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Jan. 5, 2006
World Poker Tour - PSP Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Anticipation Players Price
2/6/20062K Sports2K Sports1-6$79.95

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The pot is only at $100.
Poker. Without going into all the rules this is basically a card game where you play against several other players in order to win the best hand of cards. By this we mean between your two cards (which you don't show other players) and the dealers 5 cards you have to create your best hand. Perhaps it's a pair of cards, perhaps a straight (where you have 5 cards in a row) or a full house (three cards of one value, two of another) and so on. The best hand from all the players still betting (you can opt out, or fold, at any time if you don't have a good hand) takes the pot (the money!). The ultimate winner at a table is the one which ends up with all the money. Sounds simple and it can be, but the game is also very much a thinking mans game.

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Starting with $1000 each.
The first thing to know about this game is that it's not just for experienced players. Indeed the game includes a series of tutorials and stat tracking to help you improve your game. For those in the know this game even includes and option to create custom poker games by setting rules and limits with the poker game editor while the game also includes 14 different community poker games including Texas Hold'em, Omaha, Pineapple, Double Flop Hold'em, Super Hold'em, Billabong, Tahoe and Shanghai. The developers are also promising some pretty nifty AI which, much like real players, will keep track of your progress and game style, and then adjust to how you play the game which should add a bit more of a challenge.

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About to call for $20.
With the official license of the World Poker Tour this game includes real WPT venues such as Commerce Casino and the Aviation Club, broadcast style overlays and commentary featuring Mike Sexton and Vince Van Patten. Perhaps more importantly is the fact that the game includes elite professional players such as Antonio "the Magician" Esfandiari, Erick Lindgren, Evelyn Ng, Lyle Berman, Michael "the Grinder" Mizrachi, and Phil "Unabomber" Laak. Of course the game will include tournaments to enter and even a career mode. In this you create a player, launch a career, and strive to become a WPT World Champion as you build your character's experience and boost your career earnings by competing in multiple game modes including Quick Play, Satellite Tour Play and WPT Season Play. Flaunt your success by using your earnings to deck out your player with hundreds of accessories.

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Not much in that hand.
I guess one of the things some of you may have noticed is that this game sells for $Au30 more then the PS2 game. While that may sound disappointing we can assure you that the amount of extra content is almost certain to make the game a more complete package, and much better value. So what additional content do we get then....

To start the game includes twenty PSP Exclusive WPT Invitational Events - If your player manages to advance to the Final table of any WPT Season events, they will be invited to a Special WPT invitational event. These Exclusive WPT Invitational events are modeled after the Actual WPT Invitationals. They occur at WPT Final table sets and feature a table of WPT Champions to play against. This is a great way to see how you measure up to the pros as you progress through the WPT Season Mode. Tournaments now include up to 1000 players in a single tournament making your way to the top a much tougher challenge while there are now 200 more WPT Season Mode opponents to go up against on the PSP.

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Finished in 6th place.
Also included is 50 Poker Lingo Tips. These new tips are all related to the phrases that Mike and Vince say while they announce the game and will help you better understand the game. Audio is also being beefed up with special audio phrases that the WPT Pro players say when you are playing as or against them. The game also includes over 100 different taunts and dares that your opponents will dish out based upon the situation.

Other new additions to the PSP include the ability to view each player's unique playing style as long as they are at your table. Get a sneak peek at your opponent's level of aggression, bluffing ability, and more. Ten new final table locations as well as the ability to select which final table to use in an online game and players can be customized with 30 new clothing items, which can be found in the tops menu within the edit player menu. Finally, users can now view their online character's achievements, trophies, award chips, and stats before entering a game.

If you like poker, or just want some entertainment then World Poker Tour is the game for you and the PSP version looks like the best of all the systems. Expect a release around June 2006 through 2K Sports.