Smarter Gambling

Checking Video Poker Tables Revisited: Same Total Bet, Different Pay Tables

Written by Joshua

Video Poker pay tables are a unique aspect of that game versus slots in that you can see exactly what the game will pay. And that also means you can compare the various games on the floor to see if one pays better than another.

Like slots, the general expectation is that as the denomination increases, so do the pay tables. But that is not always correct, as other factors come in like if the game is a specialty game or a multi hand game, as sometimes those can result in some adjustments.

And that leads to today’s topic. My game of choice is Jacks or Better, and at the big chain casinos in Las Vegas a typical pay table is 7/5, which is far from ideal when a full pay pay table is 9/6. (If you are new to Video Poker, the two numbers speak to how many credits are paid for a full house and flush in this case.)

On quarters a standard requirement to be paid in full for a Royal flush is to bet 5 credits, or $1.25.

While browsing around, I noticed a nickel denomination, five hand scenario which also cost $1.25 in total. But it’s pay table was 8/5, offering a better reward for the full house.

The difference of course is you are spreading your bets over five outcomes, which should make for a bit of a smoother ride, lowering the overall volatility, since you have five chances to either improve your hand or make one, depending on your starting position.

The full house will also pay you five more credits each time it comes out, which will further help smooth out the ride.

Of course, you could switch to a higher denomination if you wanted to up the action a bit. But comparing total wager sizes, for whatever reason, the casino offers just a bit more on this particular set of machines in this way.

And this just further underscores why getting familiar with the various games and pay tables can be a good couple of minutes to invest, especially if you plan on playing for awhile.

About the author


My name is Joshua, and I’m a slot enthusiast who works in tech as a marketer by day, and dabbles in casinos periodically during off-times. Know Your Slots will reflect my interests in understanding the various ways you can play slots, travel, casino promotions and how you can get the most out of your casino visits.

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