Choosing the Best Video Poker Game for You

If you ask Video Poker players “what is the best video poker to play?” don’t expect an answer before they ask you some questions. It’s not a black & white answer – there’s a lot of grey area in consideration. That’s why today we introduce Choosing the Best Video Poker Game for You. Some considerations include:

  • What’s your bankroll?
  • Have you played before or are you a newbie?
  • Do you prefer volatile games (bigger payout possibilities with an expected quicker loss in bankroll) or do you prefer to play longer with less volatility?
  • Are you interested to learn the correct strategy to maximize your time and reduce the house advantage or do you just want to play for fun and figure it out as you go?

So Many Games to Choose From. Each game has different pay tables, denominations and can be played on a single line or multiple lines. Let’s use Jacks or Better as our base game for this post.

The deal – A FEW BASICS

The solitary play of a video poker player.

If you are new to video poker, the first thing you should understand that while it uses poker card rankings for the basis of pay out, that’s really where the comparison ends. You can’t bluff the machine or figure out OPTIMAL STRATEGY by yourself.

So, how does this game work?  A Random Number Generator (RNG) deals 5 cards from a 52 card deck. (Some games use more, such as Joker Poker). The player chooses the cards to keep, presses draw to get replacement cards for those discarded to make the second and last 5 card hand which decides the payout. Most VP machines deal the draw cards from the continuous RNG.

I refer to 888Casino concerning three major differences from slots, real poker and video poker:

  1. Unlike slot players, video poker players have a say in the outcome of the game.
  2. Because the player has a choice in video poker play, it is possible to play the hands in a way that is most beneficial to the player.
  3. Only a mathematically derived video poker playing strategy will get you the most from your video poker play.

Considering Denomination & bankroll

This is where your bankroll comes into play. Remember, a bankroll is a totally separate amount of money dedicated to casino gaming – not to the money to pay bills, or even the amount in your pocket. It’s a totally separate amount!

.You can play single line games at nickel (hard to find outside of Nevada), quarter, fifty cents, $1, $2, $5, $10, $25 and even $100 machines.  Keep in mind that this depends on your bankroll and, in this player’s opinion, playing max bet of five coins. For more info on playing Max Bet, click on “Video Poker &  Max Bet.”

If you are interested in multi-line games, such Triple Play, Five Play, Ten Play, Twenty-five Play, Fifty Play or One Hundred Play, you may want to drop down from quarters to nickels or even pennies, depending on the number of lines.

Super Times Pay Video Poker

Super Times Pay Is an example of Multi-Line Video Poker

So, you probably want to know how much is needed to give you the best chance of a winning play.

According to 888Casino, “The first rule of thumb most players hear when it comes to video poker is that for the long term you need about three to four times the amount won when you hit a royal flush on your game and denomination of choice. Specifically, if you are planning to play a 25 cent Jacks or Better game (standard game, not a progressive) where the royal flush pays 4,000 credits (which comes to $1,000), you need three to four times that amount or $3,000 to $4,000 dollars………If, instead you plan on playing a standard dollar Jacks or Better game where the jackpot once again is 4,000 credits, you will need $12,000 to $16,000 since the dollar amount of the royal flush is now $4,000.”

Please note that this for standard JOB. The higher the volatility (Bonus Poker, Double Bonus & Double Double Bonus as examples), the higher your bankroll should be.

The Draw

A very simple rule when looking for the best video poker game for your play is to look at the full house/flush payouts. Those two numbers with the specific game will usually determine the expected payout %.  Another part of the payout structure to look at is the pay for four-of-the-kinds (quads). You will find that the higher the quad payout is, the more volatile the game can be, and so, a larger bankroll is needed.

Recreational gambling is about being prepared and having fun. Video poker can be a grind, so if it’s not fun, move on to something else. But the more prepared you are, the more fun it will be.

Related articles:

Video Poker Considerations for Lower Pay Tables – Jerry “Stickman” Stitch

Video Poker Players – Don’t Rush the Royal Flush

Slot Machine & VP Etiquette – Final Part

Binbin – Remember, “When gambling, embrace the math, not the myth”

 

MGM Springfield Trip Report – Tier Credit Multiplier, Dr. Suess & The Fort

A recent visit to MGM Springfield inspired this post – MGM Springfield Trip Report – Tier Credit Multiplier, Dr. Suess & The Fort. The staff at NETimeGambling.com is always looking forward to those status multiplier days. This past Tuesday we visited MGM Springfield to take advantage of their Tier Credit Multiplier on Tuesdays. Here are the multipliers available:

  • Platinum & NOIR – Earn 5X Tier Credit Multiplier
  • Gold – Earn 4X Tier Credit Multiplier
  • Pearl – Earn 3X Tier Credit Multiplier
  • Sapphire – Earn 2X Tier Credit Multiplier

It’s all day long.  If you take part in this promotion, swipe your card and activate the promo first.  Swiping your players card at any MLife kiosk must be done before you start playing.

Tier Credit Multiplier

The play was a slow burn. Bonuses hit here and there, but we were never really up.  Bert & I played slots mostly to get the biggest bang for the buck for status points. Some of our better results were found on the following machines:

  • Lord of the Rings – Rule Them All by IGT – (suggestion, play at least $1.50 to get all lines and all possible bonuses)
  • Lucky Honeycomb Twin Fever by Konami
  • Buffalo Grand by Aristocrat
  • Jumping Jalepenos (also Konami)

Inside MGM casino

This visit was not a success financially, but for four hours we raised our status points substantially, which was our goal for the day.

But, MGM still needs to improve dining. As a matter of fact, we like TAP, and Cal Mare, but I need more than the same thing over and over.  In addition, South Market service is a hit or miss, no matter how many people are in line. Furthermore, the possibilities are overpriced, especially at the Hearth Grill. South Market is advertised as 24 hours, but look at the website and the none of the restaurant hours are listed as 24 hrs. on the website.

Casino News and amenities 

The casino seems slightly more spacious. It feeling like a few slots were taken out to accommodate the electronic roulette and craps.

Unfortunately, no report on table games this time due to only slot play. In addition, no pics or coverage on either the new “Island Bar” or the VIP Lounge where Starbucks used to be.  Both are closed off.

Drink service is much improved.  We had very little wait between roving drink staff.  I noticed a new and interesting thing happening at Center Bar.  Bartenders are interested trying their mixology talents on you.  For this reason, try asking for something different and you may be surprised at the interesting drink you received.  I saw some “experiments” that looked quite good and were received well by other patrons.  Socializing is still a good reason to hang out at the bar.  However, the video poker (still same terrible pay tables) certainly isn’t. Speaking of which……

Double Bonus Video Poker

BTW, 9/6 Double Bonus is the only playable video poker, quarter denomination, at center bar. Playing this game requires you understand that:

  1. 10/6 is Full Pay, so with perfect strategy, you’re still playing at 98% to start with.
  2. Double Bonus perfect play is the most difficult strategy to learn for perfect play of all the Jacks Or Better Bonus games. Most players concentrate on JOB, Bonus Poker, Double Double Bonus,  and Deuces variations, which have horrible pay tables at the quarter denomination at MGMS.
  3. Playing less than perfect play, or trying other game strategy (such as JOB or DDB) will further decrease you EV (expected value).  At this point, playing a $1 or higher slot machine may be better for points accrued, status level, and your ADT (Average Daily Theoretical).

Time to Visit Dr. Suess

We thought we would make a day of it.  Spontaneity sometimes reaps disappointing results. We arrived at the Dr. Seuss Museum at 4:45PM. It closed at 5:00, weekdays. Rule #1, “google” when your destination is open.  However, we were able to enjoy the garden outside and return another time. Here are pics of the garden:

From right to left – The Cat in the Hat, Dr. Seuss, and Binbin

The Dr. Seuss Museum Entrance

Time to Eat

Inside, behind the hostess station at “The Fort”

Since we have eaten at TAP, Cal Mare and Red Rose Pizza many times, I thought I would bring my wife to a locals dining staple. Thanks to Chris DiMauro, from Art In The Game, for bringing me one time. The Student Prince and Fort Restaurant is its name.  In Springfield, it’s just referred to as “The Fort.”  This establishment’s history in referred to in the post below.

Related Post – Springfield’s Dining Destination Since 1935

The inside is “historic eye candy” meets “German Pub.”  Steins adorn shelves everywhere you look. The benches, beer, and food just screams “Your gonna like this place!”  We shared the best fried pork belly we ever tasted, more meat than usual with a pork belly.  Then we took turns with the “Wurstplate.” It consisted of delicious bratwurst, knockwurst and boar/cranberry sausages. The sides of sweet & sour red cabbage, and the sauerkraut brought me back my visit to Germany, only the Fort’s might have been better!  Topped off with a Spaten Franziskaner Hefe-Weissbier and it was the perfect German dining we’ve experienced in a very long time.

Make this a dining destination in Springfield. They have complimentary parking if you’re driving. (but tip these guys anyway).

Do not walk from MGMS at night. It’s not that close and not that safe at night. I suggest you take a from MGM.

Conclusion

It’s all good.  A Great day of gambling & status harvesting at MGM Springfield, fun at the Dr. Seuss Museum (to be continued) and a fabulous ding experience. I’d say it was a Win-Win day!

NETG Related Post – MGM Springfield – Looking Back Three Years Ago

Binbin & Bert

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7 Crucial Habits for Slot, Keno and VP Players

senior-playing-slotsIf you love to play slots at your casino of choice, then you love the excitement that precedes that first pull. Subsequently, if you If you love to play electronic casino games, 7 Crucial Habits for Slot, Keno and VP Players is  what you need. You rush to it like a long lost friend. But in the rush to play, many players forget to be mindful of certain important events that precede that play – there are things you need to check before that first push of the button. So many slot players get caught up in the excitement of playing, the anticipation of winning or even the disappointment of a losing session, that they forget the following checklist before they play. Forgetting any one of the following items could cost you money and/or comps. Remember this Pre-Play Checklist

1. Get a Rewards Card

MLife Rewards Club of MGM

MLife Rewards Club of MGM

It’s free. It reduces the casino edge by earning comps on dining, shows, and giveaways. That free hotel room might not feel free with losses, but if you’re going to play, get something for it, no matter how little you may play. And, always get two cards. How many times do you lose your card or forget it in a machine? Lots! Before you regret sitting at that favorite machine and finding your card is missing, always ask for more than one card at the rewards desk.

2. Check the Game Denomination

Have you ever played a penny slot machine, only to realize it was a dollar, not a penny? It happens when slot and video poker players mistake the basic denomination of the machine. Be sure you’re spending the correct amount you intend for your bankroll.  Some machines have denomination options, like nickel, quarter, or dollar video poker.  Be careful on these machines after you have chosen which game to play – you still may have to check and choose the correct denomination for your play.

3. Check Your Players Card

Being More Careful with your Players Card is just one of the things to be careful with in the casino

If I only had a dollar for every time I made a player aware that their players card needed to be re-inserted, I could double my bankroll. Before you play, insert your card and wait to see that it registers your name. If it starts blinking, take it out completely and try it again. Some casinos, like Mohegan Sun, only process one event at a time.  If you love to put in your money or TITO at the same time as the card, the card usually doesn’t register. Take your time and insert one, then the other.

By the way, don’t be a “conspiracy Charlie” (or Charlene) concerning what the card does. It is not connected to changes in denomination, it doesn’t change payoff percentage because “it knows you won” and it doesn’t hold back jackpots. Don’t play without your Card, it’s the only way you can earn comps these days with the new casino players clubs. Most casinos only comp you only according to the playing data registered by your card.

Related Post – Casino Players Club Cards – The Truth to Correct the Myths

4. Be Sure Your Money or TITO Ticket registers in the Machine

Ticket In, Ticket Out! TITO

Ticket In, Ticket Out! TITO

Sometimes in your rush, you have trouble with your money or your ticket. One trick is to use a machine next to you if you have trouble. Some slots just have trouble reading what you add. Use that machine to get a fresh TITO Ticket.

5. One Last Check BEFORE YOU PLAY

Money in, players card registering, the denomination is correct. Ready to go.

6. Leaving the Machine

Before you leave that machine, win or lose, follow these easy quick Habits for Leaving the Machine. This habit will stop leaving your players cards in the machine as well as your money.  Yes, it does happen!  And there are people in the casino watching for just that mistake.  It only takes a moment with you looking the other way to happen someone snatch your ticket without you noticing.  It happened to me one morning at Red Rock Resort in Las Vegas, it can happen to you, too.

7. When cashing out, get in the following habit

This is personal NETG part of 7 Crucial Habits:

  1. Push cash out button.
  2. Right hand takes card
  3. Left hand positioned at TITO dispenser.
  4. Check for both in hand before leaving.

Remember, CARD & TICKET, CARD & TICKET.

Make these 7 Crucial Habits for Slot, Keno and VP Players part of your every session practice.Now, go get that jackpot.

Binbin