After slots, the most popular online casino game is video poker. What seems like a straightforward game, actually has many nuances. One such nuance is deuces wild. Here are a few tips.
Video poker is a digital form of draw poker, in which the general rule is that you can draw up to three cards, four cards if you have an ace, but never five cards. In video poker, you can draw up to five cards so your strategy must be revised to reflect this rule change.
Wild Cards Change Some Strategy
The presence of a wild card will change the strategy in important ways. If you have even one deuce, you have a pair. The idea is to decide if you should keep the pair or keep just the deuce.
The permutations increase if you have more than one deuce.
Casino games lend themselves to many variations and video poker is no exception. In fact, even in deuces wild, there are variations. Here we’ll stay with the standard deuces wild game.
The deuce is a pure wild card. You can use it to substitute for any other card or any suit. So, you never discard a deuce. Since deuces are wild, it is possible to get five of a kind. We suggest that you look for a game that has the highest payout for five of a kind. The difference might be just a few coins per hand but you would be surprised how often five of a kind comes in when there are four wild cards.
Most deuces wild games have dual pay scales—one for hands you make with a deuce and one for hands without.
Always Bet the Maximum
This is a general rule of thumb, not restricted to deuces wild but it bears repeating often. The payout for a Royal Flush with the maximum bet is far higher than if you have bet less than the maximum. The difference could be as high as 20 times. So always bet the max.
A corollary to this rule is that you should always play a game that is well within your budget. That’s because you need to bet the maximum so you need a game in which you can easily afford to bet the maximum.
Pay Scale II
Starting with the straight flush and running down to three of a kind, most video poker deuces wild games have the same pay scale with and without the wild cards.
Three of a Kind
Deuces wild doesn’t pay for pairs so the strategy of discarding a losing pair doesn’t apply.
Here is a rundown of the most important strategies in deuces wild video poker:
- It should be obvious that you keep all four deuces if you have been lucky enough to have been dealt all four. The four deuces give you five of a kind. There is no need to draw, as five of a kind pays the same regardless of the rank of the cards.
- Everything changes when you have the far more frequent three deuces. Here, you might have a 10-value card which immediately gives you both four of a kind and a Royal Flush draw.
So, when you have three deuces, you need to be just a bit careful: keep any card that gives you Royal Flush chances. You might also have a pair independent of the deuces. In that case, you have a winning five of a kind hand. If the difference between a Royal Flush and a five of a kind is substantial, you should break the pair and go for the Royal Flush. If the difference is minimal, stay with the five of a kind hand.
If the two cards not deuces are neither a pair nor a ten value card, discard both of them.
- It gets a bit more complicated when you get two deuces. You might have a straight or a flush draw. These don’t pay as much as four or five of a kind. So, we recommend that you discard any cards other than the deuces that don’t already give you four or five of a kind or a ten value card.
A ten value card gives you an outside chance at a Royal Flush so we recommend you keep it.
- With one deuce on the deal, look first for Royal Flush possibilities. We suggest keeping three or four cards to a Royal Flush and three cards to a straight flush. If you have a winning hand, even a minimal hand such as three of a kind, keep it except if you have the above Royal Flush chances.
- When you don’t have a deuce, you need to draw as many cards as possible. First, check to see if you already have a winning hand. If you do, keep it and discard the other card or cards. Keep three cards to a Royal Flush but only try for a straight flush if you have four cards. That’s because a Royal Flush pays a lot more if it’s clean.
If you have a pair, keep it. Some say you should keep two pair but that applies only when a full house pays the same as four of a kind.
You can go for an outside straight, or keep four to a flush.
The last tip is a tricky one: if you have a straight that includes four to a Royal Flush, give up the straight. This applies only if you have four to the Royal Flush.
If your luck has been such on the deal that you have none of these possibilities, draw five cards. Remember, you’ll never draw five cards if you’ve been dealt even just one deuce.
Online Casino Advantage
One of the biggest advantages of playing decision oriented games like video poker and blackjack at an online casino is that you can use a strategy card. These strategy tips are actually pretty easy to learn but until you get the hang of it, we suggest you use a printed copy of the strategy tips to maximize your winning chances.