Angle Shooters in Poker: Who Are They and How to Protect Yourself from Soft Cheating

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Angle Shooters in Poker

Poker is one of the most complex card games in the world, so it’s not at all strange that there are so many poker rules, poker strategies, and poker tips you can hear about. Poker is not 100% a game of luck, and in many cases, you can apply your social skills to get an advantage over other players, in order to get some valuable information about the hands they own; and of course, their hidden intentions! However, the whole bluffing thing in poker is actually also regulated, especially when it comes to first-class casinos and professional poker rooms. Still, the cases when some tricky player decides to start acting somehow provocative or not completely fairly are also pretty frequent. Among professional poker players, this behavior is normally called “angle shooting.” This time we’re going to talk about how angle shooters will try to get an advantage over you, and how you can protect yourself from their tricks.

How Angle Shooting Is Even Possible?

The game of poker is normally regulated by three sets of rules: general rules of the game, poker etiquette, and local house rules. The general rules of poker are pretty solid, and it’s practically impossible to alter them for your own benefit: for example, if you are playing Caribbean Stud Poker, you can’t really go beyond the rules that are widely applied in this game. However, angle shooters can easily try to alter some of the classic poker etiquette and local house rules since they don’t seem to be obligatory. Depending on the place where the game is being played, angle shooters can get a soft penalty for their actions; but in some cases, they can also get away with it. So that’s why we want to tell you more about the popular “grey” techniques used by unscrupulous players, as well as how to protect yourself from them.

Popular Angle Shooting Tricks and Techniques

  • Going South

Generally speaking, there’s nothing wrong with going south in poker – it’s just a common phrase used by poker players to indicate that you’re taking your chips from the table. As you probably know, the terms of every poker game can be discussed by the players if they are not strictly specified by the house. In some poker games, the players may be allowed to take their bankroll from the table; however, this is not a common practice. More commonly, the chips have to stay on the table until the end of the game.

Going South against the table rules is not always considered as a severe infraction of the rules and doesn’t necessarily mean that you are going to be disqualified for this soft cheating. That’s why some keen angle shooters may try to steal some of the chips during the game, hoping that no one notices. The reasons can be different – either a cheater is trying to preserve some of their funds in advance, or they try to misinform other players by pretending that their bankroll is actually thinner than it previously seemed to be.

Tricks and Techniques poker

There is no universal way to prevail against such players, except for being patient all the time. In some of the most innovative casinos this behavior will be caught on camera, and the unlucky cheater will lose some of their bankroll or their seat at the table. Still, if you’re playing in a private place or in a small company, you may need to be on watch all the time!

  • Hiding Bigger Chips

This practice is also popular among people who believe in bluffing and cheating more than they believe in simple and fair card counting. This slick trick is hardly punished by the house, because in many casinos and poker rooms it’s not officially prohibited. However, this little trick is not really ethical from the point of view of a professional poker player. Of course, any true poker player frequently incorporates some reasonable amount of bluffing, but this doesn’t mean that you have to hide your bankroll from the other players. An angle shooter who is trying to downplay their bankroll size would probably try to act like an underdog in order to look less dangerous as an opponent. However, be ready for an unexpected raise or call from them, because they’re probably just trying to lull the other players into a false sense of security.

  • Pump Fake

This is one of the most common tricks that are used by cunning angle shooters. You know that table poker is also a fast game, and many events like calling or folding may take just seconds of your gaming time. The pump fake is when a player tries to make a bet by moving the chips to the bank as if they intend to raise the bet, but in the last second they return the chips to their personal bankroll. Pump fakes are usually made to gain some valuable information about other players. An angle shooter is expecting to see your move to find out how confident you feel with your poker hand. In some gambling venues pump fake may be tolerated, but in serious casinos and poker rooms any player who tries to get more information in such a way may be easily fined by the house.

  • Lying About a Hand Value

As a poker player, you probably know that some of the actions made at the poker table are of more importance than the words the player might say. All angle shooters also know this, so always stay alert if you don’t want to get fooled! Some angle shooters can easily lie about their hand value at the end of the round, expecting that you will act impulsively and will throw your cards into the muck before you figure out that the cunning angle shooter hasn’t actually revealed their hand yet. For instance, a cheating player cries “four of a kind” at the showdown, and you nervously throw your cards away, losing any hope you had of winning. At the same time, the angle shooter may comment that it was just a joke and will get the bankroll, being the only one left in the game.

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