Online Video Poker is one of the best games on the web. Even if it were not the number one game when it comes to being most famous and widespread globally, nobody would argue the fact that its player’s passion and enthusiasm for mastering the separate online Poker variations, as well as figuring out the next big strategy are remarkable.
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However, what is equally crucial in addition to devotion, is actually being willing to invest the time and efforts necessary in order to educate yourself about the necessary knowledge and strategies that can eventually help you achieve the highest chances possible and end up a winner every single time. Especially in the beginning. one may think that it would be too demanding to reach such a level of expertise, but the facts show that exactly these types of machines provide a huge variety of games to choose from, and the expected return can be extraordinarily good, as well.
What is more, with some exceptions (card counting in blackjack) the same refers to playing in a brick-and-mortar casino? Whereas it might be exciting to play in a real life location, more and more people choose the online alternatives for various reasons, among which the joy of being able to have space and control over every move you make as a gambler. Offline or virtually, it is a question of preference and convenience, but the chances of winning and the strategic mastery required remain the same.
Why Play Online Video Poker
Before having a look at some specific insights about Online Poker, let us check a few more factors that make considering learning play Video Poker a wise choice. As we already mentioned, the chances of winning are remarkably high (sometimes up to 99% possible return) which makes almost every player bound to be successful unless they are unwilling to invest some efforts into getting skilled at the strategies in advance.
Still, even if you are not that type of a person who is eager to devote a lot of energy to Video Poker, it may be helpful for you to be aware that this precise game is actually considered to be one of the easiest ones.
There is no need to memorize a lot of tips and rules. And as far as decision making is concerned, it is a pretty simple process. Therefore, it would not be exaggerated to claim that you can easily choose to play online Video Poker as a leisure time activity whenever you want to, as well. The only thing you need to enjoy a great gaming quality is a top rated software provider.
How To Play Online Video Poker
Now that we are clear about the essence and benefits of Online Video Poker, the next question we need to answer relates to how the game is supposed to be played in practice. Before the initial cards are dealt, you need to decide on the amount of credits you are willing to play on every spin (usually from one to five), as well as how much you are playing for, which actually determines the size of the potential gain (for more details check the pay table).
What comes next is getting familiar with the so-called five-card draw. What it stands for is dealing five random cards out of the 52 card deck, which may or may not include a joker.
As a player, you are free to decide whether you would like to keep all the cards, none of them or exchange some of the cards for new ones dealt at random, as well. Once you have made your choice, you will have your final hand based on which it will get clear whether you win or not. And then the game moves to the next hand.
In case the machine you play on allows playing with multiple hands, you need to take into consideration that paying for all of them happens in advance. Despite the fact that also in this format you start with one single hand including five cards after you select the cards to be discarded, new ones will be dealt for every single hand.
There is no guarantee that you will not get the same cards in the place of the discarded ones for the separate hands, having in mind that the draws happen simultaneously. They are not dependent on one another. What you aim at to win as much as possible, is to be the one with the best hand and to have this hand meet the specific minimum criteria for the type of game you play. Below you can find out more about the value of possible Poker hands for Online Poker games:
- Royal Flush – five consecutive cards of the same suit (A K Q J 10)
- Straight Flush – five consecutive cards of the same suit (8 7 6 5 4)
- Flush – Five cards of the same suit
- Straight – five consecutive cards of different suits (K Q J 10 9)
- Four-of-a-Kind – four cards of (D D D D 6)
- Three-of-a-Kind – three cards that have the same value (10 10 10 8 5)
- Full House – three cards of the same value and a pair (J J J 7 7)
- Two Pair – two pairs (AA 8 8 5)
- Pair – one pair (D D 9 7 6)
Pieces of Advice
While there might be various strategies aiming at ensuring highest possible chances of winning at Online Video Poker, it might be valuable for you to consider the following pieces of advice regarding tactics you can go for depending on the cards you currently hold.
First, in case you happen to have Royal Flush, a Full House, Four-of-a-Kind, Three-of-a-Kind, Straight Flush or two Pair, keep them. As far as having three cards of the same value is concerned, you are advised not to give them away, but to get rid of the other two.
Second, have in mind that keeping a Pair (even if low) can bring you more benefits than choosing to hold one single card that is high. What is more, do not hesitate to break up a pair of Jacks if this can provide you with a chance of striking a Royal Flush, Straight or a Flush.
Third, if you happen to have four cards that could lead to a Royal Flush, you may consider getting rid of the lowest one among your hand. While it might be true that in this way you may interrupt the continuity of a Straight or a Flush, you still increase your chance of striking a Royal Flush, but also of getting a Pair, a Straight or a Flush.
If you have never played Online Poker before you may also be willing to take into consideration, the guidance provided below. Like trying anything new, it may seem in the beginning too hard and complicated, but it is easier to start than it looks. You need to choose a game variation (f.e. Jacks or Better), to create a specific strategy and to just start. You will learn by playing. When selecting among the different types of machines, go for the ones offering the highest potential return. Also, if the machine has a double-up feature, don’t miss betting since there is no house edge.
As you will learn in more details later on in the article, some machines do accept slot club cards. If so, benefit from this opportunity, but also check on a regular basis whether the card is read and whether the level of connectivity is satisfactory. Playing as many coins as possible frequently is ok and even preferable, having in mind that there is a reward provided by the machines for the highest hand. And if you are worried about the fact that you might get tricked, relax. All the cards are dealt and chosen at random, and all the players have equal chances of getting a Royal Flush hand at any point of the game regardless of external variables.
In addition to the basics, it is relevant to have a look at some important specifics of the Online Poker machines, as well as the different variations and strategies according to them. The information you can find displayed on a regular screen of a Video Poker machine includes the available credits, the cards dealt, as well as the amount of the win if such according to the pay table. The categorization and order of the machines is based on the denomination of stake or the game variation.
Among the typical features of most online Video Poker machines, we can list a touch screen, a slot for Slot Club and loyalty cards and coin slots and not acceptors on the right side of the screen. Some machines do not have a touch screen to operate the various functions or even if they do, buttons are still used for dealing or drawing cards, for selecting some of the coins a player would like to bet or for choosing the preferred cards for holding.
When it comes to the loyalty cards, by using them, casinos can estimate the amount and type of bonuses they can provide to their most consistent or high-class clients. As far as the coin slots are concerned, naturally enough, once the money is inserted, the according amount gets displayed instantly.
Paying attention to the type of the Video Poker machine you choose is among the golden rules when it comes to playing Video Poker. This is no surprise, having in mind that any strategy should consider aiming at a Royal Flush as the best possible hand related to the biggest amount of money that can be won as an outcome.
Since a relatively bold strategy can result in having more playing time, it is wise to have a look at the environment and all the machines in the casino before you figure out elaborating your individual approach. One of the decisions that you will need to make as a player and that is critical for the generation of profit revolves around the amount of bankroll you will choose for each session (50 to 100 x your stake). If you happen to win, make sure you put aside at least half of the win. If you lose, think twice before continuing playing.
Sometimes it might be wiser to bring your session to an end early enough as a better place to start another session later on. No matter what circumstances you may encounter, pay attention that you don’t increase the amount of money in your bankroll. Also, as we already mentioned in the section with the tips for beginners, playing maximum coins is beneficial even if it sounds counter-intuitive at first. And the reason is that the way the amount of money which is going to be paid out gets estimated based on a multiplication of the coins played, especially when it comes to the Royal Flush.
If you are about to play Online Video Poker, it would be helpful for you to get familiar with the specifics of the various types of machines (f.e. Jacks or Better, Deuces Wild, Bonus Poker, Double Bonus, Joker Poker) since the strategies that would serve you best in the game differ from one another.
Jacks or Better
Jacks or Better is the most widespread type of machines in the field of Online Poker. What is relevant to know about these machines is the fact that playing on them doesn’t include wild cards – these are cards (Deuce or a joker) that can serve as a replacement of any card necessary for you to get as beneficial hand as possible. There are multiple versions of these machines such as Jacks or Better (9/6), Jacks or Better (8/5), Bonus Poker Deluxe Jacks or Better (8/5), Double Bonus Jacks or Better (9/6) and Double Bonus Jacks or Better (10/7).
If you play Jacks or Better (9/6), you need to keep in mind that there is no order regarding the way the Royal Flush related jackpot gets hit. Also, as we mentioned before, when playing online Video Poker it is beneficial to play maximum coins as often as possible exactly because of the fact that this increases the chances and the amount that can be won. The name (9/6) comes from some of the coins one could get in the best case as a payout (six – if you have a Flush; nine – in the case of a Full House).
There is a bonus version of Jacks or Better (9/6), as well. It is called Double Bonus Jacks or Better (9/6). The big hands here are related to having Three-of-a-Kind or better with an exclusively attractive payout for Four-of-a-Kind that equals six times the value of the regular one.
When playing Jacks or Better (8/5), you can hope for getting five coins for a Flush and eight for a Full House. Given the fact that this type of machines does not provide as high chances of winning, they are less likely to be preferred in comparison to the first one. However, what can compensate this, is the size of the Progressive Jackpot. Therefore, check it before you pick up an Online Video Poker machine. Whatever machine you go for, you still need to remember that based on the type of machine there might be other big hands apart from the jackpot that might lead to bigger wins eventually. A typical example of such a big hand is Four-of-a-Kind.
Having such a hand is not only beneficial when playing Jacks or Better (8/5), but also in case you choose its other variation – Bonus Poker Deluxe Jacks or Better (8/5). In fact, this is the only scenario in which you can generate a huge win. In any other case, the 8/5 payout is not quite of an advantage.
There is also a type of machine called Double Bonus Jacks or Better (10/7). It is definitely wise to check it before you select a machine since the payouts are attractive – five coins for a Straight, seven coins for a Flush and ten coins for a Full House.
When it comes to a strategy for Online Poker games like Jacks or Better, of course, it would be beneficial for you to invest some time in getting informed about the various approaches that can lead you to success. However, let us focus more specifically on the purely practical tactics that can serve you in addition to picking up the machine offering the most generous payout.
First, if you don’t have a winning hand, replace all the five cards. Second, keep the two lowest cards if you happen to have a hand of any two cards or more that are Jack or higher. Third, there are some combinations you are advised to hold:
one card (Jack or better); suited J10, Q10, K10; two suited cards (Jacks or better); Low Pair (tens or lower); Four to a Flush; three to a Straight or a Royal Flush; as well as Two Pair or Pair including Jacks or better. In the next place, you need to replace the fifth card when having four to a Straight or Royal Flush, even if it sounds counter-intuitive to do so in the case of a paying combination.
Last, but not least. It is crucial to stay calm and act reasonably if you happen to have a Three-of-a- Kind, a Four-of-a-Kind, a Straight, a Flush, a Full House, a Straight Flush or a Royal Flush. The reason for this piece of advice is very simple – if you allow yourself to lose the balance of your mind, it may result in costly avoidable mistakes.
Deuces Wild is the type of Online Poker machine that is associated with extraordinarily good chances of winning. As one can expect, in here there are also multiple variations like Deuces Wild (Full Pay) and Deuces Wild with Progressive Jackpot. Both of them can be played on the go with the mobile slots app.
Deuces Wild (Full Pay) is considered to be the variation to select if you are a player aiming at big wins. What you still need to have in mind is the fact that you would need to play all five coins every time so that the size of the potential jackpot can become larger. The prices for a Royal Flush or Five-of-a-Kind in the case of at least one wild card are not so high. However, it is not uncommon to get a hand to a Straight Flush, a Full House or a Four-of-a-Kind when there are four wild cards in the game.
Deuces Wild with Progressive Jackpot
This is a game with a great theme. In this case, after a jackpot is hit the machine is reset to four thousand coins which is very beneficial for the player. If it is a Full Pay version of the same game, you need to keep in mind that it is pointless to hope for a bonus in case of maximum coins. Also, while it might be true that having a Flush or a Full House would bring you an increased payout, in the same time the same doesn’t refer to a hand of Four-of-a-Kind.
What is more, if there is one wild card or more in the game and you get a hand of a Royal Flush or a Five-of-a-Kind, you will not be able to enjoy a high profit, since the chances of getting rare hands dramatically increase with the adding of the wild cards. Therefore, the single best criteria, around which your decision of playing or not should revolve, is the potential Progressive Jackpot.
After we have had a look at the variations of Deuces Wild, let us check the according strategies for playing which could help you end up a winner at Online Video Poker. If you have four Deuces, do not discard them. You may get rid of the last card. It doesn’t add value to the game. However, do not do so if you happen to have the Deuces and a Royal Flush.
In the case of three Deuces, keep them and replace the rest of the cards, as long as you don’t hold a Royal Flush or a Five-of-a-Kind. When you have two Deuces in your hand, you can do the same – keeping them and discarding the rest of the cards. Again there are some exceptions. In the case of a Royal Flush, Five-of-a-Kind, Four-of-a-Kind, four cards to Royal Flush or an open-ended Straight Flush draw, you are not advised to get rid of the cards. Keep all cards when you hold any of the following combinations in addition to your two Deuces, as well: a Pair, two cards of the same suite and in consecutive order, two cards to a Royal Flush or a Full House.
If you happen to have only one Deuce and three cards to a Royal Flush or Trips, keep in mind to get rid of the fifth card. In the case of only one Deuce, a Paid in addition to the one Deuce or two Deuces with three consecutive cards of the same suit, keep your cards. However, you are encouraged to discard the remaining two cards when you have two cards for a Royal Flush and one Deuce.
The name of the variation Joker Wild comes from the fact that apart from the fifty-two standard cards, there is also a joker added to the Online Poker game. This Joker serves as a wild card which increases the chances of ending up with an as good hand as possible if you are a player. In the so-called Joker Wild (Full Pay) version you can enjoy a longer time playing, having in mind the wild card and the attractive payouts you can hope for in case of a Full House or a Flush. However, as you can imagine, the biggest payout is the result of having a Royal Flush without the need to benefit from a wild card.
Regarding suggested strategies, keep in mind the following pieces of advice, when playing at the casinos from our blog or the reviews. It is important to play the hands in a specific order:
- three cards to Straight Flush and the wild card;
- a Straight;
- a Pair and the wild card;
- two high cards of the same suit and a joker;
- two cards of the same suit and a joker;
- tree cards of the same suit and joker;
- four consecutive cards of different suits, among which there is a wild card.
If you happen to have only one joker, make sure you replace the rest of the cards. Do the same in the case of a Three-of-a-Kind and a joker or Three cards to Royal Flush and a joker. However, do not dispose of your cards if you happen to have a Five-of-a-Kind, a Royal Flush, a Straight Flush, a Full House or a Flush.
The attractive power of these types of machine lies in the fact that as a player you can easily be seduced to bet bigger than you wanted in the first place. And one of the reasons for that is related to the possibility of making bets on more than one lines of action in the same time. What you need to keep in mind. However, is that despite the seemingly low base stake and nice prospects, there is no difference between this variation and the typical Online Video Poker regarding potential wins. As with Jacks or Better and Wild Deuces, there are also multiple versions of these machines, as well.
The point of difference is associated with the various options when it comes to making a choice regarding the lines. So, make sure you inform yourself well about the payouts upfront since unless you have a winning hand, playing on such type of machine may lead to multiple line losses.
What To Do For Practice
Even if some people are born with a bigger capacity for strategic thinking or may be considered lucky when playing various games, we wouldn’t recommend that you just start betting after having read one single article or two. In case you are about to start diving into the world of Poker, it might help you to practice a bit in advance to set the basis for your future success and profit generation.
While it might be true that in a real life casino, you wouldn’t be allowed to play for fun and training without betting, the same doesn’t refer to Online Poker. Exactly the opposite, you can take the time to get familiar with the rules, to develop the basic skills and then to start investing real money, however tempting it might be to do so since the very beginning.
You may find it valuable and interesting to check the following list of highly-rated online casinos in your country, where you have the opportunity to pick up an option that serves best your needs. Also, you might want to give a try to these games as part of your learning process: Aces and Faces, All American, Bonus Poker, Deuces Wild, Double Double Bonus, Five Play Draw Poker, Jester Poker, Joker Poker, Kings or Better, Loose Deuces, Regal Poker, Tens or Better, Triple Play Draw Poker, Ultimate X Poker.
We consider practicing a wonderful way of actually getting to know which types of machine suit you best, having in mind how relevant the choice of a machine might turn out to be in a real game. Also, there are a lot of people who choose to master the strategies related to a specific type of machine in order to increase their chances of winning, which is not surprising taking into consideration how complex the separate strategies can be.
Whatever online Video Poker variations and video poker strategy you go for, do not get overwhelmed. Like anything new, you will get better and better. It takes playing. Practice will teach you much more than demanding from yourself to remember all the rules and recommendations in advance. After all, Online Video Poker and Poker, in general, are meant to be fun, apart from being potentially lucrative and supportive of the development of strategic thinking.
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