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Video Poker VP Strategy Question

Discussion in 'Video Poker' started by Chuck2009x, Nov 23, 2013.

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  1. Chuck2009x

    Chuck2009x VIP Whale

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    OK, I don't play a lot of VP because the fact is I don't like to do much thinking when I'm gambling. And it can seem boring compared to craps or a slot machine that has a reacharound bonus.

    But I want to give it more of a shot, without compromising my ability to not think. :evillaugh

    So it seems to me like if you can memorize just the 3 or 4 or 5 most frequently-occurring "cardinal rules" for each type of game, like "always hold a high pair" you're pretty much set, as long as you're not worrying about squeezing out every last 0.01% of EV.

    Do you agree? Or do you know every last move down to the 45th on the list?

    If I'm basically right, what are the simply stated cardinal rules for JOB, Boner Deluxe, and DDB?
     
  2. lvmb

    lvmb Low-Roller

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    Good question, but I think it hits the too hard tray. I'm not much of a VP player so I can't help much.

    The only simplified VP strategy I've seen was for JOB. It's on the Wizard of Odds website. It causes an increase in house edge of <1% I think.

    I get the feeling that most posters on VP here learn the correct strategy for each variant though.
    The other problem with simplifying the strategies is knowing how 'bad' each change is with respect to EV.

    Hopefully someone else can chip in to help.
     
  3. ABQJeff

    ABQJeff Low-Roller

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    Some of this depends on what you consider your session time. The longer the timed played, the more important proper strategy is. My advice is to become proficient in one game type. I can play JOB or straight up bonus poker at an optimal level and that is it. And that is all I play.
    Wizard of Odds is a good resource. http://wizardofodds.com/games/video-poker/ Or download Win Poker http://www.bobdancer.com/shopping_items/winpoker_version_6.0.html and practice. It all depends on how serious you are.
     
  4. Guy

    Guy Low-Roller

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    Using the Wizards of Odds practice game (with warnings turned on) makes it quick and easy to learn the strategy for JoB as it is pretty obvious what to hold.
     
  5. Chuck2009x

    Chuck2009x VIP Whale

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    Yeah, I agree that a trainer or the app on Wizard of Odds is pretty good for warning you off a play that's based on an "incorrect instinct".
     
  6. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    Actually his "simple strategy" only lowers the return 0.08%.
    http://wizardofodds.com/games/video-poker/strategy/jacks-or-better/9-6/simple/

    I would modify this ever so slightly though just adding one more step.

    Strategy for JoB or Bonus Poker:

    Four of a kind, straight flush, royal flush
    4 to a royal flush
    Three of a kind, straight, flush, full house
    4 to a straight flush
    Two pair
    High pair
    3 to a royal flush
    4 to a flush
    Low pair
    4 to an outside straight
    2 suited high cards
    4 to inside straight w/3+ high cards
    3 to a straight flush
    2 unsuited high cards (if more than 2 then pick the lowest 2)
    Suited 10/J, 10/Q, or 10/K
    One high card
    Discard everything

    Now for Boner Deluxe and DDB, we slightly tweak the rule added about inside straights. Plus add another one. For DDB, also follow what is added in brackets.

    Strategy for Boner Deluxe/DDB [do in DDB only]

    Four of a kind, straight flush, royal flush
    4 to a royal flush
    Three of a kind, straight, flush, full house [break Aces full]
    4 to a straight flush
    Two pair [break Aces up]
    High pair
    3 to a royal flush
    4 to a flush
    Low pair
    4 to an outside straight
    2 suited high cards
    4 to inside straight w/2+ high cards
    3 to a straight flush
    2 unsuited high cards (if more than 2 then pick the lowest 2) [hold Ace only]
    Suited 10/J, 10/Q, or 10/K
    One high card
    4 to inside straight w/no high cards
    Discard everything

    The weakest rule on these lists is the 3 to the straight flush rule I think. 3 to a straight flush with no high cards and two gaps (e.g. 468 or 589) is worse than a single high card.

    Overall though these are solid enough strategies to use while getting comped drinks at the bar. :drunk:
     
  7. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    I am quite proficient at DDB & JOB. Those are the only two games I play and study. If I'm taking a real beating at DDB, I'll switch to JOB for a while.

    While the swings in DDB can be huge, I enjoy the 4oak thrill.

    I've never found the need to learn strategy for every VP game. Lets face it, I like my adult beverages :drunk: and I would like to think even when I'm playing 3 sheets to the wind, the correct play for those two games are almost automatic for me.

    That being said, we run into a lady at MSS who has been playing VP for decades and every once in a while, she'll pull out a strategy card for a certain hand.
     
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  8. DOUBLE B

    DOUBLE B Tourist

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    I am a avid VP player (DB). I practiced on Bob Dancers program(s) till I learned perfect strategy and for one game only-DB. As someone else posted after about 2-3 hrs of burbon and coke things start to run together. That's why I have a "cheat" card attached to my players card. When in doubt I refer to my "cheat" card and try my best to play perfect strategy. Knowing what I know I would not play any VP game without knowing best strategy...even knowing perfect strategy you will make mistakes (hit wrong hold button/ misread deal/too many drinks/etc) and add that to not always knowing the correct hold is asking for trouble....errrr sure to lose your money!!!.
     
  9. FloppedASet

    FloppedASet Tourist

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    Never really messed around with VP but really want to give it a goo this next trip i got comin up in a couple weeks.. So if i follow these guidelines i should have as fair of a shot as i can playing VP?
     
  10. FloppedASet

    FloppedASet Tourist

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    just knowing the real basic of vp would applying this game plan give me a decnt shot at a VP win?
     
  11. sfchris

    sfchris Low-Roller

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    Not knowing the full strategy won't likely affect your ability to win big, but it could cause your bankroll to fall faster than it should in between hits.

    For me, the two most unintuitive plays in VP are:

    1) In JOB and DDB: Low pair is better than a single jack or higher.
    2) In DDB: If you have an Ace and a Jack or better of a different suit, you only keep the Ace.
     
  12. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    Yes you'll have almost as good of a chance as someone who plays perfect.

    1) I have to nag my g/f about this one. She always notices when she misses a low pair. She likes to forget what she'll win with 2 pair, trips, or quads. Not holding the pair is a big error here.

    2) she remembers this more, but it is a minor error in DDB if you forget.
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2013
  13. 44inarow

    44inarow VIP Whale

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    Agreed completely on #1. And the thing is, not only is that unintuitive, but it's probably the single most common decision you'll have to make (keeping the pair of 7's and ditching the lone K), so as long as you remember that one, the rest of the rules make pretty decent sense.

    I think the other unintuitive one is "2 unsuited high cards (if more than 2 then pick the lowest 2)". When you get a J-K-A unsuited, for example, my first instinct before I started trying to learn the rules was to keep all three, but the right move is J-K (of course, if any two are suited, then keep those).
     
  14. Chuck2009x

    Chuck2009x VIP Whale

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    YES! This is the kind of stuff I'm looking for. The top few most common mistakes you're likely to make.
     
  15. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    #1 Wow, I don't understand keeping a low pair and tossing a facecard, is unintuitive in JOB or DDB.
    #2, ok, I'll agree in DDB it's a learning curve, but certainly the correct play to hold the Ace.
     
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  16. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    The Wizard of Odds has done this type of list for 9/6 JoB.

    http://wizardofodds.com/games/video-poker/strategy/jacks-or-better/9-6/intermediate/

    and 10/6 and 9/6 DDB.

    http://wizardofodds.com/games/video-poker/strategy/double-double-bonus/9-6/

    The list is pretty exhaustive, what I wrote earlier in this thread is easier, imo. :)

    The strategy is basic strategy for 10/6 DDB, but the only change that I see for 9/6 is that QJT suited > QQ or JJ.

    If you play any machine with a flush payout that is 5 for 1 though, high pair is always better than 3 to a Royal, and 3 to a Royal is always better than 4 to a flush.

    and 8/5 Bonus:

    http://wizardofodds.com/games/video-poker/strategy/bonus-poker/8-5/

    One strategy change for 6/5 Bonus: Break Aces full.

    Sorry, for Bonus Deluxe, he doesn't offer a list like this. Use my modified strategy.

    Also never break two pair that doesn't have Aces in it when playing DDB. In my experience, this seems to be the most common error among casual DDB players. They see that they have Kings, Queens, or Jacks, and think that it's worth going for 250 credits vs. 45/40/35 credits for a full house. It's not worth it, not even close.
     
  17. 44inarow

    44inarow VIP Whale

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    As to #1, it's because matching the face card will pay out 5 credits, whereas keeping the low pair can get you either a two-pair for 10 credits, or a 3OAK for 15 credits. Without fully getting into the math (which admittedly I've never really dived into myself), the expected payout when shooting for a two-pair or a 3OAK are better than matching a face card for a JOB pair. But the instinct for most people, knowing that the game itself is called "Jacks or Better", is probably to keep those high cards.
     
  18. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    Did you play 5 card draw at a card table before playing video poker?

    If you didn't, then I am impressed that you felt this was intuitive when you first played video poker. I don't expect it to be intuitive to some who are brand new to video poker. And when you began playing, I assume there was little if any information on how to play the game properly, right?

    I can't remember exactly what I did when I first started playing. I pretty sure I held low pairs though since "Wizard of Odds" and other VP pages were available to me at least. I remember looking up Caribbean Stud strategy and Three Card Poker strategy right when I turned 21, so I'm sure I looked at basic VP strategies too.
     
  19. sfchris

    sfchris Low-Roller

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    :beer:

    My friend who joined me in Vegas had never played VP before but ended up liking it. But he kept complaining bitterly about this low pair rule because he kept losing every time he did it. To him it was completely unintuitive.

    Finally I got tired of his complaining and said, "hey its called gambling- feel free to break the rules and gamble a little if you want".

    Of course, the kid had major beginners luck going for him in the end and hit a 4OAK despite only having a $50 bankroll.:thumbsup:
     
  20. M0rtyC

    M0rtyC Low-Roller

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    I would say to stick to JOB or BP if you are worried about thinking too much. Both games have much lower volitivity than DDB. (2/1 payoff on 2 pairs keeps you in the game for a long time)
    Once you get proficient at the former two you'll have an easier time "moving up".

    13 years later..... I know long term I might eek out a win but I just love the game and like the bankroll to last
     
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