How Does Video Poker Differ From Regular Poker and Where Can You Play it in Canada?

If you’re someone who plays Texas Hold’em on a regular basis, you may be interested in trying out different ways to enjoy poker.

A lot of the best players in the business, including Phil Ivey and Tom Dwan, often switch between different strains of poker to improve their all-round game. These legends have even been known to cross over to other casino games too. As the happy medium between casino gaming and poker, playing video poker can help prepare players for dealing with coin flip situations. Let’s take a closer look. 

Lots of Playing Opportunities

Video poker is exactly what you might expect. It is played on a computer screen and is similar to a slot machine in that it follows certain rules. It has a RTP setting and uses RNG to determine the hands. A five-card hand comes into view, and players have the option to hold certain cards. They then spin again to see whether they have made a winning hand.

There are lots of opportunities to play video poker in Canada, and the game is arguably more common than Texas Hold’em in a brick and mortar setting. This is because players can sit down at a machine at any time, rather than wait for opponents and a dealer for the table game to start. It’s easy to find a local casino to play at in Canada, as the gambling industry in the country is worth $13 billion and there are 60 permanent casinos. For people in search of video poker machines, there are roughly 87,000 EGMs throughout Canada, so it should be easy to find a game.

Good for Beginners

Video poker is a good way to get used to all of the different hands and learn how valuable each one is in all types of poker. It can also familiarize you with which hands you are more likely to hit. For example, hitting a straight flush on a video poker machine is extremely rare, but spinning in a pair or a set happens much more frequently.


This is poker in its most basic form, and it differs greatly from a round of Texas Hold’em. For example, players normally have to stake on the cards that they are dealt in video poker, and don’t have the opportunity to fold. There is also no bluffing, and no human to human interaction. However, the commonalities between the two games are enough to make video poker a great stepping stone for newbie players. 

A High Adrenaline Game

Video poker can also be used as a way to prepare poker players for high adrenaline situations in the game. There are certain points when it is important to keep your emotions in check at the felt, even though your heart might be racing. For instance, your excitement levels could go into overdrive if you go all-in on a semi bluff. However, you don’t want other players to notice your anxiety, which is why you need training at how to master your microexpressions. Every time you press the button on video poker, it’s a bit like taking a poker hand to a coin flip situation on the river. This helps you practice your poker face.

For poker players who fancy a change from Hold’em, or slots fans who are looking for something different, video poker is a solid option. Most casinos in Canada have these machines, so it isn’t difficult to find a game. Playing video poker can help you improve some of the skills you need at the felt, too, helping you on your way to becoming a better poker player.


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