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What is free video poker?
Free online video poker is pretty much identical to regular video poker, except you don’t have to pay to play! You also can’t win any money, of course.
Free online video poker is essentially the same game as the paid version, with all of the same rules, options, graphics and pay outs. The only difference is that you’re using casino chips or ‘play money’ instead of real funds. This means you can play as much as you want without risking any cash.
Is free video poker different to Texas Hold’em?
The word ‘poker’ is used to describe many games which have some similarities but are significantly different. One example of this is video poker and traditional Texas Hold’em, which are not the same – although video poker does use the same hand rankings as Texas Hold’em.
The most widely recognised type of poker is the one played amongst real people, where you need to size your bets correctly and bluff your opponents off of their hands to win pots. This is the version of poker played by professionals like Phil Ivey, Daniel Negreanu and Doyle Brunson.
Other types of poker
There’s also a version of poker known as casino poker. Again, this is different to free online video poker. Casino poker is a game played between the player and the dealer, with no bluffing or any involvement with other players. It’s a much more classic setup, like blackjack, with short hands and dealers acting in a predetermined manner.
Finally, there’s real money and free video poker. This game uses the fundamental hand rankings of Texas Hold’em, but the gameplay is entirely different. You simply draw a random set of cards and choose which ones to hold in order to make the best hand possible. It has none of the human interaction or psychological aspects of traditional Texas Hold’em.
Types of free video poker
We’ve already established that there are many different types of poker, but there are even different versions within the free video poker sector.
Here are some of the most popular versions of free online video poker:
- Jacks or Better
- Tens or Better
- Joker’s Wild
- Deuces Wild
- Bonus Poker
Before you launch into a game, you should have a look at the payouts and rules, as this can have a major impact on the outcome. For instance, the royal flush pays out more in some versions of free video poker compared to others. And there are even variants which have a progressive jackpot – though this mainly concerns real money video poker.
Free video poker vs real-money video poker
Free video poker is popular with players who are new to the game, as it lets you learn the ropes without risking any funds. This is always a huge benefit in casino games where your decisions impact your odds of winning, and astute players can actually bring the house edge down significantly with practice.
The return to player (RTP) of each free video poker machine varies considerably based on two criteria: which version of the game it is, and how skilled the player is.
Over 100% RTP
Unbelievably, there are even some versions of video poker which offer more than a 100% RTP. That means, if you play perfectly, you can expect to make profit in the long run. However, whilst these machines were fairly common in the 1980s and 1990s, they’re much harder to find these day – especially online.
Nonetheless, it’s clear that a well-versed player will win a lot more than a player who is playing on instinct. This makes free video poker one of the best free games around. You can play for hours and hours, improve your game, then hit the real-money video poker machines armed with the skills needed to win more cash.
Like all casino games, the allure of the real-money alternative lies in the fact that you can win cash prizes. In video poker, these can be quite lucrative; progressive jackpots pay handsomely if you’re lucky enough to hit a royal flush.
It’s rare to find a game with massive jackpots which you can also gain an edge in by practising. Free video poker is just that, making it a very enticing proposition.
Where can I play video poker for free?
If you’re keen to get stuck into free video poker and want somewhere to play, you can check out any highly recommended free online video poker sites ideal for players based in Canada on this page.
Simply click on any of the casino links provided on this page. Not only do they offer free video poker, but you’ll automatically be taken to a page that gives you the best welcome bonus available at the moment. Our links are frequently reviewed and updated by our team of industry experts, ensuring you always get the best deal possible.