Video Poker Guide
Welcome to the OGB Video Poker Guide. Video poker is one of the most interesting online casino games going, at least in my opinion.
With the likes of roulette and craps there’s no real strategy involved, you’re just hoping for the best.
With blackjack, there’s an optimal strategy based on your two cards and the dealer’s up card and if you stick to it you can minimize the house edge. With all of these games, you can figure out with a bit of mental gymnastics what the house edge is, too.
Slots on the other hand are purely a guessing game. Typically there’s no strategy involved and the payout of the machine is a total mystery.
If you want a game that has pretty advanced strategy involved, and you like playing games by yourself at your own machine (when at live casinos) then video poker is the game for you.
With some careful selection and good strategy you can find machines that have as low a house edge as single deck blackjack. What’s more, many online video poker games are now jackpot games (like progressive slots) but typically you can play for a lot longer and have a much better shot at the jackpot as a good video poker player than you would just chucking virtual coins into your average slot machine.
How Does Video Poker Work?
The game is very simple and is played the same as 5 card draw which is the poker game that most people learn first as kids. You’re given five cards by the virtual dealer and you can discard as many as you want and have them replaced from the deck.
Your aim is to make the best poker hand that you can, and the machine will pay out in accordance with the hand that you make. Typically you’ll get 1 credit back for a single pair, all the way up to hundreds of credits for a Royal Flush.
How Do I Maximise my Chances of Winning at Video Poker?
When you’re playing online video poker there are two things you can do help your cause. The first is to play optimally. What this means is making the correct decision on which cards to discard and which cards to keep. This is a lot more complicated than it initially sounds, and it depends on the game you’re playing and the pay table associated with it…i.e. how many credits it pays out for the various hands.
For instance, if you have a flush that includes the ten-to-king of your suit along with the 2, it’s usually a good idea to ditch the two and draw to the Royal Flush because it typically pays out about 50 times what a flush pays out, and you have an 1 out of 47 chance of hitting (The ace of your suit out of the remaining cards 47 cards in the deck). Even if you miss the ace, you can still draw the nine and hit a straight flush!
For the record, a generous pay table in video poker looks something like this (note that if you play 5 coins per hand, you get a huge bonus when you hit a Royal Flush):
We cover video poker strategy in a lot more detail in our dedicated strategy article.
What are the best Video Poker Games to Play?
If you can’t be bothered with all the maths that’s required, that’s OK because we’ve done it for you, and the following list gives you (in order) the highest payout video poker games online today. You can also click into each game to read the rules and see the payout table for it.
- All Aces Video Poker
- Jacks or Better Video Poker
- Joker Poker
- Deuces Wild
- Tens or Better Video Poker
- All American Video Poker
- Double Bonus Video Poker
- Bonus Poker
- Aces and Faces
- Double Joker Video Poker
If you’re looking for more video poker resources, click here to visit a good guide.