Video poker first became available when computers were introduced, in the ‘70s. In the beginning, they were often primitive by today's standards. Later in the ‘80s when computer technology witnessed a boom, video poker became increasingly popular in casinos.
Video poker is essentially based on regular poker, but there are many differences. In video poker, you do not play against other people, but against the machine or casino. At the beginning of the game, you are given a hand, then, you will have the chance to discard one or several cards. The game will give you knew cards to replace the discarded ones. Now based on the rank of your hand, you will either win or lose.
Playing Video Poker Online
Today's online video poker games aren't a lot different than most video poker games in land-based casinos. This is because land-based casinos technically also offer "online" video poker to their players. Land-based video poker works the same as online video poker.
Modern video poker machines generate games the same way as video poker games in online casinos, namely though gaming software. It was only a natural step for video poker to become popular on the internet as well. These days there is no online casino that doesn't offers multiple variants of this game.
In online video poker, everything from the rules to the winning odds and probabilities of traditional video poker is preserved. The only difference is that online video poker offers possibilities that in most cases aren't available in its land based variant.
One of these things is graphics. Traditional video poker machines aren't always able to provide the same graphics as video poker games generated by sophisticated online casino software. As a consequence, online video poker is more exciting than video poker in land based casinos.
Multi-handed online video poker
The greatest advantage of online video poker is the possibility to play with multiple hands at once. Like its name suggests, in multi-hand video poker the casino will offer players the possibility to play with multiple hands at once all with distinct bets.
Some games may even allow players to play with even as much as 50 hands. This is something that's not possible in land-based casinos because of technical difficulties. Playing with multiple hands obviously means potentially more money lost but also greater winning probabilities and of course more excitement.
Variations of Video Poker
Video poker has many variations. Some of the most popular video poker variants are Jacks or Better, Joker Poker and Deuces Wild. Jacks or Better is the simplest form of video poker. It differs from other video poker variants in the fact that the lowest ranked winning hand combination is one that contains a pair of jacks. For this reason Jacks or Better has slightly better winning odds than other games.
Joker Poker is a little bit more complicated than Jacks or Better. This however is a good thing because it offers more strategic depth to the game. The difference between Joker Poker and other video poker games is that Joker Poker contains an extra card, the joker. The joker can be used to substitute any mussing card from a winning card combination.
Deuces Wild is yet another video poker type that's very simple to play. In Deuces Wild a deuce (a card with a value of "2") can substitute any missing card from a winning card combination. Basically it's an "upgraded" version of Joker Poker only with better winning odds due to the fact that a card deck in Deuces Wild contains four deuces while a Joker Poker deck only contains one joker card.
All of these variations are most frequently also available in multi-hand format. Online casino players will at most casinos have the opportunity to decide with how many hand they wish to play at once. As explained this can rage anywhere from 1 to 50 and in some cases even more.
Can Strategy be Employed in Video Poker?
Naturally like any other casino game, video poker also depends mostly on luck and chance. However, in some cases it's indeed possible to increase one's winning odds and probabilities. The first thing to remember is to be aware of the existing winning card combinations in video poker. These combinations are mostly the same as in regular poker.
Based on this, player may be able to predict the likelihood of a card combination to be formed in a game of video poker. A great video poker strategy also depends on understanding the winning probabilities and statistical likelihoods of forming diverse winning hands during gameplay.
It's not easy to develop these strategies but with a lot of exercise most people will be perfectly able to master the necessary skills. Any player is able to do this but most players usually don't have the patience necessary to work on developing them. This is why there are so many losing online casino players.
This however does under no circumstance mean that players are able to beat the casino in every situation. As explained above, video poker still largely depends on luck. A good video poker strategy may considerably help the player to increase his or her winning odds but it will nowhere ensure guaranteed winnings.