Real Money Video Poker

Real Money Video Poker

One of the oldest electronic casino games, video poker, in its many variations, remains one of the most popular choices among players of all shapes and sizes.

Best Real Money Video Poker Casinos

Video poker games are among the most popular online casino games and there are many reasons behind the game’s popularity. First of all, when playing the game, you have all the important information in front of you which allows you to properly determine the casino edge as well as develop and refine your winning strategy which will lead to the best return at the end. Video poker is also one of the simplest online casino games around very similar to slot machines.

However, when playing slot machines you rely on luck, while in video poker you make important decisions such as which cards you want to save to make up the best possible hand. What is even more, video poker games come with the lowest casino edge when compared to other electronic online casino games which is a huge advantage.

In its essence, the game of video poker takes inspiration from a five-card online poker and all gaming rounds are determined by Random Number Generators. Offering among the best winning odds in the world of online casino gaming, video poker is not only super generous but also extremely entertaining. Further in this Real Money Video Poker guide, we take a look at the most basic rules of the game, different video poker variants, and other important information that will help you get the most out of your video poker gaming sessions.

The History of Online Video Poker

The very first video poker machine was crafted in 1891 by the Sittman and Pitt firm based in Brooklyn, the city of New York. Besides crafting the very first video poker game, the company is also responsible for laying the groundwork for slot machines as the company’s video poker machine inspired Charles Fey’s slot machine. Needless to say, video poker and slot machines come from the same family as they are closely related.

In other words, both video poker and slot machines are games of chance, coin-operated. While video poker involves skill elements and slot machines do not, video poker is also determined by luck. Back to the very first video poker machine crafted by Sittman and Pitt, it featured five drums or five reels, and each reel was packed with the pictures of ten playing cards. Once players inserted coins and pull the machine’s handle, each reel would spin and stop on a picture of a playing card which made a final hand.

Seven years later, Charles Fey who is commonly known as the slot machine father crafted his Card Bell video poker machine. Then in 1901, Charles Fey creates his Skill Draw machine that boasted a hold feature. With this feature in place, players could hold single or several cards before res-pinning in other to improve their hands. The Skill Draw poker machine was the very first of this kind.

In the following years, Sittman and Pitt continued manufacturing similar draw poker machines considering the growing popularity of the game. At the time, the demand for draw poker machines was extremely high that the companies involved in the business could not keep up with it. The very first modern video poker game named Poker-Matic was crafted in 1970 by Dale Electronics.

The Poker-Matic video poker machine first arrived at land-based casinos in Las Vegas, the state of Nevada. It was the Poker-Matic machine that inspired other modern video poker games that were crafted later. It was not long after a new video poker game emerged on the scene in the middle 1970s when Si Redd working for Bally Gaming promoted his Video Poker game. However, the company rejected his patent which led him to making a business deal with the Reno-based Fortune Coin Company.

Shortly after the Sircoma company was born, Si Redd and his team started mass production of his Video Poker machine. Several years later, the new game became one of the most popular games across land-based casinos. From this point on, the game’s popularity was on the rise with more and more video poker fans around the globe. With the growing popularity of the game, many different variants of video poker were born such as Double Double Bonus Poker, Triple Bonus Poker, Jacks or Better, Deuces Wilds, Joker Poker, and many others. All of these found their place in the hearts of online casino gamers.

How to Play Online Video Poker?

Video poker games that you can play across many online casino venues are based on video poker games that you play at brick and mortar venues. The game is super simple and the rules are easy to learn. Taking inspiration from five-card draw poker, video poker machines also use some slot machines’ principles. While there are many different variants of the game, each of them has some things in common.

Once you have found your online casino venue that offers the game, you start your gaming sessions by placing your wager. To do so, select a preferred coin size alongside the number of coins. 

The next step is to click the Deal button. At the start of the round, you get five cards. After you have examined your cards, you decided which one you want to keep and which one you want to return and trade for other cards to get the strongest five-card hand.

When playing online video poker games, you can keep all five cards you have received as well as trade all five cards for different. Once you have your final hand, you get paid according to the game’s paytable if your hand is a winner. Naturally, higher-ranked poker hands deliver higher payouts regardless of which video poker game you choose. The highest-paying hand is a Royal Flush which delivers 4,000 coins for a five-coin bet. When playing Jacks or Better, you most commonly come across a payout table like this:

  • Jacks or Better delivers 5 coins for a five-coin bet

  • Two Pair delivers 10 coins for a five-coin bet

  • Three of a Kind delivers 15 coins for a five-coin bet

  • Straight delivers 20 coins for a five-coin bet

  • Flush delivers 30 coins for a five-coin bet

  • Full House delivers 45 coins for a five-coin bet

  • Four of a Kind delivers 125 coins for a five-coin bet

  • Straight Flush delivers 250 coins for a five-coin bet

  • Royal Flush delivers 4000 coins for a five-coin bet

In other words, each poker hand pays out according to how many coins you wagered. Different video poker games use the same poker hand ranking while the payouts differ from one variant to another. During your gaming sessions, all of the winning poker hands are listed on the main gaming screen, so you always know what to expect based on your coin bet and your hand strength.

Video Poker Payback Percentage and Winning Odds

While video poker games appear to be solely based on luck at least to inexperienced played, the truth is much different since video poker also involves an element of skill. In other words, every decision you make during your gaming sessions has a profound impact on the outcome. The payback percentage in video poker games is usually between 97% and 99% and this shows you how much of your wagers on average will return to you in the long run. When compared to slots and other games, this is a great RTP.

Then, to understand the winning odds when playing video poker, you must understand the game’s rules. As previously mentioned, the game is based on a five-draw poker which is the simplest poker form. Usually, video poker games used a deck of fifty-two cards and you are dealt five cards at the initial draw. Once here, you have the option to discard some or all of those five cards or you can keep them all.

Once you have your final hand, a second draw takes place and if your hand is a winning hand, you receive a payout according to your bet placed and according to the strength of your hand. Today, all variants of video poker run using Random Number Generators of RNGs, which means that all outcomes are random and there is no way to predicts them which essentially guarantees fairness.

When it comes to the game’s winning odds, higher-ranked hands are rarer than weaker hands while the exact odds of getting a certain winning hand vary from one video poker game to another. Nonetheless, when playing Jacks or Better or other video poker games that use a deck of fifty-two cards, the winning odds on the initial draw are well known. Initial odds of getting winning hands when playing Jacks or Better are:

  • Royal Flush 649,740 to 1

  • Straight Flush 72,193 to 1

  • Four of a Kind 4,165 to 1

  • Full House 694 to 1

  • Flush 509 to 1

  • Straight 255 to 1

  • Three of a kind 47 to 1

  • Two Pairs 21 to 1

  • Pair J, Q, K, or A 7.69 to 1

  • Any Pair 2.37 to 1

After you examine these numbers, it becomes obvious that you will get any pair almost half of the time. These numbers also suggest that every seven to eight hands, you will receive your wager back. Looking into higher-ranked hands, the winning odds of getting a Royal Flush on the initial draw around 1 in 649,740 which is quite rare. The odds of getting a Straight Flush on the first draw are 1 in 72,193 while the odds of getting a Four of Kind on the first draw are 1 in 4,165.

According to the winning odds listed above, players get a Full House on the initial draw once in six hundred and ninety-four games. Following the same pattern, players get a Flush on the initial draw once in five hundred and ninety games, a Straight once in two hundred and fifty-five games, a Three of a Kind once in forty-seven games, a Two Pairs once in twenty-one game, and a Pair of J, Q, K, or A once in almost seven games.

Online Video Poker Variants

Video poker is one of the online casino games with the lowest casino edge which is usually around 0.5% up to 5% depending on which variant you play. This leads us to different video poker variants that you can play at online casinos. While there are many different video poker games, Jacks or Better, Tens or Better, Aces and Faces, Deuces Wild, Joker Poker, Bonus Poker remain the most popular.

The classic variation of the game Jacks or Better or draw poker got his name from the lowest-ranked hand that you can get which is a pair of Jacks. Like the vast majority of other video poker games, Jacks or Better uses a deck with fifty-two cards. At the start of every round, players get five cards that they can discard or keep to get a winning hand. Jacks or Betts allows you to place bets from one to five coins per hand.

Jacks or Better as the simplest video poker game inspired all other video poker games including Tens or Better. Sharing many similar rules, in Tens or Better you need a pair of Tens or better to win. Aces and Faces is also very popular in which you receive better payouts for your Four of a Kind hand formed by faces cards or sets of Aces hence the game Aces and Faces.

Besides these popular variants, many online casinos also offer Deuces Wild games. Also played with a deck of fifty-two cards, all twos featured in the deck are wild cards which means they replace any other card. Since winning hands appear more commonly, in Deuces Wild the Jacks or Better hands are not winning. Joker Poker is played with fifty-three cards and one extra Joker card that acts as a wild card you use to form better winning combos. To get a winning hand, you need at least a pair of Kings or better.

Besides these, online casinos also offer Bonus Poker, Pick’em Poker as well as progressive video poker games that features increasing jackpot prizes that keep growing until some lucky player wins. To become eligible for progressive jackpots, you need to bet five one-credit coins. All in all, each variant has its benefits and perks, so try different to find what suits you. Before you get there, learn the rules, familiarize yourself with the payouts, and know what to expect.

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