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How to play video poker: Learn the basic of video poker

 Video poker is not only one of the most popular casino games, it's also one of the easiest among the video machines at the casinos. In fact, the game is so popular, at the casino bars there is always a video poker screen in front of every seat, so patrons can play this entertaining game while having a drink. Here you will learn how to play poker, we will give you the basic information, along with pictures and examples of this famous casino game.

 Video poker is played with a virtual deck of cards and each deal consist of two draws. In the first draw the player is dealt five cards. The player than has the option to select and hold as many of those five cards as they wish. Once the cards are selected, the player draws one more time, substituting the cards which were not held with new ones. Following the second draw, the win (if any) is calculated based on the video poker pay table which you can see below. Let's look at some examples to show you the steps to playing video poker (images of video poker machines at the Bovada internet casino):

1. First five cards are dealt.

Cards are dealt

2. The player holds the cards they wish to save for the next draw. In this case, we hold the two Jacks, this guarantees us at least a pair, which means we would at least get our money back.

Player holds cards

3. The second and final draw. No other beneficial cards are turned, thus the final hand is only a pair of Jacks.

Final draw and payout

 So now you know the basic steps to playing the video poker game, but what is the point of the game? Your goal when playing video poker is to get the highest possible combination from the pay table. You do this by holding cards in the first draw which would give you the best chance to win. In our example above, after the first five cards had been dealt, we decided to hold the two Jacks, since they gave us the best chance of matching a combination on the payout table. At the very least, it ensured the minimum payout, which in this case was 5 coins. If during the second draw we were to get two more Jacks - we'd have gotten a "4 of a Kind", that pays 125 coins. As you can see - it's that simple. You select the cards to hold in attempt to match one of the combinations on the pay table. And here are the winning combination and a picture of the pay table. Note, this applies only to Jacks or Better variation of video poker. There are other variations which we have discussed in other articles, but Jacks or Better is the most common and available at every internet casino.

Here is a common video poker pay table:

A pay table of a video poker machine

And the winning combinations, from smallest payout to the largest. Here is the ranking of video poker hands:

Jacks or Better - the payout of this combination is paid out when the player gets only a pair of Jacks or higher card (Queens, Kings or Aces), a pair of 10s for example will bring nothing.

2 Pair - any two pairs, for example two 3s and 2 Aces.

3 of a Kind - still simple to decipher, any three same cards, i.e. three 9s.

Straight - This is where it gets a bit complex, yet the payout rises, as well. A straight is five consecutive cards of different suit. Example of a straight is [2 of Hearts]+[3 of Diamonds]+[4 of Hearts]+[5 of Clubs]+[6 of Diamonds]

Flush - the video poker player gets a Flush when they get five cards of the same suit, but not in a consecutive manner.

Full House - when the player gets one pair and one 3 of a Kind in the same hand.

4 of a Kind - four of the same cards, for example four Kings.

Straight Flush - the same as a Flush, but the cards are of the same suit, as well. There is one exception, which is the:

Royal Flush - the highest possible payout combination (winning hand) you can get in any variation of video poker. The Royal Flush is a form of a straight flush (five consecutive cards of the same suit) but it end in an Ace. In other words, the combination of 10+J+Q+K+A in any of the four suits will give you the Royal Flush.

As you can see yourself, playing video poker couldn't be more easy. We will close this article on how to play video poker with a tip fro the pros - always bet the maximum coin when playing video poker, whether at the internet casinos or the local gambling hall.

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