Video Poker – How to Win and How it Works

Video direction from establishment author/expert that teaches you the information on how video devices work and how to be a long-lasting winner at the video game.

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– How to Win and How it Works

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  1. Too bad I had to learn the game on my own but I agree with EVERYTHING he said.

  2. I’ve listened to Steve’s podcast for years. He always gives sound advice, based on the mathematical probability, not speculation or rumor.

    Great job on this video.

  3. The most important thing that anyone can learn when they watch this video is that video poker is a much better game to play than a slot machine. Also, they should learn how to read a video poker paytable to make sure they are playing the game with the best possible return. People know when they go to a casino that they will probably lose. Video poker will allow them to lose less and to make their bankroll last longer.

  4. I have gotten lots of royal flushes. About four months ago I was playing as a partner with my son and we got two royals within about 20 minutes at a local casino here in south Florida. A friend and I were playing as partners in Atlantic City when he got dealt a royal flush on a $1 machine. You should expect a royal, on average, about once every 40,000 hands.

  5. I have a video poker tournament coming up at Mohegan Sun, CT on January 5th – can’t wait to apply your tips – thank you. – Slot Raven

  6. It would depend on the paytable of the machine. Usually, you want to play the game with the highest paying paytable. However, some games, such as Double Bonus and Double Double Bonus have more complicated strategies and you might make more mistakes . You would need to practice the stratgey until you have it memorized, but bring along a strategy card too, just in case you can’t remember how to play a particular hand.

  7. I’ve always assumed video poker machines could change the “to be dealt” cards according to what was held by the player.  Is this not the case?  Are the “to be dealt” cards predetermined before you discard (much like with a real deck)? 

    1. After the initial deal the remaining cards are continuously being randomly shuffled until you hit the deal button.

  8. Thanks for the info  been practicing with an online vid poker trainer  and  Im getting  good at it,  still not playing a perfect game  but almost there.  Went to the casino tonight and did well,  it was a 8/5 jacks or better   8/5 is the best we have around here. (Your system works)  Thanks. all I need is more practice and i’ll be playing a perfect game every time at the casino.  JKW

  9. Thanks again for your professional teaching vids . I am  playing 8/5 jacks or better now perfectly.  last couple times I went to the local casino, I have been able to play for hours and stay at least 40 to 50 dollars ahead on the quarter machines,   But so far  haven’t hit the big one  the royal Flush LOL. I was doing so well tonight  I decided to go into the High rollers room and play 8/5 jacks or better poker on a dollar machine  . I did well  but  still no royal.  But I will keep trying for it LOL. even on the dollar video poker machine  I still  kept over $40.00 ahead of what I started with and I played that machine for 30 minutes   so  I was either real lucky  or  was playing  pretty good or  both.  Thanks for the info  JKW

    1. @hman630 The theoretical return on an 8/5 Jacks or Better machines is 97.28% when played perfectly with a maximum coins bet. That means that even if you never make a mistake, the game is expected to return only $97.28 for every $100 you put into the machine. So, you have been lucky and that’s why you are ahead. In the long run, you are expected to $2.72, for each $100 played. Unless the cashback, or other benefits from the casino, is 2.72% or higher, you will be a loser on that machine. If you play 600 hands an hour on a quarter machine your expected loss per hour is $20.40 ($1.25 x 600 x 2.72). If you move up to $1 machines, your expected hourly loss is $81.60. Please keep this in mind when you play.

    2. Yes  I know that.  But keep in mind also that the longer I can play the better chance I have to get a royal dealt.  and that’s one of the reasons I play  also  its fun and  I can play this machine a lot longer than I could play a regular slot machine with the same amount of money.  Thanks again.  JKW

    3. anyway  the main reason I play  is  because its fun  I don’t expect to win. But if I get lucky while having Fun all the better.  Better this than a regular slot machine where id probably  not be able to play near as long with the same amount of money. JKW

    4. @hman630 You are expected to get a royal flush, on average, about once every 40,000 hands.

  10. Thank you so much. Your video was very interesting. Going to Vegas on May 28 for seven days.
    Have a question. What is the differences between a video poker at Casino bar and the other stand alone kind?

    1. @Jack Adams Video poker machines all work in the same manner in Las Vegas. You would just want to make sure that you are playing the machines with the best pay tables in order to get the best best payback percentages.

    2. Thank You so much for getting back to me. Have to say again how much I have enjoyed your videos.

  11. Thanks for the video, very clear and helpful information, however a doubt. The percentage of Expeceted Return increases on something when you put a bill of 20 compared to a 10 bill, and so on with other higher?

    1. +Pedro Arnaldo torres chávez The payback percentage will change based on the denomination of the machine and not how much money you put into the machine to play. Usually, the higher the denomination, the higher the payback. Penny machines will have the lowest payback and the $5, $25, $100 machines will have the highest.

    2. +americancasinoguide I just realized that my above statement refers to the payback percentage on slot machines and you were referring to a video about video poker. Usually, the same theory would apply to video poker machines, but not always. That is why it is good to learn how to read a video poker paytable. This will allow you to choose the best paying machines and avoid the bad ones. With a slot machine you will never know what it is set to pay back to the public. However, you can usually assume that the higher the denomination, the more it is set to pay back.

  12. Absolutely great video Steve! I’ve got no idea why all of these idiots attack you.

  13. You’re videos are terrific. You thoroughly address the questions that us viewers are wondering about AND you use great visual displays.

    at 2:44 you mention using the information to become a long-term winner at video poker. But how can someone be a long-term winner if the odds are 99.54% with perfect strategy? Or am I misunderstanding what you mean by a long-term winner?

    1. Most casinos will give you benefits for your play. Sometimes that will be in the form of freeplay and that can bring you over the 100% payback amount. Also, you will earn comps: free food, free rooms, free shows, etc. Ideally, you are playing a break-even game with the casinos and taking advantage of the comps if you can find a good video poker game. That won’t happen with slots because the casino advantage is too high.

  14. Great videos, thank you. Would you say there is a ballpark figure on how long/how many hands it takes to reach a full cycle and expect the % payout to play out? Thank you.

    1. Wow! 2.5 million hands to come full circle? Is this while playing the correct strategy?

      With this in mind and a 99% return (or even 100%+ return), how is it that some people make a living doing this?

    2. You would need to include the benefits from the players club in order to get the return over 100%.

    3. Yes, I understand. But you mentioned somewhere you know people who make a living playing this game. Did you really mean they earn an income to live on?

      Thank you again for all your fantastic, non-hyped, sensible videos!

    4. We just released a video titled – How to Become a Professional Video Poker Player with Video Poker Expert Bob Dancer. Bob earned more than one million dollars playing video poker and I interviewed him about how someone can become a professional player. You can see it here –

    5. So it amounts to free room and board if you sit there all day and never make a mistake. Most people want jobs that give them some sort of discretionary income to spend as they please. When the benefits can never be taken in cash, you can’t even earn a few thousand dollars a year to contribute to a retirement account. You might as well be spending the same amount of time working for minimum wage. Just stand behind the counter at the McDonalds across the street and say, “Would you like fries with that?”

  15. I’ve been using your strategies over the last 3 months and I’ve never walked out with less than when I began…. or in another words, I ALWAYS walk out with extra cash.
    Mind you I’m not getting rich, but when I walk out with extra cash in my pocket plus dinner and gas money as well, I consider that a very good day!! So thank you!!

    1. Actually, you should be losing money on most sessions. Even if you play perfect basic strategy about 2% of the return is in the royal flush. Therefore, you should be losing at a rate of about 2% until you hit that royal and then it will bring your bankroll back up. In the meantime, however, you should be able to enjoy the comps and cashback generated by your play.

    2. @americancasinoguide
      I only allot myself $20 to play and always stop if I’m ahead, even if just $10. Like I said, I’m not getting rich, but I’m not losing.

  16. Your videos are so engaging and entertaining too. I really appreciate you for sharing your knowledge and tips.

  17. Steve, I’m really liking your talk about video poker and have a question. How does the machine pick the first five cards? Does the machine just grab one of the 2,598,960 initial five card combinations? You said that in slots the casino can program in more winning combinations. Does video poker work the same by adding more initial winning or losing five card combinations? Thanks.

    1. Yes, it has to pick one of the combinations of cards. Video poker MUST be based on 1, 52 card deck, they cannot change the chances of any one card appearing. The only way a casino can change the payback on a video poker machine is by changing the amount the player is paid for each hand which is why different games have different paytables

    2. Steve, you said that a regular slot machine cycles through a preprogrammed set of combinations and stops at the one when the player presses the play button. You do not know how many winning or losing combinations are programmed. It is just cycling through the combinations programmed. Some are programmed with more winning combinations, but you do not know. Come on five cherries! There could be 52 fruits and five are shown. But the casino could program in more or less combinations. You do not know.

      In video poker we make the assumption that there are 52 “cards” and that there are the 2,598,960 initial five card combinations. But if I’m the casino I want to win. There are 15,820,024,220 initial ten card combinations or decks. How do we know that the game is fair? How do we know that the machine is programmed to only have the decks limited to the 15 trillion, cycling through until the player presses the deal button? Is there a sign on the machine saying it is limited to the 15T combinations?

      IMHO the difference between a slot machine with fruits and video poker is that you make the assumption that the game is based on 52 cards.

    3. Gaming regulations require that video poker games simulate the same odds as if you were playing the game as dealt from a randomly shuffled 52-card deck,. Since you mention fruit games, I assume you are from the UK? If so, gaming regulations there might be different, especially if you are playing in pubs.

  18. I just played video poker for the first time this week. I really enjoyed it so my friend sent me your videos to watch. Thank you for all of your shared knowledge for a newcomer like me! Ignore the haters too 😎

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