Winning at Video Poker

Videopoker is draw poker in slot machine form. The machine randomly deals the player five cards from a 52-card deck, any number of which can either be held or discarded. New cards are dealt to replace the discards. The object of videopoker is to build the best possible five-card hand.

Since its introduction in the early 1980’s, Videopoker has grown into one of the casino’s most popular games. Eighty percent of respondents to a recent survey in Las Vegas said they play videopoker.

Unlike regular Poker, which is played against other players at a poker table, Videopoker is played individually on a machine that uses random number technology to create a Poker hand.

videopoker_lgPayoffs are based on a scale, paying players for hands as low as a pair of Tens or Jacks all the way up to a Royal Flush. Like slot machines, Videopoker machines are available in many denominations, with 25c and $1 machines being the most popular. Gambling regulatory bodies require that the outcome of any hand in Video poker cannot be affected by the number of coins played. If you get a good hand with a one coin bet, you would have been dealt the same hand with two or more coins.

Many casinos also offer progressive payoffs or bonuses for Royal Flushes or other special hands. Videopoker provides variety too, with versions ranging from ‘Jacks or Better’ to ‘Double Bonus’ and ‘Deuces Wild’.

Hand rankings follow, from highest to lowest:

1.Five of a Kind*
2.Royal Flush
3.Straight Flush
4.Four of a Kind
5.Full House
8.Three of a Kind
9.Two Pair
10.A Pair

* only possible with video poker variants that incorporate wild cards.

The house edge for video poker averages around 3%.

Decide on a strategy and stick with it. If you intend to spend a significant amount of time playing video poker, it will pay to memorize perfect play for the particular game or games that you intend to play. You can find perfect play strategy tables for many video poker variations by searching with Google. For other more obscure video poker variations or non-standard pay tables, you may have to buy a custom designed strategy table or buy a video poker analysis software in order to ascertain perfect play.

Above all, adopt a good money management strategy – always set loss limits for every session and stick to them. Playing video poker can be an enjoyable form of entertainment, but if you do not have the discipline to stick to your pre-defined limits, you could have a gambling addiction and should find help immediately.