, you can click the arrow to change camera modes. The next choice (and my preferred view) is “Orbit” mode.
This is a great feature that allows you to click and drag left or right to change the angle of the camera to whatever you desire. You can also click and drag up and down to tilt the camera.
Next to the camera select option, you can change your overall demeanor at the table to things like “Sad/Aggressive” or “Happy/Passive”.
Dynamic mode is spastic, but creates an impressive TV-like effect
Finally, there is the “Dynamic” camera mode, which is the most up-close, personal, and detailed of all views.
Much like televised coverage, the camera follows the action around the table and to the cards being dealt. This can be distracting if you’re involved in a hand, but fun to show off the graphics if you’re out of the action.
Emotes can spice up time in between hands
One of the nicest features of the PKR software is the action choice, which you’ll see as 5 boxes in between the chat box and the demeanor choices.
You can click the arrows to reveal 15 or 20 actions that you can perform at the table. Your last used ones will appear in the boxes.
Keep yourself from getting bored and making bad decisions
You can actually click things like “Boo”, “Clap Hands”, “Cheer”, “Dance”, “Thumbs Up”, “Cry”, and other actions that you avatar will physically act out at the table.
This is a lot of fun and you can even click a player’s name and then choose an action to send it directly to them.
Summary of the software
In summary, the software truly does take advantage of modern computer graphical abilities.
The software aspect is so often an afterthought of most poker rooms that PKR stands out for focusing on more than bare-bones functionality.
They’re still the only ones for real-money online poker to offer anything different than the tradition birds-eye table view.
It’s also neat to be able to create your own character and act out at the table in your desired manner.
If you’re a graphics junkie, or just looking for something different than the typical online poker look, you might want to try out PKR.
TL;DR - PKR SoftwareWhy is the software worthy of so much attention?
- Still more immersive than anything else online for real-money
- 3D-rendered tables, environments, and player avatars
- Players can customize facial details and clothing
- Dozens of emotes to make your avatar perform at the table
- After more than 10 years, character models are starting to look last-gen
- Budget and portable PCs won’t be able to run 3D mode well or at all
Regardless of withdrawal method, I’ve found PKR to be dependable in terms of accuracy, support, and cashout times.
The company line is “within 36 hours”
Their stated goal is to deliver electronic withdrawals (everything aside from bank drafts) within 36 hours. I’ve usually found PKR to stick with that.
My Neteller and Visa withdrawals have typically been processed within a day or two.
Players can also withdraw via check for any amount and free courier delivery is included for amounts over €1,000.
Players from the United Kingdom and Ireland can use Paypal
This is very noteworthy as very few poker sites have navigated the tricky requirements to offer PayPal in their cashiers. PKR is one of them.
Unfortunately, this is currently restricted to players from the UK and Ireland, but if you’re a resident of either there’s little reason to use any other method.
There are no fees going either way for PayPal and, perhaps even better, the minimum for deposit is £/€10 and £/€20 for withdrawals.
A somewhat complicated payout structure
However, PKR’s withdrawal policy is somewhat non-standard.
On most rooms, players are allowed to make as many deposits and withdrawals as they like without any additional costs. This isn’t the case with PKR.
While no fees apply for deposits, players are only allowed one free withdrawal every month and a total of €2,000 in withdrawals per month without incurring additional fees.
All withdrawals not within these limits are charged a 2% processing fee. There is also the maximum monthly withdrawal threshold of €20,000.
A poor decision by PKR to restrict withdrawals
Such a restrictive payout structure, combined with senseless fees, is simply grating and unnecessary.
We all know that payment processing isn’t free, but just about every other reputable poker site offers some sort of free option and eat the fees to make players feel like their funds aren’t being held hostage by a bitter miser.
Why bother to add restrictions when it affects so few PKR players?
While 99% of PKR players aren’t going to withdraw more than €2,000 in a month, let alone the maximum possible of €20,000, that only makes the rule more obnoxious.
You’re penalizing the minute percentage of your players who are your biggest customers. That isn’t smart business.
PKR Customer Service
PKR offers 2 of the 3 best methods of customer service: email and, more importantly, a live chat option.
Don’t let sites off the hook just because you dread talking to them
One sad trend that I’ve noticed in recent years after talking with both online poker players and online consumers in general is the dread of actually initiating support.
The blame is on all the worthless outsourced support teams we’ve had to endure in recent years.
“Have you tried asking support about where your payout is?”
“No, but they’re just going to give me some copy-paste garbage that won’t answer anything so why bother using up my time?”
I absolutely get it and I’m absolutely guilty of the same mindset myself at times. I give my wife that same line a few times a year when I can’t get a piece of tech to work properly.
Just take a moment and at least try the live chat
That’s where I think live chat is key: you don’t have to format an entire email only to wait around for the privilege of possibly getting a stock copy-paste job.
I recommend that you try out the live chat option at PKR first, which should be available 24 hours a day.
Seems to be actually come from PKR itself
From my experience, the live chat seems to be staffed by actual PKR employees rather than outsourced to a third-world call center.
The wait time is typically very short or nonexistent and the representatives have always been able to answer my questions successfully.
Despite not offering telephone support, the live chat is a good option as you don’t have to wait around an unspecific amount of time for an email reply.
Since their merger with the Microgaming network, the traffic on PKR really flourished.
The Microgaming Poker Network is among the top ten poker networks in terms of total player traffic and now PKR players can also take advantage of those numbers.
Game selection during peak hours
PKR is mainly a European poker room, which means that peak hours are between around 18:00 and 00:00 GMT.
Of course, these times are a bit different on weekends, especially on Sundays when more players come out to the tables.
This is also the time slot when a majority of the best tournaments take place, so this is when you want to play.
Decent range of cash games stakes
The traffic at PKR cash game tables is rather solid.
Since the switch to Microgaming there are more players than ever on PKR so you’ll find games as low as €2NL and as high as €1000NL.
There are at least a few games up to the €5/€10 limits running at just about any time of day.
For cash game selection, PKR offers:
- Fixed-Limit Hold’em
- No-Limit Hold’em
- Pot-Limit Omaha
- Pot-Limit Omaha Hi/Lo
Sit and Go’s are busiest at lower limits and Jackpots
Not many PKR players grind Sit and Go’s on Microgaming. If you want to play them for larger buy-ins you might be disappointed as the wait-times can be several minutes, if they fill up at all.
Smaller buy-ins (up to €10 or so), will still usually start within a few minutes, especially during peak times, but other than that trying to grind these can be somewhat frustrating.
Jackpots have found a large player base here
Of course, Jackpot Sit and Go’s are an exception to this rule, as these run quite frequently across all levels (from €1 to €50), but you’ll probably need to tweak your strategy somewhat to fit a different approach found in these.
In a nutshell, many players are only interested in hitting big jackpots and this will influence your strategy going into events with smaller prizes. Many minimum prize Jackpots will see players going all-in every hand just to get them done with.
Strategy for beating the PKR games
Winning at PKR prior to 2016 was relatively straightforwards: You could play a standard tight-aggressive style, wait for good hands, and then allow the non-believers and overly aggressive players to hang themselves.
However, since the Microgaming merger, this has changed a lot.
The number of below-average players you will encounter at the tables has decreased dramatically.
The games are now tougher overall, but certain opponents are still vulnerable
To win at PKR these days you will need to really bring your “A” game to the tables and pay close attention to everything that happens in the game.
While it may not be as easy to win as before you can still take advantage of multi-tabling grinders from other Microgaming skins who are playing a robotic by-the-book style.
These players do play a solid game overall, but since they don’t think too much about particular decisions, you can discover and use their patterns against them.
It will take some time and analysis, but it is still doable!
Getting out of your comfort zone to try other game formats
Winning at cash tables on PKR may not be as easy as it used to be, but that’s not all there is. You can always consider other game formats and try to find an edge there.
These winner-take-all single-table tournaments attract a lot of gamblers just looking to score big. If they don’t land a big score to fight for, they are mentally already done with the tournament and ready to spin up a new one.
This creates a lot of potential for solid players who consider every win equally as important because they are only interested in the long run.
Increased variance means you need an increased bankroll
Of course, Jackpot Sit and Go’s can be quite volatile so you’ll need a very decent bankroll relative to the buy-in you want to play to really attack them.
Additionally, a good player needs to know how to handle the increased variance so you should be mentally prepared to handle the downswings and look forward to inevitable upswings.