Video poker has been around for decades and is extremely popular. A low house edge and greater winning possibilities are a major attraction to this game of skill, which is in essence a blend of slots and poker.
Nevertheless, it is important to remember that this is one game where the old saying ‘house has the advantage’, does not apply. Video poker is played with a standard 52-card deck where players are required to make the best 5 card hand.
There are several variants of video poker although the principle and objective of each game is the same. If you play the liberal tables properly, there is a chance of even getting 100% in returns if you include incentives such as cash back and free play.
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- 1 Top US Video Poker Casinos
- 1.1 Online Video Poker Basics
- 1.2 Online Video Poker Strategy
- 1.3 Online Video Poker FAQ
- 18.104.22.168 How do Random Number Generators Work?
- 22.214.171.124 Do Video Poker Games get Hot or Cold?
- 126.96.36.199 Why Are Video Poker Strategies so Different?
- 188.8.131.52 Is Video Poker Rigged?
- 184.108.40.206 What Video Poker Games are best to Play?
- 220.127.116.11 What’s the Difference between Slots and Video Poker?
- 18.104.22.168 How do Progressive Video Poker Machines work?
- 22.214.171.124 How Many Cards and Hands are there in a Video poker Game?
- 126.96.36.199 Does Video Poker Have the Best Returns?
- 188.8.131.52 Is there a Difference between Online Video Poker and Land-Based Machines?
Some of the popular variants of video poker include Tens or Better, Aces and Faces, Deuces Wild, Jacks or Better, Joker Poker, Double Double Bonus, and Deuces and Jokers. You will find most of these variants at online casinos with low stakes and high stakes.
At CasinoUSA.com, our experts suggest that slots players ought to consider video poker since the chances of cracking the jackpot are five times more. However, using a proper strategy is the key to success. And, that’s where we can help. All you need is to pay attention to the following.
Playing video poker is as simple as 1, 2, 3. The dealer deals five cards. You need to decide which ones to keep, which you can do in online video poker by simply clicking on the relevant cards on the screen, and discarding the rest. When you hit the ‘Draw’ button the discarded cards are replaced. You win if you end up with a traditional poker hand such as a straight, two pair, full house, flush, etc. The amount you win depends on the pay-table for the relevant video poker variant you are playing.
Pay-tables feature five columns since the winnings depend on whether you played 1, 2, 3, 4,or 5 coins. In other words, you get to increase your bet and winnings on the number of coins played. It is always wise to deposit the maximum number of coins in a video poker game since it presents the opportunity to win the maximum amount.
One of the plus points of video poker is that you are aware of the returns before you begin playing. The house edge is roughly 3% which means you get back 97% of what you bet. The returns are determined by the pay-table, which varies depending on the variant played. Some games like Jacks or Better have a return as high as 99.54%. The bottom line is to choose video poker games with a good pay-table.
Pay-tables are based on five-card poker hands that include:
- Royal Flush: Ace/King/King/Jack/10 of the same suit
- Straight Flush: Five consecutive cards of the same suit (4,5,6,7,8)
- Four of a Kind: For cards of the same rank such as Ace of hearts or Ace of spades
- Full House: Two cards of one rank and three of another rank such as 8 of hearts, 8 of spades, 6 of diamonds, 6 of hearts, 6 of spades.
- Flush: Five cards of the same suit such as Ace, 10, 8, 4, 3, 2 of hearts.
- Straight: A mixed suit of five consecutive cards such as 2 of hearts, 3 of diamonds, 4 of clubs, 5 of spades, 6 of diamonds.
- Three of a kind: Three cards of the same rank such as 8 of clubs, 8 of hearts, 8 of diamonds
- Two Pair: Two cards of one rank and two of another such as 8 of diamonds, 8 of hearts, 7 of clubs, 7 of spades.
- Pair of jacks or better: Two jacks, queens, kings, or aces.
There are a few simple rules that you can stick with in order to improve your chances of winning.
- Hold a two pair, royal flush, straight flush, full house, three of a kind or four of a kind. You and discard the remaining two cards in a three of a kind in order to get a chance at four of a kind. With a two pair, discard the fifth card for a shot at a full house.
- If you have four cards to a royal flush then it would be wise to break up a straight or flush. For example, if you have Ace/King/Queen/Jack/9 of hearts, discard the 9 for a chance to get the 10 of hearts. This also opens a window of opportunity to get a flush with another hearts, a straight with another 10 and a pair of jacks or better with an AKQ or J.
- Discard a single high card instead of a low pair.
- If you have four cards to a lower straight flush or royal flush break up a pair of jacks or better.
- Always play maximum bets or move to a lower stake machine that you can afford.
- Video poker offers high payouts but that doesn’t mean you can always break even.
- Never let short-term results let you down. If you play correctly, you will do well over time.
- Practice with play money before you place real money bets.
- Refrain from stretching your bankroll. If you want to start with $20 then head for machines that allow you to play five quarters at a time.
There’s much more to playing video poker so make sure to stay tuned to CasinoUSA.com for all the latest. Our experts have their finger on the pulse of everything to do with online video poker so make sure to keep coming back for more
If you’re interested in giving video poker a try but are confused by basic concepts, you might want to check out the following answers to the most popular questions about this casino game:
A Random Number Generator (RNG) is software that produces number combinations to ensure the game stays random. The way its done is that the RNG will produce a number with hundreds of thousands of digits that is also called a “seed number”, whenever you place your first bet. The seed number is then used by the RNG to produce another number based on it, and that number is used to produce another one and so on. This way each time you perform an action, the response from the game will stay entirely random.
No, video poker machines never get hot or cold. By using a random number generator the games always stay random. This means that no prior action will ever have an effect on the current outcome.
It’s important to understand that no video poker strategy guarantees 100% efficiency. Strategies are ways to increase your odds in the long run and avoid silly mistakes, but they are not an exact science, nor is there a uniform standard that all video poker pros stick to.
The use of a Random Number Generator ensures that the machine will always have a random outcome. And although it’s true that casinos can adjust the returns by tweaking settings, this will never result in setting up ways to interfere with the RNG.
If a casino holds an official license from a strict regulatory body (like the UK Gambling Commission, Malta and Gibraltar) this means that their RNG has been inspected for any shady practices. This, in addition with a third party audit certificate is a sure sign that what you’re playing is definitely not rigged.
The most popular video poker variant is Jacks or Better, since it normally has the highest RTP (return to player). However, you should keep in mind that the returns vary according to your playing, the bet sizes as well as the odds given by the casino.
For example, a Jacks or Better game with 9/6 odds (the most popular odds table) will have an RTP of over 99% when played on maximum wagers, while its RTP will drop to 98.37% when playing with 1 to 4 credits. Similarly, if a Jacks or Better game has 8/5 odds, wagering the maximum will result in a 97.30% RTP.
Bonus poker variants can also be rewarding. The 8/5 Bonus Poker has an estimated RTP of 99.17%, while the 10/7 Double Bonus Poker game has a projected RTP of 100.17%. Of course, the RTPs all depend on how well you can play video poker.
To make sure whether your Jacks or Better variant has 9/6 odds or not, you should always check the pay table in your game. If the game shows Full House odds of 9/1 and Flush odds of 6/1, this is your game.
However, you should also keep in mind that 9/6 odds are rare, and that you are more likely to get 8/5odds.
Although they seem very similar, slots and video poker are definitely not the same. The key difference, apart from the visual appearance, is that with video poker you can actually have a say in how your game is played, instead of just hoping for your luck to change. With strategy and practice, you can have at least some form of advantage over the casino with video poker.
Just like progressive slots, progressive video poker games have a jackpot pool that increases over periods of time. This jackpot pool is filled up from wagers from player’s who take a shot at winning the progressive prize. To do this, there is normally a side bet that you have to make.
Video poker versions normally have a single deck of 52 cards, or 53 if the Joker’s included. On the other hand, the numbers of hands you can play vary from one game to another. Some allow you to play up to 5 hands, while others will allow even more. Just remember, multiple hands also mean multiple wagers and simultaneous play, which can get pretty confusing, especially to beginners.
Yes and no. In fact, it all depends on the game variant itself. Some video poker versions like the Double Bonus Poker can have an RTP that’s above 100%, but this will all depend on the odds. It’s normally the 10/7 (Full House/Flush) versions that have the best returns, although they might be difficult to find.
The only difference between both is where they are played. Most online video poker games are adapted from land-based machines, and the rest follow the same rules and style of play.