Online video poker games to play for free
Among online casino games, video poker is not very popular, however this game has thousands of followers who prefer online video poker to the other games available.
If you like online poker and you want to practice and improve your strategy absolutely free, without risking your money, online video poker is made for you. Online video poker is based on the poker format known as 5 Card Stud. Free video poker allows you to play without downloading software and without registering, in the fastest and most comfortable way possible. Try playing for fun without risking your money, and improve your skills for when you decide to play for real money.
To play online video poker well you need to know its basic rules. The decisions you make in video poker greatly influence the outcome of the game. Perhaps this is one of the main differences between video poker and online video slot machines.
The origins of video poker
Like other casino games, the history of video poker is colorful and extensive. The game first emerged in the late 19th century. At that time, land-based casinos and other gambling venues were becoming increasingly popular. The Brooklyn-based Sittman and Pitt company developed an alternative to the slot machine: the poker machine. Instead of having three reels like the early slot machines, this one had five reels, and instead of symbols appearing on the reels it displayed playing cards, with ten different cards on each reel.
This configuration meant that the full deck of 52 cards was not used initially – the two missing cards were usually the jack of hearts and the 10 of spades. Because of this, you couldn’t get a royal flush with hearts or spades, so the chances of getting a royal flush were half of what they would have been if these two cards were in the game.
To play, money was inserted, a lever was pulled, and each drum spun before stopping on a particular card, with the five cards on the five drums together forming a poker hand. In 1901, Charles Fey developed a poker machine that had a “hold and respin” feature; it took off, and Sittman and Pitt soon released their version.
It wasn’t until 1970 that the first proper video poker machines hit the physical casino. These modern machines had screens instead of mechanical reels. Developed by a company called Dale Electronics, they were installed in several Las Vegas casinos. Gaming really took off in the late 1970s and early 1980s, when a company called SIRCOMA (which eventually became International Game Technology) began mass-producing video poker machines for casinos across the country.
Why has video poker become so popular?
The popularity of video poker today is undeniable. It is widely available in both land-based and online casinos with a plethora of exciting game variations on offer. There are a few aspects that have contributed to its popularity. One of the most obvious answers is that because it is essentially a themed slot it is relatively easy to play. You don’t necessarily have to understand poker to enjoy it, although understanding poker hands and their range will help you be more successful and potentially win more often.
The game has a great appeal with poker players as well and is sometimes a nice diversion from sitting at a poker table. This game is an obvious choice for anyone who enjoys playing poker, as you already understand poker hands and making decisions about which cards to keep and which to throw away is reasonably straightforward.
Another important reason for the rise in popularity of video poker is that it has a very low edge. In fact, there are very few games in the casino that have a higher return to player (RTP) percentage than video poker. When played correctly, it is possible to minimize the house edge to almost zero, and in fact there are machines in certain game variations that can even provide a minus house edge when played correctly.
How to Play Video Poker and the Basic Rules of the Game
To play a video poker game, you must first select the coin value and the number of coins to bet as you would on any other standard slot machine. If you are playing a progressive jackpot slot, you will have to bet the maximum number of coins to have a chance of winning the jackpot. If you are on a tight budget and want it to go further, it is advised to bet the minimum coin value and the maximum number of coins.
Once you have placed your bet, click or tap to spin the five reels. Each one will stop and reveal a card. You will end up with a row of five cards, which is your poker hand. For each card, you can choose to keep it or replace it with another randomly determined card. When you have selected the cards you wish to keep, press the start button again to spin the discarded reels. This will finally reveal your final hand.
The value of your hand is determined according to the poker hand values and any payout is made as shown in the payout table accordingly. When it comes to betting in video poker, you typically choose between one and five coins to wager. The higher your bet, the more chances you have of winning. To win the highest possible payout in the game, you have to get a royal flush (the best poker hand) with a five-coin bet. Below is an example of a standard paytable for video poker, although some versions of the game may have slightly different payout rates.