If you’re looking to enroll in a Gamer’s University, stop by Gambling City to enroll in a strategy class that will have you dominating any casino online.
Summer is coming! And for some people that means trips to Vegas or Atlantic City. For others, it means maybe an afternoon excursion to the reservation casino. But no matter where you’re going, if you’re going to play Video Poker there’s no reason for you to be doing it wrong. (Maybe I should start a new segment called “You’re doing it wrong”…hmm…)
ANYWAY, some interesting facts about Video Poker machines that I’ve learned over the years; all video poker machines are programmed the same way. Unlike Slot Machines which can be tightened or loosened by the setting of a computer (lolhax) Video Poker machines are governed by a Random Number Generator (or RNG) that, if I remember correctly, is a controlled specification required by the gaming board. The only way for a casino to “tighten” a Video Poker machine is to change the payouts for different hands. E.G. Paying out 3 credits for a 3 of a kind as opposed to paying our 4 credits for the same hand.
The easiest way for them to do this is to create dozens of different game types and change them so subtly that they essentially confuse their customers’ money away from them. But if you pay attention to the different payouts offered on each machine, you can find the one variant that has the best payout (some are actually over 100%…but you really need to look hard and hope for a tech that wasn’t paying close attention.)
Below you will find a chart that I put together after researching the odds for Video Poker in my free time. This chart can easily be printed and kept handy when you go to play, just look at the paytable for the corresponding game you are wanting to play and find the matching payscale on the chart (the entries with 2 numbers such as 6/5 refer to the payouts for a full house and a flush respectively. Some entries are more specific because the changes to the payscales are less drastic and harder to spot)
So, sit down at a Jacks or Better machine. Look at the payscale on the machine, if it says it pays out 9 for a Full House and 6 for a Flush. You are sitting at a 9/6 machine and the odds chart says that machine has a 99.54% return, which is not bad at all.
I made this chart from the otherwise unprintable list at www.videopoker.com, which also has more information about odds and such, it’s a great site that actually helped me learn a lot about Video Poker and how to lose less when I play. I particularly enjoyed this because I tend to gravitate toward Casino games where the player has more control by way of decision making and/or skill, as opposed to “1. put coin in slot – 2. push button – 3. hope for the best.”
Enjoy it, and good luck out there. Come back with that jackpot and tell them I sent you.
(no really, don’t do that. I like my kneecaps where they are, thanks.)
(oh, and click the image for full-size)