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Last Updated: April 12, 2010

Wheel Poker Deluxe

Introduction

Wheel Poker Deluxe is a video poker variant I noticed at the Red Rock casino in March 2010. It can also be played for free at VideoPoker.com.

The game can be played like conventional 3-play or 5-play video poker. However, for the price of an additional 5-coin bet, on top of already betting 5 coins on each hand, a bonus feature will be enabled. Specifically, if the player gets any hand containing a three of a kind (including a full house and four of a kind) on the deal with the five-coin bet, the player gets to play the bonus.

The bonus involves a spinning wheel which will stop on one of eleven possible video poker starting hands. The player will then play out that hand and get paid according to the outcome and special bonus pay tables.

Example

Let's look at an example taken from screenshots from VideoPoker.com.


Here I was playing 3-play Bonus Poker, with the bonus feature enabled. I received a three of a kind on the deal, so I earned the bonus.


After playing out the hand, the game asked me to press the "spin" button to spin the wheel.


This is a picture of the spinning wheel, which is why it looks blurry. It stopped on triple-play, holding the A234 of spades.


There is no decision making in regards to what cards to hold; the selection is automatic. The tables at the top show the possible wins. Note the callout box in the lower left that says "Only highest category paid per bonus."


I made one flush, which paid 150. Some of the fields in the image above are missing because they were blinking, and I grabbed the screenshot at the wrong moment.

Bonus Rules

Like many prize wheels, not all stops are equally likely. The following table shows the possible outcomes of the prize wheel, with the associated weight for each stop. The probability of each outcome on the wheel is proportional to the weighting.

Wheel Poker Deluxe Prize Wheel

Number Hands Cards Weight
3 AKQ suited 4
3 A234 suited 3
3 AKQJ suited 1
5 AKQ suited 3
5 8877 4
5 KKK 3
10 AA 3
10 AKQ suited 3
10 258T suited 3
50 258T suited 3
100 8877 3

The next table shows the possible wins for landing on 3-play suited AKQ.

3-play Suited AKQ Pay Table

Number Pair, 2P, or 3K Flsh or Str Royal
0 0 0 0
1 125 125 4000
2 325 3000 8000
3 800 3000 12000

The next table shows the possible wins for landing on 3-play suited A234.

3-play Suited AKQ Pay Table

Number Pair, Str, or Flsh Str. Flsh.
0 0 0
1 150 1000
2 400 4000
3 900 4000

The next table shows the possible wins for landing on 3-play AKQJ suited.

3-play Suited AKQJ Pay Table

Number Pair, Str, or Flsh RF
0 0 0
1 0 4000
2 25 8000
3 50 12000

The next table shows the possible wins for landing on 5-play AKQ suited.

5-play Suited AKQ Pay Table

Number Pair, Str, or Flsh RF
0 0 0
1 50 4000
2 150 4000
3 300 4000
4 800 4000
5 1500 4000

The next table shows the possible wins for landing on 5-play two pair.

5-play Two Pair Pay Table

Number FH
0 50
1 400
2 900
3 to 5 4000

The next table shows the possible wins for landing on 5-play three of a kind.

5-play Three of a Kind Pay Table

Number FH or 4K
0 50
1 300
2 900
3 2500
4 or 5 4000

The next table shows the possible wins for landing on 10-play pair.

10-play Pair Pay Table

Number 2P to FH 4K
0 0 0
1 0 4000
2 100 4000
3 or 4 100 12000
5 or 6 450 12000
7 or 8 1000 12000
9 or 10 2000 12000

The next table shows the possible wins for landing on 10-play suited AKQ.

10-play Suited AKQ Pay Table

Number Pair to Fl. RF
0 0 0
1 0 4000
2 or 3 90 4000
4 or 5 180 4000
6 or 7 450 4000
8 to 10 1000 4000

The next table shows the possible wins for landing on 10-play suited 258T.

10-play Suited 258T Pay Table

Number flush
0 0
1 30
2 60
3 90
4 1000
5 to 10 4000

The next table shows the possible wins for landing on 50-play suited 258T.

50-play Suited 258T Pay Table

Number Flush
0 to 5 0
6 to 10 100
11 to 15 450
16 to 20 1100
21 to 50 4000

The next table shows the possible wins for landing on 100-play two pair.

100-play Two Pair Pay Table

Number FH
0 to 4 60
5 to 9 120
10 to 15 900
16 to 17 4000
18 to 19 8000
20 to 100 20000

Bonus Analysis

The next 11 tables show the probability and return for each possible win for all 11 bonus hands. I won't bother to introduce each table, just look at the table headers. The average win of each bonus game is in the lower right cell of the table. For example, if you get the 3-play suited AKQ bonus, the average win is 218.51.

3-Play Suited AKQ Return Table

Win Probability Return
0 0.223806 0.000000
125 0.433508 54.188440
325 0.275985 89.695061
800 0.057847 46.277619
2500 0.001556 3.889557
3000 0.004749 14.248469
4000 0.002547 10.186735
12000 0.000002 0.026016
Total 1.000000 218.511898

3-Play Suited A234 Return Table

Win Probability Return
0 0.324951 0.000000
150 0.413574 62.036133
400 0.175456 70.182292
900 0.024812 22.330729
1000 0.059923 59.922960
4000 0.001284 5.135995
Total 1.000000 219.608109

3-Play Suited AKQJ Return Table

Win Probability Return
0 0.484375 0.000000
25 0.344401 8.610026
50 0.110017 5.500850
4000 0.059923 239.691840
8000 0.001275 10.199653
12000 0.000009 0.108507
Total 1.000000 264.110876

5-Play Suited AKQ Return Table

Win Probability Return
0 0.082500 0.000000
50 0.266334 13.316717
150 0.343922 51.588290
300 0.222056 66.616812
800 0.071686 57.348927
1500 0.009257 13.885428
4000 0.004244 16.977904
Total 1.000000 219.734079

5-Play 8877 Return Table

Win Probability Return
50 0.647228 32.361392
400 0.294194 117.677791
900 0.053490 48.140914
4000 0.005088 20.351080
Total 1.000000 218.531178

5-Play KKK Return Table

Win Probability Return
50 0.583825 29.191270
300 0.331719 99.515692
900 0.075391 67.851608
2500 0.008567 21.417806
4000 0.000498 1.991325
Total 1.000000 219.967701

5-Play AA Return Table

Win Probability Return
0 0.178835 0.000000
100 0.681879 68.187900
450 0.108250 48.712376
1000 0.006738 6.738088
2000 0.000077 0.153796
4000 0.024220 96.879693
12000 0.000002 0.020880
Total 1.000000 220.692733

10-Play Suited AKQ Return Table

Win Probability Return
0 0.050751 0.000000
90 0.347517 31.276521
180 0.440845 79.352115
450 0.141753 63.788708
1000 0.009250 9.250030
4000 0.009884 39.535273
Total 1.000000 223.202648

10-Play Suited 258T Return Table

Win Probability Return
0 0.125382 0.000000
30 0.289342 8.680262
60 0.300471 18.028237
90 0.184905 16.641450
1000 0.074673 74.673172
4000 0.025228 100.910244
Total 1.000000 218.933365

50-Play Suited 258T Return Table

Win Probability Return
0 0.073079 0.000000
100 0.596476 59.647643
450 0.312950 140.827307
1100 0.017369 19.106118
4000 0.000125 0.501223
1.000000 1.000000 220.082291

100-Play 8877 Return Table

Win Probability Return
60 0.073266 4.395985
120 0.605125 72.614964
200 0.193651 38.730132
400 0.089964 35.985790
900 0.029453 26.507731
4000 0.007063 28.251968
8000 0.001278 10.222293
20000 0.000200 3.998760
Total 1.000000 220.707622

Now that we know the probability and expected return from each bonus hand, we can find the expected win of the overall bonus, as shown in the table below. The lower right cell shows the bonus is worth, on average, 221.24 coins.

Bonus Return Table

Hands Bonus Hand Weight Probability Average Win Expected Return
3 Three to a Royal Flush 4 0.121212 218.511898 26.486291
3 Four to a Straight Flush 3 0.090909 219.608109 19.964374
3 Four to a Royal Flush 1 0.030303 264.110876 8.003360
5 Three to a Royal Flush 3 0.090909 219.734079 19.975825
5 Two Pair 4 0.121212 218.531178 26.488628
5 Three of a Kind 3 0.090909 219.967701 19.997064
10 One Pair 3 0.090909 220.692733 20.062976
10 Three to a Royal Flush 3 0.090909 223.202648 20.291150
10 Four to a Flush 3 0.090909 218.933365 19.903033
50 Four to a Flush 3 0.090909 220.082291 20.007481
100 Two Pair 3 0.090909 220.707622 20.064329
Total 1.000000 221.244510

Game Analysis

We can see from my page on probabilities in poker that the bonus probability is (54,912 + 3,744 + 624)/2,598,960 = 0.022809, or once every 43.84 hands. With an average win of 221.24, the expected win from the bonus before the deal is 0.022809 × 221.24 = 5.046393. The cost of enabling the bonus is 5 coins, making it a good bet. The expected return on the bonus feature is 5.046393/5 = 1.009279. In other words, the additional bonus wager has almost a 1% player advantage. However, the main game still carries a negative expected value. Combining the two, the following table shows the overall return, with and without the bonus wager.

Wheel Poker Deluxe Return Table

Base Game Pay Table No Bonus Bonus 3-Play Bonus 5-Play
Bonus Poker 8/5 0.991660 0.996064 0.994596
Bonus Poker 7/5 0.980147 0.987430 0.985002
Bonus Poker 6/5 0.968687 0.978835 0.975452
Bonus Deluxe 9/6 0.996417 0.999632 0.998561
Bonus Deluxe 9/5 0.985495 0.991441 0.989459
Bonus Deluxe 8/6 0.984928 0.991016 0.988987
Bonus Deluxe 8/5 0.974009 0.982827 0.979887
Double Bonus 9/7/5 0.991065 0.995618 0.994100
Double Bonus 9/6/5 0.978062 0.985866 0.983265
Double Bonus 9/7/4 0.977414 0.985380 0.982725
Double Bonus 9/6/4 0.963754 0.975135 0.971341
Double Double Bonus 9/6 0.989808 0.994676 0.993053
Double Double Bonus 8/6 0.978949 0.986531 0.984004
Double Double Bonus 9/5 0.978729 0.986367 0.983821
Double Double Bonus 8/5 0.967861 0.978216 0.974764
Triple Double Bonus 9/7 0.995778 0.999153 0.998028
Triple Double Bonus 9/6 0.981540 0.988475 0.986163
Triple Double Bonus 9/5 0.970204 0.979972 0.976716
Deuces Wild 25/16/10/4/4/3 0.997283 1.000282 0.999282
Deuces Wild 25/15/9/4/4/3 0.989131 0.994168 0.992489
Deuces Wild 20/12/10/4/4/3 0.975791 0.984163 0.981373
Deuces Wild 25/16/13/4/3/2 0.967651 0.978058 0.974589
Bonus Deuces Wild 9/4/4/3 0.994502 0.998196 0.996964
Bonus Deuces Wild 8/4/4/3 0.990625 0.995288 0.993734
Bonus Deuces Wild 13/4/3/3 0.988025 0.993339 0.991567
Bonus Deuces Wild 12/4/3/3 0.982835 0.989446 0.987242

The highest return is on 16-10 deuces wild with the bonus enabled in 3-play at 100.03%.

The next pay table shows the best pay tables available at the Red Rock casino. The best game there is the 99.42% deuces wild.

Red Rock Pay Tables

Base Game Pay Table No Bonus Bonus 3-Play Bonus 5-Play
Bonus Poker 7/5 0.980147 0.987430 0.985002
Bonus Deluxe 8/5 0.974009 0.982827 0.979887
Double Bonus 9/6/5 0.978062 0.985866 0.983265
Double Double Bonus 9/5 0.978729 0.986367 0.983821
Deuces Wild 25/15/9/4/4/3 0.989131 0.994168 0.992489
Triple Double Bonus 9/6 0.981540 0.988475 0.986163

Strategy

  • Find the best pay table you can.
  • If trying to maximize the return, you should pick triple-play. If the casino has a generous player-reward program, pushing the game over 100%, then the hourly expected profit may be greater playing 5-play.
  • Always make the bonus bet.
  • Hold the cards the same way as in conventional video poker.

Acknowledgements

  • J.B. for digging up the rules at VideoPoker.com and for the math analysis.
  • VideoPoker.com for the screenshots of the example hand.
  • IGT for confirming the average bonus win.
  • Bob Dancer for his comments and corrections.

Best Online Casino Video Poker Bonuses

Rank Casino Bonus % Wager Cash  
1 $200 20% 20xB&D Play Now
2 $250 250% 50xB Play Now
3 $250 100% 38xB&D Play Now
4 $3000 150% 90xB&D Play Now
5 $3000 150% 90xB&D Play Now

My Video Poker Offerings

Basic Video Poker Info

  • My main Video Poker page
  • Return tables:
  • Probability of Ruin for single-play video poker
  • Random simulations of multi-play video poker
  • The standard deviation of n-play video poker

Practice / Play Video Poker for Free

Video Poker Calculator

  • Analyze the return for almost any video poker paytable

Other Stuff

Strategies

Full-Pay Jacks or Better:

Full-Pay Deuces Wild:

Quick Quads:

Other Strategies:



Written by: Michael Shackleford

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