With video poker being as popular as ever both in land-based casinos as well as online it comes as no surprise to find many players looking to try and improve their odds when tackling these great games. Jacks or Better video poker is one such variation of the game and is the original version of it. This widely available game can be found in nearly all casinos that offers video poker and it also has some fairly straightforward strategies that can be learned that will help improve your odds and be able to help you manage which hands to keep hold of and which to discard.
Getting started with Jacks or Better video poker is a fairly simple process. You are drawn five cards which you may then either hold or discard individually with the purpose of building up the best hand possible. Once you have made your selection all the discarded cards will be replaced with new ones and the payout will be relevant to the hand you are left holding.
The hand with the lowest odds is Jacks or Better which requires you to draw a pair of Jacks, Queens, Kings, or Aces. Then in reverse order the best hands go; Two pair, Three of a kind, a Straight, a Flush, Full house, Four of a kind, a Straight flush and a Royal Flush – which provides the highest odds in the game.
The cards you initially draw, will affect the odds you receive on the second draw of cards. This is because you are trying to better your first hand and lowering the possibility of finding suitable replacement cards.
Knowing and understanding these levels of probability and how they improve based on your hand and the target hand is crucial to find those improved odds and increase your chances of a win. With Jacks or Better you are able to improve your chances of picking up a win dramatically thanks to the low odds required to do so. Of course a Jacks or Better hand does typically mean a simple bet return other than receiving any profit but it still gives you the chance to stay in the game and try your luck again with hopefully a better first draw.
There are both simplified and perfect strategies for Jacks or Better video poker which requires you to learn and recall a number of possible outcomes when you are playing. These strategies when practiced will help you take advantage of the odds more so than having to rely on instinct. They are statistically based outcomes that whilst mathematically sound they do still rely on a great level of chance as it is impossible to completely predict which cards will be drawn next.