Video poker is often found in casinos and online casinos. It’s a simple and easy to learn type of poker that actually more closely represents a slot machine.

Regular poker, meanwhile, is a card game in which players compete against each other. The casino or online poker room takes a rake for hosting the games.

The most popular type of regular poker is Texas Hold’em. This is the game you’ll most often find when searching for a table. There are other versions of poker, such as Omaha and Draw.

Video poker shares a few things in common with regular poker, although there are more differences than there are similarities.

Similarities between video poker and regular poker

First of all, let’s take a look at the main similarities between video poker and regular poker:

Where to find games

First of all, both video poker and regular poker are both betting games played at the casino, so you’ll be able to find both of them online and at your local venue.

If you’re looking for a game at your casino, regular poker is played at the tables, while video poker is an electronic machine that looks very much like a slot.

Regular online poker games usually fall under their own category and are played at poker sites, although online casinos may also have their own poker room. Meanwhile, online video poker runs around the clock at popular casino sites. As the games are electronic and don’t require other players, it’s possible to jump into a game and play at any time.

Hand rankings

In video poker, the aim of the game is to make the best poker hand possible using the usual poker hand rankings. The hands are the same as in any other game of poker and the strengths of those hands are also the same.

Here are the hand rankings in order of strength:

  • Royal flush
  • Straight flush
  • Four of a kind
  • Full house
  • Flush
  • Straight
  • Three-of-a-kind
  • Two pair
  • One pair
  • High card

The higher ranked the hand is, the more rare it is to make that hand. This is true of both regular and video poker.

Video poker is based on 5-card draw

As mentioned, there are many different types of regular poker. One of these is 5-card draw, in which the player gets dealt five cards and can decide to replace or hold any number of their cards during both the pre-draw and post-draw betting round.

Video poker is based on 5-card draw, but is much less complicated. Players are dealt five cards and have a chance to redraw to make the strongest possible poker hand.

However, there are major differences between video poker and 5-card draw, which will be discussed in detail below.

Differences between video poker and regular poker

Know it’s time to explore the differences between video poker and regular poker. These differences are very significant, because although video poker is based on regular poker, more specifically on 5-card draw, video poker actually plays more like a slot game.

Video poker is played against the house

The first point to note is that in regular poker, players are competing against each other, with the casino or online poker taking a rake for hosting the games. In video poker, the player is up against the house, not each other.

Players still have to make the strongest poker hand possible. If they make a hand, this is paid out according to the given paytable. As with any casino game, the house always has a small edge, meaning the average payouts are lower than the actual odds of hitting the hand.

Video poker is more of a game of chance

Because it is played against the house, video poker is more of a game of chance. The outcomes depend more on what the player is dealt and whether they hit the cards they need on the re-draw.

There’s still some skill involved when it comes to video poker. The skill comes from knowing the odds and which cards are mathematically the most favourable to replace. For example, should you risk a pair for a chance to make a flush?

Different betting rounds

One of the main differences between video poker and regular poker is how and when players can bet. In video poker, players have one betting round, which takes place before the cards are initially dealt. There is no more betting after this point.

In regular poker, in this case 5-card draw, there are two betting rounds. The first takes place after players are dealt their five cards and the second takes place after the re-draw. This adds more elements of strategy as players can increase bets with stronger hands or even bluff.

Should you play regular poker or video poker?

Regular poker and video poker tend to appeal to a slightly different player-base. As we have seen, regular poker is a game that involves more skill and strategy, which makes it more attractive for those who are looking to learn and improve over time.

On the flip side, video poker offers a more simple, chance-based game. This is attractive for fans of roulette and slots, or for poker players who are looking to take a break from the competition and spin against the house.

Both regular poker and video poker are popular games that can be enjoyed at casinos or online.