Our poker skills and knowledge can be improved in plenty of ways, even for free. The database of SharkScope enables us to look up our fellow players’ or our own tournament results (including SNG and MTT tournaments as well). It provides 5 free searches per a day for everybody; you do not even need to sign up. SharkScope is perhaps one of the most useful aids of regular tournament players as a huge amount of data and correlations can be accessed through it in a split second.

Poker and Information

Since David Sklansky, we know that, for instance, as opposed to chess, “poker is a game of incomplete information” as we are not aware of what cards our opponents are holding in their hands. By the table, at each and every party, we strive to obtain the most possible information about others and give away the least possible about ourselves. However, we can start obtaining information even before the game.

Online, we would have difficulty in remembering more hundreds of tables and more thousands of players. SharkScope and the similar databases have come into being to ease our situation by providing plenty of public information for all tournament players. Nevertheless, SharkScope is not only worth using for surveying other players; since our own results are available as well, on the one hand, record-keeping is solved; on the other, we can get a good overview of our own performance.

SharkScope Applications

In Coverage Details, we can check in which rooms and to what extent this service works (e.g. if the particular room supports Sharkscope HUD or not).

On the page, we can also browse rankings according to game types, the amount of buy-in and profit (entire profit or the average profit of the last 500 games), dating back until 2007. If we want to find out who has earned the most money in which room this year or who has had the longest upswing in the micro-limit Double or Nothing game, we can instantly have access to the necessary information here.

The Tournament Selector intends to ease the finding of the most profitable tournaments. The ones with a subscription can search for 10-dollar and cheaper tournaments free; the ones between 10 and 50 US dollars cost 1 credit, and 3 credits are charged for 50-dollar and above tournaments. Besides this, tournaments can also be filtered on the basis of difficulty level. If we are subscribers, in the case of PokerStars, and Full Tilt, we can even open the selected tournaments directly from SharkScope.

The Database

We have got to the virtual engine of the page. Selecting the Search Database option, we need to enter the nickname of the player in question, choose the particular poker room and decide if we are interested in his/her SNG-table performance or tournament results, and we can immediately get an insight even into the details of a complete poker career.

The following parameters are quite important in the case of all tournament players. After conducting a search, we can see the number of games our player has played, his/her average profit and ROI percentage (namely, the percentage of the invested buy-ins which has turned out to be remunerative). Furthermore, the profit achieved until the moment of the search is totalized, and the skills of the player are ranked on a 100-point scale. Taking all these data into consideration, we can quite well outline the profile of a player, but it is important to treat each piece of information in its right place and context.

Understanding Player Graphs

The first graph shows the number of completed tournaments related to the total profit gained from them. Apparently, if the line is below zero, we can see a losing player, if above, a winning one. The second graph presents how the entry-fee and the ROI are related. The points marked by small squares reveal to what extent our deposits have become remunerative at the different limits. On the basis of this information, we can also conclude which limit suits as the best. The third graph indicates the number of open tournaments at the particular limit. The higher is the red column, the more reliable are the indicators of our results achieved at the given limit.

Under the Further Settings tab, we can find several extra opportunities: we can search the current games, the biggest/smallest profit, upswings/downswings, the rankings achieved at SNG tables; what is more, the related results of two opposing players can also be searched here.

Free Searches or Subscription?

If we are beginner or occasional players, the daily 5 free searches can be more than enough. Subscription is worth considering if we regularly open more than 10 tournament tables daily. We can purchase a particular number of queries (200), but we can also decide to subscribe to 150, 500 or 1000 daily queries for a 1-, 3- or 12-month period. Of course, the bigger is the package we choose, the cheaper offer we get.

What Do We Get for Our Money?

Having a subscription, we can have access to quite a lot of extras. By an advanced search, we can filter the data according to game types, bet types, the size of the buy-in, speed, format and the number of participants. Consequently, we can find those game types relatively fast where we do worse or especially well (the filters can also be saved). Subscribers can save the results of the searches and can load the results of previous searches as well.

SharkScope HUD

By subscription, we can also have access to a special home-developed SharkScope HUD. Like all softwares of this kind, this one also projects the data of the players sitting by the table to the surface of the particular poker client. However, it is not betting and bet sizing habits we are informed about here, but the data of the database get displayed at lightning speed. Thus, we do not need to divide our attention between the current tournament game and information gathering. Obviously, the advantages of this HUD are primarily appreciated by those who play on 6-8 tables simultaneously.

Its operation does not require any special skills. After logging in, we need to select the poker client, click on the Launch button, and the poker room instantly opens. The automatically displayed data are the same as the ones we have access to on the page. Easier orientation and player classification is resolved by icons and colours. We can even search for all the involved players individually during play from the list under Player Graphs, and we can have a look on the graphs belonging to them as well.