Tens or Better Video Poker

Tens or Better Video PokerTens or Better is one of the easiest video poker games to play. The goal of the game is to create the strongest 5-card poker hand. The game is played solo, that means you don't have to play against any other player or dealer. Payouts are made according to the poker hand you are able to complete; each poker hand combination has a different jackpot prize. The harder it is to complete the hand, the higher jackpot is paid off.

sf??Tens or Better is played with a 52-card deck that is shuffled after each hand. Video Poker machines use a Random Number Generator (RNG) which is a device that generates unpredictable numbers for every hand, so neither the machine nor the player can cheat at the game. There are no wild cards for this game, thus every card has its own value except the Ace which can serve both as the lowest card below the two or the highest card above the King.

To play the game you must insert coins into the machine and press the deal button. The machine will deal 5 cards face up to you. You must choose which cards (if any) you want to hold and the rest are discarded. Then press the Deal button again and a new set of cards will be dealt for the discarded cards. You will have your final poker hand by now and if you have at least a pair of Tens or better, you will receive a payout.

This is a standard Tens or Better video poker machine paytable:

Poker Hands

Coin 1

Coin 2

Coin 3

Coin 4

Coin 5

Royal Flush

500

1,000

2,000

3,000

4,000

Straight Flush

50

100

150

200

250

Four of a Kind

25

50

75

100

125

Full House

6

12

18

24

30

Flush

5

10

15

20

25

Straight

4

8

12

16

20

Three of a Kind

3

6

9

12

15

Two Pairs

2

4

6

8

10

Tens or Better

1

2

3

4

5

If you are new to poker you must learn what each hand combination is. Here's a basic guide for each poker hand:

  • Royal Flush: consists of an Ace, King, Queen, Jack and Ten of the same suit
  • Straight Flush:  any five cards in a row of the same suit, such as 2,3,4,5,6 of Spades
  • Four-of-a-kind: four cards of the same rank, such as four Kings
  • Full House: consists of three cards of the same rank and two of another rank, such as three 10's and two 5's
  • Flush: any five cards with the same suit
  • Straight: any five cards in a row but with different suits
  • Three-of-a-kind: consists of three cards of the same rank plus any other two cards
  • Two pairs: consists of two cards of the same rank and two cards of another rank, plus one extra card, such as two Queens and a 2.
  • One Pair: consists of two cards of the same rank and three miscellaneous cards such as two Jacks and a 5, 9 and Ace.

sf??It is important to notice what the lowest paying poker hand is for each VP machine. Normally, all video poker machines start paying after a Jacks/Kings or better pair, some even after two pairs. That means that if you have two 9's and nothing else, you won't get any win. Tens or Better video poker machines starts paying for pairs of Ten's or higher, making it one of the most generous machines. However, there is a big catch.  Most Ten's or Better machines have a short-pay paytable. This means they have decreased the standard payout for lower-ranking poker hands. A Full-Pay video poker machine will give out 9 coins on a Full-House and 6 coins on a Flush for one-coin bets. As you can see on the paytable above the Ten's or Better game has only 6 coins for a Full-House and 4 for a Straight.

After winning a hand most Ten's or Better machines will give you an option to double-up. This is a risky gamble and it is recommended to do it only for low-paying poker hands. The double or nothing game is played with 5 cards, one for the machine and four face-down cards for the player. The player must pick one card that is higher than the machine's card. If it is, the amount won will be doubled or lost if the player gets a lower card.

Basic Tips and Strategy for Ten's or Better Video Poker

  • Always play the full 5-coin bet for every hand in order to hit the top Royal Flush jackpot.
  • Never discard or break up a winning hand unless you have four cards to a Royal Flush.
  • If you get a non-paying low pair, keep it and discard all the rest. Never hold a kicker card (face card) with the low pair. Statistics show you have better chances of hitting a three-of-a-kind without the kicker card. Only exception to this rule is if you have 3 cards to a Royal Flush or four to a straight or flush, then discard the low-pair and cross your fingers for one of these hands.
  • Discard all five cards only if you have no 3 cards to a straight, flush or straight/royal flush, no high card and no low pair.

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