While there’s no magical solution for winning, employing a video poker strategy could put you in a better position to win. While the house always holds the edge, there are several different mathematical models to try your hand at and in this guide, we will provide you with details of the top ones to use when playing the game online.

The Best Video Poker Strategies

Several video poker strategies exist. The best, though, is the type that works best for you. Below, you can find out more about the best strategies to try and incorporate into your gaming sessions.

Know the Hand Ranks and Paytables

The most optimal strategy when playing video poker is one where you know the paytables of each variation. You won’t find two hands ever being the same in a session. That’s why it is ideal to know the paytable in the version of the game you’re playing beforehand. Online video poker usually displays the paytable, dictating the potential payouts for you.

Knowing the hand rankings, however, isn’t hugely necessary when playing video poker machines, as the game will already know when to provide a payout and for how much. Yet it can be helpful in determining which cards to hold after the initial deal. Make sure you know your flush from your full house, for example.

Know When to Break Up a Straight or Flush

It’s important to know that it is never ideal to keep three cards in your quest of chasing a straight or a flush. Holding on to three cards during an online video poker game with the hope of acquiring such a hand puts you in a big spot for losing. The only time it is ideal to keep all three cards is when you’re able to secure the straight flush, providing a high value payout. Of course, if you’re going for a huge payout, this is an ideal hand to have.

Never give up a winning hand to gain an even bigger hand. If you have the chance to secure a royal flush, then break up a straight or a flush. If not, stick with the cards you have instead.

Play Max Coins

Depositing and utilizing an adequate bankroll is vital for all gamers. So, you must adjust your stakes according to what is right for your circumstances. Yet, if you play Jacks or Better, you can receive a fantastic payout for securing a royal flush with all five cards in play. Thus, an ideal Jacks or Better option is to hit the max bet button. This brings the maximum number of coins into play. You’re only able to gain that huge jackpot payout with this many coins.

Of course, if you’re not comfortable with the maximum wager, then you can always use something lower. The difference is that the jackpot in video poker won’t be available to you.

Slow Things Down

As with any casino game, video poker players have a primary goal – to make money. The more you play, the more you stand to lose, because there is always a house edge in place. This is often much better in video poker than in other casino games, but it is still present. As a result, an ideal video poker strategy is to slow down your gameplay. This is applicable to all variations of the game, but primarily to Jacks or Better.

It is advantageous to play video poker at online casinos, as you aren’t restricted by others or by a clock. You can play and take breaks from the game whenever you need. The strategy here is not to rush with your gameplay and don’t play for volume. If you have ever played table poker, you’ll know that the key to winning is to play fewer hands overall. Video poker is different, though. You don’t need to play fewer hands; you just need to play at a slower rate.

As a result, you decrease your hourly losses, providing the chance to play video poker for longer timeframes and increase your chances of hitting a royal flush jackpot. Even a sizeable standard payout can be acquired in this circumstance. It’s pure common sense.

Low Pairs Over a Single High Card

If you are dealt a pair in a video poker game, then hold on to them. Even if they’re a low scoring pair, you should retain them within your hand. It’s always worth keeping a scoring hand, rather than getting rid of them and risking coming away with nothing. It’s never ideal to go about chasing a better hand that you could “potentially” achieve. Nothing is guaranteed with online casino games – even video poker.

Try Progressive Jackpot Video Poker

You can find a variety of video poker games that also come with progressive jackpots to win. This is especially true in the case of Jacks or Better. You only stand a chance of winning this if you make use of the best strategy for video poker, though. The issue with progressive jackpot video poker is that many of the machines utilize terrible paytables.

Make sure that you load up and bet on a progressive jackpot video poker game with good paytables that benefit you. These jackpots do offer you the chance to win massive payouts, and you could be the one to secure such a reward. Yet if you select a video poker game that offers a progressive jackpot with minimal chances of winning in general, then you’re in a bad position. A video poker strategy is useless if you’ve got a terrible paytable to work with.

The Video Poker Table You’ll Want to Follow

A basic video poker strategy requires you to know what to do whenever you play video poker. That’s why we have put together a table regarding the different hands and the appropriate action to take regarding them. This video poker strategy chart is useful for various versions of the game, so utilize it to make your way through the hands, thereby optimizing your gameplay.

Hand Action
Royal Flush, Straight Flush, Four-of-a-Kind, Full House, Flush, Straight Hold, don’t discard anything from the hand
Four Cards to a Royal Flush Hold the four, discard the remaining card
Three-of-a-Kind, Two Pair, Pair (Jacks or Better) Hold and then discard the unnecessary cards
Four Cards to a Straight Flush Hold the four, discard the remaining card
Pair (Lower than Jacks) Hold and then discard the other cards
Three Cards to a Royal Flush Hold the three, discard the other two
Four Cards to a Flush Hold the four, discard the remaining card
Lower Than a Pair Discard all cards and draw five new ones

Our Top Video Poker Strategy Tips

You can find various strategies online for different types of video poker. Yet we’re interested in providing insight into the best all-round options. That’s why we have put together a selection of the top video poker strategy tips. Read through these pointers below and try to put them into your own gaming sessions.

  • Choose the Right Paytable – It is crucial to do proper research so that you can identify the best video poker machines providing the top payouts. You need to understand that the return on a video poker machine is based on the machine’s paytable, which will give you the best chance of beating the game.
  • Keep an Eye on Video Poker Promotions – Online casinos often provide inviting and enjoyable bonuses and promotions. Sometimes, these will cater to video poker, and when they are available, take advantage of them.
  • Don’t Forget About Your Own Safety – You need to know that you’re playing a safe version of video poker at a safe online casino site. This is a video poker basic strategy. In fact, it’s a basic strategy for any type of casino game. Your safety and the fairness of the games you play are vital.
  • Use the Strategy Chart – Video poker strategy charts are fantastic tools to make use of for playing the game. The table we put together above advises you on the cards to hold and discard in different situations.
  • Take It Slowly – As we noted earlier on, it is better to take things slower with video poker. This way, you won’t go beyond your means, and you can figure out each game round on its own.
  • Understand the Basic Game – If you’re new to playing online video poker, then you need to ensure you understand the basics behind it. Check the rules, hand rankings, and so on, as a basic video poker strategy.
  • Understand the Variance of the Game – There are always ups and downs in all casino games. Thus, you need to know how frequently you can expect to win or lose in a game of video poker. Higher variance releases provide bigger wins but on a less frequent basis. Low variance video poker is the opposite.
  • Take Breaks from the Game – There is nothing wrong with taking some time away from playing. Have a few hours away from it or a day or two, for example. Video poker is an intense game, and this is especially true during longer sessions. Regular breaks allow you to refocus.

Different Strategies for Video Poker Variations

As with many casino games, video poker games aren’t available in a single version. Various incarnations of the game exist, and you can enact different strategies for each of these. Below, you can see the best video poker strategy for each of them.

Jacks or Better

video poker strategy for Jacks or Better

Known to many people as the most popular version of video poker, Jacks or Better is a game you can play with a simple video poker strategy. The smallest winning hand in it is a pair of Jacks, which is where its name comes from.

Traditional poker hands are present, too, with the Royal Flush being the top payout. You need to ensure you understand the hand rankings before playing it. At the same time, the game usually allows for flexible betting. The best Jacks or Better video poker strategy sees you placing the maximum bet every round. As highlighted earlier, this gives you the best chance of securing a top payout if you get a royal flush.

Make use of the video poker strategy chart as well, as this details the correct action to take for each potential hand. It’s crucial to know which cards to keep and which ones to discard.

Getting the most out of Jacks or Better requires you to aim for a win, but also to try and win the biggest amount possible. Thus, you have to have at least part of your focus on the royal flush and maximizing that jackpot.

Deuces Wild

Deuces Wild Multihand by Play’n Go

Another popular variation of video poker is Deuces Wild. This version acquires its name from the fact that its 2s (deuces) are all wild cards, thereby able to stand in for any other to make a hand. You’ll need a different video poker strategy for playing this game, though.

You will of course need to make use of the deuce cards as much as possible. They can significantly strengthen a hand for you, so the rankings are different from traditional poker in Deuces Wild. The minimum qualifying hand is usually three-of-a-kind. Five-of-a-Kind and Wild Royal Flush are two hands that are only possible because the wild deuces exist.

You need to know how to play poker based on the number of deuces dealt to you. Should you receive four deuces – a lucky outcome, indeed – hold all of them. The hand cannot be improved beyond this. With three deuces, hold on Five-of-a-Kind or the Wild Royal Flush if you can. Otherwise, just hold the deuces and draw two new cards.

If you receive two wild cards, hold a hand of Four-of-a-Kind or better. In any other instance, hold the deuces and discard the rest. For a single deuce, hold a hand that is Three-of-a-Kind or better, hold four cards of a Royal Flush or a Straight Flush.

It is only if you are dealt a hand without any deuces that you should change the strategy in use. A paying hand of Three-of-a-Kind or better means you should hold on to it, because it guarantees a return.

Aces and Faces

Aces and Faces video poker strategies

In Aces and Faces, you usually play with a single deck of 52 cards and the standard two rounds are played in each game. A Jacks or Better hand serves as the lowest paying one, while a Royal Flush is also possible.

Essentially, this is a game that is a variant of Jacks or Better in itself. The name of it comes from the fact that the paytable is set up to reward hands featuring aces and face cards. That’s pretty much it.

As a result of Aces and Faces being like Jacks or Better, you can play with the same sort of strategy. Thus, we always recommend setting the bet level to the maximum it can reach. If you get a pair dealt, then it is best to hold both the cards, regardless of their value.

Should you come to a point of almost being able to make up a Royal Flush, then you should discard whatever cards you need to and try to go for it. Furthermore, you should always keep four cards to a flush. Always hold a winning hand, too – unless there is a Royal Flush up for grabs.

Double Bonus Poker

Double Bonus Poker by Habanero

You may have heard of bonus poker, but double bonus poker takes this game one step further. It doubles the bonuses for all Four-of-a-Kind hands that you achieve. A hand of four aces, for example, pays out double the amount in comparison to standard bonus poker.

As a result, you can adapt your video poker strategy nicely to suit this game. Keep any three cards to a flush or any four cards to a flush. Should you be dealt a pair, you need to keep them as well. That applies even if it is a low scoring pair.

In another instance, if you get a single high card, then you should hang on to it and do whatever with the remaining cards. Being dealt a hand without any pairs in it dictates that you are better off discarding the entire hand for something else.

Can a Strategy Help You Win at Video Poker Online?

Let us start out by answering this question with the insight that nothing is ever guaranteed when playing casino games. You cannot say that a strategy of any sort will result in you always winning. It’s just not plausible because of the house edge that every single casino game has. If that wasn’t there, then you could indeed win all the time, but the casino wouldn’t make any money.

Using a video poker strategy can put you in a better position to secure wins, though. It ensures that not only do you know what type of bet to place, but what you should do when you receive certain hands after a deal. You’ll know best how to proceed with holding specific cards and discarding others.

The more knowledge you have on playing video poker games, the better position you’re in. That’s just common sense. So, a strategy of knowing the paytables, the hands, the actions to take in different situations, playing the game at a slower pace, and so on, is more likely to produce positive results.

You also must remember that video poker is a casino game that not only offers some of the highest odds in gambling, but that you do get the chance to influence the game’s outcome. Of course, luck still operates as the biggest factor in the result of each game. The low house edge associated with video poker is another benefit that tips the scales slightly in your favor,.

With the right skills, a top strategy, as much knowledge as possible, and luck on your side, you can beat video poker machines. Just don’t go into the game expecting to win all the time just because you’re using a strategy. You need to realize that you will likely suffer some losses along the way. Yet enacting a strategy, such as those highlighted here, can assist you in being more successful.

Here are some pros and cons of using video poker strategies when playing online:


  • Gives you a better insight into the video poker game you’re playing.
  • Heightens your chances of getting the most out of your session.
  • Provides you with the knowledge of what actions to take with specific hands.
  • You can take advantage of the low house edge in video poker.
  • Allows you to take a slow and methodical approach to each round.


  • Strategies can be difficult to remember and put into effect at times.
  • Luck remains the primary factor in video poker outcomes, regardless of strategy.

Make Your Next Round of Video Poker a Strategic One

With everything outlined here, why wouldn’t you incorporate a video poker strategy into your gameplay? There has been some debate throughout the years over whether video poker requires any skill to play. The answer is, without a doubt, a resounding yes, as you can incorporate a strategy into your gameplay and potentially make yourself more successful.

Through this guide, we have provided guidance on using strategies when playing video poker games at online casinos. Make use of the information presented here and try to heighten your own payout chances.


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