When video poker machines debuted in 1970, they were met with a tepid response. Electronic gaming was foreign at the time, but the game has transformed over the years. Here’s the comprehensive guide to everything you need to know about playing video poker online.

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online video poker tips


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Online Video Poker 1



Top Casino Picks is happy to offer thoroughly researched, unbiased reviews of various online casinos. It’s important to find a gambling website where playing video poker online is always a positive experience. Here are our recommended picks: the best online casinos for video poker.

Planet 7 Casino


Feeling stuck in the drudgery of your everyday routines? Planet 7 Casino aims to offer an escape from the mundane. With a bold and bright color theme and a pleasing, user-friendly layout, Planet 7 provides a great experience plus a 400% WELCOME BONUS just for opening a free account.

CoolCat Casino


This real money online casino features highly popular casino games favored among gamblers from all over the world. With 220+ games to choose from, easy deposits and withdrawals and whopping bonus offers including a 300% WELCOME BONUS it is worth a closer look.

Silver Oak Casino


Looking for a no-frills casino to play your favorite games with bonuses? Silver Oak Casino could be exactly what you’re looking for. With 130+ games and unique bonuses, Silver Oak delivers a fulfilling experience every time. New signups earn a 400% WELCOME BONUS!


As with all casino games, there are unique aspects when you play video poker online. Whether you’re just getting started on your journey or you’re a long-time video poker lover, it’s a good idea to follow some basic guidelines to guarantee a successful and enjoyable experience.

online video poker tips

Set a budget

First thing’s first: manage your bankroll. This tip applies to all casino games you want to play. Your mindset about financing your hobby is important. Your goal is to extend the amount of play time, and you do that by playing responsibly. Assuming that you don’t have unlimited funds, this requires setting a specific amount of betting money that you can’t exceed. That way you won’t lose it all, allowing you to fully enjoy the game.

video poker

Learn basic strategy

Unlike some other games of chance, video poker involves a great deal of strategy. If perfected, you can win and beat the house edge. One part of this is differentiating between variants of online video poker. The range of winning hands will vary from game to game, which means a strong winning hand in one version might not be a hand at all in another. It’s important to know what game you’re playing.

online video poker tips

Find the best odds

Not all pay tables are created equal, and that’s another area that is different. For example, 9/6 Jacks or Better indicates the highest possible payback percentage, giving the player high chances of winning if he uses perfect strategy. This is how you can set yourself up for success. Because there are so many variations out there, it’s best to do some thorough research on which ones to invest your time and money into.

video poker

Bet max

There are varying denominations (coin sizes), there are always the same five bet amounts: one to five coins. In a game with a $1 coin size, the maximum bet will be $5. If you follow any chart from the minimum on the left to the maximum bet on the right, the difference between a payout for a four coin bet and a five coin bet is significant. Always place maximum bets when you can.


Today, the video poker machine is a staple of any casino experience, and it’s hard to imagine a time when it simply didn’t exist. Here’s a brief overview of the origin and evolution of the well-loved, modern-day video poker machine.

The first poker machine

Sittman and Pitt invent a poker machine with five “drums” (reels) and ten playing cards per drum. Pulling the lever causes the drums to spin until they slow to a stop, revealing the final hand. The machine is installed at bars around New York City, with prizes like free drinks and cigars instead of cash payouts.

The first slot machine

Charles Fey perfects his own invention in San Francisco: the Liberty Bell Slot Machine. His version is considerably simpler than Sittman and Pitt’s machine, with the number of reels reduced from five to three. It also has a built-in mechanism that triggers an automatic cash payout when a player lands on a winning combination. The slot machine quickly becomes popular, but without a patent, Fey’s success is diminished by many imitators.

The invention of video poker

Fey updates his invention once again to add a new element to the game. This version is called the “Skill Draw” machine. The new hold feature gives players a chance to choose cards to keep from the initial deal. The reels are spun a second time to make the player’s final hand. This is the world’s first five-card draw poker machine.

Video poker goes electronic

Dale Electronics develops the Poker-Matic, the first electronic video poker machine. Although these new machines are introduced at many Las Vegas casinos, they do not initially attract the public’s attention.

Video poker’s rising popularity

William “Si” Redd, a distributor for Bally Gaming, attempts to convince Bally to change their marketing strategy to focus on video poker. After Bally turns him down, Si starts his own company (SIRCOMA, now known as International Game Technology) to do so. After a few modifications are made to include lower winning hands, the video poker machine’s popularity skyrockets.

Video poker and online casinos

The first online casinos are open, and the industry begins to grow at an exponential rate, driven by its convenience and diverse game selection – including online video poker, which remains essential to any online or land-based casino today.


Carol, New Jersey

winner story video poker“I am a poker fanatic whereas my husband has always been more of a slots kind of gambler. We both regularly gamble online. For a long time I had been playing just to extend my time on the machine, and because my husband was also doing quite well with his bankroll that evening.

I was playing Deuces Wild on Cool Cat Casino, and I hit my first ever full pay Royal! I had been dealt 4 to a Royal (about 10 hands previous), then drew the Royal when I was dealt a 3 to it and cashed in just under $2,500!!! The funniest part is my husband was just as shocked as I was as he simultaneously won just under $2k on the slots 5 minutes earlier too! Result!”


    • What is online video poker?

Video poker is an online casino game based on five-draw poker. After placing a bet, the player is dealt five random cards. He can then select any number of cards to discard in exchange for new cards. If the final result is a winning hand, he receives a payout according to the pay table.

    • Is video poker a game of chance or skill?

It’s a unique balance. The dealing of cards is random, but the matter of how many cards to discard, if any, is up to the player. This can be learned and perfected, which means that your skills and success can be improved.

    • Doesn’t the house always win?

The saying is often true, but video poker is different from many other games. The house edge is the casino’s advantage over the player, and this can be a pretty significant amount. However, in video poker, if the player achieves perfect strategy, the house edge can be as low as 5% to 0.5%.

    • How can I play video poker online?

Just choose a place! Our reviewed casinos offer plenty of video poker options. It’s a straightforward process. Just choose a casino, register or log in, and navigate to the video poker page. Practice for free until you’re ready to play for real winnings.

    • Do I need to download software to play video poker online?

No. Most online casinos offer downloadable software for computers, but they also feature optimized web play that’s compatible with most devices. You can play video poker online using a computer or any smart device.

    • How can I get better at video poker?

Practice to familiarize yourself with different variants and pay tables. After that, check out video poker online resources. There are strategy guidelines, video poker trainers, and odds calculators that will help you continue to improve.



Action – the total amount of money bet by the player, regardless of wins or losses.


Bankroll –  the total amount of money that the player budgets for gambling; a key element in maximizing play time and enjoyment.

Bet Max – also referred to as “maximum bet”; the highest possible bet that can be placed on a particular machine, typically five coins.


Cash Out – the option to end a session and collect one’s winnings.


Denomination – also referred to as “coin size”; the value of a single coin on a particular machine.

Discard – the option to get rid of unwanted cards after the initial deal, in hopes of improving one’s hand.

Draw – the deal that occurs after the initial hand if the player has chosen to discard one or more of his cards.


Expected Value – the average payback that the player can expect to win for a specific play.


Full Pay – the term for a machine that offers the highest pay table for that particular variant; e.g., full pay Jacks or Better uses a 9/6 pay table.


Hold – the option to keep any number of cards after the initial deal.

House Edge – the casino’s profit expressed as a percentage of the player’s bet for a specific game.


Jackpot – the top payout for a video poker machine, depending on that specific game’s rules.


Low Pay – the term for any machine that doesn’t have the best possible pay table.


Multi Hand – the type of video poker that allows the player to play multiple hands simultaneously.


Payout – the amount of money to be awarded for a specific winning hand.

Pay Table – the chart accompanying each video poker machine that displays the payouts for each hand.

Perfect Play – the act of consistently playing according to the highest expected value for each hand.


Random Number Generator – also referred to as “RNG”; the computer chip that “shuffles” cards randomly.


Winning Hand – any hand that results in a payout.


CoolCat Casino


This real money online casino features highly popular casino games favored among gamblers from all over the world. With 220+ games to choose from, easy deposits and withdrawals and whopping bonus offers including a 300% WELCOME BONUS it is worth a closer look.