Deuces Wild Video Poker Tips Most Players Don’t Know

Casino Video Poker Machine, Deuces Wild Video Poker Game Screen
Ask any experienced video poker about Deuces Wild and you’ll likely see their eyes light up. That twinkle is tied to Deuces Wild’s status as one of the best bets a casino gambler will ever find. Of course, that assumes that the pay table is configured correctly.

I’ll get into the nitty gritty of pay table comparison down below. For now, just know that a full pay Deuces Wild machine offers basic strategy players a 100.76% payback percentage.

No need to adjust your screen either. Skilled players can really reap a long-term advantage over the house playing Deuces Wild.

We will break down everything you need to know about playing Deuces Wild at the best real money online casinos right here.

1 – Mastering Deuces Wild Basic Strategy Really Is Easier Than You’d Imagine

You can call it the Rosetta Stone, Holy Grail, or Bible of online video poker, but basic strategy really is vital to mastering video poker.

Every variant of video poker out there has been broken down by statistical analysis to arrive at the game’s basic strategy. The basic strategy chart provides a key to making the most mathematically profitable discard/draw decision given every possible five-card starting hand.

In other words, no matter what the machine’s random number generator (RNG) deals your way, basic strategy will help.

Let’s say you’ve been dealt something like the 2d-2h-Ad-Ah-Kh, giving you two main hands or draws to work with.

You could hold the deuces with the two aces to make a pat four of a kind. This is good for a guaranteed five-coin payout and a one-card draw at five of a kind and 15 coins.

Or you could hold the deuces with the Ah and Kh to give yourself a four-card royal flush draw. In this case, you aren’t guaranteed to win anything. But if you land another deuce, or the Qh, Jh, or 10h, you’ll complete a wild royal flush for 25 coins.

Deciding between close calls like this is what strategic thinking in video poker is all about. The charts below will help you make the right call more often.

Three Deuces

1 Royal flush Hold pat hand
2 Straight flush Hold pat hand
3 Four-card royal flush draw Draw one
4 Four-card straight flush draw Draw one
5 Three of a kind, straight, or flush Hold pat hand
6 Three deuces only Draw two

Two Deuces

1 Pat four of a kind or better Hold pat hand
2 Four-card royal flush draw Draw one
3 Four-card straight flush draw Draw one
4 Three of a kind, straight, or flush Hold pat hand
5 Two deuces only Draw three

One Deuce

1 Any pat four of a kind or better Hold pat hand
2 Four-card royal flush draw Draw one
3 Full house Hold pat hand
4 Four cards to straight flush Draw one
5 Three of a kind, straight, or flush Hold pat hand
6 Four-card straight flush draw Draw one
7 Three-card straight royal flush draw Draw two
8 Three-card straight flush draw Draw two
9 One deuce only Draw four

No Deuces

1 Royal flush Hold pat hand
2 Four-card royal flush draw Draw one
3 Three of a kind through straight flush Hold pat hand
4 Four-card straight flush draw Draw one
5 Three-card royal flush draw Draw two
6 One pair Draw three
7 Four-card flush draw Draw one
8 Four-card open-ended straight draw Draw one
9 Three-card straight flush draw Draw two
10 Four-card inside straight draw Draw one
11 Two cards to a royal flush; Q-J high Draw three

To use this chart effectively, simply assess your “deuce count” and use that particular subsection. Then, scan your five-card starting to see which hand(s) and draw(s) you currently hold. Finally, choose the option which ranks highest on the list to ensure you’re always playing perfectly.

2 – The Full Pay Machines Create an Edge for the Player

Most video poker players know that using basic strategy correctly in Deuces Wild can create a rare player edge.

But what they don’t know is that this player advantage of 0.76% over the house can only be attained using a specific pay table setup. When you play Jacks or Better, the “full pay” table uses a 9/6 alignment for full houses and flushes, respectively.

And in Deuces Wild, you’re looking for the following 15/9/5/3 setup to score full pay odds:

Deuces Wild Full Pay Table (by Coins Wagered)

FULL PAY 15/9/5/3 1 Coin 2 Coins 3 Coins 4 Coins 5 Coins
Natural royal flush 300 600 900 1,200 4,000
Four deuces 200 400 600 800 1,000
Wild royal flush 25 50 75 100 125
Five of a kind 15 30 45 60 75
Straight flush 9 18 27 36 45
Four of a kind 5 10 15 20 25
Full House 3 6 9 12 15
Flush 2 4 6 8 10
Straight 2 4 6 8 10
Three of a kind 1 2 3 4 5
Payback Percentage 99.67% 99.67% 99.67% 99.67% 100.76%

Be sure to bet the maximum of five coins per hand, though. Wagers of one to four coins don’t count for the jackpot payout of 4,000 coins on a natural Royal Flush.

Thus, betting anything less than the max reduces your payback rate to 99.67%. This results in an edge of 0.33% for the house.

3 – Adjustments to Full Pay Table Turn Deuces Wild Gold Mine Into a Landmine

At this point, you’re probably wondering why skilled players haven’t skinned casinos for all they’re worth. Why isn’t everyone grinding full play Deuces Wild while applying basic strategy.

That’s a great question. The answer lies in the casinos’ ability to adjust any machine’s pay table as they see fit.

Jacks or Better enthusiasts know to avoid inferior 9/5 or 8/6 pay tables. Similarly, diehard Deuces Wild fans have learned to avoid the pay tables below like the plague:

Deuces Wild Inferior Pay Table Adjustments

PAY TABLE 15/11/4/4 16/9/4/4 20/12 15/9/4/4 20/15/9/4/4
Natural royal flush 800 800 800 800 800
Four deuces 200 200 200 200 200
Wild royal flush 25 25 20 25 20
Five of a kind 15 16 12 15 15
Straight flush 11 9 9 9 9
Four of a kind 4 4 5 4 4
Full house 4 4 3 4 4
Flush 3 3 2 3 3
Straight 2 2 2 2 2
Three of a kind 1 1 1 1 1
Payback Percentage 99.96% 99.67% 98.94% 98.92% 97.97%

As you can see, anything less than the 15/9/5/3 full pay alignment creates a big hit to your payback percentage.

How big of a hit all depends on the pay table’s exact configuration, so steer clear of the substandard setups shown here:

Deuces Wild Pay Table Comparison

25/15/11/4/4/3 99.96%
25/16/10/4/4/3 99.73%
25/15/9/4/4/3 98.91%
20/12/10/4/4/3 97.58%
20/12/9/4/4/3 97.06%
25/16/13/4/3/2 96.77%
20/10/8/4/4/3 95.96%
25/15/10/4/3/2 94.82%

Casinos nowadays spread Deuces Wild only rarely, and for higher stakes. But you can still find machines out there when you know where to look.

And thanks to the fine folks at vpFREE2, you’ll know exactly where to look after consulting their searchable video poker machine placement database.

4 – Not So Ugly Ducks Is a Great Game If Full Pay Machines Aren’t Available

Full pay 15/9/5/3 machines are increasingly rare. But, you’ll still find plenty of Deuces Wild games using a modified 16/10/4/4 setup.

Up Close Buttons on Video Poker Machine

Affectionately known as “Not So Ugly Ducks” (NSUD) within video poker circles, this form of Deuces Wild still offers players a 99.73% payback rate. That’s no player edge, but it can still give players great odds. Playing Not So Ugly Ducks according to basic strategy only gives the casino a slight 0.27% edge.

That’s twice as good as the best basic strategy blackjack experts have. So, when in doubt, look for Not So Ugly Ducks to get your Deuces Wild fix.

5 – Online Casinos Offer Significant Six-Figure Scores on the Progressive Jackpot

While players on other software platforms are chasing 4,000-coin jackpots for landing the elusive royal flush, fans of Microgaming online casinos can win truly life-changing money.

Take the popular Microgaming-based site Casumo Casino for example. Players at this casino can compete for a progressive jackpot worth more than $100,000.

You’ll need to hit a natural royal flush in all diamonds, which is obviously a huge long shot. But when the cards cooperate, you can pay off your mortgage, travel the world, or enjoy the six-figure windfall however you see fit.


Many video poker fans have fallen in love with Deuces Wild over the years. The tips and tricks above will help you master this awesome casino game in no time. Mastering the basic strategy outlined above will help you win more often.

To learn more about video poker, check out our other casino blogs.

Posted in: StrategyVideo Poker

Most Recent

See all recent
Play Space XY Game at Online Casinos & Win Real Money
BY Nick Pappas | October 5, 2023

Space XY isn’t your run-of-the-mill game that you can play at any online casino. It’s pretty unique in terms of the mechanics and how the gameplay works. Space XY also...

read more
DuckyLuck Online Casino Slots List on the Left and Wrath of Medusa Slots Game on the Right
DuckyLuck Wrath of Medusa No Deposit Bonus & Other Offers
BY Nick Pappas | October 3, 2023

The popular DuckyLuck no deposit bonus for Wrath of Medusa was only available when the site launched in 2020. The good news, however, is that you can claim similar bonuses...

read more
Online Slot Game son the Left and Person Playing Poker on a Laptop on the Right and the LuckyLand Logo in the Center
The Best Slots Like LuckyLand — Top iGaming Sister Sites
BY Nick Pappas | September 22, 2023

There are many online slots like LuckyLand that you can play. In fact, the best real money online casinos carry an extensive collection of slot titles that are equally fun...

read more