Some video poker machines and some blackjack tables offer a return to player of over 99%. This makes these two games better than other casino games. But you have to learn the best strategy to achieve these results.
When you use strategy, you have to avoid making mistakes. That’s because when you make a mistake, it costs you money. And the best way to avoid making mistakes is to focus on one game rather than playing both or switching back and forth.
In order to pick the best game to focus on, you need to gather as many facts about each one as possible. You also need to learn about each of their advantages and disadvantages.
On this page, you’ll learn about five reasons why real money video poker games are a better option than blackjack games.
More Base Game Options
Every blackjack game is basically the same. A few rules vary from table to table, but there simply isn’t much in the way of variety. Video poker, on the other hand, offers many different base game variations.
I don’t know about you, but I get bored playing the exact same game in the exact same way over and over again. I like to have a little variety when I’m gambling. And a different video poker game is usually just a few feet away or a click away.
But when I move from one blackjack table to another, the same game is waiting for me. Even if I travel from one casino to another, all of the blackjack games are the same.
You can do some things to keep blackjack more interesting. The best way to add a challenge to the game is counting cards, but this isn’t easy to do. And it can also get you kicked out of the casino. Nobody gets kicked out of the casino for playing video poker.
You should try every different video poker base game variation you can find. This way, you can learn about them all and find the ones that you like the best. I’ve played all different types of video poker games and now only play three base games. But I’d never have found all three that I like if I hadn’t tried them all.
Gambling Strategy Is Easier
When you play video poker, you need to use strategy. If you don’t use video poker strategy, you’re losing too much money. The same is true when you play blackjack. The only way to fight the odds is to use strategy.
Some video poker games require more difficult techniques than others. If you’re looking for the easiest video poker strategies, look at Pick’em Poker and Jacks or Better. The strategy for Pick’em Poker can be memorized in a couple minutes. And the strategy for Jacks or Better can be memorized by playing online for free for a few hours.
You can always use a strategy card when you’re playing video poker, even if you don’t have the strategy memorized. The same is true for blackjack, but it’s more complicated than learning video poker strategy.
No Annoying Casino Gamblers
I prefer to gamble without a lot of noise and other players most of the time. A busy casino isn’t the best place to find peace and quiet. And a full blackjack table always seems to have at least one annoying player who either gives unwanted advice to everyone at the table or is always insulting the dealer.
When you sit down at a video poker machine, you don’t have to deal with other gamblers. You might have to learn how to ignore a chatty person at the next machine, but playing video poker is a solo adventure.
The best way to avoid annoying gamblers is to play online or on a mobile device. However, some gamblers enjoy the noise and atmosphere in a casino, but they don’t like being around annoying players. Video poker is a much better choice for these players than blackjack.
Lower Minimum Wager Amounts
When you walk into a casino and sit down at a blackjack table, the smallest wager you can make is probably going to be either $10 or $20. And most $10 tables now only pay 6:5 for a blackjack. I can rant for hours about how bad 6:5 tables are, but that’s a discussion for another article.
Where you need to be careful is how many hands you’re playing every hour. If you’re playing 60 blackjack hands every hour at $20 a hand, your total hourly risk is $1,200. If you’re playing 400 hands of video poker an hour at $1.25, your total risk is $500. But if you’re playing on a $1 machine and betting five coins, your hourly risk is $2,000.
The good news is that you control how many video poker hands you play on an hourly basis. I cover more about this in the next section.
If you play Deuces Wild video poker or Jacks or Better, and use good strategy with a good pay table, the return to player percentages are close to what you get playing blackjack using strategy with decent rules. In fact, these games are almost interchangeable from a return to play standpoint.
If you subtract the return to player percentage of a game from 100, then multiply the result times the amount of money you risk every hour, you can determine how much you can expect to lose.
What all of this means is that the amount you risk is directly related to how much you can expect to lose. Using a return to player of 99.5%, this means you can multiply .5%, or .005, times your total risk amount to get an expected loss.
Using the numbers I listed earlier in this section, here are your expected losses:
- $1,200 x .5% = $6.00
- $500 x .5% = $2.50
- $2,000 x .5% = $10.00
The difference isn’t huge every hour, but it adds up the longer you play. At 10 hours of play, you lose $60, $25, and $100 depending on how much you’re risking. This is why smaller minimum wagers available in video poker are so important.
You Control the Speed of the Game
The only control you have over the speed of a live blackjack game is if you leave the table. When you play live video poker, you can play as fast as you can hit the buttons, or as slow as you want.
You learned how the speed of the game combined with the amount of each wager directly influences how much you lose in the last section. You’re always better off playing fewer hands with lower wager amounts.
You have control of these variables when you play video poker. You don’t have as much control when you play blackjack. This makes video poker a better option than blackjack.
Some online casinos offer five-cent video poker machines, and some of them offer blackjack tables starting at $1. This means you can play online or mobile video poker for 25 cents a hand, and you can play slow. This reduces your expected loss numbers by a large amount.
Video poker offer smore variations than blackjack. Blackjack is basically the same game everywhere, but there are many different video poker variations. And the strategy you need to use to have the best chance to win is easier for video poker than blackjack.
You can also easily avoid dealing with other gamblers when you play video poker, but this is tough to do when you play blackjack.
You also have more control when you play video poker. You don’t have to wait for the dealer when you want to play the next hand. Finally, video poker machines offer smaller minimum bets than blackjack tables.