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Hitman's blog

/May/2007

What's a "kill" game?

By: Hitman @ 00:10 (EDT) / 505 / Comment ( 0 )
At my limit hold’em training table tonight, a question came up during the skypecast about kill games. The person had seen references to “kill games” in the forums recently, and wanted to know what exactly those are. A kill game is a fixed limit game in which the stakes are raised for 1 hand after a certain criteria is met… in hold’em, that criteria is the same player winning 2 pots in a row. In most venues there must be a flop in both hands (so a blind steal doesn’t count), and in many each pot must be a certain dollar amount to qualify. What happens is, if the kill requirement is met, then the next hand is a "kill" hand. In a full kill, the limits double. The killer has to post and it's considered a live blind. So for instance in a 5-10 game with 2-5 blinds and a full kill, the normal SB and BB get posted, and the killer posts a $10 kill blind. The limits that hand will be 10-20. Even though the BB has only posted 5, it's immediately $10 to go preflop. The killer has an option to check (if there's no raise to them) or to raise, just like a "normal" big blind. Most venues have the "killer" act in turn, but there are some that say the killer acts last if there's no raise to him, so ask. The kill games I've played online all had the killer act in turn preflop. If the killer is in one of the normal blind positions, they only posts the kill blind... so if the killer were in the SB postion, they'd post $10 instead of the $2 SB. Some games also use a "half kill", which just means instead of the limits doubling, they only increase by half of current betting limits. Common examples of half kill games would be 4-8 where the half kill hands are 6-12, or 10-20 where the half kill hands are 15-30. If there is a kill pot and the killer wins it, the next hand is also a kill. You’d keep playing kill hands until the killer doesn’t win a pot, then the stakes go back to normal. Kill games are also played in limit Omaha/8 or better, with the criteria for a kill typically being a scooped pot (where 1 player wins the whole thing) of a certain dollar amount or more (in a $4-$8 game that dollar amount is often $40). If you’d like to see what a kill game looks like in practice, UB offers them online.
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