5 Things Every Video Poker Player Should Know


One of the most popular games at online casinos besides pokies is video poker. The reason is that video poker gives you the fun and excitement of pokies but with a strategy element that makes them a better bet.

If you’re new to video poker, there are things you should know before playing your first hand. Today, we will cover five things that every video poker player should know.

Pay Attention to the Pay Tables

New players often just pick a game that looks appealing to them and start playing. If your only concern is having fun, that’s fine. However, if you plan to try and win some money, you want to pay attention to the pay tables for each machine.

A pay table tells you how much each winning hand pays according to how much you bet. The two things to pay attention to is how much a full house pays on one credit and how much a flush pays on one credit. This will help you determine what type of machine you’re playing.

An image of Bonus Video Poker

You should avoid many games below 8-5

The best machines are those with an 8-5 (8 credits for a full house, 5 for a flush) and up. If you can find a machine of 9-5 or better, those are the sweet spots in this game. There are charts online that will tell you the exact percentages of various games, but if you’re playing better than 8-5, you’re in good shape normally.

You Don’t Have to Play Max Credits

Most people automatically start playing max credits on a video poker machine because they see the massive 4,000 credits for a Royal Flush. While you will win the most by playing max credits, you are not required to do so.

Most machines allow you to select between 1 and 5 credits. You can press the Bet One button to select one credit and hit it multiple times to add on additional credits. For those that are playing on a limited bankroll or learning new strategies for a game, this is a great option.

Each Video Poker Game Has a Unique Strategy

Video poker is popular because you can learn strategies to improve your win rate and reduce the house edge. However, some people try and apply the same strategy for every game. Optimal strategy for Jacks or Better will not be the optimal strategy for Double Double Bonus Poker.

If you plan to play more than one variant, it is wise to invest in a strategy trainer that will teach you multiple games. That way you give yourself the best shot of winning every time.

An image of Double Double Bonus Video Poker

The strategy from this is very different than Jacks or Better.

Also, try and playing multiple variants in the same session. Don’t switch from Double Double Bonus to Joker Poker in the same session. Players tend to make more mistakes when jumping back and forth from game to game based on repetition. Pick a game and stick with it for your session to reduce mistakes.

You Sometimes Get Better Odds at Higher Stakes

On some video poker games, you will find that higher stakes will offer better pay tables. For example, a .25 per credit Jacks or Better may offer an 8-5 paytable. Move up to .50 or $1 and the pay table may change to 9-5 or 9-6.

The simple way to determine this is by changing the stakes of the game and then comparing the pay tables. You can do this without adding money to the machine. For those willing to play a little higher, you can sometimes drastically improve your odds.

Video Poker May Not Be a Good Choice for Online Bonuses

For those that are playing with an online casino bonus, video poker may not be the best choice. Often, the game will only contribute about 10% to the wagering requirement. At some casinos, video poker does not contribute at all to the playthrough.

Before signing up for a bonus, check the wagering requirements for the casino to see the percentage that video poker contributes. If video poker contributes and you’re looking to play video poker on a bonus, go to the promotions section and see if they offer a table games or video poker bonus.