Video poker is an electronic form of five-card draw poker that dates back to the late 1970s. The player is dealt five cards and is allowed to replace any number of them by an equal number of cards drawn from the unseen deck. The rank of the resulting hand (and the bet size) determines the amount paid out to the player. We focus on two specific video poker games, Jacks or Better (Section 17.1), the version closest to five-card draw, and Deuces Wild (Section 17.2), a version with the additional complication of four wild cards. With optimal play, the Deuces Wild player has a slight advantage over the house, while the Jacks or Better player has a slight disadvantage.
KeywordsEquivalence Class Optimal Strategy Conditional Expectation Wild Card Initial Hand
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