How to Win at Video Poker
Online casinos have done a good job coming up with new games: a multitude of online slots titles, and table games converted to player-against-the-house games. But one video online game still rules the roost: video poker.
Video poker is as popular online as it is on casino floors—and that means it’s really popular. One big reason is that video poker games are much more interactive than slots games.
All variations of video poker involve playing a basic five-card draw game, where the player is dealt five cards, then chooses which to hold and which to discard on the draw—or second deal of cards.
Payouts are based on standard poker hands. The higher the hand, the higher the payout. Variations of the games usually involve wild cards. The more wild cards in the game, the lower the hand payouts, but the higher your chances of a winning hand. And all video poker games offer a big jackpot for the highest hand—usually a Royal Flush or five of a kind.
As for strategy, the most common is to always go for the biggest hit you can on a given hand. An example would be breaking up a pair or even a three of a kind—which have low payouts—to attempt to hit a straight flush, which has a large payout. Still, many players would rather play the safe bet and except the lower payout. It’s a matter of personal choice.
OK, so that’s a quick primer on video poker. Here’s a look at some variations available at CaesarsCasino.com, just as an example.
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- Jacks or Better or Draw Poker. This is video poker at its most basic, with no wild cards. Hitting a pair of jacks or better is usually a push, meaning you win back your bet. That can help extend a session as most other variations won’t pay off until you hit two pair. With no wild cards, hits come less frequently, but payouts are higher.
- Joker Poker. Jokers are wild and you can play variations with one, two, or even three jokers. The wild cards really juice up the game and lead to more hits, but payouts are lower, starting usually with three of a kind.
- Deuces Wild. One of the most popular variations of the game with four wild cards: the four deuces. As you might guess, with that many wild cards, the individual hand payouts are lower, but those deuces show up a lot. Your chances of hitting a high hand—full house or better—go way up.
- Bonus Poker. Bonus poker games set certain hands (usually four of a kind) for a much higher payoff. The games usually don’t have wild cards, but there are a lot of variations, including double bonus poker with even higher payouts.
- All American. Similar to Jacks or Better, this variation sets higher payouts for flushes and straights.
Play on, and may the cards always be in your favor.