Joker Poker is one of the most well-established machine-based games that you will find in a casino. In a nutshell, it is a traditional video poker game that is based on fixed-odds. The aim of the game is to formulate a matching poker hand, to that of the real game. The better the hand, the more you win!
Joker Poker Rules Overview
In comparison to more traditional video poker titles such as Jacks or Better, when you play Joker Poker you are accustomed to the ‘Joker Card’. If you are familiar with online slots, then the Joker card is very similar to a ‘Wild’ symbol. In other words, the Joker card can substitute any other card in your hand, to assist in making the highest hand possible. We’ll cover this, alongside the main Joker Poker rules, further down.
Due to the sheer popularity of the game, you can now play Joker Poker at a plethora of industry-leading casinos, both at your desktop computer, as well on the move via your mobile device.
So now that we’ve covered the fundamentals, in the next part of our guide we are going to explain the most basic Joker Poker rules.
How to play Joker Poker
First and foremost, it is important to note that there is no variation in the underlying rules when comparing the online or mobile version to that of land-based casinos. As such, Joker Poker is one of the easiest casino games to play.
When you first get started, you will initially need to determine how much you want to bet on each round. This will of course depend on the operator in question, although betting stakes are usually suitable for both low and high rollers.
Once your stakes have been pre-set, you then need to ‘Deal’ the cards. In total, you will be dealt 5 playing cards. The game utilises a standard pack of 52 playing cards, plus the additional Joker. As the aim of the game is to finish the round with the best poker hand possible, it is hoped that you can make a win from the original 5 cards dealt. However, this is where the game has a twist.
Before the round concludes, you have the option of replacing some, all, or none of the original 5 cards dealt to you. This means that you can utilise the ‘Hold’ button, which instructs the machine to keep that particular card, or cards, in-place. Once you have decided which card(s) you want to hold, simply click the ‘Deal’ button again.
At this stage of the game, in order to win you need to match a hand from the list of winning poker hands. In doing so, the amount of money you win is based on two factors. Firstly, each poker hand is connected to a ‘Fixed-Odds Pay-out’. Secondly, the total win size is determined by the amount you staked on that particular round.
Therefore, in order to calculate your winnings, you simply multiple the fixed-odds payout by that of your stake size. For example, if you land ‘Two Pairs’ at odds of 2x and you are betting £10 per round, then you would win a total of £20!
So now that we’ve shown you how the most basic Joker Poker rules work, in the next section we are going to explore the pay-out table.
What hands can I win at?
When you play Joker Poker online, you have to remember that you are playing with an additional card, which is the Joker. This means that the pay-out table will contain extra hands, in comparison to the real-world game. Don’t forget, the higher the hand, the more you can win. To make things easier for you, we have listed the most common hands below.
Joker Poker Rules: Hand Structure
Natural Royal Flush: The term ‘Natural’ Royal Flush is used to indicate a standard Royal Flush, without the aid of the Joker. As it is in the real-world game, a Royal Flush is the best hand you can get when you play Joker Poker. The only way to get it is to land a 10, J, Q, K and A, all of the same suit. If the Joker Poker machine has a jackpot of any sort, it will most likely be for this.
5 of a Kind: Much like in the case of the below hand, 5 of a Kind requires the aid of the Joker card. It is essentially a hand that constitutes Four of a Kind, plus the Joker. For example, four Kings, plus the Joker.
Joker Royal Flush: In most cases, the next highest hand when you play Joker Poker is that of the ‘Joker Royal Flush’. In effect, this means that you have made a traditional Royal Flush, with the aid of the Joker card. For example, if you managed to get a same-suited hand of 10, J, Q and K, plus the Joker card, you will have a Joker Royal Flush.
Straight Flush: A Straight Flush is awarded when you get 5 consecutive cards, all of same suit. For example, a 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 of Spades.
Four of a Kind: When you play Joker Poker and get any four cards of the same value, you have 4 of a kind. For example, four Queens.
Flush: If all 5 cards have the same suit, you get a flush. For example, a 2, 7, 8, 9 and Q, all of which are Clubs.
Straight: A straight is awarded when you get 5 consecutive cards, not of same suit. For example, a 9, 10, J, Q and K, consisting of different suits.
Three of a Kind: Any three cards of the same value. For example, three Jacks.
Two Pair: Any two pairs of the same card. For example, a pair of 4s and a pair of 6s.
Kings or Better: A pair of Kings or Aces. Unlike the more traditional ‘Jacks or Better’ version, when you play Joker Poker online, the game most commonly only pays out for a pair of Kings or Aces.
Joker Poker Summary
In summary, Joker Poker is one of the most popular machine-based casino games in the industry, both in the online and land-based space. When it comes to the actual Joker Poker rules, they couldn’t be simpler. Simply match a poker hand from your final 5 cards, and you win!