Video Poker

Video Poker and Helpful Tips

Video poker is an exciting past-time for many people all over the world. The game is arcade or casino game derived from the rules of five card stud poker. Gamblers can play on digital consoles roughly the size of slot machines. Here is information regarding the history of the game, various regulations for these gambling machines, and different versions available for play.

How to Play Draw Poker

To play video poker, you begin by inserting money into the gambling machine. The game will require you to make that and then press the deal. Five cards are then presented to the player and make a hand like five card draw. You are then offered the opportunity to get rid of one or more of the cards to exchange for new ones that get drawn from the same deck. Unlike five card draw, you can discard all five of the original cards. After you draw, the machine will pay out if the hand played matches one of the winning combinations listed in the pay table.

Different Types of Poker Hands

Having two pair means that you have two cards that match face value and another two cards that match face value in your hand at the same time. Three of a kind is when you have three cards in your hand that has matching face values. A flush includes all cards of the same suit. A straight is a hand of five cards that are sequentially numbered. Four of a kind is a hand containing all four cards of the same value. A straight flush has five cards in sequential order of the same suit in your hand. And finally, the rarest hand is a royal straight flush. This hand contains the 10, Jack, Queen, King, and Ace all of one suit.

Understanding the Pay Tables

Pay tables show the amount different hands pay out. They are based on how rare the hands are, the variation on the game, and what the game operator decides. A standard pay table begins with the lowest hand that pays out being a pair of jacks, which only pays back the money spent. All the hand combinations in video poker can be compared to the different types of table poker. Two pairs & three of a kind are found all the time. A straight, a flush, and a full house are less commonly found, while four of a kind, a straight flush, and most definitely a royal flush are all very rare and are winning hands in video poker.

Rates for a Basic Pay Table

A basic payout table is pretty simple to understand. A pair of Jack’s or higher will pay out 5x your initial bet. A hand that includes two pairs pays out 10x your bet. Three of a kind pays out 15x; a Straight pays out 20x, a Flush 25x, Full House 40x, 4 of a Kind 125x, a Straight Flush 250x, and a Royal Flush pays out 2000x your original bet. The higher that your bet is, the higher the payout will be. If you pick up a royal flush on a penny bet, you will only win $20 while the same hand with a dollar bet would win you $2000.

Modified Slot Machine

The very first game with the feel of video poker was built by Charles Fey in 1901 when he added a feature to draw on the slot machine he had invented. It did not have a screen but gave the player the ability to spin twice while holding some of the reels from the first spin. It took over three-quarters of a century for it to catch on though.

Early Popularity

The earliest models appeared in the mid-1970s, roughly the same time as personal computers first appeared. Around this period it became more economical to combine a solid-state central processing unit with a television-like monitor making video poker commercially viable. A company by the name of SIRCOMA, standing for Si Redd’s Coin Machines, introduced Draw Poker in the year 1979 and firmly establish video poker as a favorite game. Continuing through the 80s, video poker became more popular in casinos, as gamblers thought the devices were less intimidating than real players at the tables. Still today video poker has a prominent place on many casinos gaming floors. Specifically, the game is hugely popular with locals of Las Vegas who play them at local casinos off the Las Vegas Strip. These local casinos offer better odds and lower monetary denominations.

Different Versions of the Game Available

There are many different types of variations of video poker. A few of these various kinds include Deuces Wild, featuring twos as wildcards, Joker’s Wild, featuring Joker wildcards, and pay schedule modification, featuring a bonus when you have four aces and with a five were smaller. A schedule modification games usually have an answer to in the name like bonus, double, or triple. There is also multiplayer poker, where the gambler begins with a hand, and every new hand draws from a new deck of cards with the base hand. There are video poker games available online that you can hone your skills on before heading to the casino.

Common Variations of Video Poker Available

There are many different variations of video poker available. A version of the game called Jack’s or Better, or simply draw poker, is the most common version of video poker. A pair of jacks get you your money back and is the lowest payoff. Bally’s All American Poker is similar to Jack’s or Better with some payouts increased in some payouts decreased. Straights, flushes and straight flushes all have increased payouts while full houses and 2 pairs are worth less. Ten’s or Better has a minimum winning hand of a pair of 10s and different values for both full house and flush payouts.

Throwing in Some Wildcards

Joker’s Wild variations add a wildcard joker that you can use to build better hands. This wild card included makes a new type of hand possible, the 5 of a kind. Deuces Wild makes all of the twos in the deck wildcards. In this game, a four of a kind happens on average one out of every fifteen hands and makes up half of the payback percentage of the game.

Bonus, Double Bonus, and Double Double Bonus

Bonus Poker just offers a higher payout for a 4 of a kind hand. Double bonus is a variation that includes a higher payout for four aces. Double Double Bonus offers bonus payouts for different hands of 4 of a kind. The payback percentages differ between all these different types of games. Even the different types can have different payouts that change the rate as well.

How to Calculate Payback Percentages

The majority of video poker machines are configured to pay proportionally more for rare hands when the maximum credits are bet. Players who do not get the maximum are playing with a theoretical return that is smaller. The highest paying variant of an individual game is called full-pay. The variance having a lower percentage of payback were termed short-pay. Payback percentage is a numeric value expressing a long-term expected return of a gamblers wager as a percent when the game is played perfectly. If you are playing a machine with a payback percentage 99%, that would indicate that for each $100 you bet, you should expect to lose only a single dollar if you play every hand optimally.

A Few Benefits of Video Poker

Video poker is perfect for playing some hands without the stress of competition. It has become increasingly popular as time has progressed. It is bigger than ever. More and more people are straying from playing online poker against opponents from all over the world to play with only their hand. Another advantage of video poker comes from being able to bet as little as a few cents a hand if you want to.

Helpful Tips and Understanding How to Play

Here are some helpful tips that can help you understand the game better. Make sure that you never throw away cards that can help you to make the board. Make sure that you do throw away and twos you might have unless they are part of a better hand than just a pair. Make sure that you check out the pay tables, so you know what hands pay out the most. If you are playing a poker slot that offers you the chance to play a double or nothing bonus round, give it a shot, but always quit while you are ahead.

Tips about Which Cards to Hold

For a basic game of Jack’s or Better, it should not be too hard to pick the cards to hold and the ones to get rid of. Cards lower than a Jack should be gotten rid of unless they are part of a better hand like a straight, flush, or 3 of a kind. Just a pair of anything that is less than a Jack does not pay out anything, so get rid of those cards. If you have a Royal Flush, Straight Flush, 4 of a Kind, 3 of a kind, Full House, or 2 pairs, hold on to those cards because all of them will pay out. Having a 3 of a Kind in your hand and getting rid of the two extra cards can help you score a Full House pretty quickly.

Maximize your Winnings Online

You do not even have to go to a casino to play high paying games of video poker. It is easier to find payout percentages for online versions of video poker than it is to find them for machines at casinos. You can search different websites to find the video poker game that has the highest payouts to maximize your winnings.

Online Casinos that Offer Bonuses

Another benefit of playing video poker online is the bonuses that are available at certain online casinos. Most of them offer new players a bonus for signing up and will match the amount that you deposited, doubling the amount of money with which you started. This bonus is a wonderful way to build up a bankroll as you begin online gambling. You will also have a greater chance of winning. Some restrictions do apply with these bonuses, and you should be sure to read what they are.

Common Terms and Definitions

Some terms that you should become familiar with can help you figure out what you are doing. First, a cycle is the statistical chances of how many hands must be played to find the winning combination you are looking for. These probabilities are derived from mathematical equations using summations and combinations. Knowing these statistics can help you make better choices when it comes to what cards to keep and throw away. Knowing how to do these mathematical equations can help you figure out exactly what your chances are of picking up the cards you need.

More Common Terms and Definitions

Quads is a slang term that refers to a 4 of a kind. You can tell others that you have a hand of quad Aces. Hold is a term that means you are keeping specific cards and not trading them in for new ones. A pat hand is known as a hand that is dealt to you that you are unable to improve in any way, like 4 Aces. Deuces signify twos when it comes to card games. Your action is the amount of money you have bet. Your bankroll is the total money that you have available for gambling. A drawing hand is one that requires one particular card to improve the overall value. Face cards are cards like the Jacks, Queens, and Kings that have a face on them.

Even More Common Terms

An inside straight is a hand that has the possibility of being a straight with a number missing from the middle. An outside straight is a hand with four sequential numbers that has the opportunity of becoming a straight by picking up the number before or after the sequence. A kicker is your hands highest card that is not paired. An RNG is an acronym for a random number generator. A random number generator picks random number completely at random for the cards values.

Calculating the Chances of Drawing a Flush

If you are good at math, start to practice calculating odds of finding certain hands on the fly to improve your overall poker skills. If you have four hearts in your hand, it is very easy to figure out how much of a chance you have of picking up the flush. There are 52 cards in a deck including 13 of each suit. Five have been presented to you leaving 47 more to choose from. There are nine hearts left in the deck that would complete your flush. You, therefore, have a 9 in 47 chance of picking up the flush.

Harder Calculations

If you only have three hearts in your hand, you can figure out those chances as well. Five cards were dealt, 47 are left in the deck, and ten of those are hearts. You have a 1 in 4.7 chance of picking up a fourth heart. Now, you have 46 cards left to choose from and only nine hearts left. You will have a 9 in 46 chance of picking up this heart. If you multiply these probabilities together, you will find out how likely it is that you draw two more hearts to complete your flush.

Gambling Addiction

If you or someone that you know is having issues with an addiction to gambling, there is help available. Compulsively gambling often results in financial ruin. You are presented with the illusion of easy money, but gambling is such a successful business venture because the house always wins. It often occurs when a player feels they can solve their financial problems by gambling what they have in the hopes of striking rich. Chances are though that the gambler loses and finds themselves in a cycle of trying to win back what they have lost. Making risky bets creates an emotional high in the brain of the gambler similar to the way certain drugs affect your brain.

Signs and Symptoms Associated with Problem Gambling

Common signs of an addiction to gambling are also closely related to the signs of drug addiction. Usually, the gamblers feel they should be secretive about their gambling habits and not discuss it with others. A compulsive gambler will have issues controlling their habits and will continue to gamble even when they can’t afford it. Another common sign is your loved ones showing concern for you and your gambling habits. If you feel that you cannot stop, try attending a Gambler’s Anonymous meeting to share experiences with others who are recovering.

With a history that has lasted over 100 years, variations of the game that are available, and the right knowledge of terms and math, you can master this game. It is no wonder that this game is so popular today.

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