Game Setup and Playing Mode:
Being that it's video poker, what you see on an actual video poker machine at a brick'n mortar casino is pretty much the exact same thing you get when you play video poker at an online casino. In the screenshot below (courtesy of VIP Slots Casino), you will see the typical betting interface for an online video poker machine. Note the 250 column is highlighted. This means one coin (worth $.25) is being wagered, and lists the payout odds accordingly. To play another coin, simply click the "BET ONE" button.
For the screen shot below, the "BET MAX" button was selected, thereby betting all five coins on a single hand. Note the highlighted 4,000 column and the bet amount increased to $1.25 (based on a $0.25 coin):
The screen shot below shows an online video poker hand in play immediately after the deal. Simply click on the card(s) to be held (not be redrawn), as was the case for the 5 of Spades below:
Note below that the draw button is highlighted. Click on it when the hand has been marked with all the desired Holds. If the resultant hand is a winner, it will reflect accordingly in the pay table. The below example shows a winning Straight:
Game Objective and Rules:
The objective of video poker is to shape a poker hand that pays money. Sound pretty simple? Well, it is. What's not as simple, or rather, takes longer to master, is optimal strategy for getting the House Edge down as low as possible when playing poker. If you are searching for solid video poker strategy, we recommend Michael Shackelford's, aka the Wizard of Odds, simple and optimal strategies published on his website.
The essential rules of video poker are governed by the hand rankings, as these determine if you hand is a winner and how much it will be paid. Below are the hands that apply to most video poker versions, including all paying hands for Deuces Wild and Jacks or Better.
- Royal Flush - Five cards of the same suit in consecutive order, beginning with 10 then all three Face Cards and Ace
- 4 Deuces - Four two's.
- Deuces Royal Flush - A wild Royal with two's.
- 5 of a Kind - Five cards of the same value with a Wild Card
- Straight Flush - Five cards in numeric/value order of the same suit.
- 4 of a Kind - Four cards of the same value
- Full House - a 3 of a Kind combined with a Pair.
- Flush - Five cards of the same suit in no particular numeric order.
- Straight - Five cards in numeric order of varying suits.
- 3 of a Kind - Three cards of the same value.
- 2 Pair - Two pairs of each, each pair with matching cards.
- Kings or Better - A hand of two Kings.
- Jacks or Better - A hand of two Jacks - the lowest ranking hand.