Avoid Some Common Gaming Pitfalls and Enjoy Gaming More

By Ben Hamill - July 30 2016
Avoid Some Common Gaming Pitfalls and Enjoy Gaming More

We spoke about learning the nuances of correct play in order to even the playing field between the player and the house. In this blog I'll discuss a few actions you can either take or avoid to enhance your chances of winning even if you don't use a strategy card.

Before beginning your playing session, it behooves you tremendously to determine the expected payout of any video poker variation you want to play.

  • Casinos will use two techniques to lower the payout rate. These involve reducing payouts a coin or two on the lowest ranking winning hands such as one pair or two pair. Another way the house enhances its take is by keeping payouts for rarer hands at a minimum. This means flush, full house, four of a kind, and straight flush.

You can always compare the pay table of the same game between casinos so you can get an idea which casino is paying less than the other. Even in the worst case scenario of free market online casinos, the payout rate for any video poker variation will rarely be below 96%. In the best online casinos, the payout rate for video poker is usually the highest of all the games at that casino, upwards of 98%

  • It's also always best to play the highest number of coins allowed at the particular game. It's also necessary to know your budgetary limit. You stand to last longer and win more playing the maximum number of coins even at a low minimum table than playing minimum coins at a higher table. This is because the big payouts for four of a kind or better hands grow dramatically if you've bet maximum coins. So, it's far better to play for $2.50 at a .50 minimum game than to play the same $2.50 as the minimum in a high roller game.
  • Setting a budgetary limit is as important for winning as it is for losing. Setting a time limit on your gaming session is also important. You probably play at night to relax. You also need enough sleep to function properly at work or with your family. On the one hand, the longer you play the less concentration you can bring to the game. On the other hand, playing too long is as much a sign of irresponsible gambling as is losing too much money.

Also, if you're playing at home, you surely have domestic chores and other important things to do. Your self-esteem will have an effect on your gaming as well so if you need to do the dishes, by all means take a break, go to the kitchen, and do them.

  • As tempting as it is to have a drink whilst playing it is best to keep alcohol consumption to a bare minimum, preferably zero, whilst playing. It is not for humanitarian reasons that land-based casinos ply their players with alcohol. Your judgment becomes impaired quickly with alcohol. Your patience in using the strategy card wanes as your buzz takes over. Best to play and then, when you've finished playing for the night, kick back with a relaxing drink.

At that point, even two drinks would be okay!

  • One of the best reasons to play at an online casino is the ready availability of a Practice Mode. You can play for free. Some online casinos do limit free play but most allow you to play long enough to get a good handle of the games.

Many online casinos have tutorials that can help you learn a new game quickly. Land-based casinos give you the rules; a tutorial should teach you some strategy so you can make reasoned decisions.

There are sites online that let you practice and then tell you what you didcorrectly and what your mistakes were.

  • When you play online, you are in far more control than at a land-based casino. The land-based casinos have all manner of distractions: alcohol, noise, dinging, pinging and ringing, women in skimpy garb, boisterous and drunk gamblers, smoke, announcements, lights flashing. Since you're playing at home you ought to do everything possible to keep distractions to a minimum. Keep your windows closed so outside noise doesn't bother you. If the sound of barking dogs hurts your concentration, try to schedule your gaming sessions for when the dogs are the quietest. Play without background music or the television on. There are innumerable ways to keep yourself in a state of full concentration; be mindful of the value of reducing distractions.
  • We cannot underestimate the cost savings of playing online. The money you save not flying, not paying for restaurant food, not drinking in bars, not paying for a hotel room, can go towards your gaming budget and, as we said earlier, playing for the maximum number of coins has the potential for a big payout. So, transferring your casino travel budget to your online casino gambling can result in a big win coming your way!
  • Free market online casinos generally pay more than land-based casinos. Their overhead costs are far lower than the overhead costs for brick and mortar casinos. Surprisingly, free market casinos also pay out far more than Provincial casinos.

It pays to play at free market online casinos, with a well-thought out game plan, a strategy card, familiarity with the game you're playing through tutorials and some free play, fully awake, without alcohol or other distractions, and the attitude that gaming is a fun activity regardless of the outcome!