QUESTION: I like to double up every once in a while in video poker. Some casino properties turn on this mode for players, others do not even offer the option.
So, when I hit “double up,” five cards come up, with the first card turn right side up as the dealer’s card. Presumably I now have four choices of cards to choose from. Do I REALLY have four cards to choose from, or is my choice merely the next card in sequence to be dealt? Unlike some of the other similar situations, this one really does make a difference.
ANSWER: For readers unfamiliar with the feature, some video poker machines offer the chance to double your return after any winning hand. If the card you choose from among the four that are dealt face down, you win.
For example, if I bet five credits at Jacks or Better and draw a pair of Queens, my return is 10 credits -- the five I wagered plus a five-credit win. If I choose to double up, and the face-up card is an 8, I win if the card I choose is a 9 or higher. Now my return doubles to 20 credits. If I choose a 7 or lower, I lose my 10 credits – both the winnings and the original bet. If it’s an 8, it’s a push, and I keep the 10 credits and an either put them on my credit meter or double up again.
After any win or push, you can choose either to stop there and take the credits, or double up again.
To get back to the question of how the cards are dealt and whether your choice makes a difference, The Double Down option sets all cards at once. You really do have four choices. At the end, when it shows you all four cards, those are your real choices. Which card you choose does make a difference, though there’s no way of telling which cards will win for you and which will lose. All you see is the backs of the cards.
It’s a similar situation as pick’em bonus rounds on video slot machine. On Jackpot Party – which has held its place on casino floors for so long nearly every slot player knows it – there’s a grid of gift-wrapped boxes. Some hide credit awards, while others hide party poopers that end the bonus round. The prizes and poopers are randomly distributed, all in their places before you start picking.
The random number generator sets the possibilities, but your choices determine whether you win. That’s the same situation as in double-up.
One more thing. The double-up option is an even proposition. The cards are randomly dealt, and you have equal chances of winning and losing. There is no house edge.
QUESTION: You described different ways to play video keno, and I appreciate it. I don’t see a lot written about it.
What you didn’t write about is how to win. Is there a best way to choose numbers? I play repeating patterns sometimes. I try to make the winning numbers of the last draw into a pattern that I can then move left, right, top, bottom. I win pretty good sometimes.
ANSWER: Any method of choosing numbers will win sometimes, and every method will lose more often than it wins. The numbers are drawn by a random number generator, and any repeating pattern is strictly coincidental.
Every number has an equal chance of coming up on every draw. Hot numbers and cold numbers are things we can see only in retrospect, and have no bearing on future outcomes. When there are 80 numbers and 20 are drawn, each number has a 1 in 4 chance of being drawn. If number 16 has come up on three times in a row, the chance of it coming up again on the next draw is 1 in 4. If it hasn’t come up on the last three draw, the chance of it coming up on the next is 1 in 4.
Video keno is strictly a guessing game. I don’t play often, but when I do, I stick to the family birthdays method. It has no more, and no less, a chance of winning as any other system for number selection.
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