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Live Poker vs. Video Poker Differences

There are many differences between playing live poker and playing video poker. Some are minor while others are very significant. Study the list of points below and make sure you understand each point.

  • Bluffing, "check raise," sandbagging, and other strategies of live poker do not apply or work in video poker.

  • Regular live poker includes several stud varieties, as well as high-low games, that do not relate to video poker at all. The game of draw poker is the only one that applies to both video and live poker.

  • Video poker games are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Sometimes you may not have enough players to make up a live poker game. Video poker requires no other players.

  • Hand rankings may be very similar and yet may also be different. Every video poker game will pay more for a straight than for three of a kind. Some pay the same for straights and flushes, and straight flushes are not always worth more than four of a kind. In live poker, four 6s are worth more than four 3s, but in video poker they are always the same.

  • You can't loose with a good video poker hand. If you end up with four of a kind you are going to get paid. You can't lose out to another player who is holding a straight flush, as in live poker.

  • There is only one decision point in video poker. Regular live poker frequently has several betting rounds, and sometimes several decisions per round. In video poker, you make your one choice before the draw. After the draw the round is over.

  • In video poker, you know at the beginning what any winning hand is worth. In regular poker, three of a kind may not be a winner, and it could cost a big loss of money if you take the chance to find out. This is not the case with video poker.

  • In video poker, you know the outset what any hand costs. The amount you put in a machine is the most you can lose. You rarely know this in live poker.

  • A good psychologist would play well at regular live poker, but a good mathematical mind will do well playing video poker.

  • Strategy cards or crib sheets can't be used at live poker tables. However, strategy cards can be very useful at video poker, and most casinos allow you to use them.

  • You have to call "time" in live poker, which allows you a few more minutes to make a decision. In video poker you don't have to worry about time at all.

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