Jacks or Better VideoPoker

by Gayle Mitchell

Jacks or Better VideoPoker is a classic version and is a good place to begin your VP education at Learn to Play Video Poker program.
This is the game that started it all and is an ideal game for newbies and veterans alike. 

Below is a pay schedule for Jacks or Better 9/6 VideoPoker.
9/6, noted in bold below refers to a 9 coin return for a full-house when betting one-coin and 6 coin return for a flush. Therefore, max coin return of 45 and 30 respectively.
This paytable illustrates specific winning hands and maximum coin return payout.

Pay Schedule: Jacks or Better VP 9/6
Pair--Jacks or Better
Two pair (2 PR)
Three-of-a-kind (3/kind)
Straight (ST)
Flush (FL)=6
Full House (FH)=9
Four-of-a-kind (any)
Straight Flush (SF)
Royal Flush (RF)

max coin return
5 coins
10 coins
15 coins
20 coins
30 coins
45 coins
125 coins
250 coins
4000 coins

Jacks or Better VideoPoker Strategies per pay schedule:
  • The ace is not the most important card. A jack, queen or king will also return your bet when paired.   The jack, queen or king offers more opportunities to develop winning hands around it than an ace.
    For example, to form a sequence, a jack has two possibilities — a queen on one side and a 10 on the other.   An ace, however, has only one possible sequence partner — the king.  
  • Never keep a kicker — that’s an additional face card — with any pair.   To do so reduces your return by 5%. Let that pair stand and draw 3 cards.  
  • Always keep a five-card winning pat hand, with one exception: if you can draw one card to a Royal Flush.  
  • Don’t break a flush even if you can draw one to a straight flush. However, always break a flush to draw one card to a Royal Flush.  
  • Never break a straight to draw to a straight flush. If you have three cards to a flush and no high cards, draw two cards for the flush.  
  • If you have four cards in succession for a straight, draw one card.   Four consecutive cards is called an ‘outside’ straight when there are two possibilities for a winning hand at either end.
    So, if you have 6, 7, 8, 9, either a 5 or 10 will payout.  An ‘inside’ straight narrows your odds of completing that straight.   For example, if you have 5, 6, 8, 9—trying for the 7 is called drawing to an inside straight, because the single card you need is on the ‘inside’.   Additionally, draw to an inside straight only if one of the other cards is a jack or better where you can at least return your bet if you match that high card. 
  • Keep a small pair (jacks or less) for three of a kind.  
  • If all your cards are 10 or under with no possibility in sight for a winner, it’s best to opt for five new cards.
20% of all original first hands dealt are winners.Jacks or Better VideoPoker will generally hit the Royal Flush each 40,000 hands played, or every 80-100 hours of play.
As with all Video Poker games, maximum coin play for each hand is the best strategy.

Here is a sampling of other VP versions that offer the Jacks+ as the  minimum payout.
Bonus Poker
Double Bonus
Double Double Bonus                                
Triple Bonus
Jackpot Poker, aka, Aces & Faces.

Lessons for these Video Poker versions and more are taught at Gambling Teachers Free Learning Center.  

Jacks or Better VideoPoker Multi-Hand is offered for nearly all versions.
As with standard video poker, you’re dealt five cards, you may hold from zero to all five. The cards you keep appear in all the other hands as you discard/deal.
Multi-hand VP can feature three, five, ten, fifty, even one hundred hands per bet.

May all your VP choices turn out to be ‘Royalty’.

Jacks or Better VideoPoker is followed by a Deuces Wild lesson
Return to Learn to Play Video Poker Program

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Video Poker Online: 10 Play Power Poker
Play takes place on a 10-handed grid.
Game versions: Aces and Faces Power Poker, Deuces and Joker, Deuces Wild Power Poker, Double Joker, Jacks or Better, Joker Poker and Double Jackpot Poker.

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