You might know this already but video poker, unlike what many say, is very much a game of strategy and skill. A lot of players who enjoy this type of game can play for years on end and still learn nothing valuable and play recklessly. This guide is for people who know a little bit about video poker and want to learn more complex methods of winning.
Underneath you will find a chart which will list all of the possible hands in video poker, in order from best to worst. You should always check this list before you start discarding cards and keep track of every possible combination there could be.
- Four of a kind, royal flush, straight flush
- 4 to a royal flush
- Three of a kind, full house, straight, flush
- 4 to a straight flush
- Two pair
- High pair
- 3 to a royal flush
- 4 to a flush
- Low pair
- 4 to an outside straight
- 3 to a straight flush (this is an open-ended contribution to a straight flush, you need more high cards than gaps)
- AKQ J unsuited
- 2 suited high cards
- 4 to an inside straight with 3 high cards
- 3 to a straight flush (an open-ended straight flush, where the number of spaces is 1)
- KQJ unsuited
- Q J unsuited
- JT suited
- KQ, KJ unsuited
- QT suited
- AK, AQ, AJ unsuited
- KT suited
- One high card
- 3 to a straight flush (a straight flush with zero high-cards and 2 gaps)
- Discard everything
After you get used to it, actually using a strategy will become way easier. You just have to pay attention to that list on each hand you play and slowly but surely you will have it memorized. You can either have the list open in a browser while playing or just print it out and place it next to your computer so you can quickly glance over at it.
Also keep in mind that every variant of video poker has its own type of strategy that you need to apply. You can very easily take the list we just showed you and modify it to the new rules or to your own liking. Technically the strategy we’ve showed is pretty much perfect but you can add things to it after you’ve gained some experience. For example, in games which have wild cards you should probably change your strategy for the difference in payouts between “natural” hands and “unnatural” hands.
Even though we recommend you use that list exactly, sometimes you can try to go for a better combination if you see the possibility. Your chances of hitting it will obviously be lower but the possible winnings might be worth it. It all depends on your experience so just keep practicing until you’ve perfected your own technique.