Full Tilt Poker, once a star among online poker platforms next to PokerStars, turned its back on the poker world and its loyal players at the end of February. The online poker platform can look back on an impressive career and an eventful company history full of ups and downs.
The end of Full Tilt Poker may have been looming for a while, as the platform had been inaccessible to its customers from Europe since around the middle of last year and initial suspicions arose of a potential Full Tilt Poker end. The players from Europe had to download the desktop or mobile software from PokerStars so that they could continue to access their user accounts. A link for this could be found on the Full Tilt Poker website. After the .eu client was taken offline in 2020, the same fate followed for the .com client in 2021.
A quiet farewell
Yes, the departure of Full Tilt was almost too unspectacular on the stage. The provider decided not to hit loud advertising drums on various social media accounts or to make a big deal out of its end.
On the contrary: The announcement of his withdrawal from the online poker world happened quite unobtrusively in a note in the FAQ section of PokerStars.
The active Full Tilt Poker players will be transferred to the PokerStars platform along with their username and password. This is because PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker belong to the same group of companies. Full Tilt Poker customers do not have to worry about changing their log-in details, they are simply taken over by PokerStars. This means that there is no additional work for the customer.
Nevertheless, the players now have to get used to PokerStars: The structure, the look of the site, all of which has to be adapted and is certainly not an easy time for the former Full Tilt customers. Frequently asked questions about the platform change were answered in the FAQ section of PokerStars and made available for reading.
The history of Full Tilt Poker – a look back
Full Tilt Poker started in 2004 and was one of the second largest poker rooms in the world after PokerStars. In its early days, Full Tilt signed many professional poker players. These played exclusively on Full Tilt. Behind the Full Tilt Poker brand were some well-known names from the poker community, including Phil Ivey, Chris Ferguson, Mike Matusow, and many more.
With the famous motto “Learn, chat and play with the pros”, Full Tilt has cast a spell over many poker enthusiasts and also encouraged poker players to play poker together with professionals. This endeavor has also been supported by the fact that advice written by professional poker players has been published on the website in the “Tips from the Pros” category.
With functions such as Rush Poker or Fast-Fold-Poker, Full Tilt quickly developed into one of the best online poker providers with features that simply stood out from the competition. The innovative design full of animations was certainly one of the reasons for the platform’s triumph.
The story of Full Tilt is a resounding success. This also includes the well-known brand ambassadors who have been the platform’s figureheads over the years. But like many successful companies, Full Tilt suffered a number of defeats.
Black Friday – from then on it went really downhill
A few years later, more precisely in 2011, the company had to go through a somewhat less pleasant time:
On April 15, 2011, often referred to as “Black Friday” in the poker scene, stricter gambling laws came into effect in the United States. As a result, the online poker providers Full Tilt Poker, PokerStars and Absolute Poker were blocked by the United States Department of Justice.
The poker platforms have been accused of money laundering and illegal gambling. The lock was in effect for an indefinite period. The players on the now frozen sites were shocked when they suddenly could no longer access their accounts and funds. Millions of gamblers were afraid they would never see their money again. So how did it go on?
Well, Absolute Poker disappeared from the scene. PokerStars paid out its customers while also taking over its biggest competitor to date, Full Tilt Poker. After a few months, Full Tilt Poker was relaunched, but from now on it had to struggle with a bad image. The success and reputation that Full Tilt Poker enjoyed prior to this drama never returned.
Full Tilt Poker’s comeback is very unlikely and its end appears to be final. Whether PokerStars will sell Full Tilt Poker’s software remains questionable. The sale would be very profitable, but PokerStars could score a goal for itself and lay the foundation for a new competitor.