Video Poker Games

Video poker games are available in a variety of styles, with different pay tables and game features. In terms of the house edge, video poker is one of the best games on the casino floor. The games are also easy to learn and play.

Success at video poker means finding the right machine for your playing style and learning the proper strategy for that game.

How to Play Video Poker

While each game is a little different, they all operate in the same basic way:

  1. Decide how many coins to wager. Most video poker games allow bets of between one and five units.
  2. Press the “deal” button to receive five cards. Some video poker games may use a different arrangement of cards, but five is pretty much the modern standard.
  3. Select which cards you want to keep by pressing their corresponding button. This is where strategy comes in.
  4. Press the “draw” button to discard any cards you didn’t keep and add replacement cards to your hand.
  5. You win if your form a hand with a listed payout on the pay table. These vary from game to game. Higher-value hands (royal flush, straight flush, etc.) will earn you a bigger payout than lower-value hands (two pair, aces high, etc.)

The Five Do’s of Video Poker

DO place the maximum bet on every hand. For most games, this means betting five coins per hand. This is important because you’ll only be eligible for a game’s top payouts if you place the max bet. Hint: if a game’s max bet is too high for your bankroll, switch to a cheaper machine.

DO review the rules and pay table of every game you play. Remember, this casino contest is available in a number of different varieties. Since each has its own set of rules and payouts, it’s easy to imagine making a simple mistake based on a misunderstanding of the rules.

DO get picky about what title you’ll play. You should play on video poker games that give you the best chance of winning. That means researching the pay tables and payback percentages of video poker titles and sticking to ones that give you the best advantage.

DO play using basic video poker strategy. Each game has its own ideal strategy. I’ve found that once you learn a couple of game strategies, it’s easier to learn the optimum play for a new title. Since you’re already researching the best machines, why not apply the best-possible strategy?

DO join the player’s club or VIP club. If you don’t join, you’ll miss out on possible comps and other rewards that are available to you at no extra charge. Depending on your level of play, you may earn anything from a free meals to a cash back offer and even more. Playing on the games with the lowest house edge according to basic strategy all while earning comps gives you the best attack against the casino’s edge.

Video Poker Variations

Why do so many video poker variations exist?

The games are popular. Video poker is an affordable game that combines the excitement and user-friendly status of slot machines with the skill element of poker.

Casinos will always host popular games. But because video poker tends to offer the house a small edge, casinos have to host a ton of them, and entice people to play with rule and pay table variety.

Casino gamblers are naturally drawn to new titles. They’re also susceptible to gimmicks, like the kind new video poker titles provide.

Here’s a list of the most popular variations of video poker currently available, either online or in land-based casinos. Following the list, I’ve prepared a short summary of the most popular games.

Ace Deuce Bonus PokerAce InvadersAce on the Deal
Aces and EightsAces and FacesAces Bonus Poker
Acey Deucey pokerAll AcesAll American
Anythings WildAtomic FeverBig Split poker
Big Times Draw PokerBig Win PokerBlackjack Bonus Poker
Bonus Deuces WildBonus PokerBonus Poker Deluxe
Bonus Poker PlusBonus RoyalsBuild a Wheel
Chase the RoyalDeuce on the DealDeuces and Joker Wild
Deuces WildDice FeverDouble Aces and Faces
Double BonusDouble Bonus Deuces WildDouble Bonus Poker Plus
Double Deuces WildDouble Double Aces and FacesDouble Double Bonus
Double Double JackpotDouble DrawDouble Draw Aces
Double JackpotDouble JokerDouble Pay
Dual Action PokerExtra Draw FrenzyExtreme X
Faces and DeucesFive Aces PokerFlush Fever
Full House Bonus PokerGuaranteed PlayHyper Bonus
Jackpot PokerJacks or BetterJoker Poker
Loose DeucesMatch CardMulti Strike
Multi Strike DeluxeNo Risk Double UpOne Eyed Jack
Pick-em PokerPower QuadsQuick Quads
Royal Aces Bonus PokerRoyal CourtRoyal Draw
Second Chance RoyalSequential RoyalSevens and Jokers Wild
Sevens WildSpin PokerSplit Way Royal
Stack-em pokerStud Choice pokerSuper Aces Bonus Poker
Super Bonus Deuces WildSuper Double BonusSuper Double Double Bonus
Super Draw PokerSuper Times PaySuper Triple Bonus
Super Video HoldemTens or BetterThree Card Draw Poker
Three Way ActionTriple BonusTriple Bonus Poker Plus
Triple Deuces WildTriple Double BonusTriple Triple Bonus
Triple TroubleUltimate Four of a Kind BonusUltimate X
Ultra Bonus PokerVideo HoldemWheel Poker
Wheel Poker DeluxeWhite Hot AcesWinning Streak poker

Jacks or Better

Jacks or Better is one the best-known and most common variation. I don’t remember ever playing at a casino that didn’t offer Jacks or Better.

The game is available with different pay tables. The best table for the player is known as a “9 / 6 machine,” offering a payback percentage per hand of .995.

The reason this type of game is called a 9 / 6 machine is because it pays 9 credits for a full house and 6 credits for a flush. Other game pay 8 for the full house and 5 for the flush, which reduces the player’s profits and increases the casino’s advantage.

Deuces Wild

Deuces Wild is a common entry in the “wild” category. I’d say wild-card games in general (and Deuces Wild in particular) is one of the two most popular titles along with Jacks or Better.

Similar to that game, Deuces Wild is available in a variety of pay charts, ranging from “full pay machines” all the way down to machines that pay less than .95 back per hand.

A common variety of Deuces Wild found in casinos is “Not So Ugly Ducks Deuces Wild.” It has a great pay table, compared to other versions. The pay back per hand is .997, making it one of the best machines on any floor where you find the game.

Bonus Poker

Bonus Poker is a slight variation on the popular Jacks or Better machine. The biggest difference is that Bonus Poker offers a higher-than-usual payout for four-of-a-kind hands. The best pay chart for Bonus Poker is an 8 / 5 chart, returning .992 per hand.

Pick-em Poker

Pick-em Poker is a less-known variation of the game that’s gained a lot of attention because it’s so different from most titles.

Using a standard 52-card deck, the game starts by dealing you two cards.

Next, the game offers you your choice from two different cards. After adding one, you see another pair of cards, then another, and then a final pair, allowing you to increase your hand to five cards. Pay outs are made according to the pay table on the machine.

Pick-em Poker is known for offering an awesome payback percentage. The best pay table offers a return of over .999 per hand, assuming you’re using perfect strategy.

The ideal pay chart for Pick-em Poker (the one descried above) looks like this:

HandPayout
Royal Flush1,200
Straight Flush239.8
Four of a Kind120
Full House18
Flush15
Straight11
Three of a Kind5
Two Pair3
9s or Better2

Tens or Better

Tens or Better is another Jacks or Better clone. It’s popular because of a rule variation that pays out winnings for a pair of tens or better, rather than a pair of Jacks or better.

Two common pay tables exist for the game – one pays 25 credits for a four of a kind hand and the other pays just 20 credits for the same hand. The expected return for the 25-credit table is .991, while the expected return per hand for the 20-credit table is.980.