Video poker is one of the more recent gambling games to emerge. The concept behind video poker is quite simple to understand. Players are playing a hand of poker without any dealers or other players: for the sole purpose of creating a winning hand.
Video poker may be one of the newer gambling games, but it already has a long history. Over the 40 years that video poker hand has existed in one form or another, the game has evolved in tremendous proportions. From being the major innovation in gambling in the 80s to being a well-known commodity of convenience in online betting sites, video poker is now part of every casino’s catalogue.
So how was video poker created, and what made it immensely popular? Let’s check out together.
It was in 1970 that Dale Electronics introduced the first video poker hand machine - Poker-Matic. It became so popular that it was featured in every land-based casino in Vegas.
In the 1970s, computers were becoming increasingly popular, and the gaming industry was one of the fields that took the most significant advantage of them. A man known as Si Redd - an employee at Bally Technologies - had just created a new type of game, which he hoped Bally Tech would stick with: video poker.
The executives shot down the idea, not wanting to branch out from slots into a new, untested game. In one of Bally's biggest mistakes, they agreed to let Si Redd take the patent.
Within months, Si Redd had formed his company, known as Si Redd's Coin Machines or Sircoma. He started producing new games, and despite an initial lack of interest, casinos began to want to implement them. In the early 1980s, casinos across the United States carried the hottest new game in gambling. If you want to learn more about gambling games, read here.
Slot machines and video poker have a shared history. To fully comprehend the evolution of video poker, we must first examine some of the game's predecessors.
The first poker hands machine was created in 1891 by the Sittman and Pitt Company of Brooklyn, New York. There were five drums in this machine, each holding ten unique cards. The reels begin to spin after a coin is inserted and the lever is pulled. Eventually, each reel would come to a stop on a card that represented the final poker hand.
The Bell Card was developed in 1898 by Charles Fey, who is regarded as the inventor of the slot machine. The winner of a royal flush on this poker machine would immediately receive cash payouts worth up to 20 cents.
Fey invented the Draw Skill, a revolutionary poker machine with a "Hold" feature, in 1901. The player may hold certain cards and return the other cards after the first turn has produced a poker hand to strengthen it. The first 5-card Draw Poker machine was this one.
Sittman and Pitt also started producing machines with the dubbing feature in the early 1900s. They were in such demand that they couldn't be produced quickly enough. Nearly all liquor and cigar shops in the United States had access to these machines. More about Sittman and Pitt, you can read here.
Gambling fortunes no longer depended solely on chance; a certain amount of skill was also involved. However, since gambling was illegal in most of the nation at the time, winning hands were frequently exchanged for gifts like alcoholic beverages, cigars, or cigarettes.
The user thought the system was using a full 52-card deck. These computers could only store 50 cards, though. The ten of spades and the jack of hearts were typically discarded which drastically changed the poker hands ranking.
The chance of a royal flush was reduced by half as a result, even if players are unaware of this because a royal flush was not conceivable in spades or hearts. Despite having fewer poker-winning hands to be dealt, these machines were well regarded, and these pioneering machines gave rise to the familiar form of video poker today.
Liberty Belle Saloon in Reno, Nevada keeps some of the original machines as memorabilia for the good all land-based video poker gaming.
Within a short period, Si Redd struck an agreement with the Fortune Coin Machine Company in Reno to establish Si Redd's Coin Machines (also known as SIRCOMA), which would create his unique video poker hands machines in large quantities. Although interest in the games only gradually increased, by 1981, this new game had become the most well-liked addition to casinos.
A winning hand in the original edition of Draw Poker needed at least two pairs. The game’s popularity skyrocketed by changing the lowest winning hand to a pair of jacks or better, the game's popularity skyrocketed. Compared to modern technology, these early devices had screens comparable to televisions at the time. Soon after, Si changed the business name to International Gaming Technology (IGT), which is still a significant participant in the industry.
Video poker became increasingly popular during the 1980s. These games did not frighten away players terrified by casino table games. The development of video poker increased the appeal of video slots.
Because players were accustomed to seeing the reels spin, video slots were first shunned. However, with the advent of video poker, this issue was resolved.
IGT didn't just continue to develop video poker games. They began to dive into the slots market and helped create video slots. The games were designed on a similar concept used in video poker and drew a massive crowd. The modern slot machine has never been the same since.
One of the best things about video poker is that it is flexible. You wouldn't have thought like that if you were locked in a glass cage. However, the software needed to play the games became better and better, and by the 1990s, video poker was being ported to game consoles, phones, and more.
Casinos today have a large number of video poker machines. They come in denominations ranging from a penny to and beyond $100. Numerous varieties exist, ranging from the straightforward Jacks or Better to bonus games with wild cards like Deuces Wild and Jokers Wild.
The initial cards dealt and preserved from a hand are played three, five, 10, fifty, or even one hundred times in various action games. There are video "action" poker games like multi-strike poker, which on winning hand results in a maximum of three extra hands with double the payback of a winning hand, and Spin poker, a hybrid of video poker and slot machines.
If that's not enough variation to keep your mind whirling, multi-game multi-strike poker is also available.
When online gambling became a thing, it was evident that video poker was one of the first games to leap into the digital age. Video poker was already an electronic game, so it took little or no effort to turn it into an internet game. Today, online video poker games have many variations, and there are many different ways these games can be played. Casinos, sports betting, and bingo domains; all carry video poker games.
As video poker developed on various platforms, it had to reinvent itself and evolve to remain popular. For this, many variants of video poker appeared. Some characteristic of the jokers is that they can act like any other card you need to win.
Others count unique hands, like Aces and Faces; some allow you to play multiple hands at once – sometimes as many as 100 in a single game. As times change and competition becomes more intense, more video poker variants are expected to appear in online casinos across the net.
In recent years, smartphones have taken over the gambling world, and once again, video poker has had to evolve. Again, this was child's play for an electronic game. Due to their simplicity, you will find that many video poker games that can be found online and on mobile gaming devices are incredibly basic in design. Si Redd initially achieved that winning design with his early video poker machines, and with little to no need to change it, his minimalist approach is still in use today.
Video poker keeps changing, and it keeps surviving. It's one of the most accessible games to survive since its origins are electronic. You can expect to continue to find Video Poker success in casinos for years to come.
In 1970 Dale Electronics introduced the first video poker hand machine - Poker-Matic. It became so popular that it was featured in every land-based casino in Vegas. In 1980 Si Redd formed his company, known as Si Redd's Coin Machines or Sircoma. He started producing new games, and despite an initial lack of interest, casinos began to want to implement them.
In the 1980s, Si Redd struck an agreement with the Fortune Coin Machine Company, and by 1981, this new game had become the most well-liked addition to casinos.
That is a tough one to answer. Some players prefer the Las Vegas classics you can still find in some casinos from the 80s, but most are into modern video poker gaming over the phone. Numerous varieties exist, ranging from the straightforward Jacks or Better to bonus games with wild cards like Deuces Wild and Jokers Wild.
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