Visualized Video Poker Instructions and Rules

Gambling is entertainment, and most people don’t want to read a book about video poker before getting down to what it’s all about; playing the game, having fun and perhaps even winning a bit. will teach you how to play properly without all the reading.

Turn on the sound, sit back and relax and let us teach you the basics of video poker in no time.

Video Poker Rules by

At first glance, a video poker machine looks very similar to a regular slot machine – however there is a big difference. Video poker is (in part at least) a game of skill, whereas playing slots is strictly a game of chance. Before playing video poker for money at one of the video poker casinos you should know amongst other things the rankings of video poker hands.

The first thing you must do to play proper video poker is to forget what you know about ‘regular’ poker, with the exception of the hand ranking system. You should also forget about keeping that ‘kicker’. Also note that in video poker, an Ace is not better then a Jack. This is because you are not playing against any other poker players – just the video poker machine and the paytables – and the machine does not pay more for a pair of aces then a pair of jacks.

The objective of the video poker is to get a winning poker hand, paid off according to the paytable on the machine. There is no bluffing, no other players, just you against the machine.

When playing video poker you put your coins in the machine and start the game by being dealt 5 cards, dealt randomly from a single deck with 52 cards. (This assumes a ‘regular’ type of machine, bonus video poker games may have a joker or other additional cards in the deck.)

In video poker the poker hand rankings are as follows – from the highest hand to the lowest:

Then you have the option to discharge or hold any or all of your 5 cards. Pressing the ‘hold’ button underneath will allow you to keep the card in question in your poker hand.

Once you’ve chosen what to keep and what to discard, you then click on deal and the cards you chose to discharge are replaced with new cards.

Finally, you can see on the paytable on the video poker machine if you have won anything or not – if you are playing jacks or better video poker you will need at least a pair of jacks or higher to win.

Note the paytable above. You can see that if you play one coin per game, a Royal Straight Flush will get you 250 coins. But if you play 5 coins per game a Royal Straight Flush pays 4000 coins. 5 times 250 is only 1250 coins; so there is a significant bonus in playing the five coins. If you are playing to win; you should always play the maximum number of coins allowed. If that’s getting too expensive, you should look for another video poker machine that accepts lower coin denominations.

Now look at the paytable above again; note the payout for a full house and a flush when one coin is played. A full house pays 9 and a flush pays 6. That is good, but not all Jacks or Better machines offer 9/6 for these hands. Always look for the good jacks or better video poker games offering 9/6 odds – also known as ‘full pay’ video poker.

Online Video Poker Paytables

Different video poker games offer different odds on their paytables. On this page of you can find more information about online video poker paytables.

The video poker paytables are always visible on the front of the video poker machines, so it’s very easy to determine if it’s a good or a short pay machine you are standing in front of if you know what to look for. Many casino players don’t know what to look for so they end up playing a game that is ripping them off compared to full pay machines. I guess that is why the casinos put these short pay machines up all over the place.

I will try to teach you how to spot the good paytables – known as the full pay video poker games. Below is a screenshot of a paytable taken from a Jacks or Better machine. After having studied this page you should be able to determine if the screenshot is taken from a full pay video poker game or if this one is from a short pay machines. You can hover your mouse pointer over the picture to get the correct answer to this question – but you should try to figure our the correct answer yourself before looking.

Jacks Or Better Video Poker Paytables:

Below we can see paytables for 4 different kinds of Jacks or Better video poker – all showing the payouts when a single coin is played. The full pay version that we are looking for and 3 other versions of the game with lower odds. We don’t want the casinos to take our money so we will not play those short pay games anymore – right?

Deuces Wild Video Poker Paytables:

Double Bonus Video Poker Paytables:

* The long run expected return is assuming perfect strategic play.