Video poker has been the refuge of those who shun slots, but want to avoid the intensity of table games. It’s a comfortable go-between that allows them to enjoy the thoughtful rigors of poker without the intimidation of other players. In this article, I’ll explain video poker rules, including how to play the game and how to interpret the pay tables.
This page will provide an introduction to the game. You’ll learn the basic rules for video poker, along with a few tips and suggestions that will help you maximize your winnings. In the event you’re uncertain where to play real money video poker, we’ll share a few of our favorite online casinos below.
KickAssPoker.com’s Online Video Poker Guide
- Basic Rules of Playing Video Poker
- Strategy for Improving Your Video Poker Results
- Top Online Casinos with Real Money Video Poker
Playing Video Poker
How To Play Video Poker (Basic Rules)
Most video poker games follow a normal draw poker routine. After choosing your wager, you’ll be dealt 5 cards, each with a “hold” button directly underneath it. Pressing this button holds the card. When you play online, you can simply click the cards you’d like to hold. Once you’ve chosen your hold cards, you can press (or click) the “deal” button. Your other cards will be replaced with new ones, making your final hand. If your final hand matches a hand on the pay table, you win.
The first thing you’ll notice when you visit the top gambling sites is that each offers several versions of video poker. Jacks or Better is the most popular game, but there are dozens of others. The basic rules are the same, though each version offers small nuances exclusive to that particular game.
Let’s start with the basics:
You’ll begin each hand with five cards. You’ll then select the cards you would like to keep by clicking on them. Once you have selected them, click the “Draw” button to replace the remaining cards. You can also choose to replace your entire hand. Whether you win or lose depends on the version of video poker you’re playing. The video poker payout depends on the pay table.
Before you begin your first hand, you’ll need to choose a betting denomination. These vary by casino and the version of the game you’re playing. Common video poker betting amounts at most of the casinos we enjoy include $0.01, $0.05, $0.25, $0.50, $1 and $5.
You’ll also need to select how many “coins” you would like to bet for each hand. For most versions of video poker, you can bet between one and five coins. For example, if you choose $0.25 as your betting denomination, you can bet $0.25 on a hand, or up to $1.25 on a hand. The more you bet, the more generous the payouts.
Making Hands in Video Poker
Most people are familiar with the hand rankings that can be made during poker. They include a pair, 3 of a kind, straight, flush, full house, 4 of a kind, straight flush, and royal flush (in order of ascending value). 5 cards are dealt and players have the option of replacing some of them with others to make hands. Video poker works in the same manner. If you can make any of the hands listed on the pay table, you’ll win a payout.
Video Poker Pay Tables
Video poker machines use a Random Number Generator that simulates the probabilities of making various hands with a standard 52-card deck. The pay table describes how much you’ll win for those hands. This can be an advantage for the savvy player. Remember, probabilities are a constant. They never change. That means you can compare pay tables to find the games with the most attractive video poker odds.
Strategy For Improving Your Video Poker Results
Despite what a lot of gamblers think, you can improve your results by following a specific strategy in video poker. Real money video poker is unlike slots, which are based almost entirely on luck. With video poker, your decisions play a huge role in the outcome of your bets.
Strategy is specific to the version of video poker you’re playing. Because there’s no way to cover all of them on this page, we’ll focus primarily on the most popular game: Jacks or Better. Most other versions are derivatives of this game.
This isn’t meant to be an exhaustive strategy guide for Jacks or Better. Rather, it will help you get started in the right direction. The following hand descriptions are accompanied by the number of cards you should replace. We’ll skip hands for which you should keep all five cards (for example, royal flushes, straights, and full houses).
Four of a Kind – replace 1 card
Three of a Kind – 2 cards
Pair of Jacks or Higher – 2 cards
Low Pair – 3 cards
4-Card Straight – 1 card
3 Cards to a Royal Flush – 2 cards
The above hands are, of course, only a small portion of the possible hands you can make in video poker. We have included them because they tend to confuse beginning players. For instance, a novice may be tempted to get rid of a low pair when playing Jacks or Better. He or she may also be tempted to break up a 4-card straight because of the low likelihood of completing the straight on the draw.
Also worth noting, if you are holding high cards in your original hand, keep them and discard the others. A lot of video poker players get rid of their high cards in order to try for a pair or better on the draw. Statistically, it’s better to keep them.
Playing Online Video Poker
Top Online Casinos With Real Money Video Poker
Most video poker fans enjoy playing other online casino games, such as blackjack, roulette, slots, and craps. For this reason, when choosing a gambling site, it’s important to consider all of the features they offer. That includes their sign-up bonuses, promotions, casino software, and banking options (among many other features). We enjoy playing at the following online casinos. We encourage you to try each of them, so you’ll know which one you prefer.
- Bodog – They are one of the veterans of the online gambling industry, and know exactly what their members crave. Bodog maintains a Flash-driven casino environment you can enjoy through your browser, but also provides easy-to-use software to download. They offer an unlimited and instant 10% match sign-up bonus on your first deposit. It’s small in comparison to those offered by other casinos, but they more than make up for it in many other areas. Visit Bodog today to get started.
- Super Slots – They are one of the oldest online casinos, but maintain a very low profile. SuperSlots offers a 100% match up to $300 on your first deposit. They also have weekly promotions, with Bonus Mondays (75% match on your first deposit), Bonus Wednesdays, and Bonus Fridays (100% match). Visit Super Slots today to take advantage of these promotions.
If you’d like to enjoy real money video poker online, visit the casinos we recommended above. The only way to know if you enjoy the experience is to test drive them yourself.
As video poker has become more popular, the interest in playing the game online has exploded. You can get started easily by visiting Bodog Casino and creating a free account. It’s an ideal way to spend your time learning exciting new games while having the chance to win generous bonuses and prizes. We also have a Bodog Casino review page loaded with more information and links.