Planning Poker game process

In January 2022 we have added Poker game mode inspired by the Planning Poker card game to Magic Estimations for Jira Cloud. This page is dedicated to the new mode and explains how it works:

Planning Poker overview

Planning Poker is a gamified technique that development teams use to guess the effort of project management tasks. These estimations are based on the entire group’s input and consensus, making them more engaging and accurate than other methods. To help gauge the number of story points for the relevant tasks, teams use planning poker cards, which are similar to poker cards.

Poker mode overview

Poker game mode of Magic Estimations has been inspired by the Planning Poker framework, but not quite the same. Our solution inherits the gamified consensus-based core of the card game, but we use lanes (columns) of the collaborative estimation board instead of cards.

Every participant can select the lane where he thinks the issue should be placed. When all the participants are ready, the personal votes are revealed and the team can start the discussion, trying to reach the consensus and place the issue on the board.


Such an approach allows participants to compare the user story to all others that have already been placed on the board making it easier to make a call.

Creating Poker game

Poker mode is available while creating a new estimation game, check the creation details and configuration examples on page.

There are 4 unique Poker game settings:


  1. When the Auto pickup next issue feature is enabled, the app will start estimating of the next backlog issue after submitting the final vote for the previous one.

  2. When the Auto reveal votes feature is enabled, the app will reveal personal votes without the moderator’s action when all the participants finish voting.

  3. Allow players to update votes after revealing results.

  4. Enable voting timeout (timer).

accompanied by a standard one - Auto assign moderator that allows passing the moderator role if the moderator is offline.

By default, we recommend enabling the first 2 features + the moderator auto-assign and consider enabling the rest depending on your estimation patterns.

Game process

Once the game has started there are 2 game states:

Starting voting

The game moderator can start voting by dragging any card from the backlog or the board to the drop area located at the top left corner. Other participants can see this control only when there is an issue in the voting area:

There is a limit of 5 active users for clients of Magic Estimations Lite

Submitting personal votes

When voting is on, every active participant has Vote for lane buttons inside each lane configured for this game:

Clicking on such buttons will lead to selecting the lane as your vote and triggering the Voting progress tracker in the Voting area. Participants' votes will remain hidden till revealed. Personal votes can be updated before the revealing.

Game moderator can reveal personal votes manually by clicking on the Reveal option (eye icon in the Voting area) or the votes will be revealed automatically upon reaching 100% progress (everybody has voted) if the Auto reveal control is enabled.

In case the Voting timeout (timer) configuration is enabled, the countdown will start automatically when a new issue appears in the voting area. When the countdown stops, voting results are revealed automatically:

Finishing voting

Once all votes are revealed, the participants will see voting results. The moderator can Restart voting after a discussion if there is no consensus or finalize the place of the current issue on the board by using one of the Accept buttons inside the lanes or by dragging:

When voting for an issue is over, the next backlog item is picked up for voting automatically if the Auto pickup control is enabled.

In case the Allow players to update votes after revealing results configuration is enabled, all the participants can change their vote during the discussion. The session moderator can’t change their vote.


Have a productive estimation!


What’s next?

We recommend visiting articles describing Magic Estimations configuration and estimation process: