The game has card combinations that are governed by a random number generator, just like in slots play. Here the similarity ends. Cards are randomly dealt from either a virtual deck of 52 or 53 cards, dependent upon the type of poker game.
Card combinations can be calculated and possible playing strategies devised. This is why video poker is so popular and, if played skillfully can be rewarding.
The machine deals five cards on the screen. The player then has the option of drawing up to five new cards. The aim is to make up combinations based upon five types of hands; High Card, One Pair, Two Pairs, Three of a Kind, Straight, Flush, Full House, Four of a Kind, Straight Flush or the top Royal Flush. The most important thing in video poker is learning which of your original five cards to keep or hold and which to discard.
You keep the cards you want to keep by pushing the “hold” button that corresponds to the card on the screen. When you have made your choice you hit the “deal” button and the cards you have discarded will be replaced by new cards. Your win or loss is determined by the outcome of your final hand,after you hit the draw button.
How much you win is based on the pay table that is posted on the front of the machine. Payouts are displayed in terms of your bet size.
You should have a basic knowledge of what beats what and how to play five-card draw before getting into the nitty-gritty of strategy.
The stronger your hand the better the prize. Like all poker games the ultimate goal is to hit the Royal Flush and win a huge jackpot!
Types of Video Poker Games
Jacks or Better
This is the most popular and commonly played Video Poker game. Game play is simple, you have to achieve a pair of Jacks, or better, to win a pay-out.
A winning strategy for a high payout is to play five coins per hand. If you are playing on a budget, but still want to pursue that jackpot score , lower your starting stakes to the minimum and try to play the maximum coins per hand. Give it a go!
There are many variations of the basic game, including 10s or Better, Deuces Wild and Aces and Faces.
In variants of the game the pay-out tables will differ and so does the hand components needed to win.
10s or Better is a simple variation of Jacks or Better. In the game a pair of 10s or better is enough to win a pay-out.
Aces and Faces gives you a higher pay out for any four of a kind featuring Jacks, Queens or Kings and an even bigger pay-out for a hand of four Aces!
Jokers Wild is a little more complicated to play, while it still uses a standard 52 card deck, you have to remember that the Jokers are wild cards and can be held at face value, or be changed to any other value needed in a hand.
There is no “high card” or “two of a kind” winning hand in this game due to the exchangeability of the Joker. To score a win you must have a hand of at least two pairs.
The same is true for Deuces Wild only substituting Deuces (2s) for Jokers as the wild card, which means they can be substituted for any other card in the deck to make a winning hand.
There is a very high pay-out for a hand of four 2s!
Deuces Wild is the more exciting of the two because there are four wild cards as opposed to the two Jokers in a deck.
King of Decks
King of the Decks is perhaps the most complicated and because of that, the most exciting of the video poker games.
It uses five full decks of 52 cards, and the grand hand is to get 5 king of clubs.
In King of the Decks, the common poker hands still win, but the kings of clubs pays out an additional progressive bonus. Minimum in this game is two pair as well.
Multi-Line Video Poker
One popular power play development is the option to play multiple lines at once, ranging from 4-line, 10-line, 25-line and even the illustrious 50-line games!
No matter how many lines you play, the basic game play is the same.
In multi-Line video poker, strategies and playing decisions will affect every lines.
So if you are playing 25-lines and decide to keep a pair of Kings, while changing three cards, then on all 25 lines you will retain a pair of Kings, and be dealt three new cards.
This type of play really fires up your ability to maximize your wins. Any guaranteed win will count on all 25 lines and stands a chance of being improved on all of them for a real jackpot!
Progressive Video Poker
There are plenty of progressive video poker jackpots available online. Typically, many machines are linked together to feed the same progressive jackpot, and there is no limit to how large these video poker jackpots can grow. Once won, it will reset to its starting amount.
Although the jackpots aren’t as colossal as record-breaking slot jackpots, they are easier to hit. You’ll usually need to land a royal flush to hit the jackpot. Luckily the odds remain the same, no matter how big the jackpot gets.
Free Play Video Poker Games
If you love your video poker play then there are loads of video poker free games all ready to practice your strategy or just have fun with no risk!
By practicing your favorite game for free at home, you can learn to play perfectly.
We found tons of video poker games for free, ranging from the perennial Jacks or Better class through to, Deuces Wild Double Up, Three Card Poker and Joker Power Poker.
The biggest difference between video poker as compared to online poker tournaments or land-based games is that you aren't playing against anyone at a Poker table, just against the house. No bluffing skills needed!
There’s lots to love about playing video poker. Video poker requires strategy and skill to get the most out of the game. This adds an extra level of playing enjoyment, as the more you play the better you will get. You can also practice with free play to give you a head start on perfecting your strategy.