Online Video Poker

Online Video Poker

Video poker ranks as a popular attraction at casinos the world over. It is based on a 5-card draw poker game, with slots technology in tow. Read this video poker guide and enjoy this exciting casino game.


The story of video poker began in the 1970s. At that point in time computers were massive – the size of small houses – and pretty much about the same cost too. One individual named William Redd was instrumental in the development of new slots machines during the 1970s, even though company executives rejected the notion of his proposal for a new game called Video Poker. The company that he worked for was Bally – a giant in the slot machine industry. Redd persevered and he finally convinced his employers to provide him with the patent on Video Poker. After signing an agreement with the Reno-based company – Fortune Coin Company – William Redd formed a company under the name Sircoma. This was an acronym for Si Redd’s Coin Machines. During the 1980s, Video Poker finally caught on and became a global sensation. Top games include Jacks or Better, Aces and Faces, Joker Poker, Deuces Wild and Tens or Better.


Video Poker, like other casino games, sports its own brand of terms, phrases and gambling lingo.

  • Action – the total value of the player’s wagers
  • Bet Max – this is the Max bet in any Video Poker game when 5 coins are wagered per hand
  • Cycle – a Royal Flush is hit every 40,000 hands on average
  • Discard – the card/s a player decides to get rid of
  • Flush – a 5 card hand with all cards of the same suit
  • 4 of a Kind – a poker hand comprising 4 cards of the same value
  • Full House – 3 of a kind +1 pair
  • Hand – this refers to the 5 cards dealt to a player in a game of Video Poker
  • Jackpot - this is the max payout – typically a Royal Flush
  • Payout – this is reflected in the paytable for any hand that pays out
  • Royal Flush – this is the best video poker hand with Ace, King, Queen, Jack, 10 of the same suit
  • Winning Hand – any hand paying a winning combination


Typically, Video Poker games comprise standard decks with 52 cards. The exceptions are the Joker Wild games which include additional jokers. To get started, make a bet, press deal and choose which cards to hold and which cards to discard. The Video Poker machine instantly replaces the discards with fresh cards. Depending on what the value of your 5 card hand is, you will be paid out according to the pay table. The ranking system used in any particular Video Poker game depends on the specific game in question. Typically the Royal Flush is the best hand for all games. In Jacks or Better for example, the player needs to hold a pair of Jacks or Better, to win something in the game.


Consider the Video Poker game Jacks or Better as a case in point. This game is easy to play and doesn't require any complex strategy. Players are not competing against one another; rather they are competing against the house for a winning hand. All the cards in a Video Poker game are randomly dealt, but there is a basic strategy that players can employ in their game. If you have a Royal Flush or a Straight Flush, always hold all cards. If you have Four of a Kind, hold all cards and if you have a Full House, hold all cards. The same goes for a Straight. If you're holding Three of a Kind, hold them and discard two cards. If you're holding two pairs, hold two pairs and discard the fifth card. If you're holding Jacks or Better, hold the pair and discard the remaining three cards.


  • Learn the rules of the specific Video Poker variants you're about to play before you wager for real money
  • Play Video Poker games online for free before you play for real
  • Try out several Video Poker variants before you settle on a game that you wish to play for real money
  • Always check the pay table before you begin playing – that way you'll know what winning hands to compile
  • Play the maximum bet of 5 coins so that you can hit the maximum payout with a Royal Flush
  • Video Poker is all about fun – don't take it too seriously
  • The cards are randomly dealt – there is nothing players can do to influence which cards will be dealt

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