Real Money Blackjack

When stepping through the doors of a land-based casino or visiting one on the Internet, the vast majority of players tend to go straight to the slot games. But experienced gamblers know that there are other games which offer almost the same simplicity and entertainment while providing much better payouts at the same time. The games in question are the different variations of video poker and they combine in a wonderful way the best aspects of slots and traditional poker.

Video poker is known to be a much simpler version of its table counterpart. It is not as stressful and does not require reading the faces and signals of your opponents around the table. This is a game played solo against a computer and yet, it involves decision making and understanding the rules of the game. It is, in fact, the opportunity to decide which cards to hold and which to replace that makes the game so appealing to casino players. They no longer rely on luck alone to win but they can employ a strategy in order to succeed and beat the house.

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Video poker machines can be found in most brick-and-mortar casinos around the world. But they are equally widespread in online casinos, as well, where you can play for fun and even better, for real money. Real money video poker is a fantastic alternative to classic casino games such as blackjack or craps – it is fun and challenging, it is simplified compared to poker, and it comes with the promise of solid payouts. Additionally, the game is an ideal option for novice poker players as it will guide them through the basics without the risk of losing large amounts of money.

Basic Rules

video poker royal imageVideo poker is one of the very few casino games, along with blackjack and poker, where players have the opportunity to improve significantly their winning chances and actually gain an edge over the casino. For this to happen, however, they need to have a good understanding of how the game is played. Knowing the basic rules is essential although, in this game, it is possible to collect winnings if relying solely on luck. But for a long-term success, players should make themselves familiar with all the ins and outs of video poker.

This is an automated, RNG-based game which derives from 5-card draw poker, considered to be one of the simplest versions of table poker. In its most basic form, video poker is played with a standard deck of 52 cards and it follows the rules of traditional draw poker. The RNG, or Random Number Generator, is a complex piece of software, which guarantees the random results of every round or draw in video poker. For this reason, it is often called “the brain” of games such as video poker, slots, and basically, all virtual casino games. Before betting any real money, players should know that exactly 2,598,960 hands can be dealt in a single draw. While this may sound too much to grasp, a huge portion of these hands is actually duplicate, so learning how to play them all is not as difficult as it may appear.

In order to start a game, the player needs to place a bet and click on the Deal/Draw button. The computer draws 5 cards and the player has a choice to either hold them (by clicking on the card) or discard them. After selecting the Deal/Draw button once more, the player receives the new cards that take the place of the discarded ones. The computer then determines whether a winning combination is formed and if so, it rewards the player with a payout corresponding to the strength of the hand.

Choosing Where to Play Real Money Video Poker

There are hundreds of online casinos which offer different variations of video poker. Most casino game developers create their own versions and as a result, players today have a really great choice of video poker games. Before you pick a casino and a particular game, there are several things you should consider carefully. The first thing is, of course, to find a safe, reliable and fair online casino which is legitimate and fully certified. Since you are planning to play real money games, you will also want a casino that allows payments in your preferred currency and payment method. The withdrawal times and the fast responding customer support are also very important. Note that most online casinos have a 24-72 hour pending period in which players are able to cancel their withdrawals.

There are many other factors that will help you decide where to play video poker for real money. Certainly, the visual appeal and the design of the casino site will also shape your opinion, but it would be better to focus on the payouts and the different bonuses offered by the gambling operator.


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Players who are trying video poker for the first time should avoid playing just any game they see and stick to the video poker versions with the highest payouts. They are easy to find because all the information you need is in the pay table of a game.


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Another aspect of online casinos all players should take into consideration is the bonuses. Almost all web-based gambling providers offer newly registered players bonuses, designed to boost their play budget and help them explore more games.

Video Poker Strategy

video poker strategy imageVideo poker gives players the opportunity to change the odds of the game. But in order to win in the long term, they need to employ certain strategies, depending on the specific variation of the game they choose to play. For instance, in Tens or Better, you can win with a hand as low as a pair of Tens, while in Joker’s Wild, thanks to the wild Joker, you can get a Five of a Kind – for example, 4 Kings and a Joker. Not only the payouts for the different hands will be different, but also the strategy behind every decision you make while playing. Still, there are several basic principles that are valid for any version of video poker.

Among the first lessons every player learns about video poker is to hold on to the automatic wins from the initial draw. While this may sound too obvious to ignore, many novices would make the mistake to discard a pair of Jacks, hoping they could get a Royal Flush or any other winning combination. Well, the likelihood of getting a Royal Flush is much smaller than getting a Jacks or Better, which, in case, is a guaranteed win.

There are, of course, instances when breaking a winning hand is actually the right move. For example, when you have a Flush or a Straight, you can discard one card for the chance of getting a Royal Flush. If you have a 9, a Jack, a Queen, a King, and an Ace of spades, you should discard the 9 for the possibility to get a 10 of spades. You will still have a chance for a Flush (with any other spades) or for a Straight (with any other 10). And there is also the chance for hitting a pair of Jacks or Better if you are dealt any other high card.


video poker machine imageVideo poker was introduced in casino floors in the 1970’s and gained popularity in the following decade. However, the game is much older and the first fruit machines were actually based on the automated poker machines. It all started in 1891 when Sittman and Pitt Company invented the first poker machine which had 5 reels, or drums, as they were called at the time. There were 10 playing cards on each drum and the player started the game by inserting a coin and pulling the lever. Then, in 1898, San Fransisco-based mechanic Charles Fey created a poker machine that would pay out 20 coins for a Royal Flush. It was called the “Card Bell” and was followed by the “Skill Draw” machine in 1901, which had one really important feature – players had the option to hold one or more of the cards in the draw. There was a second spin which gave a better chance at hitting a winning combination. A this was the first 5-card draw poker machine.

Interestingly, the first automated poker games were not played with all 52 cards of a standard deck. Players thought all cards were in the game but the machines had 5 reels of 10 cards each, which meant that only 50 cards could be included. In fact, the Ten of spades and the Jack of hearts were usually missing. As a result, the odds of hitting a Royal Flush were halved but only the manufacturers of the machines were aware of that.

Best Casinos to Play Real Money Video Poker

We have covered what to look for when choosing the website where you would play video poker for real money. Below, we have provided information on some of the best online casino brands you can join if you would like to play video poker for real money. The variations offered by these casinos include popular video poker options, enabling players who use strategies to find the variants they prefer for their strategic play.

In addition to video poker diversity, these brands offer a safe and fair gaming environment, which is also extremely important for successful video poker gaming sessions online. Smooth transition to mobile play on the go and easy payments are also things we have considered when composing the list below, so make sure to check all of the virtual casinos we have evaluated.


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