Video poker is an exciting casino game whose rules are quite easy to learn. It has a very entertaining gameplay which is the reason why it is played by hundreds of players all over the world. Video poker is considered a fairly modern game in contrast to the original poker which emerged in the distant 17th century. It is often compared and even confused with slots as both games are played on almost identical machines in land-based casinos. However, experienced players know that on a deeper level, slots and video poker are very different.
What sets video poker apart from the rest of the popular games that are played on similar machines in brick and mortar casinos is that this game involves a certain set of skills. What makes video poker so interesting is the fact that you can make an impact on the outcome of the game by using a strategy. Nowadays you can play a wide range of video poker variations without having to go all the way to an actual land-based casino. The reason why the game was optimised to online casinos moderately easy and quick was that it already had a virtual nature as it was played on a machine.
Video Poker Basic Rules
Playing video poker is very easy as the basic rules are quite straightforward. Even if you have no experience when it comes to any type of poker, you will still be able to learn how to play in no time. The original game which is considered to be the version Jacks or Better uses a single pack of cards. It should be noted that there are some variations in which the joker is also included.
Like in most casino games, the first thing you need to do in order to start playing is to bet a particular amount. Most video poker machines accept up to five coins and it is entirely up to you to decide how many to insert. At the beginning of every round, you will be dealt five cards which you can either hold or replace.
It is possible to substitute all cards and get new replacements or retain all of them instead. If you wish to hold a particular card, you should simply select it by using the Hold button which you can usually find below each card.
If you are a novice player and you have accidentally selected a card which you don’t want to change, you can click on the Hold button once again in order to deselect it. The main objective of the game is to manage to form any of the combinations that offer a payout. Most machines automatically tell you whether you have managed to collect a winning combination and how much exactly you have won. Nonetheless, it is highly recommended to get familiar with the best-paying hands a particular variation offers because this way, you will be able to make better decisions for your cards.
How Hands are Ranked in Video Poker
The hand ranking in video poker is pretty much the same as in the classic poker game. However, not all variations offer the same winning combinations as some feature unique ones which are exclusive to the particular version. Therefore, it is best to always check the pay table of the version of your choice before you start playing. As already mentioned, the variation Jack or Better is the most widespread one and thus, its hand ranking system is considered to be fundamental.
The highest paying winning combination which you can form is called Royal Flush and it consists of five cards of the same suit – a King, a Queen, a Jack, an Ace and a Ten. Straight Flush is the second best hand which you can get while playing video poker. It consists again of five cards of the same suit which have to be consecutive. The rest of the winning hands are Four of a Kind, Full House, Flush, Straight, Three of a Kind, Two Pair and the lowest winning combination you can form – Jacks or Better.
|Four of a Kind||
|Three of a Kind||
|Two of a Kind||
Another important aspect which you should take into account prior to playing video poker is the pay table. Every pay table, regardless of the variation of your choice, contains valuable information about the possible winning combinations you can make and their payout. You will be able to see that the payout for a particular hand combination is different, depending on the number of coins you decide to wager.
In this sense, if you insert the maximum amount of five coins, you will have the chance to get the highest payout in case that you manage to collect the required cards. Keep in mind that at the end of every round, your cards are compared to the pay table of the respective variation and you get paid according to it. Therefore, you should only strive to form the winning combinations that apply for this variation.
|Four of a Kind||25||50||75||100||125|
|Three of a Kind||3||6||9||12||15|
|Jacks or Better||1||2||3||4||5|
Video poker is a casino game which is famous for having a fairly low house edge. In terms of beneficial house edge, it can be only compared to blackjack, another card game which offers you decent odds of winning. However, when it comes to video poker, you should know that the house edge greatly depends on the machine and the variation of your choice. In general, you should look for full pay machines as they are the ones that offer favourable payouts. Most full pay video poker machines have a house edge of approximately 0.46%.
These machines are often referred to as 9/6 ones because, in them, Full House pays out 9 to 1 and the payout for Flush is 6 to 1. If you are playing on a 8/5 video poker machine, you will run out of money much faster as in them, Full House pays out 8 to 1 and Flush – 5 to 1. The house edge that the latter types of machines offer is 2.70% which is much higher. Therefore, before you start playing a video poker variation, you should first consider these two winning combinations as they are indicative whether the machine is beneficial or not.
|Type of Bet||Probability of Win||Payout||House Edge|
|9/6||Pays 9 to 1 for a ‘Full House’ and 6 to 1 for a ‘Flush’||99.50%||0.50%|
|8/5||Pays 8 to 1 for a ‘Full House’ and 5 to 1 for a ‘Flush’||97.30%||2.70%|
|7/5||Pays 7 to 1 for a ‘Full House’ and 5 to 1 for a ‘Flush’||96.15%||3.85%|
|6/5||Pays 6 to 1 for a ‘Full House’ and 5 to 1 for a ‘Flush’||95.00%||5.00%|
Random Number Generator
The Random Number Generator plays a crucial role for all casino games that have a virtual nature such as video poker and slots. As a matter of fact, online games also use this device as it has proven to be reliable and highly efficient. The reason why the video poker machines that most land-based casinos offer are trustworthy and fair is that they have a RNG. Thanks to it, you can rest assured that the outcome of the games is not predetermined in any way.
There are several types of such devices which are used in the technological world for various purposes. The device that the casinos employ is called Pseudo Random Number Generator and it is responsible for generating number combinations for the games in a completely random manner. Furthermore, there are various independent testing companies which conduct regular tests and check whether the video poker machines work as promised. Technical Systems Testing and eCOGRA are among the reputable companies which specialise in this field.
Video Poker Variations
Video poker is among the games which have a number of exciting variations. By trying a new version, you can diversify your gambling experience greatly and find the game that suits your personal preferences best. It is recommended to first start off by playing Jacks or Better because all variations use the same rules and game play. However, bear in mind that the winning combinations and the payouts can greatly differ from one variation to another. Therefore, it is best to consider these two aspects in advance, if you want to make sure you are playing on a beneficial machine.
Jacks or Better
Jacks or Better is the first video poker game that was introduced in the 1970s. Today you can also bump into a video poker machine, labelled as Draw Poker instead of Jacks or Better, as this was the original name of the game. The highest winning combination is Royal Flush and the lowest is a pair of Jacks. A single pack of 52 cards is used and you have five cards in your hand which you get at the beginning of every round.
Since it is one of the most commonly played variations, you can find it in a number of land-based as well as web-based casinos. Your ultimate goal is to manage to form any of the winning combinations. In order to do so, you have to decide which cards will be most likely beneficial to discard and which ones it will be best to keep.
Deuces Wild is another very popular variation which many video poker fans love playing. What sets this version apart from the rest of the video poker variations is that it features wild cards. All 2’s in the deck are special as they play the role of wild cards. These cards work in your favour as they can help you form winning combinations much easier. The reason why is that if you are lucky enough to get a wild card, you can choose to substitute any of the cards in your hand with a beneficial one.
The lowest winning combination in this variation is Three of a Kind and the highest one is Natural Royal Flush. There is one more winning hand that has a similar name – Deuces Royal Flush. The reason why is, that the latter contains wild cards and the former doesn’t. This also influences the payout you will receive as the winning combinations that are formed thanks to a wild card pay a lot less.
Aces and Eights
This video poker variation is similar to Jacks or Better in a lot of ways. In fact, the major difference between these two variations is that in Aces and Eights, if you get four Aces or Eights, you will make a bigger profit. In this version, Four of a Kind pays out 400 coins, providing that you have inserted a maximum of 5 coins. In comparison to Jacks or Better, the aforementioned winning combination under the same circumstances pays out only 125 coins.
It is played with a single pack of cards and there are no wild cards involved in the gaming process. The game features the Double gambling option, meaning that if you manage to collect any of the winning combinations, you will be given the chance to double your profit. For this purpose, there is an additional round which is completely optional.
This means that if you are satisfied with the standard payout of the respective winning hand, you can refuse to participate in the additional round. However, if you decide otherwise, you should know that there will be five cards, one of which will be exposed and the rest you won’t be able to see. In order to double your winnings, you need to choose a card whose value is higher than the visible card.
Progressive Jackpot Video Poker
Progressive jackpot games have always been among the most popular casino games as they offer players the chance to win big while having fun. Long gone are the days when slots were the only casino game that featured a colossal prize. Nowadays, you can play even progressive video poker which is one of the most exciting and challenging casino games. The jackpot in these types of games can reach an extremely substantial amount due to the fact that many video poker machines contribute to it as they are linked together.
This way, every time a player inserts a coin, a small part of it goes to the ever-growing sum. The best thing about these types of games is that there is no limit when it comes to the amount that the jackpot can reach and also, that no one knows when it will be won. This could happen at any time and the lucky person could be anyone. In order to win the jackpot, you are required to collect all cards for Royal Flush and to insert the maximum number of coins in the respective machine.
If you want to increase your chances of making a profit as much as possible while playing video poker, you need to get familiar with the subtleties of this game. For instance, many professional gamblers advise that it is best to always insert five coins. In case you get a Royal Flush, you will be paid 4 000 coins, providing that you have made the maximum bet. However, if you were playing with only one coin, the payout is 250. Another useful tip is to search for full pay machines, also known as 9/6 ones as they offer the most beneficial odds.
Video poker is a game which requires both skills and luck and thus, it is essential to learn a reliable strategy which you can use throughout the game. Bear in mind that it is best to choose a strategy that corresponds to your level of experience. For instance, if you are new to video poker, you should learn the basic strategy as its plan is simple to follow. It will guide you through the game and it will help you determine which cards to keep and which to discard.
Besides a strategy for your cards, you also need a reliable money management plan for your wagers. This way, when you make a profit, you will be able to retain it and go home with the money you’ve won. Also, it is best to set loss and win limits and play according to them. This means that if you experience several major money losses, you should be able to withdraw from the game instead of trying to recoup for them by placing even larger bets. In order to be able to control your funds successfully and to follow your strategy, you also need to be extremely disciplined.
Microgaming Video Poker
Microgaming is surely one of the software providers that deserve mentioning when it comes to video poker variations. It has developed an impressive range of high-quality video poker games which are famous for their vivid graphics and diversity. The online casinos that cooperate with this software provide usually offer a broad selection of video poker variations, including Multi-hand video poker, Deuces Wild, Jacks or Better, Tens or Better Power Poker, Aces and Faces and others.
This leading software developer also offers progressive jackpot video poker games – Jackpot Deuces and SupaJax. The latter gives you the chance to win a colossal prize if you manage to get four jacks and the special SupaJax card. In Jackpot Deuces, you can win the progressive jackpot if you manage to form the highest winning combination – Diamond Royal Flush. In both variations, in order to qualify for the life-changing jackpot, you need to insert 5 coins or the maximum acceptable bet.
Playtech Video Poker
One prominent software provider that takes credit for the emergence of a number of video poker variations is Playtech. All of the games that are powered by this software supplier impress not only with their excellent quality and graphics but also with their huge diversity. Most online casinos that are in partnership with this company offer Deuces Wild, Two Ways Royal, Jacks or Better, All American and others. All video poker variations differ from one another in their pay tables as well as winning combinations.
Deuces Wild by Playtech is a video poker variation which features wild cards. Thanks to them, you will be able to form winning combinations much easier and therefore, get paid more frequently. Tens or Better is another version which this software provider offers. As you might have gathered, in it, the lowest winning combination is a pair of tens. This version gives you the chance to double your winnings every time you win.
NetEnt Video Poker
NetEnt is another leading software supplier that has greatly contributed to the development of many video poker variations. It offers video poker games for all types of players, regardless of their personal preferences and experience. One of the most important things which you need to consider prior to trying a particular NetEnt variation is its pay table and winning combinations. In most variations, the highest paying hands are Royal Flush, Full House and Straight Flush.
Bear in mind that it is possible to adjust the size of your wager every round which allows you to place bets that are in accordance with your bankroll. Of course, if you can afford to bet the maximum amount, it is best to do so because if you manage to form a particular winning combination, you will get the highest possible payout. Some of the most popular video poker variations by NetEnt are Deuces Wild Double Up, Joker Wild, Jacks or Better Double Up and others.
Mobile Video Poker
Today we live in a highly technological world where a number of people possess smartphones and tablets. Mobile devices have become a major part of our daily routine which is the reason why a number of online casinos have adapted their gambling services to them. Video poker is among the exciting casino games which are compatible with various mobile devices. Regardless of whether you have an Android or an iOS smartphone or tablet, you will be able to enjoy the classic video poker game as well as other interesting variations whenever and wherever you like.
Thanks to the mobile casinos, you have the freedom to choose the time, place and the device on which you can play mobile video poker. This gives you the unique opportunity to play on the move and get entertained, regardless of your location and circumstances. As impressive as it may sound, you have a portable mini casino in your pocket which you can bring with you all the time. You can play mobile video poker on your smartphone by downloading an app or by simply accessing the casino website directly through your most preferred browser.
Is it true that video poker machines become “due”?
Every time the numbers are generated in a completely random manner and therefore, it is possible to get a Straight Flush two consecutive times or don’t get it at all during that particular session. It should be also noted that the RNG doesn’t take into account the previous outcome of the round when generating a new series of numbers.
How to determine the best video poker variation at a particular online casino?
The pay table gives you the chance to get familiar with the possible winning combinations and their payouts. Some of the most beneficial games on the Internet that you can easily find in a number of online casinos are 9/6 Jacks and Better, Deuces Wild and Double Bonus Poker. In some cases, the latter offers a house edge of 0.17% or a 100.17% payback percentage.
How to fund a casino account in order to play video poker?
The details you need to fill out in order to make a deposit also depend on the payment solution of your choice. There are some payment methods which require your bank account details and your full name, whereas others don’t need such sensitive information. Some of the most popular deposit methods include Skrill, Neteller, Credit and Debit cards, Paysafecard, EcoPayz, InstaDebit, WebMoney, MyCitadel and others.