Video Poker

Before covering specific strategies regarding Video Poker, make sure that you check out the My Game and Get More Game tutorials.

Now, if you need a poker refresher, go to Poker Basics for the ranking of each hand.


I. Basic Strategy
II. Jacks or Better
III. Winners
IV. Flush
V. Straight
VI. Three of a Kind
VII. Two Pair
VIII. One Pair – Jacks or Better
IX. One Pair – 10s or Less
X. High Card (With a Face Card)

XI. High Card (Without a Face Card)

Basic Strategy

Video Poker may not be the most popular video game in Illinois, but there’s no denying that the people who enjoy it are really into these games.

If you want to be a Video Poker star, you’ll need at least two things; a solid knowledge of poker strategy, and experience with the specific Video Poker games.

Many Illinois Video Poker games do offer better returns than slots, but there isn’t really a huge difference, and you have to know how to win to get those returns.

If you are not familiar with or can’t remember poker strategy, your chances of winning on a consistent basis will probably be better with Video Slots.

Still, if you enjoy playing challenging games and you a want to have more control over your gaming destiny, Video Poker may be a good match for you.

These are basic rules that can be applied to any Video Poker game. Keep an eye on our Tips & Tricks blog for strategies to use with specific Video Poker games.


Jacks or Better
One Pair

One Pair (Aces)

You must have jacks or better to win most Illinois Video Poker games. Some games require a higher hand of Two Pair or Three of a Kind to win the lowest amount.


Winners
Royal Flush
Royal Flush

Royal Flush

Straight Flush
Straight Flush

Straight Flush

Four of a Kind
Four of a Kind

Four of a Kind

Full House
Full House

Full House

Flush
Flush

Flush

Straight
Straight

Straight

Three of a Kind
Three of a Kind

Three of a Kind

Two Pair
Two Pair

Two Pair

Always hold a royal flush, straight flush, four of a kind, full house, flush, straight, three of a kind, or two pair. Congratulations, you’re a winner!


Flush
Flush

Flush

Break up a flush only when you have four cards to a royal flush.

A♦K♦Q♦J♦9♦

Discard the 9♦, and take a chance for the 10♦ and the big jackpot .

You still leave open the possibility of a flush with any other diamond, a straight with any other 10, or a win with pair of jacks or better.


Straight
Straight

Straight

Break up a straight only when you have four cards to a royal flush.

K♦Q♦J♦10♦-9♣

Discard the 9♣, and take a chance for the A♦ to fill the royal flush, or possibly the 9♦ for a straight flush.

Inside Straight

5♦-J♠-7♥8♦-9♣

An inside straight has card missing in the sequence that must be drawn to complete the hand. Discard the jack for any 6 to complete this straight.

8♦-9♠-J♥Q♦-K♣

Do not draw to a four-card inside straight, unless it includes at least three face cards. Discard the eight for any 10 to complete this straight.

If you don’t draw a 10, you may still draw a face card for jacks or better.

K♦-Q♠-J♥10♦-7♣

A four-card open straight is one that has space open at either end to complete the hand. Discard the 7 in this hand to complete the straight with any ace or any 9.

An inside straight is less likely to be filled than an open straight. There are twice as many cards available to complete the straight.


Three of a Kind
Three of a Kind

Three of a Kind

Discard the remaining two cards for a chance at four of a kind or a full house.


Two Pair
Two Pair

Two Pair

Discard the fifth card for a chance at a full house.


One Pair – Jacks or Better
One Pair

One Pair (Aces)

Hold the pair, draw three cards.

K♦-K♣-Q♦J♦10♦ or J♣-J♦10♦9♦8♦

If you have four cards of royal flush, or four cards of a lower straight flush, then you should break up a pair of jacks or better, and go for the better hand.


One Pair – 10s or Less
One Pair (Nines)

One Pair (Nines)

Hold the pair, draw three cards.

J♣-Q♦K♥-8♠-8♦

Hold the 8s and discard the rest. Keep a low pair instead of a single face card for a chance at three of a kind, four of a kind, or a full house.


High Card (With a Face Card)
High Card (With a Face Card)

High Card (With a Face Card)

If there are four face cards of the same suit, hold them and draw one card for the possible flush. If there are three face cards of the same suit, hold them and draw two cards.

If there are two face cards of the same suit, hold them and draw three cards. If there are three face cards, but none have the same suit, hold any two face cards and draw three cards.

If there is only one face card, hold it and draw four cards.


High Card (Without a Face Card)
High Card (Without a Face Card)

High Card (Without a Face Card)

Hold none and draw five cards.