The Ultimate Guide to Online Video Poker 2022

All the secrets of online Video Poker revealed. We teach you how to play the classic game and what advanced strategies you can apply, as well as all the terms you need to know. Our Video Poker guide will take you through all the key things about video poker, from the very basics to the tips you need to play the best possible way. Find the best video poker online casinos as reviewed by our experts and start your journey today.

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Overview

The game of video poker came up in the world of live gambling, with players playing the games in dimly lit backrooms of bars, with empty stares in their eyes and a cigarette on their lips. Today, video poker is one of the most popular casino games in the world, with machines spread across the glamorous floors of some of the world’s most prestigious casinos. The game is as exciting as any other, and the sounds of big wins on a video poker machine will give you a thrill of a lifetime.

Poker was one of the most popular casino games at the time when video poker came up, and it was digitalized for the purpose. The rise of the internet meant video poker would quickly become popular online as well. Video poker is a mix of classic 5 card poker game and slot machines.

As video poker machines become more advanced, it is the logical next step to offer them for online play as well. Online software developers have found a whole new generation of players who enjoy playing video poker, a game that is traditionally associated with older gamblers. Today, young players are chasing the thrill of landing a royal flush as much as ever.

While many traditional casino games thrive only in the live casino setting, video poker is perfectly designed to be played from the comfort of a player’s home and without any prying eyes. Both new and experienced video poker fans now get to enjoy the game at the pace they like and without any pressure of the casino environment.

Simple playing rules are not the only upside of video poker. There is also a whole bunch of different versions of the game to pick from, which makes it more exciting for players to enjoy. Games like Jacks or Better, Joker Poker, Deuces Wild, and others will keep you glued to your chair for hours in pursuit of the big wins. The high payout rates of video poker are another amazing upside.

In this guide to video poker, we are going to teach you everything you need to know. The information will take you from the history of the game to the different versions of video poker you could be enjoying and the useful tips, tricks, and terms you need to know to enjoy video poker to the fullest. We will teach you all the strategies you need to be a great video poker player and answer all the frequent questions you may have about the game. Keep reading if you want to know anything about video poker and become an expert at this popular casino game.

Pros & Cons

Pros
There are many different variations of video poker available
You can learn video poker quickly and have some fun
Play anytime you want and get some quick action
The min bet is low
House edge in video poker is minimal
You don't depend on any other players in any way
Cons
House does still retain an edge in video poker, although the RTP is very high
There is no way to predict the cards that are coming
You will have to memorize a complex strategy to play perfectly

History

Video Poker is a mixture of the most ancient and the most new in gambling. It is founded on poker (a classic card game) which has its beginnings in ancient Europe, but received a breath of new life a few decades ago in the 1970s as computerized casino games surfaced.

In the middle of the 1970s, an employee of Bally Technologies named Si Redd made a pitch about Video Poker to the company executives. His proposal was rejected but he persisted in his project buoyed by his entrepreneurial spirit. Eventually, he formed his own company, Sircoma, which is known today as IGT (International Game Technology).

It took a few years before Redd’s investment paid off. In the middle of 1980s, Video Poker had truly made an entrance. This was the start of the MTV age, that time when people were truly starting to see the potential of video technology, and with that, Video Poker was well in the right position to get the Vegas people’s imagination.

Video Poker was basically derived from Draw Poker, in which the lowest hand possible is a two-pair but then, the type that achieved the most popularity in its early years is Better or Jacks, wherein the player must obtain a pair of Better or Jacks in their 5 cards to win the game. This is the version that has remained the most popular nowadays.

Just like other casino games, Video Poker likewise got a surge in its worldwide popularity thanks to the internet age. Video Poker is now a popular game at most casinos online, together with roulette, regular table poker, and blackjack.


Terminology

The terminologies used in Video Poker is a combination of newer terms and regular poker terms, as what can be expected from a game that is a mix of the new and the old.

Action is the total amount betted by a player in a certain game.

Bet Max is the Maximum Bet on a certain game. Usually it is 5 coins per hand.

Discard are cards which the player chooses to lose or throw away after the first deal.

Flush is a hand of five-cards in which all are from the same card suit.

Four of a Kind is a type of hand wherein there are four cards of the same value.

Full House is a hand that has a pair and a three of kind.

Hand is the five cards dealt by the machine to the player.

Hold are the cards that the player chose to hold on with.

Jackpot is the highest possible bonus which is usually reserved as the prize for a royal flush.

Pair are two cards that has the same exact value, example two Queens or two 5s.

Pay Back is the estimate of the game’s payout percentage which is based on previous data for millions of hands.

Payout is the paid out amount to a player for 1 hand.

Pay Table is a list displayed on a screen which pertains to the list of payouts for every scenario.

Royal Flush is the best hand that is possible in a game of Video Poker or even regular poker. It consists of an Ace-high flush from the same suit of cards.

Straight is a hand of five successive numbers, example 3-7 or 7-Queen.

Straight Flush is wherein all 5 cards are from the similar suit of cards.

Winning hand is any hand that has a winning combination.


Rules

Video Poker’s rules are comparatively straightforward in relation to other types of poker. All types of Video Poker are played with a common 52-card deck (except for the game Joker Wild which of course includes the jokers). To start playing, place a bet and press “deal” for the five cards to be dealt to you. You can choose to “hold” or “discard” as much as 5 cards if you like. The poker machine will then replace the cards you discarded with more random cards. Whatever five cards that are left with you is your final hand, which would be the basis if you will not be paid out or be paid out.

In all forms of video poker, cards have the same order in terms of rank although the amount of payouts differs depending on the game. This is right order: Royal Flush; Straight Flush; Four of a Kind; Full House; Flush; Straight; Three of a Kind; Two Pair; One Pair of Jacks or Better.

No House advantage is defined in this game. The percentages of payout differs from 97% up to 99.5% but then, there is one applicable rule to all types of Video Poker: it is the fact that the player is playing against the machine and therefore has only two end points, either to win or to lose.


Strategy

As is expected from a game with simple rules, the strategy in Video Poker is fairly basic. The player only has two options after getting his/her first five card hand, and that is which cards to discard and which cards to hold. The following strategy can be easily adapted to other types of Video Poker, although it basically applies to Better or Jacks.

Straight Flush: Keep all your cards with you if this comes out of the box. It is very rare that you must be tempted to take a photograph of the screen and if you are so lucky as to get a royal flush, you’ll get rich from progressive jackpot.

Four of a Kind: This is deemed to be the second-best combination so you got to hold your cards. This cannot be improved by discarding any cards.

Full House: The third-best combination, and can’t be improved by discarding any card. Hold all cards.

Flush: Can’t be further improved, keep all cards.

Straight: Can’t be further improved, keep all cards.

Three of a Kind: Discard the two other cards but keep the three of a kind.

Two Pairs: For a shot at a Full House, discard the fifth card and only keep the two pairs.

Jacks or Better: Keep the pair and lose the three other cards.

As a rule of thumb, you should lose all cards except from The Jacks, Queens, Kings, or Aces if you don’t win a thing from the initial hand.

The following are a few pieces of advice that may come in handy in helping you be better at Video Poker:

  • Before trying Video Poker, play real poker first. Playing poker against the computer will be easier once you have played against real life opponents and have come to understand all the card combinations.
  • Prior to starting a new type of Video Poker, read the Pay Table first to know the possible payout for each card combo. A good pay table must have payout percentages of up to 99.5%.
  • Do not ever lose all five cards if you ever strike a winning hand from your first deal. Even a pair of Jacks is still a sure ball win, lose the other three and see if you can improve your cards.
  • If there is a progressive jackpot for a royal flush, make sure to play the Max Bet which is usually five coins. You can’t qualify for the jackpot if you did not play for the Max Bet.
  • Be calm and stay that way. The best in poker do not play if they are tired, drunk, angry, or emotional and the very same rules are applicable to Video Poker. Even if you are playing against a machine, your decisions can be affected by your emotional state. If you keep calm, your decisions shall be better, which would mean you’ll have more fun and win more games.
  • Every hand is a brand new hand. You could lose ten hands in a row or win ten hands in a row but then, the next or eleventh hand will always be a new hand making the previous ones meaningless to your current game.

Tips

Once you have the grasp of the basic rules, you will want to go beyond that and learn some advanced concepts. Here are a few tips on how you can do that:

Getting Started

Now that you know what you are getting involved with, it's time to get you started. Here are the steps you need to follow to start playing video poker online for real money:

1 Read Up First

Before you are ready to make your first bet, you should make sure you understand the rules and strategies needed to win in this game. Read up first before you start splashing around your hard earned cash.

2 Choose Your Online Casino

Once you are sure about how to play, you need to choose the right online casino. Do some research and check out our list of top video poker online casinos you can play at for some great suggestions.

3 Pick the First Game

Now you are ready to start playing. Pick one of the many video poker games in the casino lobby. We recommend you start with one of the simpler versions such as Jacks or Better.

4 Place Your Wager

Once the game is loaded up, you can start playing. If you are in real money mode, start with smaller bets and build your way up as you grow in confidence and hopefully as you win some money at lower stakes.

5 Understand Your Paytables

Make sure you fully understand the game's paytable when playing. This is a crucial step if you want to have success at the games and you will have to base your strategy off the paytable in question.

Terminology

If you want to be completely comfortable around video poker games, you will need to learn all the important terms. This glossary will teach you all the lingo you could possibly need when playing video poker:

Video Poker Glossary

Video Poker Types

These are the most popular versions of video poker out there:

Classic Video Poker

The game is based completely on five-card draw poker, one of the simplest variations of poker. The game is similar to a slot machine, but uses a poker paytable. You can play the game over the internet on your mobile phone or your laptop.

All Aces

All Aces is a video poker variation that derives from the classic game of Jacks or Better. Additional payouts are offered for four of a kind hands, while some lesser hands have a smaller payout than usual.

Aces and Eights

Another popular variation of video poker, Aces and Eights pits the player against the house. Both you and the dealer will have five cards, and you get to draw new cards if you wish. The game does derive from Jacks or Better, but offers different payouts for four of a kind hands.

High-Speed Poker

A fast video poker variation played against the dealer, High-Speed Poker will have three different rounds. You will have an Ante Bet, Play Bet, and an optional Bonus Bet that you can place. This game moves at lightning speed and is extremely exhilarating to be a part of.

Bonus Deuces Wild

An advanced version of the Deuces Wild machine, this game adds an extra layer to the traditional version. On top of all deuces being wild cards, you will have extra payouts for five of a kind and a royal flush. Some lower hands like straights and flushes are worth less, but they are also very easy to make.

Double Double Bonus Poker

Loosely based on Jacks or Better, Double Double Bonus Poker will give you plenty of extra cash for various combinations of quads, while reducing your payouts for some of the more common hands out there.

Double Joker Poker

A video poker game with two wild cards, this game allows you to make five of a kind and make a lot of poker hands with greater ease. The addition of wild cards make Double Joker Poker a more exciting version of video poker than many.

Jacks or Better

By far the most popular variation of video poker, Jacks or Better is a game that allows you to win many different ways. You will start out with five cards, all of which you can discard and replace one time. Any pair of jacks or better will give you a valuable payout, while a royal flush will trigger the game's jackpot.

Tens or Better

Tens or Better is made on the basis of Jacks or Better. The main difference, as the name suggests, is that you will get paid for a pair of tens as well as all better hands. This does mean payouts are slightly reduced, but also that they come around more often.

Deuces Wild

A video poker game that's gained great popularity, Deuces Wild makes every deuce in the deck into a wild card. This means you will often have hands with amazing winning potential, as any deuce can act as any other card in the deck.

Aces and Faces

Aces and Faces is another fairly standardized video poker game. The biggest difference between it and traditional video poker comes in the slightly altered payouts which an amateur player might not even notice.

Bonus Poker

This version of video poker also comes from Jacks or Better basics, with some added payouts for four of a kind combos, but the same rule that no hand under a pair of jacks offers a payout.

Joker's Wild

Joker's Wild is a popular and fun video poker version where a single joker card adds to the action. The joker substitutes all other cards and allows you to win big money with hands like five of a kind.

All American

All American Poker is another adaptation of the popular Jacks or Better video poker game. In All American, straights, flushes, and straight flushes pay more, but a full house and two pair will pay less. This adds some variety and change to your gameplay and also changes the optimal strategy quite a bit.

Poker Pursuit

In Poker Pursuit, you will have an Ante stage and a Raise stage, which means you get more interaction with the game. The final payouts are made in accordance with a preset paytable that contains all the possible poker hands.

SuperJax

This version of video poker is only offered in online casinos. Unlike the traditional video poker, the SuperJax card is present in the deck. This card can land you the progressive jackpot if you can get it alongside the other four jacks from the deck, making five of a kind.

Mega Jacks

Yet another version of Jacks or Better, Mega Jacks comes with a progressive jackpot feature, but no wilds. You can win the progressive jackpot by landing a royal flush while betting the maximum coins.

Louisiana Double Poker

This video poker variation is played with a deck that has 53 cards, instead of the usual 52. The Double Card will not replace other cards, but will double any win you already have. You will need at least a pair of jacks to land a win, and if you can get a royal flush, you will receive the jackpot.

2-Ways Royal

The biggest difference between Jacks or Better and 2-Ways Royal is that you have two possible royal flush combos you can win, both of them offering a big payout and an exhilarating jackpot moment.

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FAQ

This term stands for a hand that needs no improving. If you have been dealt a royal flush, straight flush, or a full house, you will not want to draw any cards and should take your win instead.

Yes! There is plenty of strategy that you will need to apply when choosing which cards to keep and which to switch out. You should learn all the poker strategy before you start playing for real money.

This refers to a video poker game that offers the best possible payouts and whose RTP often reaches as high as 100% if played optimally.

Yes! You can play many video poker machines in demo mode and without risking a single penny while playing. This is a great way to learn and practice before you play for real cash.

If you are playing the real money video poker versions, you can absolutely win real money. Of course, you also stand to lose real money if your sessions go the wrong way, so make sure you play for what you can afford and look forward to the potential wins.

Yes, for the most part hand rankings in video poker games correspond the traditional poker rankings, with royal flush being the best possible hand.

Yes! If you play your games at a regulated online casino, all the games will be independently audited by regulators who search for any inconsistencies and ensure that all gameplay is 100% random and safe for players to enjoy.

You will not need to download any apps or software in order to play video poker games at most online casinos. However, some casinos may require you to download an app for mobile play or offer it as one of the options for gameplay.

There are many different video poker games that you can play in online casinos, and we are going to go into more detail on these at the end of this guide. Each video poker variant comes with different rules and a different paytable.

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