How To Play Video Poker

“How to play video poker successfully” is a question that keeps bugging the minds of thousands of players. In reality, the steepness of the learning curve is not a problem if you put effort in steady exploration of the game.

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 Introduction: How The Game Works

The game is based on poker in land-based casinos and thus has quite similar gameplay and mechanics. Players deal/draw five cards and decide which one to keep or return to the machine. The main goal is to obtain the most successful combination, which brings the highest reward.

What Makes It Special

The defining feature of this game is the number of possible card combinations that counter each other. There is more to being good at this game than just knowing video poker rules and for example, bluffing plays an essential role even while playing online. Moreover, every professional player can understand the intentions of others and build an adaptive strategy.

 Is It For You

If you dig casino activities, where you can overcome the house edge by using logical thinking and well-thought strategies, the chances you will like this game too are high. Of course, it is not as if the factor of luck is absent here, but the randomness is quite a bit lower than with other gambling activities like spinning roulettes.

Video Poker Rules

Learning to play video poker starts with figuring out the main concepts of the game’s rules and mechanics. As a newcomer, you might find the number of combinations and nuances quite overwhelming initially, but do not give up.


At the start of the game, every player hits a “draw” button and receives 5 random cards from the deck. At this point, they also should figure out the amount of money to wager on the bet. Then, to make it simple, each one of them tries to create the best combination of cards, which also can be called “hand.” The player manages to estimate the chances of their hand being the best on the table wins.

Winning Hands

As for the possible combinations, there are quite a few of them. However, only one of them is ultimately “winning” because it has the highest value. Others will increase your bankroll size only if there are no higher hands on the table.

Some of the combinations are in decreasing order:

  • Royal flush. Includes the cards from Ace to ten, which have the same suite;
  • Straight flush. Cards of the same suit in consecutive order;
  • Full house. Triple cards with the same value plus a pair of similar cards;
  • Cards in a consecutive order regardless of their suit;
  • Two pairs. A couple of doublets with a random card;
  • Includes one doublet and random cards.

 Pay Tables

These charts display the paybacks for particular games and even card combinations. You can always check for the variance of the outcomes of different types of poker and choose the most appealing one. The availability of pay tables adds to the transparency of the gameplay and allows structuring your bets logically.

Learn how to play video poker in demo mode
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Popular Types

Using a computer is undoubtedly the best way to play video poker today. However, which one of the game’s variations to choose? The answer will be different for every person, so you should consider every option.

Bonus Poker

This variation of the game provides an opportunity of boosting your experience by claiming special offers. You will most commonly find the jackpot feature that allows winning a staggering amount of money to meet special requirements.

Double Bonus

Another bonus that allows getting a significantly higher payback for collecting four cards of the same value. However, the payback for the “Two pair” combination here is also lower than in the ordinary variety of the game.

Aces and Eights

One of the most potent card combinations here is four Aces or four cards with 8 on them. The cards also have to be of a black suit according to the rules of the majority of online gambling platforms.

Jacks Or Better

As it comes from the name of the variation, the weakest winning combination here is a pair of Jacks with other random cards. It means that if you have obtained such a hand, you already have some chances to win.

Deuces Wild

The main trait of this poker variation is that any card that has a number 2 on it can be replaced with any other one. Thus, it is always a good idea to keep twos, which are very versatile. Due to the significantly increased chances of forming a winning combination, the payback here is relatively low compared to other game types.

How To Play Video Poker: A Beginners’ Guide

Stick to the guide’s steps below to boost your chances of having a positive outcome of the game. Finally, let’s move on to answering the question you are reading this article for: “How to play video poker at a casino?”

Step 1

Select Your Bet Size

Never go all out in the beginning. Instead, start from modest best and increase them if you are confident in the odds of creating a strong winning hand. Enter the number of coins you want to wager in a dedicated place.
Step 2

First Cards Drawn

Push the “Deal / Draw” button to take the first five cards from the dealer. Examine the combination you have and think of the possible ways to improve it with the next moves. Do not worry if it seems like a weak hand; the first deal does not mean anything.
Step 3

Hold Your Cards

Do not return the majority of the cards from the start. It is quite a good idea to hold them for the next round to see the moves of other players and preserve the versatility of your hand.
Step 4

Second Cards Drawn

Here you can choose which cards you want to get rid of. Then, try to obtain the cards your pile is missing to become a winning hand. Always estimate your chances logically.
Step 5

Outcome & Payout

Get the payout after the game ends. The value of the payback will depend on the hand you had at the end of the game. So even if it has the highest value, it does not mean you will have the highest payout.

Video Poker Strategy

Let’s sum up the main points of the successful strategy for the reviewed game. Of course, by this point, you have to have a basic idea of its gameplay and nuances of mechanics, so a list of points will conclude it all.

Main points of the strategy:

  • Investigate the video poker rules of the particular table on the website of your choice;
  • Keep the value of the bets within the limits of your bankroll size;
  • Take the actions of other players into account while planning your next move;
  • Take advantage of the bonus systems of the gambling platforms;
  • Do not use the autoplay mode because it decreases the payback;
  • Stick to progressive variation of the game to be able to get higher payouts.

 Tips On How To Play Video Poker At A Casino

Here is some additional advice on the best way to play video poker to complement the previous section of the article.

 Always Bet Maximum

Make sure you wager the amount of money that gives you an opportunity of playing progressive poker and getting the highest payouts. You do not have to bet an absolute maximum on every game if you are new and only starting to understand its gameplay features. However, your decision on the value of each bet should be reasonable.

 Don’t Rush When Making Decisions

Speaking of being reasonable, spend some time thinking about the move you are going to make. Sometimes last-minute solutions can have such an enormous impact on the outcome of the game. Remember that there are no additional points for being swift while making decisions.

 Where To Play In Canada

Consider checking every website from the list to find out which one has the most appealing interface and highest payouts. Choosing the platform for playing video poker is almost as important as figuring out how to play video poker. Avoid using biased reviews or subjective rankings.

Pros & Cons

To wrap up the article, we will discuss some of the best traits and disadvantages of the reviewed game. It is fair to say that video poker is generally a trendy game and has many benefits for all types of gamblers.
  • High level of engagement and interesting gameplay;
  • Versatility of winning combinations and somewhat complicated video poker rules make every round unique and interesting;
  • Relatively high payouts and good winning odds;
  • Wide selection of game’s variations.
  • Somewhat steep learning curve;
  • Limited number of decent websites to play the game.


What Is Video Poker?

It is one of the card activities you can find on online gambling platforms. The gameplay includes creating the best hand.

What Is The Best Video Poker Game To Play?

All of the variations have benefits, but we recommend starting with the standard or progressive poker.

What Are The Rules Of Video Poker?

Players receive cards and try to make the combination with the highest value.

How To Play Video Poker?

Follow the detailed guide to improve the chances of increasing your bankroll size.