MUST HAVE TOOLS ANY MICROSTAKE PLAYER SHOULD BE USING
For anyone considering making it as a professional online poker player nowadays will have to strongly consider investing resources (time and money) in their development.
Online poker isn’t what it was 4 or 5 years ago when by just applying a few concepts and by solid reasoning it was enough to bank at least $50,000 a year playing cards online. Not bad ah?
Well that just isn’t the case anymore. The profit ceiling and the expectation had reached historic lows and will continue to drop in the upcoming years so staying ahead of the learning curve and beat the game on a regular basis will become not an option but a necessity.
What can we do?
WORK HARDER ON YOUR GAME¡!¡ This is something that have gained more and more value as the year passes and it’s something even microstakes players are taking into account.
In here we will recommend what we believe are the must have tools any serious online poker wanna-be pro should be using in order to take their game to the next level and stay ahead of the competition.
- STATISTICAL TRACKING SOFTWARE
All these softwares works by collecting and gathering the information poker clients store in the player hard drive related to the game, not just his own play but for every other player seating at the poker table with him.
They import than information, process them and display them on the table inside a small and customizable panel called heads up display (HUD) live while playing that overlays on each player table avatars with a number of statistical that show each opponent´s behavior or tendencies.
Or it can also be displayed in a form of detailed reports users can use to analyze your own game or other people´s game mostly when you´re not playing, isolating the most crucial and common situations during the game and reproduce those hands to further evaluate your game as well as others.
This is the first must have for any poker player out there, but we want to be absolutely clear here that by just owning and using these pieces of softwares won’t guarantee it will make you a better player.
I know a lot of players that are really good with outstanding results that have never used one of these in their life. But yet again, there isn’t anything that indicates that by actually using one of these softwares they wouldn’t have better results.
It is by just learning how to properly use them and get the most out of them is that you will put yourself in a great position to improve as a poker player.
This is especially true for when you´re NOT playing poker. Something all these softwares have in common is that they all have amazing features for you to analyze your own game or other people’s game, and this is where you set apart from other players.
There are a number of resources out there that can teach you on how to get the most value out of these softwares and we strongly advise you to focus on that, again especially on the off the table stuff.
So there are many choices out there, some of the best are unfortunally paid or subscription based softwares and others are free, obviously the paid ones are far better as they offer many more features but the free ones are also a great place to start especially for those with a tight budget.
When making the decision of getting any of these softwares take into account that the difference between one another regarding their features and the impact they will have on your game it is very small.
So before purchasing take your time and use all their free trail periods and get the one you feel the most comfortable with. Don’t go out there and get the one you heard something in the forums or read an article from someone recommending this or that.
Take your time and use them all if you can and take the best decision FOR YOU.
Free statistical tracking softwares…
Free Poker Database (FPDB)
This is one of the first and only worth having free statistical poker tracking software that was release and even now today it’s still pretty much in use. It is a really good option for those just starting out on a tight budget to get your feet wet and get familiar with these type of programs.
You can download the software and all the require documentation from the link below…
Paid/subscription based ones
Holdem Manager 2
One of the most trusted brands of the markets with an easy to use interphase for those just starting out.
Holdem Manager 2 (HM2) offers a 30-Day free trial version for you to check it out.
One of the first and the other major competitor in the market. Its interphase isn’t as user friendly as HM2 but it´s far more customizable and this is a very appealing feature for those who don’t mind investing time in getting around it and get the most out of it.
PokerTracker 4 (PT4) its more commonly use among MTT and MTTSNG regulars especially for the higher games because of the ability that offers to create your own stats and reports.
PT4 also offers a 30-Day free trial for you to check it out.
One of the fastest growing pieces of softwares out there in the online poker world from the past couple of years giving his unique design and visually appealing HUD for PokerStars.
It became very popular due to a feature that allows its user to almost automatically share recent played hands to their friends, forums and Jivaro community.
Jivaro also offers a 30-Day free trial to anyone before purchasing.
Hand2Note has break through and enter the market with a strong push providing a new broad of opportunity for players to take their game even further.
Thought, designed and develop for poker players by poker players Hand2Note has steadily become one of the best choices today offering features that surpass in many ways the w main leaders in the market.
Hand2Note offers a free license for those playing up to NL25, 1/2 LHE and MTTSNGs up to the $9 level.
One of the pioneers in this regard, Xeester was one of the first statistical tracking softwares to ever launch.
They also offer a 30-Day free trial to test it.
GAME ANALYSIS SOFTWARE
If you thought for one minute that getting any of the softwares above was enough you were lying to yourself.
Even though they offer great analysis value it´s just not enough. We must complement them with other softwares in order to get a full and comprehensive analysis about a poker situation that will serve us to make better decisions every time.
Flopzilla is a tool that aims to develop a much better and accurate hand reading skills as it main features displays how certain ranges connects with the community cards and how that matches against your hand.
The interphase is extremely fast, intuitive and easy to use even for the most newbies out there. The calculations are so fasts that there is no need for a CALCULATE or a COMPUTE butt on it just gives you the results everytime we set a scenario or edit the information.
There´s a great tutorial made by SplitSuit on his YouTube channel on how to develop your hand reading skills using this software.
Flopzilla offers a 7-day free trial and after that it costs $35.
This is for MTTSNGs players and a personal favorite for me especially for newcomers. Many advanced and high stake players prefers Holdem Resources because is more accurate but for me ICMizer interphase it has too much value to pass it on.
And it also has other features that fits the new players needs far better than holdem resources or any other software out there.
Features like a build-in replayer. After you upload a single hand or a hand history file you can replay those hands right there and run EV calculations as you go.
It also has a bunch of preset it tournaments payout structures from different poker sites so you won’t have to configure this.
And to top it all out, it has its own SNG Coach which is a quiz mode feature from different MTTSNG formats with preset it scenarios and results that allows you to test your knowledge and grade it. You can even see the calculations of each and every single one of those preset it scenarios.
This is a free basic equity calculator where you can just input and compare the equity of hand vs hand scenario as well as hand vs range and range vs range and get familiar with the equities of all kind of scenario.
Although there are many other softwares out there we believe these should be a must have for any poker player starting out and strongly considering becoming a professional poker player.
This is definitely on the more advanced stuff but we can´t ignore the impact GTO solvers has in the game as it something more and more commonly used not just by high stakes but by low and mid stakes players.
So if you ever get out of the micros and would like to beat low and mid stakes consistently then studying game theory optimal (GTO) and know your way around a GTO solver will be your next step on your development.