Video Poker Strategy Follows Both Logic and Statistics
Video poker is the best game you can play at a casino in terms of return to player rate and strategic interest. Depending on the actual video poker game you choose to play, the casino, and the game provider, the return to player rate will always exceed 98% and sometimes comes just millimeters away from 100%.
The most popular video poker casino game is Jacks or better. That’s mainly because the payouts for winning are good and the bonuses for getting the highest hands are also very good. Jacks or better is relatively easy to get as opposed to some games where you need a better pair to win.
The pay tables differ amongst the many variations of Jacks or better. You should always look for two pay schedules. The first is the payout for the best hands. These great hands are rare but people do hit them. You want the payouts to be commensurate with your investment.
Similarly, many Jacks or better games have an even money return for both a winning pair and two pair. We suggest looking for a game that pays 2-1 for two pair. They’re out there; you just have to look for them.
Also, even if you bet the minimum, you get a sizable payout for a Royal Flush but the payout for that great hand when you bet the maximum is often four times the payout for the next highest bet. Royal Flushes are rare indeed but the return is so good and the overall return to player rate is so close to 100% anyway, that it always pays to bet the maximum.
If the maximum bet on one game is too high for your playing budget, simply play a game with a lower maximum.
One Advantage of Online Video Poker
There are many advantages to playing video poker online but here we have reached one of them. At land based casinos, you have to make sure that you can afford the maximum. At an online casino, all the variations are in front of you so you should never make the mistake of betting less than the maximum when you’re playing online.
Which Cards to Hold
Many players hold one or two high cards hoping to pair them even if it means throwing away a low pair. Statistically, you’re more likely to draw a winning hand if you hold a low pair than if you hold one or two unpaired high cards.
This leads right into the most prominent advantage of playing online video poker: you can play with a strategy card. Sometimes, the cards you should hold are not obvious. For instance, if you have three cards to a Royal Flush and a low pair, most strategy cards tell you to keep the cards toward the Royal Flush. That’s because, as rare as they are, Royal Flushes do occur and you need to position yourself to win one if you can.
Another interesting anomaly is to hold four cards in the same suit even if you have a low pair. The payout for a flush is a lot less than for a Royal Flush but the general rule is to pursue the highest paying hand you can get. Similarly, experts tell us to hold four cards to an outside straight over a low pair.
If you have two unpaired high cards, keep them both. Our chances of pairing one of them or getting two pair are higher if we hold both high cards. Similarly, we often get three unpaired high cards. Since any pair wins, we keep all three high cards.
Land Based Casinos
Sometimes, a player gets to a land based casino and all of the video pokers games he or she wants to play are taken. When you play online, you never have to wait for a game.
Land based casinos will never let you play with a strategy card.
The payout rates at land based casinos are often lower than at online casinos because land based casinos have more overhead.
Because of the pressure on the video poker games at land based casinos, you can’t play for free indefinitely. At online casinos, there’s always room for another player so you can play for free as long as you wish.
Although we stated earlier that some strategies are not intuitive, overall the strategy in Jacks or better is quite intuitive. After a short time, you won’t need a strategy card at all. By following the simple rule to pursue the highest paying hand, you’ll win enough to stay close to your original bankroll and you’ll have a lot of fun doing it.
These are games that pay 9 times your bet for a full house and 6 times your bet for a flush. Some games pay 8-5. Naturally, the return in a 9-6 game is much higher; enough in fact to help you win or break even after an hour or more of playing.
WPokies Online Casino
One of the most popular online casinos for Australia is WPokies. The casino features over 600 pokies from a number of providers and also has a wide selection of table games and video poker. Video poker at WPokies casino offers all players, not just Aussies, very high return to player rates.
You can play Jacks or better and you can learn the subtleties if many other video poker variations by playing for free. Remember, WPokies is an online casino so you can play for free as long as you like and you can always play with a strategy card.