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Video Poker: Not Just for Experts

Basic Rules of Video Poker

First of all, when you play video poker you're playing by yourself. Instead of creating the best hand, you're trying to get paid by your hand's strength. A pop-up screen tells you how much you've earned with a specific hand. Your pay depends on the machine you play. For instance, if your machine is "Jacks or Better," you have to have two jacks as your minimum in order to receive pay, which is even money for a jack pair. Payout grows with hand strength.

Either put in your coins and push "Deal/Draw," or press "Play Max Coins." Five cards will appear on your screen. Using the buttons under the cards, you specify which cards to keep and which to discard. Then, press "Deal/Draw" once again to get your replacements. In the case where you get a new hand stronger than the first, you receive credits, which are determined not only by your hand but by the pay table.

These are the basic rules of video poker, and they apply to about every type, but there are different machines that add other twists to the game and can give different video poker tips.

Different Ways to Play

The video poker game described above was with the "Jacks or Better" machine, a very common one, but there are two other popular kinds- "Joker Poker" and "Deuces Wild." The joker and two, respectively, act as wild cards, and they can be whatever card you choose. Your computer will tell you the best card to choose. It's easier to play, but you don't get paid as much as you would for the same hands in "Jacks or Better."

Progressive jackpots are another way to spice up video poker games. Several machines are hooked into a common system and each player contributes a little to the jackpot. If you get a royal flush, you win that money, which is usually a stupendous amount. It better be, though, because some people spend their lifetimes trying to get a royal flush and just never do.

Video poker is an enjoyable game that anyone can play, no matter what machine you play on.

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