Choosing the Right Video Poker Machine

Video poker is enormously popular and casinos are cashing in on this popularity by adding new machines to their floor all the time.  While Jacks or Better is the most popular video poker game, others have gained in popularity, such as Deuces Wild.  Each game requires its own strategy and will have its own odds of winning a hand. Ensuring that you know how to find the best machines, with the highest payouts and the best odds of winning is vital to your enjoyment and profit.  For example, hitting a royal flush on one machine will not pay as much as hitting a royal flush on a machine with different odds.

How do you know what the best video poker machines are?  They key is learning to read the pay tables.  Pay tables are simply lists placed on the machine that denote the amount won for each hand on that particular machine.  Aren't all machines the same, you ask?  Absolutely not; in fact, many casinos will place machines that have different pay tables side by side in an attempt to get gamblers to use the one with a more favorable (for the casino) pay table.

Best Online Video Poker Casinos

  Site Bonus Match US Play Now
1 William Hill Casino OnBling Casino $3250 200% USA Play Now
2 Win Palace Casino Win Palace Casino $3000 200% USA Play Now
3 Slotland Casino Casino Titan $4000 200% USA Play Now
4 PKR Casino Loco Panda Casino $3000 300% USA Play Now

The only way for the casino to increase the house edge is to adjust the pay table on the machine, something that most of them do anyway.  For instance, a standard full pay machine for Jacks or Better is called a 9/6 machine, because it pays out 9 times for a full house and 6 times for a flush.  Casinos usually have 8/5 machines, where there are reduced payouts for the full house and the flush, which increases the house edge without driving off all the bettors.

Here is an example of two pay tables, one is the standard 9/6, the other is a dismal 6/5, something that can be found in some casinos and can make your gambling a less-than enjoyable experience.

Hand
9/6
6/5
Royal Flush
250/4000
250/4000
Straight Flush
50
50
Four of a Kind
25
25
Full House
9
6
Flush
6
5
Straight
4
4
Three of a Kind
3
3
Two Pair
2
2
Jacks
1
1

The 9/6 pay table has an expected 99.54% payout, while the 6.5 pay table only has 95%.  This can seriously reduce the amount of expected return and effectively cut out positive expectations from the game.  Ensuring that you know how to read the pay table will help you find the machines with the best odds of winning.

Always look at the pay table of a machine, even if there are two identical machines beside each other. It is possible for every machine in a casino to have a different pay table.  In order to ensure you are gaming at the best machine, you will need to read the pay tables on every machine.  In addition, make sure you bring a strategy chart to the machine with you to help you make the right decision on your hands.