Vegas Strip casino Excalibur, famously known for its medieval theme, cheap rooms, and bad food, is making way for new and innovative electronic tables from PokerPro. As of 2 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 18, the poker room doors will close to reopen on Aug. 21 or Aug. 22 with a whole new look.
Twelve PokerPro electronic tables are to be installed, completely replacing all dealer-required tables. While game selection is still being worked out, Neil Bard, floor manager for the Excalibur and soon to be poker host of the new room, says that both tournaments and cash games will be offered. “I’m excited to see the turnout,” says Bard. “We are going to have several famous poker pros come to help launch the tables.”
PokerPro tables are made by PokerTek, the leading manufacturer of electronic tables. According to PokerTek’s website, the PokerPro System can increase the number of hands dealt in Texas hold’em by 50 percent and 100 percent in Omaha by eliminating the use of cards and chips.
While playing in LA, I’ve come across these tables at two venues, Hustler and The Bike. In my experiences, just playing SNGs, it did not speed up the game, mainly due to peoples relatively hopeless technological savvy. I’m sure this will decrease as people become more familiar with the format. The pros: no dealer errors, hypothetically less cheating, no money exchange mistakes. The cons: no chips to neurotically play with, no chips to ship, no cards to twirl expertly into the muck, and no mountain of chips to stack after raking a huge pot.
Eh. I’m indifferent to this ‘digital launch’. When I go to Vegas…I want the real deal, life poker experience. For now, I’ll keep the digital to my laptop.