Video Poker is one of the most popular games of chance and has managed to maintain its popularity in online casinos, even if it has strong competition from slots or table games. And this is even though we are talking about a game launched on the market in its first forms more than 40 years ago, in the mid-70s.
In this article, we will talk about some extremely important aspects that you need to know as a beginner and not only.
Why you should choose video poker in online casinos
Video poker does not attract spectacular bonus features or first-class graphics, as in the case of video slots, for example, but that does not mean that we are talking about a game that should be ignored.
Every experienced player knows that, along with Blackjack, Video Poker gives you the best chance of winning or, more correctly, the house advantage is the smallest in this game. And this is the main thing that should interest you if you want to make a profit when you play in an online casino.
Played correctly, even the weakest versions of Video Poker available on the market are much better than most pay-out slots. And this translates into either more frequent gains or, in the worst case, less significant losses.
For example, Jacks or Better video poker has a payout of about 99%, compared to an average of 95% for video slots or 97.3% for roulette. By a 99% payout we mean that if you play 100 lei for video poker, you can expect to win an average of 99 lei. These calculations become valid after millions and millions of hands, but they are perfectly correct. So it is often the case that you lose all your money and in other cases make huge profits. But in the long run, this will be the “average” of your earnings (99% of what you invest). Simply put, in the case of a video poker game, you will win more often than in the case of slots or roulette, but in the long run, you will easily lose.
How lucky you are when you play video poker online
Video poker falls into the category of gambling, so clearly, chance plays a role, but only to a certain extent. The classic game of poker is considered by many to be a game of skill because the best players constantly calculate their chances of catching a particular hand, “read” their opponents and decide on an “optimal” action based on all available information. In poker, you don’t have to have the best hand to win, given that when you feel your opponent’s weakness you can use a “bluff” to make him throw a better hand.
Obviously, in the video poker game you can’t “bluff” the machine or vice versa, but certainly the decisions you make influence the chances of winning. Thus, if you make the right decision mathematically every time and give up the right cards, you will reach the maximum payout percentage (99%). Otherwise, the payout may decrease by many percent, and in this case, you will not be able to blame the bad luck.
Using relatively simple mathematical calculations, we conclude that we can catch a Royal Straight in Video Poker once in every 40,000 hands. But here comes the “luck” factor. It can be very good to catch a royal straight three times if you play 40,000 hands, but you can just as well wait for Royal for 120,000 hands without receiving it.
Hundreds of thousands or millions of hands are played in online casinos every day, so your chances of winning are not only influenced by personal experience. You don’t have to play 40,000 hands to hope for a Royal Straight. You can catch it first hand, in which case you can consider yourself lucky and we advise you to withdraw the money immediately.
What video poker game should you start with?
If you are into Video Poker online, it may be difficult to choose one of the games on offer, as there are several versions available on the market.
Our advice is to always choose the “Jacks or Better” Video Poker game. Not only does this game have one of the best payouts, but it is 100% based on the classic five-card poker game. You don’t have “wild” cards or jokers that complicate your calculations when you decide which is the best move with each hand.
The game is based on a virtual pack of 52 cards and it is very easy to calculate which odds you will catch a specific card. Suppose you have a hand like A (rhombus) K (rhombus), J (rhombus) 10 (rhombus) 8 (spade). You will give up the 8th spade in the hope that you will catch a color, a straight, or a royal straight. The last case is the ideal one and you know that only one book in the pack helps you to make that royal straight: a lady (Q) of a rhombus. Of the 52 initial cards in the virtual pack, there are 47 more and one of them is the diamond, so you have a 2.13% chance of catching that card.
For one color you need one of the other 8 diamonds in the pack (2,3,4,5,6,7,8 and 9), so you have 8 chances out of 47 to make a color – 17.02%.
Also, Jacks or Better is a game with low volatility, so the chances of losing all your budget in one session in which luck is not on your side are much lower.
What you need to do to become a good video poker player
First, read this ” Video Poker Player’s Guide ” and learn the basic strategy for the game of your choice. Whether you choose Jacks or Better, Bonus Poker, Joker Poker, or Deuces Wild, find out the right decisions based on the starting hands you receive and you will find that you will become much more efficient.
Remember that video poker is a game of decisions. In most casino games you only decide whether or not to bet on a certain result ( you bet on the roulette that the ball will fall on a red number) and how much you bet. Instead, you place your bet on Video Poker, and depending on the cards you receive, you must make decisions that may affect the outcome of that bet. This is one of the things that makes video poker so popular with players. It’s not entirely a game of chance and you feel that you can make decisions that will help you win a hand.
When you want to learn a certain game, start with the basic strategy and only then learn how to proceed in the less common situations. It is much more effective to know a simplified strategy than to try to learn moves.
You can find many programs on the internet to help you learn the most popular video poker games without having to play for money. For example, this Poker Trainer is an ideal option for beginners. You play Jacks or Better for free, and the game is programmed not to suggest which cards you should keep. Depending on the decision you make, you are notified if you made the right decision or if you made a mistake. This way, you will learn very quickly how to behave depending on the situation.
In general, in online casinos you can play video poker for free, using virtual money, but you do not have such a tutorial that will show you when you make a mistake and when you make the right decision.
Don’t Forget When Playing Video Poker
However, the best advice we can give you is to keep your online casino activity at a hobby level and don’t forget to have fun. It is a serious mistake to try to turn this enjoyable activity into a way to make money because you will most likely fail.
Don’t forget to have fun playing video poker or any other game of chance and never bet more than you can lose. And if you lose a lot of money, never try to get it back. You may be lucky, but the most likely outcome is to lose even more money. When you play with this pressure you are no longer rational, you make mistakes and you risk getting into the situation of betting the money you need for other activities.
Please stick to the country-specific restrictions and regulations, as these are different from state to state and country to country. It is not allowed to use this information to violate a law or statute. If you feel like playing too much, or if you give you gambling at home or workplace problems, please visit for advice or support.