Video Poker Glossary

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Some video poker terms can be confusing to new players, especially if they are unfamiliar with poker.  For those of you who are looking for a definition for any of those tricky video poker terms you are in the right place!

Video Poker Glossary

  • Bankroll · The amount of money a player has to play with. As a player wins or loses during the game, his bankroll increases or decreases as well. See the article on how to manage your video poker bankroll for tips on keeping your bankroll healthy.
  • Bonus · Some video poker machines offer a bonus if the player gets a certain hand during play.
  • Cycle · A cycle is the number of bets a player should expect to make before making a specific hand.  This is calculated as an expected average number of bets that need to be made, and is not to be used as a steadfast rule.
  • Deuces Wild · A common version of video poker in which all 2′s are wild cards.
  • Full Pay · A full pay machine is one that pays out what is considered to be the appropriate amount for common hands.  The pay table is different for every machine, but for a Jacks or Better video poker machine, it should pay 9 credits for a full house and 6 credits for a flush to be considered a “full pay” machine.
  • Gutshot Straight · A gutshot straight is a draw for a straight in which the card needed to complete the straight is one of the interior cards.  For example, if a player is holding a 2, 3, 10, 5, and 6, this would be considered a “gutshot straight” because the card needed to complete the straight is in the middle of the straight.  The player would discard the 10 in hope of receiving a 4.
  • House Edge · The percentage advantage the casino has over the player in a certain game.  The house edge in video poker is generally very low, often less than 1%.
  • Joker Poker · A version of video poker which uses a 54 card deck which includes jokers.  The jokers in this game are wild, meaning they can be substituted for any other card in the game.
  • Pay Table · The pay table is the schedule of credits paid to the player for winning a given hand.  The pay table is usually displayed above the video poker machine’s screen.
  • Payout · The amount the video poker machine pays the player when he wins a hand.  How much a player wins for each hand is displayed in the pay table.
  • RNG · Random Number Generator.  The RNG is a piece of software used by the video poker machine to ensure that every game is completely random and fair.  The RNG decides which cards are dealt to the player on every turn.
  • Short Pay ·Unlike “full pay” machines, short pay machines pay players less than what is generally regarded as standard for the game.  When possible, players are advised to avoid short pay machines and look for full pay machines in order to receive the best odds.



What other video poker terms do you want defined?  Post the video poker terms in the comment section below to have them defined by our team of video poker experts!

Now that you know all of the video poker terms, check out these articles to improve your game: online slots versus online video poker, how to double your video poker winnings, video poker myths, why video poker is better than poker, and video poker risk of ruin.  For a list of all video poker strategy articles, see the video poker strategy page here on the Silver Oak Casino blog.

Jeff White

Jeff has been an active gambler from the age of 18 when he won a small local poker tournament in San Jose, CA. He moved on to playing other casino games shortly thereafter, with a great interest in the statistics and mathematics involved. He has studied the historical gambling systems of nearly every popular casino game played today, and has written strategy books for several of them including blackjack, slot machines, craps, and roulette. Jeff has been a daily contributor to the Silver Oak Casino blog since the beginning of 2009.

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