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How Do You Like It? Slow, Medium or Fast?

January 9, 2013 at 8:26 PM | by | ()

Casinos are slick when it comes to video poker. Some video poker machines will have a button where you can choose your own speed of play while other machines don't. We've found that many of the video poker games with better pay tables (9/6 Jacks or Better, for example) at lower limits (.25 cents) won't have the option to choose speeds and you have to play fast. The games with the worst pay tables will let you choose your pace and this, unfortunately, makes sense.

The casino house edge on better pay tables is less than 1% so, at smaller limits, they want us to play quicker so they can make room for the next gambler and more money. At the same time, casinos are okay with us taking our time on the 6/5 Bonus Poker game with a house edge greater than 3%. With triple the house edge (and profit margin), casinos feel more comfortable letting us go with the slower pace.

This is more often the case in the locals casinos since few casinos on the Strip have video poker with low limits and good pay tables. If we're playing video poker on the Strip, we'll typically have the option to play slow or play fast.

Slow, medium or fast? That's the question.

This writer doesn't like playing fast, especially when there have been a few adult beverages consumed. Play will often begin on three arrows (fast), but the longer we play the more our speed declines because it becomes more difficult to play correctly at fast speeds either from fatigue or inebriation.

How fast do you play video poker when given the option? Let us know in the comments below.

Archived Comments:

Slower The Better

Besides the possibility of making mistakes when you play fast, you are also spending more (play) for your comped drinks. The bartender doesn't know or care what speed you have the machine set on, as long as you continue to play. Which means less hands between drink refills!

If a machine won't let me choose the speed, I just slow-play it. I take a few seconds before I hold my cards and hit draw.

Slow for me

I would rather play slower.  It makes my bankroll go further, and I'm less likely to make a stupid mistake.


I like to watch the card pop up and fast boggles my old brain.

Slow I feel like I need to pull the cards out of the machine.

It is so rare for me to find a 9/6 I did not know there was not a choice of speeds.

I also like a little noise and it drives me nuts to get on a silent machine.


The 9/6 JoB or 8/5 BP in a variety of casinos are set to go fast. It takes focus and no booze to get through it.

Red Rock is a weird one where they have the 8/5 at different speeds at the the bar, but not at some of the machines in the casinos.


I prefer slow. Its easier to comprehend the cards as they pop up.

The bartender dictates...

It's simple really! I play as fast as the bartender will let me. I watch him/her. If there eyes are in my direction... I play. If not, I sluff off. More comped drinks for the $20.


I typically like to play medium.  Although most of the machines at the Orleans and Gold Coast seem to be set to fast.  The only time I really play lightening fast is when I'm in a video poker tournament.  I have been told by friends that they think I play to fast when I'm playing with money.

The last time I played in a daily tournament, it was set to 15 minutes with I think 1500 credits.. I ended up running out of credits before time.

As fast as possible

Back in the day, with better paytables in higher denominations and looser slot clubs, you could make a pretty good living playing video poker. That's when I learned, with a lot of practice, to play as fast and accurately as possible.

Old habits die hard, so, yeah, I'm the guy banging out 600+ hands an hour on the nickel full-pay deuces these days.