Hit SuperNova Elite in 2011 with Poker Software

Date: 2010-12-05
Author: Sean Gibson

Every PokerStars grinder has thought about a run to reach SuperNova Elite.  It’s the ultimate test of a long-term grind and the reward is over $100,000 even if you break even at the tables.  More modestly, many micro-stakes grinders want to hit SuperNova so they can enjoy the high level of rewards it has to offer.  With Full Tilt Poker changing its rakeback method from dealt to contributed, a lot of regulars are looking to move their bankrolls to PokerStars and grind it out there.

How can you possibly figure out how to get your grind going since the start of the new year is coming?  First, we should explain that SuperNova and SuperNova Elite reset every year and those that already have it must put in the required number of hands every month in order to keep it up.  But, for players just moving over or starting essentially from scratch in 2011, here’s your guide to figuring out what you need to do to hit these levels.

Note that you need 100,000 base FPPs to hit SuperNova and 1,000,000 base FPPs to hit SuperNova Elite.  We’d like to thank the folks behind FPP Pro Plus, which we used to get all of our data for this article.  Remember, these are estimates and meant for you to get a good understanding of what it takes to hit these coveted VIP levels.

Micro-Stakes: $0.05-$0.10 to $0.10/$0.25 No Limit Hold’em Players

For those of you playing micro-stakes games, it’ll be a long grind, but you might make it there by the end of the year. For players at the 10nl tables ($0.05-$0.10 blinds), you’ll need to play 1,250,000 hands at six-max and 1,818,812 hands at full ring to hit SuperNova Status.  That’s a large number of hands, meaning that six-max players need 104,166 hands per month, while full ringers need 151,567.

For 25nl players, things start to get inside the realm of reason.  Six-max players need to hit 793,651 hands to hit SuperNova, while full ringers need 1,111,111.  That equates to 66,137 and 92,592 hands per month, respectively.  That’s starting to become attainable, but is still quite a pace to aim for.

Let’s say you’re a 25nl six-max player and can play 24 tables at a time for four hours every day.  You’d need approximately 413 hours of play, which equates to about 103 days to accomplish your goal.  Again, this is assuming you can 24-table six-max games.  For full ring players, where 24-tabling is practically a norm, you’ll need 661 hours, or 165 days, to reach the goal of enough FPPs for SuperNova Status.

To hit SuperNova Elite status, you’d need 7,936,508 hands at six-max or 11,111,111 hands at full ring at 25nl.  Obviously, that isn’t going to happen.

Small-Stakes: $0.25-$0.50 to $0.50-$1 No Limit Hold’em Players

50nl players need to play 442,478 hands at six-max or 617,284 at full ring to hit their SuperNova goals.  Using the 24-tabling method, a player could hit SuperNova in just 57 days if they played for four hours per day at six-max, while full ring players would accomplish it in 91 days playing four hours a day.

If you play 24 tables for 10 hours a day, then you’d get SuperNova in just 23 days at six-max and in 36 days at full ring.

At 100nl, things really start to fall into place.  The estimated number of hands required for SuperNova is just 274,725 for six-max players, while full ring players have to hit 349,650.  Using our standard 24-tabling for four hours a day estimate, we see that six-max players can hit SuperNova in 35 days, while full ring players can hit it in 52.

Now for SuperNova Elite status.  50nl players at six-max and full ring need 4,424,779 and 6,172,840 hands, respectively.  Let’s face it, that’s not happening.  At 100nl, you need to play 2,747,253 hands at six-max and 3,496,503 at full ring.  Six-max players who play 24 tables for four hours a day would hit SuperNova Elite in 357 days.

Mid-Stakes: $1-$2 to $2-$4 No Limit Hold’em Players

At 200nl, you need 190,476 six-max hands and 236,967 full ring hands to hit SuperNova.  Playing 24 tables at either game makes that possible to hit even in a month’s time if you do some serious grinding.

Let’s focus on SuperNova Elite grinding for mid-stakes players.  200nl full ring players can hit the needed million FPP goal if they play 24 tables for four hours a day for 352 days.  Let’s say you make that six hours a day; then, you are looking at a 235-day grind.  For 200nl six-max players, if you 24-table for six hours a day, then you’ll hit Supernova Elite in just 165 days.  If you adjust that to four hours a day, you’ll hit it in 248 days.

When playing 400nl, six-max players need 191 days to hit Supernova Elite if they grind 24 tables for four hours a day.  Full ring players need 234 days playing for four hours a day while 24-tabling.  The issue we get into at this point is if it’s possible to 24-table the 400nl stake.  There simply aren’t enough players in these games outside of peak hours to make that a possibility, so many players mix up games and play a combination of 400nl, 200nl, and even 100nl when needs persist to sit at tables.


If you are thinking about seriously grinding it out at PokerStars, then you need to do your homework now rather than just a few days before the new year starts.  For micro-stakes players, get your SuperNova grind going early and don’t have pipe dreams of hitting SuperNova Elite.  Even small-stakes players should just hit SuperNova and go for some of the milestone rewards rather than make a futile run at Supernova Elite.  Mid-stakes players should be mixing in 200nl, 400nl, or even 100nl to keep up a realistic grind to hit that coveted SuperNova Elite status.  Don't forget to use FPP Pro Plus to guide you!

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