Online Video Poker
As we explained in our casino game page, video poker is a widely popular game - albeit a watered-down version of real poker. Regardless, it hasn’t stopped companies from making all kinds of games around this type of poker.
Our casino games page covers the basics of video poker but it’s worth repeating here. That being said, there is also a lot of strategies involved, which we share on this page. This will ensure you can win some real money and enjoy yourself.
Video Poker Basics
As mentioned before, in video poker, you have a five-card hand. From there, there is a betting phase that’s made up of a series of coins ranging from one to five. After that phase, you can begin to interact. You’re free to draw a card and discard a card on your turn or to hold your position.
The entire objective is to turn up with the strongest hand after a certain number of turns. Simple right?
It’s this simplicity that’s key in video poker. It’s easy to get into for other players. It also plays drastically different than traditional poker. And yet, it’s similar in that video poker has skill involved. Video poker is a game of skill after all. So what strategies should you consider?
Strategies and Tips for Video Poker
First off, video poker is only a small handful of games where your odds are higher than usual. But video poker is also pretty special in that you can influence the game’s outcome as well.
All that’s required in video poker is skill and practice. And that’s where these tips come in handy. Also, note that these strategies apply to other variants too. Examples are Deuce Wild. In fact, playing against a machine is smarter. You can win more that way.
Now with that said, here are some pointers.
Video poker is simple, regardless of what variant you play. They all are based on features you’d see in five-card draw Poker. So what are the rules for that? Simple:
- You have the simple 52-card deck;
- After your wager, you press Deal and you get five random cards;
- Tap on the cards you want to keep;
- The untapped cards are pitched and you draw new cards based on the number of cards you discarded.
Rules are simple, but your goal here is much like Poker. You want your hand to be a flush, two pairs, straight, or if you get lucky, a royal flush.
You want to keep these in mind when discarding cards and choosing what to keep. After all, the amount of money you win is based on the strength of that hand. As a result, you want to be strategic about what cards you discard.
The last thing you want to do in a video poker game is to use the strategy that many players use: guess. You will lose a lot of money if you leave it to guessing.
Remember, having skills is needed in this game and you can win big if you know what you’re doing. Now each person’s strategy is different which is why we encourage you to develop it. This is easy to do now that video poker is online. You can play for free for little risk and try out strategies.
The beauty of video poker machines is that you can see the expected returns before starting to play. Why is this good? Well, game developers, today don’t disclose this information anymore. In fact, new slot machines don’t give you access to those numbers.
This makes video poker one of the only games where you can see expected returns.
This helps the player out immensely when you consider other pieces of information, such as the house edge.
What is it you might ask? It’s another term for average Casino profits. It might not seem like much, but knowing these two pieces of info can help decide which video poker machine to play.
Whether you are playing a variant or not, this strategy below will work quite well. Do make note that even though these variants are similar, there are different winning strategies too.
Regardless, have these best practices:
- Play max bet. Strange I know, but it’s crucial you do this. Betting max gives you the opportunity to get a bonus win whenever you hit a royal flush. What’s also important to know is you can bet more conservatively, but only betting five coins will give you access to winning with a royal flush.
- Slow down. Like any other casino game, video poker and others are made for one purpose: make the Casino profit. Therefore, if you’re looking to win, play video poker slowly. The beauty with video poker is the fact there is no timer. You can take as much time as you want. In fact, you can go play a few games and then take a break.
- Be part of a Player’s Club. While these groups are meant to get players to play more, this isn’t the main reason to join them. The biggest reason is the incentives as Player Clubs often get special bonuses. These bonuses can shrink the house edge on the long term, thus giving you higher returns.
- Prioritize video poker games with progressive jackpots. Progressive jackpots on video poker games are incredible. It’s a way for casinos to give players big wins for small bets. Again, check the pay tables as some may have this feature but offer little odds of winning.
- Look at other bonuses. Not just progressive jackpots, but there are various promos and offers that other games and casinos offer. After all, these promos and offers a tip in the players' favour so definitely take advantage of them. You can even ask casinos about the bonuses too.
As a rule of thumb, avoid these things in your strategy:
- Never keep the kicker. When playing Jacks or Better, don’t retain a kicker. A lot of players think you have higher odds of winning but you don’t.
- Chasing a flush or a straight. Never keep three cards in an attempt to get a flush or straight.
Remember the basic strategy: don’t give up a winning hand to get a better hand.
Read also: Online Baccarat