Lakeside Inn and Casino 168 • Highway 50, Stateline, NV 89449 • Toll-free: 800-624-7980, Local: 775-588-7777

Video Poker Strategy

April 05, 2017

Video Poker is a game that requires skill and bridges the gap between slot machines and table games. Most of Lake Tahoe casino's video poker machines, when played correctly, offer a lower house advantage than slot machines. They are easy to use and do not require interaction with a dealer or other players. The Jacks or Better is the easiest game to learn.

Here's how to play. The machine deals five cards on the screen. The player then has the option of drawing up to five new cards. You keep the cards you want to keep by pushing the “hold” button that corresponds to the card on the screen. When you have made your choices you hit the “deal” button. The cards you did not hold will be replaced by new cards. Your win or loss is determined by the outcome of your final hand. How much you win is based on the pay table that is posted on the front of the machine. Here are the winning hands:

Royal flush: Ace-king-queen-jack-10 all of the same suit (hearts, clubs, spades, or diamonds).
Straight flush: Five consecutive cards of the same suit; for example, 2-3-4-5-6, all of clubs.
Four of a kind: Four cards of the same rank; for example, ace of hearts, ace of spades, ace of clubs, ace of diamonds.
Full house: Three cards of one rank, two cards of another rank; for example, 3 of diamonds, 3 of hearts, 3 of spades, 6 of hearts, 6 of spades.
Flush: Five cards of the same suit; for example, 10, 9, 7, 4, 3, all of diamonds.
Straight: Five consecutive cards of mixed suits; for example, 2 of diamonds, 3 of hearts, 4 of diamonds, 5 of clubs, and 6 of spades.
Three of a kind: Three cards of the same rank; for example, 6 of hearts, 6 of clubs, 6 of diamonds.
Two pair: Two cards of one rank, two cards of another rank; for example, ace of spades, ace of hearts, 7 of clubs, 7 of diamonds.
Pair of jacks or better: Two jacks, queens, kings, or aces.

In order to achieve the maximum return, you play the game using a set mathematical strategy. Through the use of online poker probability calculators, computer programs, and flash card systems, a player can easily calculate the probability of each hand. This will guide a player's decision on what cards to hold or discard for maximum payout or longer play. There are almost 312 million equally probable hands. It is very important that you learn the strategy for each game and play them correctly. Each video poker game has its own strategy. For example, you should not use the same strategy for Jacks or Better when playing Deuces Wild.

Now, if you are not a mathematician, there's another strategy that will be just as useful. Being observant and carefully selecting the type of poker game you are playing will give you bigger payouts or extend your playing time. Selecting the right game for you comes down to personal preference. If you are searching for the biggest payout on the royal flushes, then it would be wise to play Triple Double Bonus Poker where your payout is significantly higher than Jacks or Better.

Something else to think about is what denomination you are playing. It's very simple: To get the biggest payout you need to play the max credits. Here is where playing the five cent video poker machine has an advantage over 25 cents video poker. On a Triple Bonus Poker Machine, playing a nickel at max credits will win you $200. If you play a single credit at 25 cents on the same game you would only win $62.50.

However you decide to play video poker, whether it's for big payouts or a fun night at the Lake Tahoe casinos, Lakeside Inn has you covered. Lakeside has an abundance of video poker machines. We also offer thirteen 3-Way Action poker, which is over more than four times more than any other casino in Lake Tahoe. That's why Lakeside Inn is always your best bet!


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