Last Update: Oct. 21, 2013
Video poker made its entry to the casino in the seventies; and is today one of the most popular forms of gambling. For the player who likes a game of skill, a low house edge, the possibility of large wins, and the anonymity of playing alone there is nothing else that can compare to video poker. The rules of video poker are simple; you play 1 to 5 coins, the machine give you five cards, you choose which to hold and which to discard, the machine replaces your discards and pays you off according to the value of your hand.
You may have heard the adage that the "house always has the advantage." Video poker is an exception to that rule. If you look for the most liberal pay tables, and play them properly, you can have a thin advantage. Some pay tables, which are slightly in the machine's favor, can return over 100%, if you factor in incentives such as cash back, free play, mailers, and other comps.
Following are the rules for standard video poker.
Following are some strategies to some of the most popular video poker games:
Quick Quads strategies:
Ultimate X strategies:
Can't find the game or pay table you're looking for? Video Poker Help Starts Here also carries lots of return tables.
For just the pay tables and returns of major games and pay tables see these documents:
Play for Fun
Practice over a dozen video poker games on my new and improved video poker game.
Five-Card Hand Calculator
My free video poker analyzer will calculate the best way to play any hand and any pay table for most video poker games.
Game Return Calculator
My video poker analyzer will calculate the return for just about any video poker game in seconds.
I'm very proud to offer the only free video poker strategy maker. Enter any common game and then the pay table and the calculator will produce a near-optimal strategy. Here is an example of the output for 9-6 Jacks or Better.
Miscellaneous Advice and Comments
Video Poker in San Diego
In November 2008 I did a video poker survey of the 11 casinos in San Diego County.
Video Poker in Macau
For a detailed explanation of the video poker scene in Macau, please visit my companion site, Wizard of Macau .
Video Poker Wizard
Please support this site by purchasing my Video Poker Wizard. For a host of video poker games, you can practice your game, with or without advice, or analyze any hand or pay table. A great way to have fun and improve your game anywhere.
Reason #3 why the Wizard likes Bovada:
In my opinion many online casinos are too stingy when setting the odds on their games. They think they will make more money that way but I believe they are misguided, because when players lose too quickly it’s not fun, and those players might not come back.
Bovada is one of the few casinos that understands this. They offer generous odds to let you play longer and get you a better chance of winning. Among their generous offerings are Full-Pay Jacks or Better returning 99.54%, six other video poker games paying over 99%, single-zero roulette, and my favorite, Pick ’em Poker, returning 99.95%!
Kudos to Bovada for not being afraid to give their players a good gamble.