When playing a poker game you will usually find that you have a variety of options available to you in terms of different ways to play and ways to approach just about every hand. At the same time, you will have a huge range of different terms to learn and information to gather about how the game itself works.
Being able to understand everything you are being told and taught as the game goes on is very important – in fact, understanding the terms out there is as important as actually understanding the game on its own!
One term that you will hear a lot is House Advantage, and with online poker you will probably hear it even more than normal. If you are always looking to maximize the chances of victory in any game of poker you will need to know how to manage house advantage, and what it actually entails.
If house advantage stays still, it can actually affect the kind of winnings that you will get – what you need to do then is understand how these changes take place. Each video poker game is a bit different, so always read the rules back.
House advantage, in the simplest terms, is the average amount of money that you will stand to win or lose on a specific bet. This is based on a specific percentage of that bet. So if you are playing in a game with a house advantage of 5% you will get roughly $0.95 for every $1 bet that you make.
This higher the house advantage is, the less the chances you have of actually winning overall because you always running at a minor loss thanks to the advantage provided to the house. It can seem a little unfair, of course, but that’s online gaming!
You also need to understand volatility; this is how spread you are from the average that you are. For example if you are playing roulette the volatility can be extremely low – with other games like slots you will find that volatility is far higher and this can in turn damage your chances of success in various ways.
This means that house advantage will probably stay at the same level throughout but it will also cause you to go through some rather major swings. It can be confusing at first, but it’s something you’ll get used to.
If you have never played a game of Joker Poker before then you actually missing out; it’s a very unique concept and will test your quality and ability to do things right as it’s a very unique style of poker in comparison to many other forms available. However, it’s variance in style and formats can make it a real challenge – the most challenging style of Joker Poker, for example, is the Kings or Better format.
In these games, you will be using a 5/3 table and will typically be playing with a 7x win for a full house. This comes with a 1x payout for two pair, as well. However, by going along these lines, you will only be able to improve pairs to a three of a find or better to actually boost the potential level of your payout.
This decreases the value in general of all one pair hands, and therefore it’s vital to be able to understand how this is going to affect the game you are playing. Given the fact that these games introduce the joker, it becomes really easy to make up a three of a kind hand in comparison to other kinds of poker.
Therefore, it’s very important to be able to manage your hands and be able to understand the flow of the game. Let’s say you hand that was something like XQJT2, and you had no flush draw. This gives you the chance to do one of two things;
- Keep a one pair hand with the joker
- Go for a straight draw
If you win, you will typically get something in the region of 1.46x payout whilst if you get the draw you will get roughly 1.38x. You need to get involved regularly with Better Joker Poker to fully be able to understand how this works at its fullest. It will take some time to get there as you need to memorize all the kinds of payout levels that each game offers you, and this can be the real challenge for many people.
To get there in the end, though, you simply need to be able to make the most of the hand you have; in the example given above, you will be able to boost your earnings dramatically if a King emerges. A King or higher can boost the payout even further, so start jotting those figures down!
The Jacks or Better video poker game is without a doubt one of the most enjoyable out there – it’s got a particularly unique style that makes it really easy to get involved with. Its rampant popularity comes from the fact that the game itself is so easy to use, and also offers some very interesting rewards.
The other side of the coin, though, is that Jacks or Better requires a far more tactical input than many other video poker games out there. Whilst they all require skill to do well at, this does need a very specific style to succeed with.
Whether or not you can get that kind of skill put in place is a different matter, of course, but we recommend that you consider the following tips to try and make your game a little bit more effective;
- Try and remember that tactics are a far different thing to strategy; tactics are more “in the moment” and will test your ability to read the situation at that moment in time instead of being able to manage the entire game itself. You need to be able to understand the difference between a tactic and a strategy when you first start playing Jacks or Better
- The cards that really will make a difference in any particular game of Jacks or Better will be the ones that will change the way that you actually play that hand. Whilst most hands are fairly straightforward there will be the odd time where you need to go down a proverbial crossroads; this occurs when you have two draws to pick from, or the choice between going for a pair and a draw
- If you are playing with a high pair, and you could also have a flush draw, you could go for the high option and make sure that you keep the two key cards (in this example, two Aces). The better option, though, might be to keep the high pair instead as it can serve you better on another hand
- However, if you have a low pair and can make a flush draw with it, you might want to keep the flush draw instead of the pair. High pairs tend to outpower a flush draw in Jacks or Better, whereas flush draws will overpower a low pair
Tactical training is available all across the web, too!