By Jack Sawyer
Full Tilt Poker Unique Software Features
Full Tilt Poker is one of the juggernauts in the online poker world. They have more traffic than most other competitors; their funding/cash-out options are fast and transparent, and their software is truly a pleasure to use.
And on this last point we’ll go deeper now. What makes Full Tilt software so good? Let’s start at the very top: logging in.
The log in at Full Tilt Poker takes security to the next level. You can configure your account with a 3-card pin, which will require you to not only enter your poker alias or email (an option lets you choose between the two) and your password, but also a 3 card combination out of the whole deck that is pretty much impossible to fish by keyloggers etc. You essentially have two-factor authentication that is easy for you to remember but damn hard for other people to figure out.
Cutting Edge Lobby:
After you log in, you will be greeted by the Full Tilt lobby, by default in the customizable “standard” view. The standard view will let you easily browse the available games using a horizontal tree-like interface, conveniently located at the top of the screen, to select whichever game you want to, and save your selection while giving it a handy name like “LOLdonstakes HU sng” to be able to easily find your chosen games later.
The “Standard” view also has a customizable widgets sidebar on the right, in which you can put whatever widgets of your choosing. This includes a Full Tilt Points odometer which helps you keep track of how many FTPs you have been generating, a games legend, a ring game type icon legend, a cashier balance mini view, an Iron Man Status widget, and a session info widget which keeps track of how many hands you played and how many points you generated in the session. Most of the widgets can be customized to appear only in ring games or only in tourneys. For the cash games, Happy Hours tables are outlined, together with other icons indicating whatever a table might have, such as deep (double buy-in), cap (you are only allowed to bet until a specified limit per hand, indicated while on the table), ante (in which ante’s are introduced along the familiar blinds), educational (which means that some pro is on the table giving poker lessons), and speed (which means that the table plays faster, with cards being dealt faster and the timebanks being shorter, which leads to more hands per hour).
There is also a “Basic” view which lets you easily select a seat in the first game of your choosing available, without being able to table-select. This is great for grinders who don’t really need to table select like SNG players or MTT players.
And finally there is also the “Classic” view, which is just a plain vanilla lobby that is now common across all other rooms.
Full Tilt lobby also recognizes a ton of keyboard shortcuts. These include:
• Find Tournament by ID – Ctrl+T (Command+T on Mac)
• Registered in Tournaments – Ctrl+R (Command+R on Mac)
• Check My Disconnect Time balance – Ctrl+D (Command+D on Mac)
• Auto Muck On/Off – Ctrl+M (Command+M on Mac)
• Display Bet Amounts – Ctrl+B (Command+B on Mac)
• Display Pot Totals – Ctrl+P (Command+P on Mac)
• Open Up Cashier – Ctrl+S (Command+S on Mac)
All of the poker disciplines are well represented here, including No-Limit, Pot-Limit, Fixed-Limit, Hold’em, Omaha, Mixed Games, 7 Table Mix, Stud, etc. Whatever you crave, there will be no shortage in games available for you!
Funding your account is of utmost importance, and Full Tilt does take care of giving you a wide array of options in style! Once you setup a preferred depositing system, which will be remembered but redacted so that if someone gains access to your account it will not be of much use to them, you can activate one click deposit, which as its name implies will allow you to fund your account with just a single click right from the tables, never skipping a beat in the action.
All-in-all, Full Tilt Poker’s lobby alone is cutting edge enough to be described among the very best if not the absolute best available today in the online poker’s business. But thankfully, Full Tilt Poker did not rest on its laurels, and have many more innovations available in their software. Some hidden in plain sight and others in broad daylight for everyone to appreciate (and envy). Let’s analyze where the action actually takes place: the tables.
The Actual Tables:
Full Tilt Poker is known around the online poker industry for its cartoonish avatars. While not the prettiest to look at, they do serve as simple and effective ways to dress up the table graphics. All the while not being so resource intensive as other approaches (such as all-out 3D graphics for instance) to make it a smooth experience for everyone, including the massive multi-tabler.
On the tables themselves, you will have several options including a layout option which brings you to the custom layout manager and you will be able to customize the layout until how you are most comfortable playing with it and save it for future use. You can also customize the table graphics, selecting a different, flatter view (called “Racetrack” view) or eliminating the cartoonish graphics altogether by selecting “Avatars Off”. I forgot to mention that you avatar is changeable, and can be chosen in the Account > Change Avatar option in the lobby.
Special things are special because of the details, and Full Tilt Poker knows this perfectly. Something as simple and easily overlooked such as the bet slider is totally customizable in the Full Tilt Poker software. You can customize the Bet Slider Modes (Classic, Linear, Exponential). Classic is the existing mode where the pot size is the mid-way point of the slider. In Linear mode, the mid-way point of the slider is the same as half your chip stack and in Exponential mode, the slider will start out slowly at the beginning, but increase rapidly toward the end. The Mouse Click Action is also customizable. (Jump to Click Point (Classic) means the slider will go straight to where your mouse cursor is when you click. Increase/Decrease bet amount by big blind means that for each time you click on the bet slider, the bet amount will increase/decrease by the amount of the big blind, depending on which side of the slider pointer you click on. And also customizable is the Mouse Wheel Action , which you can choose to have the bet amount increase/decrease by big blind when you scroll up/down, or for the bet amount to increase/decrease even more gradually by choosing the ‘Smooth’ option. Whenever you execute a change, a small graphic will represent what you just did and show you how your new slider works.
Cash Games Amenities:
With the GSN TV Show High Stakes Poker being a hit, most people became familiar with something that is actually the norm in live poker but unheard of online. In the show, when players get entangled for hundreds of thousands of dollars in a hand, they sometimes elect to run it twice, in which the remaining community cards will be dealt more than once. This is a great way to minimize your variance in poker, and even so, was unheard of online. Until now. Full Tilt Poker is the first known site to have implemented a run it twice feature, which can either be enabled to be run by default or selected during the hand. This feature is only available for tables within Ivey’s room which are very high stakes on the site, but will also go down to other tables with time.
There is also a very sophisticated Buy-In preferences feature. You can customize your default buy-in, your ring game auto-rebuy, and auto top-up that will auto rebuy chips each time you fall below a specified amount.
Notes you take at the table will show up in the main lobby too, making it easy for you to avoid that identified shark, and seek out that spewing buddy you found.
Turning the Display Table on Action feature will also help you organize your open windows the way you want to. When it is your turn to act, the table will pop up in front of any open applications. Turning this option off will cause a flash in your taskbar and you need to manually click on the table to open it and play your hand.
It’s not only the cash game player who have a ton to cheer about while using the Full Tilt software, but also the tournament players.
Full Tilt, home of the world famous FTOPS series, has a ton of innovations added only to make the life of a tournament player easier.
Full Tilt offers what they call Matrix Tournaments. These are conveniently pointed out in the game lobby. These tournaments will pit you on four tables against the same opponents, so you will now actually have a chance to back up your claims of being that good. You also earn Matrix Points for each player that you knockout and/or outlast on every table. Once the tourney is done, the player with the highest Matrix score will be paid out for their overall performance, in addition to their payout for their finish in every tournament.
You can now also find tournaments you've missed registering for but which have registration still open with ease. At the beginning of the tournament, a number of seats will be reserved for late entrants. Each late-comer will receive a full chip stack and will be dealt in on their big blind.
Full Tilt also has Shoot Out Tournaments. Unlike standard Multi-Table Tournaments, where players are moved to keep the tables balanced as others are knocked out, each table in a Shootout Tournament plays down to a single winner ? just like a Sit & Go. Win your table and you’ll move on to face the winners of the other tables in the tournament.
In a Double Shootout, players have to win their starting table before advancing to the final table. For example, a standard Double Shootout will have a field of 81 players, with the nine table winners moving on to the final table. In a Triple Shootout, players have to win two tables before advancing to the final table.
They also have an innovative Tournament Waiting List. If the tournament you want to play in hits its cap before you register, you can join the waiting list by clicking on the “Register for Waiting List” and buy into the tourney as normal. If any player unregisters and you are first on the list, you will automatically get a seat to play and take it down. If no seats are available for when the tournament starts, you will simply be refunded your buy-in.
There is also a Tourney Dollar system, which you can play satellites to earn and enter into bigger events of your choosing.
Full Tilt poker has also introduced a style of tournament that is unheard of anywhere else. The “Cashout Tournaments” will give players the options to cash out part of their chips or all of their chips while the tournament is still running. When a player decides to cash out, the amount they choose is taken from the cashout pool. Cashout value is based on starting stack size and the tournament buy-in amount.
For example, in a cashout Tournament with a $50 + $5 buy-in, $250 goes to the tournament prize pool and $25 goes to the cashout pool. If each player starts the tournament with 1,500 chips, then 1,500 chips are worth $25. Players may make partial cashouts in 10% increments of their original stack size. Using the tournament example above, partial cashouts work like this:
• A player may cash out as few as 150 chips – 10% of the starting stack; the value for 150 chips in this example is $2.50.
• A player who’s stack size has increased to 3,000 may choose to cash out 1,500 chips; the value for 1,500 chips in this example is $25.
• A player who’s stack size has increased to 5,000 may choose to cash out 3,000 chips; the value for 3,000 chips in this example is $50.
Please note that players may perform partial cashouts for any amount of their stack in 10% increments of their starting stack. When a player makes a partial cashout, the chips cashed out are removed from play. If a player chooses to make a partial cashout while a hand is in progress, the cashout will show as “Pending” until the hand is completed. Once the hand is finished, the cashout will be completed unless the player’s chip stack has dropped below the amount requested. In this case, the cashout will be cancelled.
You can also do a Full cashout. A full cashout allows a player to leave a tournament before it has ended and take the full cashout value of their chip stack. The value of the individual’s chip stack is determined the same way as a partial cashout.
When a player makes a full cashout during a tournament, they are eliminated from the tournament at the conclusion of the hand. For example, if there are 21 players left in the tournament and a player completes a full cashout, they are eliminated from the tournament in 21st place and the cashout value of their chip stack is credited to their account. If 21st place is a paid position in the tournament, the prize amount for 21st place is also credited to their account.
Please note that when a player makes a full cashout, the total cashout value is rounded down to the nearest cent. As with partial cashouts, the chips cashed out are removed from play. Players will be allowed to cash out until play reaches the final table, indicating the end of the cashout period. At the end of this period, all the money left in the cashout pool is divided between the remaining players based on the current size of their chipstack.
Whether it's cash or tournament play, Full Tilt Poker has you covered. But whatever you choose to play, the action is always divided into individual hands. Up until now we’ve only covered what you could do before a hand (in the lobby), or during the hand (at the table). But what about what is left after the hand is over?
After the hand:
It has happened before. You have played a great hand, but have a hard time getting it back because you have no idea which hand it was, you are in the middle of a grind session with tons of tables open and have no real want to dig through text to see the action.
Full Tilt solved this problem by including a graphical hand history replayer, which is easily summoned by just clicking on the Last Hand button on the table. The last 50 hands are represented, complete with stop actions, making it extremely easy to see what happened during a hand. Your hand histories are also conveniently available for you to import into any kind of tracker software you may be running.
At the table there is also a “stats” button which will show you how you’ve been playing up to now.
Full Tilt Poker is indeed one of the juggernauts in today’s online poker scene. But not resting on its laurels, they have worked hard to have the best game selection, the best lobby interface, and the easiest to use software, and also unmatched customization options, making it truly an experience, not just another room.
No other room offers all the goods Full Tilt does, and in fact, only a few come close. It’s the example all other online poker rooms should follow - it’s just that good.
Catch up on what you’ve been missing! Start playing today!
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