Pay Table Charges

 Pay Table Charges

I’ve mentioned in this blog that video poker payback percentages usually are changed by altering the returns on full houses and flushes. A 9-6- Jacks or Better game, which pays 9-for-1 on full houses and 6-for-1 on flushes, has a higher payback percentage than one that drops the full house-flush returns to 8-5.

A reader emailed me to ask if all that really matters. “You’ll have a winning session whenever you get sufficient four of a kinds or better,” he wrote, suggesting that lesser hands were just filling time.

But those full house-flush returns do matter, even if its only to give you extra hands to chase those quads and other big payers.

In 9-6 Jacks or Better, we draw a full house about once per 87 hands, and a flush about once per 91 hands. If we play a moderate pace of 500 hands per hour, we’ll average between 5 and 6 full houses and 5 and 6 flushes.

Drop the full house payback from 9-for-1 to 8 for 1, and five or six times during an average hour, it costs us enough to pay for another hand. Same deal if the full house return drops from 6-for-1 to 5-for-1. In an average hour at an 8-5 Jacks or Better game, your return will pay for 10-to-12 fewer hands than at 9-6 Jacks or Better.

In plain dollars and cents, the return at 8-5 Jacks is $50 to $60 an hour less than the 9-6 game on a dollar machine, or $11.25 to $15 less on a quarter machine. For the big-pay-or-bust-player, the lower pay table means bust time comes that much faster, with fewer chances to draw quads or better.

Keep checking those pay tables, and maximize your chances to go for the gold.

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