High RTP in Video Poker: Luring Skilled Players for Strategic Play

Daniel White

Last updated 7.12.2023

High RTP in Video Poker: Luring Skilled Players for Strategic Play

Video poker, a synergy of skill and serendipity, has emerged as a staple in the casino gaming sphere.

At the heart of this game’s appeal lies the Return to Player (RTP) rate, a metric of paramount importance.

In video poker, the Return to Player (RTP) is a foundational metric that indicates the percentage of wagered funds returned to players over time, highlighting the potential for profitability.

RTP, a term frequently encountered yet often misunderstood, serves as the cornerstone of video poker.

It’s not merely a figure but a beacon guiding players through the labyrinth of gaming options, illuminating the path to strategic and potentially profitable gameplay.

In a game where every decision can tip the scales, understanding RTP becomes not just beneficial but essential

Deciphering the RTP Formula in Video Poker

RTP in video poker quantifies the potential return a player can expect, calculated over an extended period of gameplay. It is a critical metric in assessing the profitability potential of video poker games.

The calculation of RTP in video poker is straightforward yet profound in its implications. It is determined by dividing the total amount returned to players by the total amount bet by them.

It’s important to understand that RTP isn’t based on short-term outcomes. Instead, it reflects long-term payouts, requiring data from thousands, if not millions, of game rounds. This extensive data set ensures accuracy and reliability in the RTP calculation.

Video Poker Variants and Their RTP Rates

This table provides a concise comparison of different video poker games, highlighting their unique characteristics and Return to Player (RTP) percentages.

Video Poker VariantRTP RateNotable Features
Jacks or BetterOver 99%Pays on a pair of jacks or better; various versions with different pay tables
Tens or BetterOver 99%Similar to Jacks or Better; pays on a pair of tens or better
Deuces Wild100.76%Deuces serve as wild cards; high potential for skilled players
Bonus Poker99.2%Bonuses for different four-of-a-kind combinations
Super Double Bonus Poker99.6%High bonuses for four of a kind; best for chasing big hands
Aces and Faces99.25%Special payouts for four-of-a-kind hands; four aces pay 80 coins
Joker Poker100.64%Includes a joker; high payouts starting with a pair of kings

This table will serve as a quick reference guide for players to understand the RTP rates and key features of various video poker games, assisting them in making informed choices based on profitability and gameplay preferences.

Why High RTP Draws in the Strategists

Skilled players favor high RTP video poker games for their enhanced potential of yielding profitable long-term outcomes.

This statement highlights the strategic dimension that high RTP brings to video poker, attracting players who are not only keen on playing but also on optimizing their chances of winning.

The attraction to high RTP games for skilled players lies in the blend of better odds, strategic edge, and an engaging gaming experience. Video poker’s unique appeal stems from its favorable odds and the influence of player skill on the game’s outcome.

Video Poker Game Selection Guide Based on RTP

RTP RangeRecommended GamesPlayer Skill Level
Over 100%Deuces Wild – Joker PokerAdvanced players who can implement perfect strategy and take advantage of the positive expected value
99% – 100%Jacks or Better – Bonus Poker – Double Bonus PokerIntermediate to advanced players who have a good grasp of video poker strategy and are looking for games with high return potential
97% – 99%Tens or Better – Aces and FacesBeginners to intermediate players who are still learning strategies but want games with decent return rates
Below 97%Variants with more complexity and lower RTPsBeginners or casual players who prioritize fun and learning the basics over optimal returns

This guide is intended to assist players in selecting a video poker game that aligns with their skill level and desired RTP.

Higher RTP games generally require a more comprehensive understanding of strategy to achieve the theoretical returns, whereas lower RTP games may be more forgiving but offer less potential for profit.

Control to the Player

Unlike many casino games, video poker offers a high degree of control to the player, allowing for strategic decision-making that directly impacts the game’s result.

For example, in the popular Jacks or Better variant, a high RTP of 99.54% offers players favorable conditions. The game’s straightforward rules, combined with the right strategy, such as checking the paytable for a 9/6 payout, significantly improve winning chances.

Similarly, in Deuces Wild, the RTP can go as high as 100.762%, with simple rules that include using every deuce as a wild card. In contrast, Bonus Poker presents a slightly lower RTP of 99.17% or less, depending on the version, but still offers a profitable gaming environment.

While RTP offers an insight into a game’s long-term payout potential, it’s the player’s ability to leverage this information through strategic play that truly defines the skillful engagement with high RTP video poker games.

Mastering Strategy in High RTP Video Poker

Effective strategies in high RTP video poker games include a discerning game selection, mastering game-specific variants, and applying optimal play techniques.

These strategies are the key to transforming random chance into a game of skillful anticipation.

In video poker, the odds vary depending on the variant, but it’s a game where strategic play can significantly improve winning chances.

Understanding the rules, card rankings, and the worth of each hand is imperative before employing any strategy. Each video poker variant, like Jacks or Better, Deuces Wild, and Bonus Poker, requires a unique approach.

Strategic Decisions in High RTP Video Poker Games

This table provides insights into the strategic approaches for various high RTP video poker games, aiding players in making informed decisions to optimize their chances of winning.

Video Poker VariantRTP RateStrategic Decisions
Jacks or Better99.54%– Check for 9/6 paytable
– Prioritize Full House, Straight Hand
– Keep high pairs, two pairs
– Aim for outside straights and flushes
Deuces Wild100.76%– Utilize deuces as wild cards
– Keep Four Deuces, Wild Royal Flush
– Focus on Five of a Kind, Straight Flush
– Discard non-paired or low-value cards as needed
Bonus Poker99.17%– Seek 8/5 paytable for optimal payouts
– Focus on Four of a Kind (Aces), Full House, Flush
– Keep Straight, Three of a Kind
– Consider all variants of Four to a Royal Flush
Tens or Better97.96%– Look for favorable paytables
– Prioritize high pairs (Tens to Aces)
– Keep Four to a Royal Flush, Straight Flush
– Aim for Full House, Flush, and Straight hands
Aces and Faces99.26%– Target 8/5 Aces and Faces paytable
– Prioritize Four Aces, Four Face Cards
– Keep high pairs, Two Pairs
– Focus on achieving Full House, Flush, and Straight

This table serves as a strategic guide for players to understand the key decisions in playing high RTP video poker games, enhancing their gameplay by aligning their strategies with the specific characteristics of each game variant.

Game Variants

For Jacks or Better, a common variant with a high RTP of 99.54%, the initial strategy involves checking the paytable for the best payout, preferably a 9/6 payout.

This variant pays 9 coins for a Full House and 6 coins for a Flush. A strategic player follows a specific order of cards to keep, such as keeping a Full House, Straight Hand, or a high pair, while discarding less advantageous cards.

Deuces Wild, with an exceptionally high RTP of 100.762%, presents a simpler rule set where each deuce serves as a wild card, offering expansive strategic possibilities.

Bonus Poker, which generally has a lower RTP of 99.17% or less depending on the version, offers different bonus payouts for different hands, necessitating a distinct strategic approach.

Real-World Examples

A skilled player in Jacks or Better might prioritize retaining a four to a Royal Flush over a low pair, aiming for the higher payout. In Deuces Wild, the strategy would shift to maximizing the utility of the wild deuces for the best possible hand.

The connection between RTP and strategic decision-making in video poker is clear. Higher RTP games provide a more favorable setting for employing these strategies, making them particularly attractive to players seeking both challenge and potential profitability.

Real-World Strategy Examples in Video Poker

Video Poker VariantInitial HandStrategy AppliedOutcome
Jacks or Better3 of Hearts, 3 of Diamonds, Queen of Spades, King of Hearts, 7 of ClubsKeep the low pair (3s), discard the restChance to hit three of a kind or a better pair
Deuces Wild2 of Diamonds, 10 of Hearts, Jack of Hearts, Queen of Spades, King of SpadesKeep the Deuce (wild), discard the rest aiming for a better handHigh potential for a winning hand with the wild card
Bonus PokerAce of Diamonds, Ace of Hearts, 7 of Spades, 8 of Clubs, 9 of DiamondsKeep the high pair (Aces), discard the restChance to hit three of a kind, four of a kind, or full house
Tens or Better10 of Hearts, 10 of Clubs, 3 of Spades, 5 of Diamonds, Jack of HeartsKeep the low pair (10s), discard the restSolid chance for three of a kind or a full house
Aces and FacesAce of Spades, King of Hearts, Queen of Clubs, 4 of Diamonds, 6 of HeartsKeep the high cards (Ace, King, Queen), discard the restPotential for a high pair or a Royal Flush

This table provides examples of strategic decisions made in different video poker games based on the initial hand dealt.

The strategies are aimed at maximizing the chances of forming a higher-scoring hand, reflecting the common practices and insights of experienced video poker players.

RTP in Video Poker vs. Other Casino Games

Video poker often offers higher RTP rates compared to other casino games, making it a strategic choice for discerning players.

In video poker, games like Jacks or Better can offer an RTP as high as 99.54%. In contrast, slot games generally have RTPs ranging from 92% to 97%, with higher figures being less common.

Blackjack, another popular casino game, presents an even more favorable scenario for players, with some variants offering RTPs as high as 99.92%, like Blackjack Switch, or 99.69% for Vegas Single Deck Blackjack.

RTP in Video Poker vs. Other Casino Games

RTP Comparison: Video Poker vs. Other Casino Games

This table highlights the average Return to Player (RTP) rates of video poker compared to other popular casino games, providing a comprehensive overview of their profitability potential for players.

Casino Game TypeRTP RangeNotable Examples
Video PokerOver 99% to 100.76%Jacks or Better, Deuces Wild
Online Slot Machines94% to 97%Various online slots
Land-based Slot Machines88% to 92%Slot machines in land-based casinos
Blackjack Variants99.27% to 99.75%Blackjack Switch, Single-deck Blackjack
Roulette94.74%American Roulette
Craps (Pass Line Bet)98.59%Standard craps game
Pai Gow Poker97.34%Standard Pai Gow Poker
Three Card Poker97.15%Standard Three Card Poker

This table serves as a useful guide for players to compare the RTP rates of video poker with other casino games, illustrating the relative advantage of video poker in terms of potential returns over time.

It shows that while video poker generally offers higher RTP rates, games like Blackjack also provide competitive RTP figures, making them appealing to players seeking games with high return potential.


These RTP differences significantly impact game choice among various player demographics. While video poker offers higher RTPs than slots, making it appealing to strategy-oriented players, blackjack variants with their high RTPs attract players who favor skill over chance.

The choice of game often depends on a player’s preference for skill involvement and the potential for profitability based on RTP rates.

The Strategic Importance of RTP in Video Poker

In synthesizing the insights gathered about the role of Return to Player (RTP) in video poker, it becomes evident that this metric is more than a mere numerical expression; it is a fundamental aspect that shapes the game’s landscape.

High RTP in video poker does not solely cater to the aspirational desires of skilled players; it actively fosters an environment where strategic play is not just advantageous but essential.

This intersection of skill, strategy, and statistical favorability positions video poker uniquely within the casino gaming realm.


High RTP serves as a beacon, drawing skilled players towards video poker. It’s not just the allure of potentially profitable outcomes that captivates these players, but the challenge and engagement offered by a game where their skills can significantly impact the result.

This aspect of video poker demarcates it from games predominantly governed by chance. The high RTP, becomes a dual conduit, enhancing both the appeal and the depth of the game.

Final Thoughts

Reflecting on the gaming dynamics, RTP emerges as more than just a measure of potential returns. It is a cornerstone that supports the strategic framework within which skilled players operate. By understanding and leveraging RTP, these players engage in a more nuanced and rewarding form of play.

The importance of RTP, transcends its basic definition, impacting the very essence of what makes video poker an engaging and strategic endeavor.

Daniel White

Daniel White, based in London, UK, serves as the dynamic Editor-in-Chief at Best-RTPCasinos.com. With a sharp eye for detail and a deep understanding of the online casino industry, Daniel specializes in RTP analytics and player-focused content. His leadership has transformed the site into a go-to resource for players seeking the most rewarding online gaming experiences in Europe and beyond.