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Video Poker Calling all VP Players- Recommendation needed

Discussion in 'Video Poker' started by Happygirl21, Sep 26, 2013.

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  1. Happygirl21

    Happygirl21 Low-Roller

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    Many of you have sparked a curiosity in me, that I did not know I had( minds out of the gutter please:wink2:)

    Looking for suggestions for a virgin-video-poker player. Starting with .25 x 5 credits game.

    I have always associated poker hands with the game of yahtzee. So what does that tell ya?

    Thanks
     
    AC, it's no LV but better than nothing.
    In the planning phase.
  2. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    Jacks or Better (JOB) Look at the first row of the paytables, then look at the payout for a full house and a flush. On the Strip not likely, but look for 9 for a full house and 6 for a flush on the paytables.

    Easy to find at Main Street Station or the Cal downtown, but the Strip, I'm not sure what you'll find at the quarter level.
     
    Christmas
  3. Dean Martin

    Dean Martin VIP Whale

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    And buy some Winpoker software to practice on.
     
  4. raisingoo

    raisingoo Low-Roller

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    If you are truly a VP virgin, then you should learn the following:

    * By Nevada law, all video poker machines must post "pay tables." Usually they are at the top of the machine's video display for single-line games. For some multi-line games with fancy software, you can go into a submenu to see this. But, again, legally they must tell you what they pay for, say, a full house, or a straight.

    * Most (but not all) paytables can be determined if they are "good" or not by the terminology x/y, where x = full house credits, and y = straight credits. For example, 9/6 is good for the VP game Jacks or Better. But 6/5 is really bad.

    * Since all video poker machines use a 52 card deck (well, some games like joker poker may use a 53 card deck with a joker) *AND* you know the payouts already before you even play a single hand, there are ways to devise strategy to play the game. Remember, with video poker you are dealt 5 cards and you get to choose anywhere from 0 to 5 to hold. This is a critical step. To play the game correctly, you need to understand which of the 0 to 5 cards you want to hold to make it the best possible payout for you (usually, that means the best possible payout in the long-term every time you see that type of dealt hand).

    * Some people devote entire careers to mastering strategies for various games. Others may put in a few hours or so to learn the basics and practice just one game. Do what you want, but at least have a decent plan. You can't master all the games overnight, but try to at least understand mostly the game you are most likely to play. By "games" I mean that there are a variety of variants of video poker.

    * Guess what... unlike slots, which are mostly "dumb luck" and mindless, some video pokers players, with proper strategy, can find ways to either lose very, very, very little money in the medium-to-long term-- or even, with promotions and points and such-- find a way to mathematically eek out an edge.

    * There is actually math behind perfect VP strategies. It all depends on the type of game you are playing and the paytable. For example, 9/6 Jacks or Better is a game you might find at the quarter level downtown. With perfect strategy, that game pays out 99.54%. This is way better than slots, which may pay as low as 85%.

    * So, for example, if you play 1,000 hands in two hours at $1.25 a hand (5 credits at the quarter level) at 9/6 Jacks or Better and use perfect strategy, your theoretical loss is only $5.75. Yes, less than six dollars. Of course, you could be down a couple hundred, or you could be up a couple hundred... or you could hit a $1,000 royal and be up many hundred. However, the point is, over many thousands of hands, the house edge is very low (i.e. 100% - 99.54%) with this game.

    * You won't find any good games at all on The Strip at the quarter level. Sorry. Believe me, I've tried. The best you can do is 50 cent 9/6 Jacks or Better at Treasure Island. You'll have to jump up to the dollar level to find "full pay" machines, generally. A good site which will tell you where to find the "good" games-- and which casinos has what-- is http://www.vpfree2.com and I'd recommend going there highly.

    * Some people can play video poker and have no clue what they are doing. Except for dumb luck, this can cause their overall win/loss ratio to plummet. To perhaps levels even LOWER than slots. Therefore, you should at least study the game you are planning to play a little before you even invest any real money.

    * A good trainer is Video Poker for Winners http://www.videopokerforwinners.com/ and it costs $49.95-- however, you can download it for free and play it as a trial on your computer for up to 10 days.

    * There are many, many, many different types of video poker games. I only mentioned Jacks or Better because it's popular and possibly the easiest game to master, at least at the intermediate level. Other people like deuces wild. Some others like games like double bonus or double double bonus, but I'd advise against those later games until you become better. The reason why is that those are "high variance" games and you need a larger bankroll to overcome the swings between high hands, because they put a premium on high hands (such as 4 aces) and take away credits for more commonly given hands (like 2 pair).

    * The Wizard of Odds website (www.wizardofodds.com) is also a good resource and it will give you advice for various VP games, including Jacks or Better. In fact, it offers three different strategies for JoB: Simple (return of 99.46%), intermediate (return of 99.52%), and optimal (return of 99.54%).

    * Make sure you have enough of a bankroll for any game you wish to play, at any level. If you are playing quarters JoB, maybe $300 or $400 will last for, say, 6 or 8 hours with only a small "risk of ruin" (i.e. wiped out). Most importantly, you get a chance (albeit it a small one) for a $1,000 royal (that is, 4000 credits at quarters) each hand you play. But if you jump up to dollars ($5 per hand at max coins), you'll need 4x the bankroll of quarters. There are also $2/hand, $5/hand, $10/hand, and even higher denomination machines, but unless you have a very, very large bankroll and are also very skilled, I'd avoid those completely.

    * Keep in mind that getting a royal flush (4,000 credit payout on most machines when playing max coins, so $1,000 on quarters) is awesome... but in a game like Jacks or Better, it only mathematically happens once out of every 40,000 hands. And that's a mathematical mean. Some heavy players can go years. (Others get lucky and can get two in one day.) But it's very, very rare. Unfortunately, the "99.54%" accounts for you getting this at least once in a while. So, figure 500 hands an hour... This means, on average, you'll get a royal every 80 hours of play. Not sure how long you plan to play, but 80 hours of play is a long time.

    * My personal favorite place to play is Main Street Station, which has full pay 9/6 Jacks or Better at the quarter level... right at the bar... with free drinks while you are playing. And on top of that, every time you get four-of-a-kind (a quad) you will be given a scratch card. You scratch the card and you can win anywhere from $2 to $5,000. But almost always $2. The value of the scratch card puts the game at probably 100% if you play using any sort of intermediate or better strategy.

    * If you can't find 9/6 Jacks or Better, close games are 8/5 Bonus Poker (99.17%) and 9/6 Bonus Poker Deluxe (99.64%), and the strategies for these are similar. You can find these games at some other places, too, but they are slighty more volatile-- i.e. you need big hands at least every now and then to stay afloat-- and you will need a bigger bankroll.

    * I was a 90% slots player for years and years, but video poker has grown on me, and now I probably play VP 75% of the time. It's really better for the wallet, usually, as long as you can at least think the hands out.

    * Don't be afraid to print things out, or write things down, to help you at the machines. You won't get in "trouble" for this. A printout of the perfect strategy for the game you wish to play can always help you, not hinder you.

    Good luck and happy VP playing.
     
  5. TIMSPEED

    TIMSPEED !địt mẹ!

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    1. WizardOfOdds.com
    2. Head to a Boyd Property
    3. Play 9/6 Jacks-or-Better; or 8/5 Bonus Poker
    4. To sufficiently play at the 25c level, I'd recommend a bankroll of $500.
     
    Palace Tower Suite!
  6. raisingoo

    raisingoo Low-Roller

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    edit

    edit: I noticed you are staying at Planet Hollywood.

    While my comments about going downtown still stand (believe me, downtown is usually much better on the wallet and has higher payouts than The Strip), if you want to find full pay video poker within semi-easy distance at the quarter level, here are some options:

    1) I forgot that New York, New York actually does have a couple banks of 9/6 quarter Jacks or Better machines. They're probably the last on The Strip that do. However, they accrue no points at all (can't use a players club card). They are located near the check-in (reception) desk.

    2) If you find yourself at or near Ballys, consider walking 3 blocks "behind" Ballys to Ellis Island, where there is also 9/6 jacks or better. Sign up for the players club card to get discounts on food, too-- it's very inexpensive there. And they brew their own beers, too.

    Hope this helps.
     
  7. jackincols

    jackincols Guest

    Starting out as a "virgin VP player", you've got one part already correct as a starting point ("Starting with .25 x 5 credits game.")

    And if you can't remember everything raisingoo said, just practice Jacks or Better before you go out and you'll be fine.

    Don't vary from Jacks or Better or 25 cents x's 5 your first time out. Even Jean Scott had to start somewhere and when she first played, and she was clueless as well until she started reading up on VP.
     
  8. philculp

    philculp Tourist

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    I was in the same boat as you! Never really tried it because I didn't know proper strategy, but got curious and researched using the sites listed above.

    I downloaded the game Video Poker by Robert Suh on my iphone and it has a "teacher" mode. It plays just like a casino and uses a 9/6 payout, but it will alert you if you made the wrong hold (based on mathematical probability). LOL, I was making the wrong move 1 out of every 5-6 times when I first started and now I'm going about 50-75 hands without being corrected. It's a free app, I bought a $5 upgrade once to get more teacher hands when I ran out. Haven't hit a Royal yet, but I consider it lucky because it means I'm due this weekend when I go. :poker:
     
  9. raisingoo

    raisingoo Low-Roller

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    oh, and one more thing...

    Oh, and one more thing... sorry to flood the post with 3 messages, but...

    ...you may ask, "why play the game with the best paytables?" and the answer "well, you get higher payouts!" is obvious, but consider this...

    You can find 6/5 Jacks or Better at the quarter level on the Strip. You may be tempted to play these machines at your home hotel-casino, or those within walking distance, because it's convenient. And the casinos "want" you to do this. But, it's really bad to do this.

    Consider a 6 (times 5 = 30) credit payout for a full house via a 9 (times 5 = 45) credit. The difference is 3 credits, times 5 = 15. 15 credits at the quarter level is $3.75. You will get full houses during any playing session of reasonable length, and you are just throwing away this money if you play the bad machines.

    A straight is even more common and sacrificing even one credit (5 at max coins) also adds up.

    Believe it or not, if you play for any reasonable length of time, it might even be cheaper to pay for a cab to downtown to play the "better" machines. (Though a bus is more economical.)

    So, don't play any "short pay" machines, if you can get away with it. It's just not worth it.

    Also, you are making the best choice by playing max coins (5 credits) each and every time. This gives you a shot at the full pay royal. If you can't afford $1.25/hand, I'd advise dropping down to nickels, and playing 5 credits nickels (25 cents per hand). Finding full pay nickel machines is even more difficult, but some places do actually have them (Four Queens, for example). Play only what you can afford. You may be tempted to play a short session at, say, $5 video poker-- $25/hand-- but by doing this, you are truly "gambling." :)

    Happy playing.
     
  10. 3544quebec

    3544quebec Low-Roller

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    Sorry if I am diverting the thread with my question

    As an alien if I get a Royal with a payout of $1200, a US casino deducts 30% (plus state taxes in some locations) so playing anything above a 25c machine at max credits (paying $1000) will reduce my long term return by 0.6% if my math is correct - I'd appreciate someone checking my calculations:

    Amount bet to get a Royal = 5 x 40000 x $y where $y is the machine denomination

    Tax withheld = 4000 x $y x 30%

    % long term return donated to US Government = 4000 x $y x 30% / 5 x 40000 x $y = 0.6%

    So if my options are realistically limited to the following by my bankroll/location

    98.45% JoB: $1, $2
    98.01% BP: 25¢, 50¢, $1

    then the 25c 98.01% BP would be my least worse option?
     
  11. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    Good post, but I made one big correction to it. The only non-wild game that usually changes straight payouts is "Double Bonus" (which you should look for 5 for 1 on a straight). Otherwise all other non-wild games typically pay 4 for 1 on a straight.

    And like you say, it's probably best that she plays at places that offer 9/6 JoB (NYNY, Ellis Island, Gold Coast (w/Super Times Pay), but PH at least has 7/5 Bonus with STP for as cheap as nickels. I can't speak on how good the comps those machines give off. If OP is mostly a slot player, I would try to concentrate slots at PH and video poker at better paying places.

    OP this site will help you find better paying games: You'll typically be wanting to look for 99.54% JoB or 99.17% BP.

    http://www.vpfree2.com/casinos/by-region/las-vegas.html

    If you cannot count the rest of your gambling losses (keep win/loss records for the trip) against the Royal for the trip (I don't know US tax law for gambling deductions by foreigners), then yes, it might be better for you to play 7/5 Bonus (98.01%) at the quarter level. And at most CET properties (my guess of where you might be playing), 7/5 Bonus exists with Super Times Pay at the quarter level (98.29% w/STP). The probability hitting a tax form in this case is 15 times less when playing 1 line (the unit will be a 3/5/10 play though, but you can max bet with any number of lines) and about 7 times less likely with multi-lines (dealt royal or royal with a multiplier would give you a tax form). So the overall return with STP will still be higher than normal 7/5 Bonus as long as you stay at the quarter level, and much more fun, imo.
     
  12. Happygirl21

    Happygirl21 Low-Roller

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    Raisingoo,
    Wow I can not thank you enough for your in depth reply! I really appreciate it!!! I was planning on going DT anyway (Neon BY) so I will scout around down there. Being that I am so unfamiliar with VP I will keep my wager at .25/5. I know someone suggested a 500. bank-roll but honestly I will probably just start with 100. (Use the rest for what I know, BJ)

    I will definitely do a tr when I get back, who knows may have a serious run of beginners luck.

    Again thanks to you and the others:beer:
     
    AC, it's no LV but better than nothing.
    In the planning phase.
  13. 3544quebec

    3544quebec Low-Roller

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    Thanks tringlomane, for the added value response (every 0.28% counts). I will search out the STPs as your sleuthing was correct and it is CET I am limited to. I suppose if playing multiple lines I could grudgingly accept a dealt Royal or royal with multiplier regardless of the tax withheld :licklips:
     
  14. bclub

    bclub Tourist

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  15. DonD

    DonD Super Moderator

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    The rules about the tax witholdings and paperwork need to be revamped. I believe that the numbers they use were put there in the 70s. It costs the casinos and racetracks time and money. It also costs the players too.
     
  16. jackincols

    jackincols Guest

    ".....who knows may have a serious run of beginners luck."
    I'm a firm believer in beginner's luck. Seen it happen many times. Good luck at VP.
     
  17. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    The way I am reading it, I'd avoid above quarter video poker slash slots that would have a reasonable chance to produce tax forms until it actually becomes easy for foreigners to write off losses like US citizens can. Just because an appeals court sided appropriately on this doesn't mean the status quo of withholding 30% will change anytime soon.
     
  18. bclub

    bclub Tourist

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    http://www.vpfree2.com/casino/luxor

    Says here that there's 9/5 quarter machines. I'll be there in 2 weeks, we'll see if they're still there....
     
  19. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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  20. 3544quebec

    3544quebec Low-Roller

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