At first glance, you might think that all the gambling machines in the casino are video slot machines, but if you look closer you will find that some of the machines are video poker machines or combined machines where you decide which type of game you want to play – slot game, video poker game, instant keno game, virtual scratch cards, etc.
Video poker is different most from most slot machines since you get to make a choice during the course of a round and this choice will have an actual impact on the result. Video poker isn’t a pure game of chance; you choice do have an impact on the outcome.
Most variants of video poker are based on five card draw. Your get a starting hand consisting of 5 cards, face-up, and it is up to you to decide if you want to discard any card or cards and have them replaced. You can discard 0-5 cards. Any card you discard is replaced by a new card from the deck. You only have one chance to discard cards, so you can’t discard one card first and then later decide to discard two more cards, etc.
Video poker is typically played with a single standard deck of cards with 12 hearts, 12 spades, 12 diamonds and 12 clubs. In some video poker variants, one or more jokers are added. Also, letting certain cards be wild cards is common. One of the most popular versions of video poker is Deuces Wild, where all the deuces (2’s) are wild and can substitute for any other card to form a winning poker hand.
Winning at video poker
When you play video poker, you are not playing against other players or against a dealer hand. Instead, you know from the start exactly how good your hand must be for you to win anything. If you are playing Jacks or Better video poker, you need a pair of jacks or better to get paid. If you are playing Tens or Better video poker, a pair of tens is enough to get paid, and so on.
It is always important to check the rules in advance so you can adapt your strategy accordingly. Two video poker variants with the same name can have different rules. So, just because three of a kind or higher is required for a win at Joker Poker video poker from a certain game developer, that doesn’t mean that three of a kind is the cutoff point for Joker poker video poker from another game developer.
Examples of what a paytable can look like for Jacks or Better video poker:
|Royal Straight Flush||250||500||750||1000||4000|
|Four of a Kind||25||50||75||100||125|
|Three of a Kind||3||6||9||12||15|
|Pair of Jacks or Better||1||2||3||4||5|
As you can see, the win for a Royal Straight Flush is disproportionately large for a 5 coin bet. This is to encourage players to wager 5 coins per round.