Winning Strategies for Video Poker
Video poker is a game which is similar to slots in many ways. Like the regular slots game, video poker involves playing in a slot machine. But unlike slots, you can actually make a profit from playing video poker if you know how. Video poker is also a form of draw poker and uses the same rules and basics of poker, but instead of playing against other players, you are pitted against a machine.
You can play video poker as long as you know how to play a slot machine, but to win in this game you should know how to play poker. In video poker, you are dealt 5 cards and you can choose to retain any of the five cards by pressing the Hold button. After that, you use the Deal button to replace the cards you've discarded and the result of the game will then be displayed on the screen.
Unlike slots, you can manipulate your odds of winning in video poker by analyzing the machine's pay tables and choosing machines with the best payout rates. Since there are more than 2.5 million possible hand combinations in a 52-card deck, even the smallest increase in the odds will mean a big increase your chances of winning. The payout rates are usually fixed by the casino operator to tilt the odds in favor of the house, or what is called the house edge.
In video poker, the payout odds for all machines are basically the same, save for the flush, royal flush or full house. For example, in a "Jacks or better" video poker machine, the payback rate of 9 for a full house win and 6 for a flush win is 99.5%. For the 8 for a full house win and 5 for a flush win, the payback rate is 97.4%. The odds for a royal flush in a 9/6 is 1 in 40,000 hands while in an 8/5 the odds are 1 in 45,000. So you know that 9/6 machines offer better odds of winning.
Another tactic for increasing your odds of winning is to play maximum coins, so you have to bet 5 coins for every game. If you don't play maximum coins, it's just like giving your chances of winning the royal flush to another player.
By looking for video poker machines with the best payback rates and using strategies, you can win consistently in video poker. Always keep in mind that winning in video poker takes time, so be prepared to play for hundreds of hours before you can make a profit. As long as you take your time and employ the correct strategies, video poker will reward your patience and effort with big prizes.
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