How to Beat Video Poker Machines: The Ultimate Strategy
Table Of Contents
- What Makes Video Poker Special?
- Learn the Rules of Video Poker
- Video Poker Basic Strategy
- Choose the Right Pay Table
- How to Beat the Jacks or Better Video Poker
- Always Play the Max
- Find the Best Pay Table
- Slow Down
- Join a Player’s Club
- Play the Progressive Jackpot Video Poker Machines
- Keep an Eye on the Bonuses
- Things to Avoid
In this article, I am going to explain how to beat video poker machines by:
- Playing smarter
- Playing slower
- Picking the best games
- Reducing the house edge
- Avoiding the stupidest mistakes
In case you already know all of this and can’t wait to play some of the best video poker games - this is the site you should visit.
However, if you’d like to know how to play better with a helpful video poker strategy - continue reading.
What Makes Video Poker Special?
Since it made its entry into the casino scene back in the 1970s, video poker has gone from strength to strength to become one of the most popular gambling games.
Do you know why?
Video poker is one of the few casino games that not only offer some of the highest odds in casino gambling but it gives you also the chance to influence the game’s outcome.
Yes, your skills can make a difference.
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As if that’s not enough, video poker is popular also because it brings into the mix a low house edge (profit to the casinos) while still giving you, the player, a chance to win big (in jackpot proportions).
Video poker gives you that much-craved anonymity in the sense that you can play alone and without the psychological pressure of a live poker game.
In other words, you don’t have to deal with pit bosses, dealers, or fellow players who dissect and even irritatingly comment on your play.
While these are just some of the few godsend advantages that video poker brings into your playbook, the biggest question remains: how can you beat video poker machines?
You may have probably come across an adage in the betting circles that states:
"The house always has an advantage."
It may be hard to refute this, but video poker is almost an exception to this rule.
With the right skills, strategy, knowledge and an element of luck, you can beat video poker machines hands down.
The fact that you are playing against a machine and not against other players is an advantage that makes video poker machines very beatable.
Add this to the fact that you’re almost five times more likely to hit a big jackpot (aka. the Royal Flush) when playing video poker makes it one of the best games out there.
In fact, you should seriously consider moving from traditional slot machines to video poker machines.
But before you blindly jump ships, here’s the strategy you should follow to beat video poker machines.
Learn the Rules of Video Poker
Playing video poker is simple.
While there are various variants of video poker, they have one thing in common: they’re all based on simple mechanics of five-card draw poker.
Video poker uses a standard 52-card deck.
After you make your wager and press the "Deal" button, the machine randomly gives you five cards.
At this point, you need to choose which cards to keep and which cards to throw away or discard.
To keep them, tap on the pictures of your chosen cards on the screen.
Once you have made your pick, press the "Draw" button for the machine to randomly replace the discarded cards.
In this exciting game, your winning is based on ending up with a poker hand such as flush, straight, two pairs, or even a royal flush.
Always keep in mind that the amount that you win per hand depends on the poker value of your hand and the posted paytable of the machine you’re playing.
One of the most important things to know on how to beat video poker is that you have to make a wise decision on which of your dealt five cards to keep and which ones to discard.
Remember, making the right decision from the word go will give you the best chances of winning even a jackpot.
Video Poker Basic Strategy
The gravest mistake that you can do in your quest to beat a video poker machine is to attempt playing by just…guessing.
You will lose a lot of money on a simple game that gives you a real shot at winning.
Remember, having the right skills and using an optimum video poker strategy will not only give you a higher chance of winning millions, but you will also enjoy the benefits that come with winning, such as comps that are set aside for casino’s best players.
Keep in mind that you should also thoroughly practice on your computer before risking real money on a real video poker machine.
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Choose the Right Pay Table
One of the best things about playing video poker is that the machine allows you to know the expected return before you even start to play.
Video poker is incomparable to any other game because unlike quite a few new slots, it is the only game that shows you the expected return on your money on the paytable.
It is therefore crucial that you do your research to identify the best video poker machines that offer good paytables.
To find the most generous machine, you should understand that the return on a particular video poker machine is based on the machine’s paytable.
For instance, casinos average a profit of about 3% on each play on a video poker game.
This profit is known as the house edge.
Now if the Casinos get 3%, you as the player should get a return of 97%, which can vary depending on the machine’s paytable.
That’s why you need to check out various machines and their pay tables before you play at the video Poker with the highest returns.
For example, you increase your chances of beating a video poker machine if you choose a game with a paytable that offers 99.54% return than if you pick a video poker game with a paytable that provides a 97.29% return.
In other words, the 99.54% machine only keeps 0.47% house edge while the 97.29% machine keeps 2.71%.
In this case, choosing the 99.54% is the better option as it offers you close to full pay.
On the contrary, you will lose your money almost six times faster if you play on the 97.29% machine.
There is, consequently, no doubt that searching for a good machine will pay.
You should not fall prey to using machines that are lousy or machines that offer terrible paytables.
How to Beat the Jacks or Better Video Poker
Each video poker game has its own strategies.
For instance, the strategy that will help you win on Jacks or Better is different from that which will help you succeed on Deuces Wild.
And because learning all the strategies on the book might be tiresome if not impossible, let’s look at how to beat video poker Jacks or Better.
Even though Jacks or Better offers one of the lowest returns, especially when compared to games such as Deuces Wild, Double Bonus Poker, and other variations, it remains one of the most enthralling and rewarding video pokers games, at least according to the majority of video poker players.
Therefore, here are some crucial tips that will possibly help you win big and beat the video Poker machine while playing Jacks or Better.
Always Play the Max
It is always imperative to play maximum coins.
This is because Jacks or Better video poker machines offer a top payout for a royal flush (the jackpot).
Playing maximum coins gives you the chance to get a bonus win when you hit a royal flush.
Even though you can bet between one to five coins per hand, you only stand a chance to get the bonus on a royal flush when you bet five coins per hand.
On the contrary, you can consider dropping down to a lower coinage if you aren’t comfortable with the five-coin bet.
The only difference is: you will not play for the jackpot.
Find the Best Pay Table
As noted above, finding the best paytable is crucial if you are serious about beating a video poker machine.
With regards to Jacks or Better, there is a myriad of pay charts available.
Although each pay chart offers a different house edge, you should always consider going for a 9/6 (or more) pay chart when playing Jacks or Better video poker.
This is because a 9/6 is a fair return that offers full house pay on nine coins and flush pay on six coins.
Playing on a pay chart that offers less the 9/6 pay chart is a risky move and a clear indication that you are playing with a bigger house edge.
In this case, you are giving the casino more profit (money) per hand, thereby losing your money faster than you realize.
Like almost all casino games, you should always remember that video poker machines are designed for one main purpose: make a profit (house edge) for the casino.
Either way, the more you play, the more you lose.
It is, therefore, advisable to apply what I call "a slow-down strategy" when playing Jacks or Better.
No one will chase you and no one will call the clock if you take some time to decide what cards to keep.
You can play and go on a break anytime you want.
The key is not to rush and not to play for volume. Video poker, unlike online poker, is a gambling game where the greater the number of your hands means higher chances of you losing your money.
If you play poker, you know that the key to being a winning player is "to play fewer hands."
Video poker is different.
In video poker, you don’t need to play fewer hands - you need to play slower hands.
This will help you in lessening your hourly losses, hence giving you the opportunity to play for longer and increase your chances to hit a royal flush or to put together a sizeable win.
Even though this is nothing but common sense, many players often ignore this basic gambling principle and therefore lose a lot of money within a very short period.
You need to take complete control of your hand-per-hour to get the chance to extend your playing time and minimise your losses at the same time.
Join a Player’s Club
More often than not, the player’s clubs are created and designed to get you and other players to play more and longer to get comps.
While this may seem like a negative, it shouldn’t be your ground of not joining them.
The Player’s clubs are your best chance to earn special bonuses that casinos give only to their most valuable players.
This works to your advantage in the sense that it helps you reduce the house edge in the long run.
I strongly recommend you to browse through the best casinos online and choose the one that has the best advantages when it comes to long-term video Poker playing.
Play the Progressive Jackpot Video Poker Machines
One of the main reasons why almost all casinos offer progressive jackpots is to give players an added chance of reaping big on a relatively small bet.
Jacks or Better video poker games are known to offer some of the best progressive jackpots out there, but you only stand a chance of winning if you use the best strategy.
The problem is, many progressive Jacks or Better video poker machines use terrible paytables.
You should be vigilant to ensure that you only play progressive jackpot on machines that offer a comparatively good paytable.
Remember, progressive jackpots offer players the chance of winning phenomenally big. It could be you.
But if you pick a video poker game that gives you no chance of winning, then you won’t get a single chance to beat the game.
Keep an Eye on the Bonuses
There are always a lot of promotions and offers not just on the Jacks or Better video poker, but on other games too.
By targeting the right promotions, you stand a bigger chance to beat video poker machines since you get free money to play more games.
Don’t ignore the bonuses to play video poker and don’t be afraid to use a casino’s live chat feature to ask if there’s something for you.
Only last month, I received four bonuses only because…I asked for them.
Sometimes, online casino websites are so bad that it’s nearly impossible for an average user to find all the promotions or all the latest casino bonuses that are running at any given time.
If you want a bonus, ask for it. Remember: fortune favours the bold.
Things to Avoid
And now, a few practical and simple tips to win at video poker online.
The Kicker. When you play Jacks or Better video poker, you should always avoid the widespread blunder of retaining a kicker.
Many players mistakenly think that keeping a kicker gives them a higher chance to win with a higher payout.
The Straight/Flush. You should also never attempt to keep three cards in your quest of chasing a straight or a flush.
Keeping three cards with the hope to grab a straight or a flush only leaves you in a losing position.
The only time that you can keep all the three cards is when you can pull off the highly valuable straight flush in your attempt at going after a big payout.
Keep in mind this basic strategy on how to beat video poker machines: never give up a winning hand in an attempt at getting an even bigger hand.
Playing video poker games, particularly Jacks or Better video poker, is one the best choices you can make when you log in to your favourite online casino.
Video poker games come with a lot of options and features that not only make them a proper alternative to traditional slot machines but also give players a real shot at winning big.
What video poker game has the best odds?
It all depends on the video poker paytables, but you should probably be looking at full-pay Deuces Wild games if you want a video poker game with the best odds.
Can you cheat at video poker?
You can cheat everywhere, but you don't want to. You'd risk your winnings, and you can get your account banned. Instead, use proven video poker strategy and tips and land some winnings the right way.
Is video poker better than slots?
In many ways yes. The slots have their own advantages, but as a whole, it is hard to find slots that offer a house edge which would be as beneficial to the player as video poker does.
How to beat Jacks or Better at video poker?
To beat Jacks or Better video poker game, you need to keep two things in mind: you must find games with good payables (9/6 or more)and you have to play for the max. Only betting five coins per hand will give you a chance to land the Royal Flush (the jackpot) and that's how you win at Jacks and Better video poker.
What is the strategy to win at video poker every time?
There is an element of chance, just like with any other casino game, so you cannot win at video poker every time. You can maximize your chances though; find games with good payables, understand the rules, take your time when making decisions and aim for progressive jackpot machines. These would be the winning video poker tips in a nutshell, but you might want to read up on that in more detail, and this is the perfect article!
Can I play online video poker for real money?
Yes, you can definitely play video poker online for real money. Simply pick a casino that offers video poker game and is available for real money play in your region, choose a game you fancy, and use tips to maximize your wins. Don't forget to gamble responsibly!
Have a question? Or maybe you have some of your own tips and strategies for video poker that worked well and helped you win? Share below in the comments section!