Comprehensive Guide to Online Video Poker 2023

Our comprehensive video poker guide covers everything you need to know about getting started at video poker online casinos, finding the best video poker games based on your gaming preferences and budget, and everything else. All of the top-ranked online casinos for video poker have been reviewed and ranked by our expert team.

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Overview

Back in the time when there were no online casinos present in the iGaming community, the early 80s, mention of video poker games would usually remind people of old bars and people sitting in front of video poker machines. Thanks to the introduction of online video poker games, the entire community of people who enjoy playing video poker games were presented with better winning opportunities.

Also, video poker machines present in modern land-based casinos attract many players for several reasons, and one of these is the fact that video poker games have among the lowest casino edges. Playing video poker both offline and online is also very fun and can lead to substantial payouts.

It is also interesting to note that the game of video poker was one of the very first games to be introduced to the world of online casino gaming. Video poker shares similarities with five-card draw poker and online slots. Considering the fact that video poker is very popular among online casino players, most iGaming sites feature at least a couple of different video poker games.

Playing the game in online settings is also very fun and rewarding even though it is a single-player game. With many different video poker variants, all games can find a video poker game to join, even those who are on a very tight budget.

All different video poker games have one thing in common, their very easy gameplay. Another benefit of playing video poker games online is the sheer amount of different video poker variations. Today, the most popular video poker variants are Jacks or Better, Joker Wild, and Deuces Wild, but you have a variety of other games to explore while gaming online. Whichever variant you choose, endless hours of fun are guaranteed.

All video poker games also come with very favorable RTP rates. More about video poker RTPs and everything else is covered in the later sections here. More specifically, we briefly go over the game’s history, some of the biggest pros and cons of playing video poker, the terms used by experienced video poker games, and much more. With this being said, you want to stick around to truly familiarize yourself with the world of online video poker.

Pros & Cons

Pros
Fast-paced gaming actions
Excellent game variety
No waiting time as you are playing alone
Very simple rules and entertaining gaming sessions
One of the most favorable casino edges
Lower minimum accepted stake
Cons
Video poker games come with a house edge of around 5%
Some video poker winning strategies are too complex for beginners
RNG software makes it impossible to employ certain winning strategies

Let’s Briefly Discuss the History of Video Poker

Before we discuss how modern video poker games work and where to find them, we need to briefly discuss the history of video poker and the story is very interesting. Like the vast majority of other casino and gambling games, video poker was born in Europe. More specifically, the first video poker game with its simple rules and format was invented in Europe, while the popularity of video poker skyrocketed in the USA back in the 1970s thanks to the rise in computer usage.

When discussing modern video poker rules, we have to mention Si Redd. Si Redd used to work for one of the gambling giants Bally Technologies back in the 1970s. When he presented his idea, the company’s executives dismissed it but he was not giving up. This is when Si Redd decided to establish his own company and the company was named Sircoma. Today, Sircoma is a multi-billion-dollar entity International Game Technology or IGT for short.

As we know, patience opens many doors and in the case of Mr. Redd, this was definitely true. While the idea for modern video poker games was born in the middle 1970s, Mr. Redd had to wait for a couple of more years to see his idea coming to life. The modern video poker game found its way into the hearts of gamblers following the rise of the Las Vegas gambling scene. This was also the time when video poker fans truly embraced the game’s new concept and rules.

Speaking of the modern game of video poker, it takes inspiration from five-card draw poker games. In five-card poker games, players get five cards. However, in the most popular video poker game Jacks or Better, players get a two-card hand. Other video poker games have slightly different rules which will be discussed in later sections.

What is important to note regarding the history of video poker is the fact that the game’s popularity skyrocketed with the rise of online casinos. Today, the game is equally popular among fans of land-based and online gambling activities.


Learn the Game's Rules

Now, we discuss the game’s rules, and the rules that apply to most video poker games are very simple. Whichever video poker variant you play, the standard fifty-two-card deck is used. At the same time, most video poker games do not use joker cards. One variant in which joker cards are present is the extremely Joker Wild.

Either way, to start your video poker gaming sessions, you first place your bet and click on the Deal button located on your screen. Once done, you receive five initial cards. Once you examine your cards, have the option to discard cards and get new ones in hopes of forming a stronger five-card hand.

When it comes to the hand raking system in video poker, it is always the same but payouts for each hand may slightly vary between different video poker games. Either way, the strongest hand in video poker is always the Royal Flus followed by the Straight Flush, Four of a Kind, Full House, Flush and Straight. You also get payouts for Three of a Kind, Two Pairs, and Jacks or Better.

In video poker, you can either lose or win, there is no tie outcome. This is something shared by all video poker games. When it comes to payouts, certain video poker games come with an RTP rate of around 99.5% which is significantly higher than RTP rates in slots. The bottom line, video poker with its favorable casino edge and great payouts is an awesome game.


What About Video Poker Strategy?

As mentioned in the previous sections, video poker is one of the simplest games around. There are only two outcomes no matter which video poker game you play. During every video poker gaming session, your main goal is to form the strongest five-card poker hand. When you receive your cards, you get to discard some or all cards and get new ones in order to have a stronger hand.

The strategy featured down below applies when playing Jacks or Better. However, the same strategy works for other video poker games. The video poker hand ranking system featured down below starts with the least valuable hand you can have.

  • Jacks or Better: If you have a Jacks or Better, keep the cards and discard the remaining cards.
  • Two Pairs: You also want to keep any Two Pairs you may have and discard the remaining card. The next card you receive may get you a Full House.
  • Three of a Kind: You also want to keep any Three of Kind you may have and discard the remaining cards.
  • Straight: If you have a Straight you want to play with that hand as no further improvements can be made.
  • Flush: The same is true when you have Flush as no further improvements can be made.
  • Full House: This is the third-best hand you can have so keep all the cards and play.
  • Four of a Kind: This is the second-best hand you can have so you want to play it.
  • Straight Flush: If you have a Straight Flush, you want to play with your hand or you can try your luck and get a Royal Flush.

Most Used Video Poker Terms

Now, onto the most used terms in video poker. Get to know these before you start playing video poker for real money.

Winning Hand: Having a winning hand means getting a payout.

Payout: Payout is the sum of money you get for your winning hand.

Pay Back: Payback is an expected payout ratio based on the most recent game statistics.

Pair: Having a Pair means having two cards that have the same value, such as having two 2s or two 3s.

Pay Table: Pay Table features all of the payouts included for every winning hand.

Straight Flush: When you have a Straight Flush all of the cards included in the hand have the same suit.

Straight:  When you have a Straight, you have five successive cards in your hand.

Royal Flush: This is the strongest hand in video poker that features an Ace-High Flush with the same suit.

Jackpot: This is the best payout you can get in video poker and it is usually reserved for Royal Flush hands.

Action: Action refers to the sum invested by the player in one game.

Discard: Discard refers to rejected cards.

Bet Max: Most video poker games allow maximum bets of 05 coins per hand.

Flush: Having five cards of the same suit.

Four of a Kind: Having four cards of the same value.

Hold: Cards which you keep.

Full House: Having a Three of a Kind and a Pair.

Hand: Card dealt by the machine.

 

Tips to Follow

Now that you are familiar with the game of video poker, you probably feel confident enough to start playing for real money. Before you do so, make sure you check out our selection of handy tips and tricks which may help you boost your winning odds.

How to Start Playing Video Poker Online?

Before you get started playing video poker online at your chosen casino, take a look at our step-by-step guide on getting started.

1 Choose Your Online Casino Carefully

With so many different online casinos operating in the industry, it is crucial that you invest enough time in researching what different online casinos offer and how they operate. You do not want to make a mistake and register at an online casino that does not have proper licensing or an online casino that does not have video poker games.

2 Do Other Research

Equally important is doing your research on the game itself. Essentially, before you start playing you want to familiarize yourself with the game’s rules, hand ranking system, and associated payouts. If there is anything that you do not understand, go back to the game’s rules and redo your research until you truly understand how the game works.

3 Get to Know the Paytable

You also want to invest enough time in studying your chosen game’s paytable. As you know, payouts depend on your five-card hand. Different video poker games may have different payouts and you want to examine your game’s paytable before you place your first bet.

4 Start Playing

When you are confident in your skills, you are ready to start playing. Choose a reputable, licensed online casino, head to its video poker lobby, find the game that suits your budget and preferences, and start playing.

5 Place Your Wager

Your real money gaming session starts as soon as you place your bet. Video poker games come with different betting limits, so make sure you check these before you start playing. Once you get started, keep an eye on your budget and enjoy.

Dictionary

If you want to play like a pro, you need to familiarize yourself with all the different terms and lingo used by more experienced players. To help you, we have a handy video poker dictionary featured down below with all the most important terms.

Video Poker Dictionary

Different Video Poker Games

Take a look at the most popular video poker games:

All Aces Poker

All Aces Poker is one of the most exciting video poker games you can play online and it shares most similarities with Jacks or Better. However, there is a difference between the two games in their payouts. More specifically, in All Aces Poker, you get slightly bigger payouts for Four of a Kind winning combos and slightly lower payouts for several other winning hands.

Classic Video Poker

Classis Video Poker is the simplest variant based on five-card draw poker games. Classic Video Poker is usually played on a smaller screen which is very similar to classic slot machines common at land-based casinos. Classic Video Poker has a huge fan base among online casino players.

High-Speed Poker

As suggested, High-Speed Poker is a video poker game that offers fast-paced gaming sessions. In High-Speed Poker, there are there wagering rounds, including the first round of the Ante Bet round, the Play Bet round, and the Bonus Bet round which is optional. The game has been designed to appeal to fans of fast-paced gaming sessions.

Aces and Eights Poker

In Aces and Eights Poker, you also play against the dealer. At the beginning of each gaming round, you get five cards dealt from the dealer and you get to decide which cards you want to keep and which to discard. Like the vast majority of other video poker games, Aces and Eights shares the most similarities with the game of Jacks or Better but payouts for Four of a Kind winning combos are slightly higher.

Double Double Bonus Poker

Next, we have Double Double Bonus Poker and which is yet another video poker game that uses the Jacks or Better gaming concept. However, in Double Double Bonus Poker, you are eligible for special bonus rewards when you have certain Four of a Kind winning hands.

Bonus Deuces Wild

This variant of video poker borrows the gaming concept of the Deuces Wild game. At the same time, the game has been slightly modified to increase players’ winning odds. Also, in Bonus Deuces Wild you can get extra payouts for certain Four of a Kind winning combos, as well as, for Roya Flush winning combos that have wild cards. At the same time, in Bonus Deuces Wild you get slightly lower payouts for Straight and Flush winning hands.

Jacks or Better

Jacks or Better is the most popular video poker variant. Also, Jacks or Better is one of the simplest video poker games with its usual rules. At the beginning of each gaming round, you get five cards and you get to decide which cards you want to keep and which to discard. The least valuable winning combo in this game is a Pair of Jacks. In other video poker games, having a Pair of Jacks does not get you any payouts.

Double Joker

Double Joker is a unique game that takes inspiration from the game of Joker Poker. In Double Joker, you can use two joker cards and these are wild cards that replace any other card. With two joker cards, scoring winnings is easier but payouts are lower when compared to other video poker games.

Deuces Wild

Deuces Wild is yet another very popular video poker game that has a loyal player base made of iGaming fans. In this particular game, all twos act as wild cards, and wild cards can replace any other game. While forming winning combos in Deuces Wild is easier due to the presence of wild cards, payouts are slightly lower.

Tens or Better

Taking inspiration from Jacks or Better, Tens or Better is also very popular among online casino players. When it comes to Tens or Better gaming sessions, they are similar to gaming rounds when playing other video poker games. At the same time, in Tens or Better you can get a payout for having a Pair of tens. In other games, having a Pair of tens does not qualify you for payouts.

Aces and Faces

Aces and Faces follows those standard video poker rules we have discussed in one of the previous sections. The main difference between Aces and Faces and other video poker variants lies in the payout structure for certain winning hands.

Joker’s Wild

In Joker’s Wild, you can form winning combos with the help of joker cards. As expected, joker cards can replace any other card to help you build a stronger five-card poker hand.

Bonus Poker

Bonus Poker is an exciting video poker game that is most similar to standard Jacks or Better games. Just like in Jacks or Better, the least valuable hand in Bonus Poker is a Pair of Jacks. What makes the game different from Jacks or Better is the availability of bonus payouts for certain Four of a Kind winning hands.

All American Poker

All American Poker is yet another exciting Jacks or Better variant with the usual video poker rules. At the same time, in All American Poker you benefit from higher payouts for Straight Flushes, Straights, and Flushes. At the same time, slightly reduced payouts are reserved for Two Pairs and Full Houses.

Mega Jacks

Next, we have Mega Jacks and this is another Jacks or Better variant. What makes the game different from other games is its progressive jackpot. To get this prize, you need a Royal Flush without wild cards. You qualify if you have been betting at the maximum accepted stake.

SuperJax

SuperJax is only available online. The game’s rules are the standard rules that other games follow but in SuperJax, there is one extra card called the SuperJax. If you land a winning hand packed with Four Jacks and one SuperJax card, you get a progressive jackpot.

Poker Pursuit

Poker Pursuit is an exciting high-stakes video poker game that has different Ante and Raise rounds, like most standard poker games. When it comes to payouts, having any winning combo qualifies you according to the game’s paytable.

2-Ways Royal

2-Ways Royal is a unique video poker game that resembles the standard game of Jacks or Better. What makes the game different is its two-way Royal Flush concept, which features a low and a high Royal Flush.

Louisiana Double Poker

In Louisiana Double Poker, a fifty-three-card deck is used, including Double Cards. Double Cards are not wilds but they deliver increased payouts when you form winning combos with these cards include. The minimum qualifying hand in Louisiana Double Poker is a Pair of Jacks. The strongest winning hand is a Royal Flush.

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FAQ

Just like other casino games, the game of video poker is mostly based on luck but there is also an element of skill. With this being said, you can use different winning strategies to boost your winning odds but there is no winning strategy that guarantees to win every time.

Having a Pat Hand means having a hand that you cannot further improve by getting new cards.

Yes, there is no difference in the poker hand ranking system when you play the game online and at land-based casinos.

In order to check the fairness of your chosen online casino, you look for RNG certificates issued by reputable third-party testing agencies. Also, online casinos that have licenses issued by reputable iGaming authorities must comply with strict safety and fairness measures. If you are playing at a licensed casino, you can expect fair gaming results at all times.

No, you do not need any special software to get started with online video poker. Most modern online casinos are instant-play gaming platforms. You may come across casinos that offer downloadable gaming platforms and, in this case, you can download software to play.

Yes, most online casinos that have free/demo play modes let you play video poker without investing a dime. Free games are an excellent choice for beginners who are just getting to know video poker.

Full-pay video poker games offer the best payouts thanks to their extremely favorable RTP rates which are very close to 100%.

Online casinos feature a variety of different video poker variants, including the most popular Jacks or Better.

Yes, you can win playing video poker even though the game is mostly based on luck.

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