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Table poker vs. video poker

Land-based casinos and online casinos feature multiple video poker machines where their customers can play comfortably.  Our cash casino offers video poker because it’s the most compatible type of poker for online casino gaming but brick-and-mortar casinos now also offer video poker.

Why are land-based casinos – places where gamers can walk up to a poker table and play against a live dealer – providing video poker machines on their gaming floor? Why are those machines proving to be just as popular, if not more popular, than table poker? What’s the difference between the two types of poker and which type of poker is the right one for you?


The game of poker is believed to date back 1000 years when a similar, domino-type game was developed in 10th century China. Others say that its origins can be traced back to 16th century Persia to a game known as “As Nas”. Regardless of its beginnings, it was introduced to Europe in the 17th century and quickly became a favorite at the early Italian and French casinos. French immigrants brought the game with them to New Orleans in the United States and the surrounding areas in the 18th century and its popularity quickly spread among new settlers who were moving westward. They Anglicized the game known as “Poque” to “poker” and adapted the game a bit to a five-card, 52-deck game.

Even while poker remained a favored game of the aristocracy and high society casino players in Europe, it’s popularity soared in the United States including among riverboat crews and soldiers in both armies of the Civil War. Different variations were introduced such as five-card draw, three, five and seven-card stud and today’s dominant  Texas Hold ’Em.

Video Poker

When video machines started to make their appearances in arcades, the idea of bringing video poker to casinos started to become a reality. The machines kept to the basics of the poker rules but offered players opportunities that they didn’t have with table poker. There were no time limits on play, no minimum betting requirements and no expectations of player mastery of any of the game variations.

Over the course of time, game developers released different types of video poker including single-deck games, multi-deck games, games with various numbers of cards in the hand and more. Today, poker aficionados can find all of the most popular poker variations at the online casino which features poker options for gamers of every skill level and every betting level.


Some of the differences between table poker and video poker include:

  • Containment – video poker is a more contained type of poker than is table poker. You can play video poker with just a basic knowledge of poker’s rules and strategies whereas in table poker, it’s expected that you come to the game with more experience and a deeper understanding of poker’s techniques and systems.
  • Simplicity – video poker tends to be a simpler game than table poker.  Once you get the hang of how you bet, how you ask for more cards and how you move from one level to the next, you can move forward fairly quickly. Many observers believe that video poker makes it easier for people to control their bankrolls since the bets are systematic and not as erratic as in table poker.
  • Table Minimums – video poker doesn’t have any type of table minimum bet whereas the poker tables at land-based casinos involve minimum bets that are meant to keep the wagering high. That means that, even if you’re an unskilled player or a gamer who is just starting out playing poker you can enjoy the game in the same way as if you were in a high-stakes French Riviera casino poker room.
  • No Competition – in video poker, your game depends solely on your card combination with the winning hands paid out according to a displayed pay table. In table poker, you are playing against the house and, often, against other players. That means that you have to somehow assess what the competition has in their hand in order to make your bet and decide when to hold and when to fold. You don’t need to manipulate anyone or worry about anyone trying to manipulate you. It’s just you against the machine.
  • Knowledge – table poker requires more patience than does video poker. In addition to the game itself, a good table poker player will invest countless hours in study and practice in order to master all the intricacies of the game. Playing video poker, however, is less a game of skill and more a game of luck and best suits players who want to play a game of chance.
  • Hand Ranking – the hand rankings of table poker and video poker are similar but a video poker machine will always pay more for a full house than it will for 3-of-a-kind. It’s a simple difference that doesn’t make one version better than the other but you should be aware of the difference if you’re comparing the two poker variants.
  • Betting Rounds – Table poker can have multiple betting rounds involving multiple decisions per round. Video poker involves only one decision point – before the draw. You stay in the game until the craw and once the draw occurs, the game is over.  video poker, there is only one decision point. You make your one choice before the draw.
  • Poker strategies – you don’t have to deal with bluffing, raising, sandbagging, calling or any other poker strategy in video poker. You just place your bet based on your hand and that’s that.
  • What hands are worth – In regular poker, you don’t know what your hand is worth until you ascertain what are in the hands of your competitor.
  • Collusion – in video poker, you’re allowed to solicit advice from a friend while in a table poker game, any kind of collaboration is strictly forbidden.

So which is better, table poker or video poker? Everything depends upon the player and his/her expectations. You need to determine what your abilities are, what your access is to each type of poker and which poker will give you the greatest sense of satisfaction.


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