Regardless of how often you play online poker, installing TableNinja might be the greatest thing you can do for yourself.
And by greatest, I mean it’s pretty sweet - and you’ll at least be happy you did.
TableNinja is a poker shortcuts app similar to the “Poker Shortcuts” app used for the Rock Band Wireless Poker Controller video.
The idea is simple: Instead of having to use your mouse or type out the amount of your bet, you can hit one key and have the program do the rest.
When you think about it, you only typically make a small number of actions at a poker table:
- Raise min
- Raise 3bb
- Bet Pot
- Bet ¾ pot
- Bet All in
For most of the poker players in the world, this list is almost 100% of all the actions you’ll ever make.
When it comes down to it, using your mouse is always going to be a lot slower than using your keyboard.
Even if you have no real need for such a program, as soon as you start playing a large number of tables or play poker from your iPhone you’ll begin to really appreciate the shortcuts.
There are two main packaged software options to choose from:
- Poker Shortcuts
Since real ninjas are totally sweet, TableNinja wins from name alone. But here’s what you need to know about each program:
Poker Shortcuts works for both Full Tilt and PokerStars. It’s a free program and works pretty darn well, but being a free program it has more bugs and is slower to adapt the code every time a poker room updates its software.
TableNinja has two versions: TableNinja FT (Full Tilt) and regular (PokerStars)
The Full Tilt version is currently in Beta and you can download it (at the time of publication) for free. If you’re a Stars player, you’re going to have to pay $35 to get the software.
The advantage to paying for this software over the free Poker Shortcuts is that it’s easier to use, easier to set-up, has far fewer bugs and you can expect updates and improvements as time goes on.
Here’s a little video from the TableNinja site:
Since I assume most of you are familiar with some sort of gaming or another, the most obvious setup for this program would be to use your WASD cluster. I have my TableNinja set up as follows:
Left button – A
Middle button – S
Right button – D
Bet 70% of the pot – Q
Bet 3bb – W
Bet the pot – E
All-in – Z
That’s all I use. Now you have two options with all the betting.
You can have it so hitting your key will input the bet amount, making you have to click “Bet” with your mouse to complete the action, or you can have the software automatically make the bet once the button is pressed.
Using this feature increases your chances of misclick mistakes but also greatly speeds up the betting process.
By default, the software will only input a command to the table your mouse is hovering over. To keep things simple, it highlights the current table with a red border, a table needing your attention with a green border and the next table in line with a purple border.
There are options to automatically move your mouse to the next table needing action, but this feature can prove disastrous if you are trying to check email or chat on Skype while you play.
There’s nothing worse than trying to figure out why you can’t type in your Skype msg box only to see you’ve just shipped it all in pre-flop with 10♣ 5♥.
You can also have the software automatically have you take a seat, buy-in and post your blinds upon opening a new table. This feature is highly recommended for all players using an iPhone or any other mobile device.
One of my favorite features of the software is its ability to register you into a tournament. It has always bugged me that once I click the “Register” button for a tournament in the lobby, it opens up a second page asking me if I want to register.
By the time I click Register again for a heads-up SNG, the seat has been filled. With TableNinja you can click register in the lobby and the software will do the rest.
The whole idea with TableNinja is to minimize the total amount of time you need to spend clicking and maximize the time you can spend playing.
If you’re lazy, play a large number of tables or are playing via an iPhone, chances are TableNinja will change your life.
If you’re none of the above, it’s still a pretty neat program.