Basic Video Poker Strategy

Basic Video Poker Strategy
by Jason Green of

Many people think that playing video poker is just like playing slots. People believe that playing video poker simply deals with the luck of the draw or spin. Just like any other casino game luck is involved but there is skill involved when playing video poker. The skill that is involved in video poker is very much like the skill that is implemented when playing poker at tables or online. There are may different types of video poker games that you can play and many give you 100% payout, and much more, and you can increase your chances of winning by following a few video poker strategies.

The way to get the maximum payout when playing video poker is to bet the maximum amount on each hand. Casinos offer the maximum payout for a couple of reasons.

1. There are not many people that use the optimal strategy when playing video poker.

2. There are many people that choose to play video poker because there are generally lower minimum stakes. People that play the game for this reason because they do not want to wager the maximum amount. It is very simple when trying to get the maximum amount. You simply have to bet the maximum amount. The old saying rings true in that, “you have to bet big to win big.” You can have fun playing video poker for lower stakes but it will be much harder to win big unless you get a hand that does not come up often, such as a Full House or 4 of a kind.

The Optimal Strategy

You should use the optimal strategy when playing video poker because you can use the complexities of the game to your advantage. In video poker you are not playing against other player but simply to try to get the best poker hand possible. In video poker you do not have to deal with such things as bluffing and reading other players. The optimal strategy for video poker is the basic strategy of poker, but in regular poker there are other aspects because there are other players but for video poker there is not, so you should use this basic strategy. This strategy is for any video poker game where you are trying to get the best 5 cards possible, but may not work for games that have variations, such as wild cards.

– If you have a straight or anything better, such as a full house or a flush, do not take any cards, as you will already receive a payout. If you want to take the chance and go for a great hand you can do so but you will be giving up that automatic payout.
– If you have 2 pair and are only a card away from an open ended straight you should take a card.
– If you have 3 of a kind or are 2 cards away from getting a flush, straight, or higher, you should take 2 cards.
– If you have a pair or two cards that are high (Jack-Ace) you should take 3 cards.
– If you are dealt only one high card you should take 4 cards.
– If you are dealt no pairs and your highest single card is a 10 you should take 4 cards.
– If you are dealt a hand that you have the possibility of a straight that is not open ended, such as 3,4,6,7,K you need a 5 to hit the straight, which is not good odds so you may want to take 4 cards, keeping the King and hope for anther King, or better, for a smaller payout. The payout for hitting the straight will be much better, but the odds are very slim that you will hit the 5.

When you play video poker you should try to use the same strategy you would when playing regular poker. But you will be taking the opponents out of the game, which will lessen your options. If you use the optimal strategy that is shown above you will increase the chances of improving your hand. This will give you the best chance of getting the best hand, which will give you the highest payout. Therefore you should you should use the optimal strategy when playing video poker and also remember that the maximum bet will lead to a maximum payout if you have a winning hand.