Online video poker offers the best odds of any online casino game, giving players the opportunity to secure some excellent returns.
If you like more control over your destiny than slots give you, but you’re not comfortable with the bluffing element in poker, then video poker is the game for you.
At CasinoBillions.com, we have researched and tested a wide range of video poker games in the UK to save you time.
Our in-depth guide will provide you with helpful tips and tactics to maximise your enjoyment of one of our favourite areas in an online casino.
Popular Video Poker Games
Video poker features numerous different types of games. The basic rules tend to be the same, although there are some subtle differences worth noting. Here’s a look at some of the most popular video poker online games:
- Jacks or Better – This is the most basic variant of online video poker in the UK and is ideal for novice players to learn the game
- Deuces Wild – Deuces or twos act as wild cards which can be substituted for any card in the deck giving players a greater winning chance
- Joker Poker – This has the Joker acting as a wild card, giving you more opportunities to get a winning poker hand
- Aces and Eights – This game is similar to Jacks or Better, but has higher payouts on four of a kind for Aces, 7s and 8s
- Double Bonus Poker – Based on Jack or Better, but with a substantial bonus payout on four of a kind of Aces, 2s, 3s, 4s, 5s and Kings
The aim of online video poker is simple – to achieve the best possible hand based on the cards dealt. The player can discard one or more cards from the original deal to strengthen their hand.
Once the final hand has been dealt, winning combinations are paid out according to a pre-determined pay table and the variant of video poker being played.
Jacks or Better is one of the most popular variants of online video poker and requires at least one pair of Jacks in your hand in order to start winning.
The traditional poker hand rankings are used to determine the winners of the game. We have listed these below in order of strength:
- Royal flush – A, K, Q, J, 10, all the same suit
- Straight flush – Five cards in a sequence, all the same suit
- Four of a kind – All four cards of the same rank
- Full house – Three of a kind with a pair
- Flush – Any five cards of the same suit, but not in sequence
- Straight – Five cards in a sequence, but not of the same suit
- Three of a kind – Three cards of the same rank
- Two pair – Two different pairs
- Pair – Two cards of the same rank
- High Card – When you haven’t made any of the hands above, the highest card wins
In progressive video poker, a separate jackpot exists which continues to grow until one lucky player wins the prize. When the jackpot is paid out, it is reset to zero and starts growing again.
How To Play Like A Professional – Best Video Poker Game Tips
Whereas slots are very much a game of chance, online video poker requires skill to master the game. It offers some of the best odds at an online casino, but if you want to play like a professional you need to understand the rules.
Choose a game that has a low house edge. This will increase your chances of boosting your bankroll. Take advantage of free play options before parting with your cash to ensure that you understand how each game works.
Make your playing sessions a reasonable length. Take a break at least every hour or so – sooner if you find yourself making mistakes. Do not play online video poker if you are tired or under the influence of alcohol.
Most online casinos in the UK offer bonuses and promotions to online video poker players, so take advantage of these to give yourself the best chance of winning real money.
How to Win At Video Poker
The biggest mistake you can make playing online video poker is thinking that the game relies purely on luck. Having the right skills and using video poker strategy will give you a much higher chance of winning big.
Firstly, you can increase your chances of beating a video poker game if you choose one with a pay table that offers a higher percentage return.
Each individual game will have different winning combinations and will require slightly different strategies. You must spend time memorising the combinations and knowing what to do when you see certain cards in your hand.
Find a strategy chart that details the card combinations and that tells you what you should hold or discard. For instance, if you are playing Jacks or Better and have only one high card, hold it and draw four new cards, or if you have a pair of 7s hold them and draw three new ones.
Once you have memorised the chart, your actions when playing online video poker will become second nature to you and your winnings should increase.
Most UK operators have similar payment terms, particularly at the lower and higher end of the scale. A typical example is as follows:
- Royal Flush – 250/1
- Straight Flush – 50/1
- Four of a Kind – 25/1
- Full House – 9/1
- Flush – 6/1
- Straight – 4/1
- Three of a Kind – 3/1
- Two Pair – 2/1
- Jacks or Better – 1/1
The majority of online casinos offer a Jacks or Better with a 9/6 ‘full pay’ table. This means that if you were to get a Full House you’ll be paid 9 to 1, and 6 to 1 on a Flush.
- Aces and Faces – A video poker game in which four Aces or four face cards of the same rank get a bonus payout
- Action – The total amount of money wagered
- All American video poker – Has better payouts for Straight Flush than regular Jacks of Better video poker
- Average payout – The average amount you could be expected to win from a game
- Bet Max – The maximum amount you can wager on a hand
- Boat – Full house
- Catching cards – Getting good cards
- Cowboys – Kings
- Cycle – Statistical calculation of the number of hands that need to be played for a card or a combination to come up
- Deuces – Cards with the face value of 2
- Discard – A button located at the bottom of each card which is pressed if you want to discard the card
- Double up – Some games provide the option to double the bet on a winning hand
- Draw – Replacement cards
- Face card – Includes Jacks, Queens and Kings
- House – The operator hosting and running the game
- Jackpot – A special bonus paid when the highest hand is hit
- Multi-play – Games allowing up to ten hands of video poker simultaneously
- Progressive jackpot – A big jackpot that grows progressively as more people play and more money is deposited
- Random Number Generator – A program that generates new numbers on a completely random basis. The RNG is used in many casino machines to provide absolute randomness
- Jack, Queen, King and Ace of the same suit – the highest card in video poker if no wild cards are played
- Strategy card – A card showing the correct plays for every possible hand on a particular game
- Winning hand – A hand that you get paid for. Most video poker machines pay out for a minimum of a Pair of Jacks
Professional poker player Tom Dwan started playing online poker with the $50 his dad gave him for his birthday. He earned over $5,000,000 over the next 3-4 years. Here’s a few more interesting poker facts:
- “Anna Kournikova” is a poker hand that “looks better than it plays”
- A professional poker player once lost his sports car for five months after forgetting where he parked it
- Actor Ben Affleck is a good poker player – he once won the California State Poker Championship which had a prize of $356,000
- President Warren G. Harding lost the entire set of White House china in a poker game to General Douglas MacArthur’s wife, Louise
- There are over 2.5 million possible five card combinations in poker
- Players have a 50 percent chance of being dealt no pair in a five-card deal
- The term “jackpot” originated from a form of poker in which the pot grew larger and larger until a player could open bidding with a pair of jacks
You now have all the information you need to successfully play online video poker. Keep following CasinoBillions.com to find out about the best online casinos and remember to have fun when you’re gambling!