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Video Poker Long Run Volatility

People often talk about casino games and issues of 'expectancy', which is really just talking about the house edge and how much you're expected to win or lose. The catch is, when people quote a house edge they are almost always referring to a number that is only valid over the 'long run'. Remember our talk about payback volatility earlier? It can sometimes be a blessing, as you'll be there at the right time and have a great payback percentage for your session, but it will most often be a curse, as you can play with perfect strategy and still lose your bankroll over the course of a session.

So the question is, how long is the long run? How much Video Poker do we have to play if we want our precious positive expectation games to pay us? That's a tough question. Some people say you need a million hands, which comes down to a couple of thousand hours of play. In other words your long run can literally take years, depending on how much you play.

This isn't to say that you'll be losing right up till you turn 95! The long run is made up of a whole bunch of short runs. If we can work at each short run being a winner, and making up more than all the losing short runs, then we'll always be a bit up. Waiting for those royal flushes can take a long time. That's exactly what following strategy cards is all about. A good Video Poker strategy card can make all the difference between making money and losing it, so don't think you can rely on your poker smarts.

Using proper strategy on each hand you are presented with will ensure you are getting as much out of the long run as you can. To gain a proper long term advantage, (or as close as the machine will allow) you simply have to follow the strategy, have a big enough bankroll to outlast the low points volatility may bring, and play long enough to hit some big hands. There aren't too many variables to worry about really, and that's why Video Poker is such a player's game.