Video poker is so called because usually one player plays against a machine which displays the player's cards on a screen. However, there is no reason why it could not be played with real cards, dealt by a human banker instead of a machine.
The player places a stake and is dealt five cards from a standard 52-card pack. The player has one opportunity to discard any number of unwanted cards, and is dealt an equal number of replacement cards from the deck. If the player has a sufficiently good poker hand, the dealer then pays the player according to a fixed scale of odds according to the type of hand. "Sufficiently good" often means a pair of jacks or better - if the player's final hand is worse than this, the stake is lost to the dealer.
The exact odds offered and the minimum winning hand varies from game to game. Of course this can significantly affect the player's chances of making a profit. In some games certain cards are wild - either the deuces or a joker added to the deck - and in some games there is a cumulative jackpot which is won by a high hand such as a royal flush. The size of the available jackpot then also affects whether the game is worthwhile to play.back to top