Video Poker

Jacks or Better Video Poker

The First & Most Popular Video Poker Game

Jacks or Better video poker was born thanks to a minor tweak - when the paytable of the first mass produced video poker game, Draw Poker, was slightly altered. Instead of two pair, the lowest paying hand became Jacks or better, which increased the payout and sent the popularity of video poker through the roof.

Today, Jacks or Better is the most popular video poker game

In its full pay version the return to player is 99.54%. The full pay version of a video poker game features a paytable with the highest theoretical return. Many land based or online casinos provide the same video poker game with different paytables – with payouts for some hand combinations decreased, and sometimes even some increased in order to reach a lower overall return.

FULL PAY JACKS OR BETTER PAYTABLE 99.54%
Jacks or Better Video Poker Paytable

The full pay video poker game is also called "9-6" Jacks or Better, based on the payout for Full House and Flush. The full pay version of Jacks or Better video poker is not that easy to come by, and is available at casinos featuring video poker games from most games providers including Microgaming, Playtech and RTG. One of our recommended casinos, 32 Red, features full pay Jacks or Better video poker.

Variance of Jacks or Better Video Poker

The theoretical payout or RTP tells only part of the story about each video poker game. Another important figure to take into account when choosing which video poker game to play is variance. According to variance, we can determine how wins are distributed, based on their amount. If the variance is high, it means that a lower number of high amount wins are more likely to occur. At low variance, it is the opposite - most wins are paid to the player in small prizes, and big wins are extremely rare.

The variance of Jacks or Better poker at 19.5 is one of the lowest available. That means that during your session, you will experience more frequent but mostly smaller wins.

Because of this lower variance you will need less bankroll to last, for example, one hour, than if you were playing some other video poker games with higher variance..

Jacks or Better Strategy

Also make sure to master Jacks or Better strategy to get close to the 99.54% theoretical return. Check our video poker strategy article for the Jacks or Better basic strategy table.

Those who would like to get even closer to the declared theoretical payout should learn and master optimal (perfect) Jacks or Better strategy, which will help them reach that RTP figure.

Jacks or Better Optimal Strategy

This strategy will enable you to take full advantage of the 99.54% full pay version of Jacks or Better video poker.

Rank Combination
1 Royal Flush
2 Straight Flush
3 4 of a Kind
4 4 cards to Royal Flush
5 Full House
6 Flush
7 3 of a Kind
8 Straight
9 4 to Straight Flush Open Ended (Q high)
10 Two pair
11 4 to Straight Flush Inside Draw
12 High Pair (Jacks or Better)
13 3 cards to Royal Flush
14 4 cards to Flush
15 10 J Q K
16 Low pair (22 - 10 10)
17 9 10 J Q
18 8 9 10 J
19 9 J Q suited
20 9 10 J suited
21 Open ended straight draw (10 highest)
22 8 J Q suited
23 3 to Straight Flush Open Ended (max 10)
24 9 Q K suitted, 9 J K suited
25 9 10 Q , 8 10 J , 8 9 J all suited
26 J Q suited
27 J Q K A
28 J K suited, Q K suited
29 J A, Q A, K A all suited
30 4 to Straight Inside (3 hihg cards)
31 3 to Straight Flush 2 Gaps 1 High Card
32 3 to Straight Flush 1 Gap 0 High Card
33 JQK
34 JQ
35 10 J suited
36 JQ, JK
37 10 Q suited
38 JA, QA, KA
39 10 K suited
40 Jacks
41 Queen
42 King
43 Ace
44 3 to Straight Flush 2 Gaps 0 High Card
45 Discard all

As you can see, the optimal strategy is 3 times as long as the basic strategy. The mistakes that will occur because of the simplification of the basic strategy will cost you less than 0.1% in the long run. So unless you are serious about mastering optimal strategy, or have an extremely good memory, you will be fine with the basic Jacks or Better strategy.

Free Jacks or Better Online

An excellent way to learn how to play Jacks or Better and to practice strategy is to play free Jacks or Better online without registration or download required. Most casino games providers offer such an option, as well as Jacks or Better online games.

Another option is to start playing video poker games using free no deposit bonuses. However, make sure that video poker games (and particularly Jacks or Better) are allowed when playing with a bonus, as many online casinos restrict bonuses only to slot games. Also check out the wagering requirement, which is often higher for video poker.

FREE ONLINE JACKS OR BETTER NO REGISTRATION REQUIREDFree Jacks or Better Video Poker Online

Recommended online casinos:

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Casino Reputation
Perfect
License: Curaçao
Good
Players from United States
English website
English live chat
Mobile Devices Support
Safe Amount to Win: $200,000
Widthrawal Limit: $10,000/ m.
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