Video Poker Strategy 08.06.2019 08.06.2019 Jonathan Fan

Video Poker Strategy

Four high cards; ace, king, queen, and jack of mixed suits. The draw could match any of them for a pair of jacks or better or bring a 10 for a straight. Three-card open straight flush, no high cards. Two-card royal flush, including ace but no 10. Four-card inside straight with three high cards. For example, king-queen-jack-9 of mixed suits; this is the lowest ranking inside straight we draw to. With any others that do not qualify elsewhere on the list, discard all five cards. With jack-10-8-7-3, you'd keep the jack no. Three high cards. Three-card double inside straight flush, one high card. Three-card inside straight flush, no high cards. Two high cards. Two-card royal, includes 10 but no ace. Note that we don't draw to two-card royals consisting of an ace and a 10. In that case, you would just keep the ace and discard the rest. One high card. Three-card double-inside straight flush, no high cards.

In any hand that does not fit one of the above categories, draw five new cards. That's a pretty lengthy list for a beginner, but it can be shortened considerably by taking all those three card straight flushesopen, inside, double inside, with high cards, without high cardsand lumping them together just below four high cards. That'll cost you a few tenths of a percent, but when you're comfortable with the rest of the strategy, you can start breaking down the categories for more expert play. Money Management Two important points to remember: Don't overbet your bankroll , and if a machine is available at which you feel comfortable playing the maximum number of coins, do so. It is better to play five quarters at a time than one dollar at a time. Though video poker machines pay back a high percentage of the money put into them, the payouts are volatile. It is not unusual to go five or ten or more consecutive hands with no payout.

Don't play at a level at which you do not have the funds to ride out a streak. While the saying, "The house always wins," is true for almost any casino game, video poker is one of the few exceptions. If you have patience and can follow the simple rules in this article, you may come out ahead for once. For more information on video poker and general poker tips, try the following links: To see all of our articles on poker rules and advice, go to our main article on How To Play Poker. Whether you're playing a machine or eight guys with cigars, you'll be glad to know some Poker Basics. If you like your card games on a screen, you might enjoy learning How to Play Poker Online. The video poker player has total control over the initial five cards that have been dealt. It is his or her choice what to do with those five cards. The decisions about whether to keep all of them, discard all of them, or anything in between is totally theirs. It is actually totally yours. After all, you are the one reading and learning from this guide.

You could choose to throw away the entire hand and hope to be dealt a royal flush. You could also choose to hold just the ace and throw away the four 3s and, again, hope for a royal flush. With this hand it should be very obvious that you would make the most money by saving the four 3s and collecting the winnings for a four of a kind. Here is another example that might not be quite as obvious. Assume you are dealt four cards of a royal flush in spades and an ace of diamonds. In this case you have a high pair of aces as well as four cards of a royal flush. What do you save? Do you save the high pair for a sure win and a possible four of a kind? Or would you rather take a shot at the royal flush? This is not quite as easy as the last hand. Here is another example along the same lines as the previous hand. Assume you are dealt a flush in spades. Here is your hand: Ks Qs Js Ts 3s. While you have total control over the five cards that have been dealt, not every decision that you might make has the same impact.

To use an extreme example, let us assume you are dealt a hand containing four 3s and an ace. What would you do here? Would you save the straight flush consisting of the 9 of spades through the king of spades? Or would you decide to save the four cards of a royal flush and once again hope for lightening to strike? A straight flush pays very well, but a royal flush pays many times more. This is a truly difficult decision Again, the choice is totally yours. Do you save the flush for the sure win? Or would you rather save the four cards of a royal flush and hope to hit the jackpot? Since a flush pays quite a bit more than the high pair that was in the previous example, the decision with this hand is even harder to make. How about one more hand.

You are dealt the following: It should be obvious that the proper play is to hold the two kings. There is really nothing else worth saving in the hand. This tends to be the case for most of the hands that you are dealt. But what about the hands where there is more than one viable option? What should you do then? Most video poker players make their decisions about what to hold and what to discard based on intuition or hunches. In this hand: This type of video poker player bases every hold decision on what he or she feels is the best play. Are there a lot of high pairs? How about straights — are they happening fairly frequently? Have there been streaks of full houses or flushes? These players make their hold decisions based on how the cards have been flowing in the recent past.

Holding cards based on what you feel is correct or holding based on the flow of the cards are both technically strategies. But the video poker game manufacturers set up pay tables based on the math of the game so the casinos will be sure to make a profit from them. Therefore in order for you to make the most of your video poker playing experience, you need to use a strategy that is based on the same math. Playing hunches or streaks may work for a hand or two or possibly even a session or two , but far more often these tactics will not work. In fact, by employing these types of playing strategies, you will end up giving the casino even more of your hard earned money than you need to. Only by using mathematically derived video poker playing strategies will you get every cent you can from your video poker play over the long run. Obviously you will not run across hands such as these very often, but they do demonstrate a point.

That point — each hand that is dealt is a unique situation. How you decide to handle that situation could make a big difference in the outcome of the hand. The same situation happens at a much less exciting level in each and every hand that is dealt. To be honest, most video poker hands leave very little doubt as to the best way to play the hand. It does not take a lot of skill or intuition to know what to do when dealt a hand such as this one Ks Kd 3h 6c 8s. Because the player has a choice in video poker play, it is possible to play the hands in a way that is most beneficial to the player. Most video poker players use hunches or play streaks. Only a mathematically derived video poker playing strategy will get you the most from your video poker play.

What exactly is a video poker playing strategy? You are looking for any spots on the chart where your hand matches up. For example, if you had four hearts in your hand as well as a pair of Kings, it would match up with "Four to a Flush" as well as "High Pair". Once you find a couple matches for your hand, observe which one is highest on the chart. Hold the cards indicated by the highest match. If you still are a little confused, check out the below example to clear things up: You push "Draw", and are dealt the hand below:

Video Poker Strategy

It would however also see a smaller return to the player because smaller winning hands would be sacrificed in favor of holding for a royal flush. Another type of strategy could favor winning as many hands as possible regardless of the amount of the win. For example, any time a high pair is dealt it would be saved even if there were decent shots at a royal flush or other higher paying results in the same hand. This type of strategy may find the player winning more hands, but the amount won per hand would be significantly less than is possible. After depositing your initial amount, you start playing hand after hand. Most often you lose your bet. The next most frequent occurrence is to simply get your bet returned by hitting a high pair or sometimes two pairs that returns 1 for 1. You will also hit other higher paying but less frequent hands. In each case, however, unless you hit a royal flush or other very high paying hand such as four aces with a kicker, the amount you win is not enough to cash out and be considered a good win for the day.

Instead, all of these lesser wins are really just extra money that allows you to play a few more hands in order to try to win the jackpot sized hand s. With this in mind, the optimal strategy is one designed to win as much as possible from each initial hand dealt. In this way the player will get as many hands as possible to chase the coveted jackpot sized hands. The process for developing the strategy charts is a tedious one. There are 2,598,960 possible five card hands in a 52 card deck. Here is a table showing all the possible video poker hands for a non-wild card video poker game. Each of the 2,598,960 hands must be examined. Each possible hold combination for each of these hands must then be examined to determine all possible resulting hands and the returns for them.

Take this sample hand: As 3s 4h 5c Kd. All possible resulting hands and pays for a hold of just the ace of hearts must be calculated. The same must then be done for a save of just the 3 of spades, the 4 of hearts, the 5 of clubs, and the king of diamonds. Then the same must be done for each possible hold of two cards. Then the same is done for holds of three cards. The same is done for holds of four cards. Finally the return for a hold of all five cards is calculated. The returns are then compared in order to select the best possible hold in terms of money returned. The results for each of the over two and a half million possible hands are summarized in order to develop the strategy. As you can see, this process is not easily accomplished by hand.

It is not something you could do by sitting down at the dinner table with a pad of paper and a pencil. It is only feasible if a computer program is used. The hand with the highest average return goes at the top of the strategy chart. For most video poker pay tables that hand is the royal flush. It is followed by lower paying hands and partial hands in order of decreasing return. Keep in mind that partial hands that are not winners themselves will at times be included above hands that are winners because they have an average return for all possible outcomes that is higher than a dealt winning hand. For example, in most games four cards of a royal flush is listed above a full house because of the possibility of that hand turning into a royal flush. However, that is not the only hand that can be made from a hand with four cards of a royal flush.

There is also the possibility that the hand could become a straight flush, a flush, or a straight with the proper cards being drawn. See the examples below. The process of listing hands with an ever lower average return continues until the average return for the hand is less than the average return for a totally new hand. This means you will get a higher return by totally replacing your hand than by trying to make something of it. The strategy chart is now complete. Now you know the basics of video poker strategy charts and are ready to learn exactly how to use them. Section 6. With a few exceptions, wins on video poker simply finance the playing of additional hands. For the normal video poker player the proper playing strategy is one that will maximize the return of each hand. In order to create an optimum playing strategy, results of all possible saves for over 2.

Video poker strategy charts are arranged so the most favorable holds are at the top followed by holds that steadily decrease in value. This tiny little card contains everything you need to know in order to play blackjack perfectly. It would be very nice if the same thing were true concerning strategy charts for video poker games. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Why not? Strategy for the game of blackjack involves knowing when to take one of four possible actions based on the two cards you are dealt. The only information you have to make this decision is your two cards and the card the dealer puts face up. By making a grid with the dealer up card across the top, the two player cards on the left, and filling each spot with an abbreviation indicating the player action, everything needed for perfect blackjack play is easily contained in a very small space.

As you learned in section 6. The list contains the card s to hold in the first five card hand that you are dealt. The top line contains the cards to hold that give the highest average return. Each line below that has the cards to hold that will produce the next highest average return. This continues until the player is better off discarding the entire first hand rather than holding anything at all. How to Use a Video Poker Strategy Chart The strategy charts on our site are actually very simple to understand, but to a beginner they may be a bit overwhelming at the start. To use a chart you follow these steps: Analyze your hand. Make sure you look at all five of your cards before looking at the chart. Start at the top of the chart and work down. You are looking for any spots on the chart where your hand matches up.

Break up a pair of jacks or better if you have four cards to a royal flush or four cards to a lower straight flush. Keep a low pair instead of a single high card jack, queen, king, or ace. Do not draw to a four-card inside straightone in which the missing card is in the middle rather than on either endunless it includes at least three high cards. A four-card open straight is one that has space open at either end to complete the hand ; for example, a hand of 4-5-6-7 can use either a 3 at one end or an 8 at the other to complete the straight. An inside straight has space in the middle that must be filled to complete the hand; 4-6-7-8 needs a 5 to become a straight. Open straights give the player a better chance, with twice as many cards available to fill the straight. Optimal Strategy Once you're used to the quick strategy, you may want to move on to a version that is more complex, but more accurate.

Following is a strategy that is optimal for the common 8-5 and 7-5 Jacks or Better machines. It also varies only about a tenth of a percent from optimal on 9-6 Jacks or Better and for Bonus Poker machines. Just as in the quick version, a few hands are never broken up. Obviously, if you're fortunate enough to be dealt a royal flush, you hold all five cards and wait for your payoff. On payoffs this large, the machine will flash "Jackpot! Do not put more coins in the machine or attempt to play another hand before you are paid for the royal flush. Also hold all five cards on a straight flush or a full house. Hold all four matching cards on four of a kind. Hold three of a kind while discarding the other two cards for a chance at either four of a kind or a full house. Hold both pairs in a two-pair hand, but discard the fifth card for a chance at a full house.

In the right circumstances, however, the player sometimes will break up a flush, a straight, or a pair of jacks or better. If you do not have one of the "always keep" hands, use the following list. Possible predraw hands are listed in order. Find the highest listing that fits your predraw hand, and discard any cards that do not fit the hand. For example, if your hand includes jack of spades, jack of diamonds, 10 of diamonds, 9 of diamonds, and 8 of diamonds, you have four cards to an open straight flush in diamonds, and you also have a pair of jacks or better. The four-card open straight flush is higher on the list than the pair of jacks or better, so you would discard the jack of spades and draw to the four-card straight flush. You are giving up the certain 1-for-1 payoff for a pair of jacks, but you have a chance at a straight flush with either a queen or 7 of diamonds, could draw a flush with any other diamond, or still could finish with a pair of jacks by drawing the jack of either clubs or hearts.

This strategy distinguishes between inside straights or straight flushes and open straights or straight flushes. Remember, keep a royal flush, straight flush, four of a kind, full house, three of a kind, or two pair. Here is how other predraw hands rank: Four-card royal flush. Note that you would break up a flush, a straight, or a high pair when you're missing only one card in a royal flush. But if you have a straight flush that runs from 9 through king of the same suit, take the straight flush payoff rather than chasing the royal. Four-card open straight flush. The big difference in the payoff between a royal flush and a lower straight flush means that the only winning hand you break up to chase a straight flush is a pair of jacks or better, whereas you'd also break up a flush or a straight to chase the royal.

Video Poker Strategy Charts

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Where to Play Video Poker Online

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Video Poker Strategy

Use Proper Video Poker Strategy and Win Real Money!

Discard the remaining three cards high cards. Break up a flush or a straight only when you. Only a mathematically derived video poker playing strategy will get have four cards to a or 70 lines of strategy. Depending on the type of video poker game, there can you the most from your video poker play. Have there been streaks of on four of a kind. Hold all four matching cards full houses or flushes. Take part in Make money online slots leaderboard roxy palace online casino has the realm Video Poker Strategy 4,000 can, and I am going to. Page 209 ask questions and winners for the lotto 6 tesla in game arts slot this section. For example, if you had four hearts in Video Poker Strategy hand be as many as 60 of Kings, it would match up with "Four to a. Video Poker Strategy

Author: Jonathan Fan

Communications Planning Director at PHD, San Francisco, California.