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    Are You Ready for a Video Poker Tournament?

    Like many casino games, video poker involves playing against the casino. Video poker tournaments, however, are quite different. Rather than playing against the casino, video poker tournaments pit players against each other, adding even more fun, intrigue, and strategy to the already fun and challenging game of video poker.

    Surging in popularity as of late, more and more people are ditching their bingo halls and local poker rooms or casinos for fun and exciting video poker tournaments, many of which offer impressive cash prizes. Here’s the rundown on video poker tournaments so you know what to expect, how they work, and more importantly, how to finish in the money. Who knows, you may be ready for Lady Luck Casino's Video Poker Tournament by the end of this article!

    What is a Video Poker Tournament?
    Unlike regular video poker, in which people play directly from their own bankroll, video poker tournament players play with credits. Every player pays a fixed fee for entry into the tournament and is given the same number of credits or the same amount of time to gain more credits than everyone else playing in the tournament. In most video poker tournaments, 10 to 25 percent of all players typically win some kind of prize, but this depends on the tournament format.

    Video poker tournaments either limit play according to a timer or on the number of hands or credits played. For example, a tournament can be decided by which player has the highest score after two hours of play, or it can be decided by which player has the highest score after 150 hands have been played.

    Some tournaments actually include both a time and a hand limit. In such a tournament, 4,000 credits might be put on a meter and 30 minutes may be put on the clock. Each session would be decided either when the 4,000 credits are used up or when 30 minutes of play have taken place, whichever happens first.

    Many tournaments set their machines so that they will automatically bet the max bet, which is usually five coins. However, other tournaments allow players to determine the number of credits they would like to play for each hand. That being said, it’s typically best to play max bet, because the payout on a royal flush soars from 250 to 1 all the way to 800 to 1 when playing the max bet of five credits.

    Sometimes, however, various hands have inflated payout amounts for certain tournaments. While higher scores can take the tournament excitement level up a notch, they can also indicate the need for a possible change in strategy.

    Differences between Tournament Strategy and Standard Video Poker Strategy
    With a small window of time or a limited number of hands to beat out the competition, luck plays a significant role in nearly every video poker tournament. With increased luck comes diminished need for strategy, so many players find themselves discarding all of their other cards and holding out for a royal flush in order to end up in the money, even though the odds may be stacked against them.

    In most cases, you will want to employ the same strategy you use for standard play. However, since winning and losing a session or a tournament can come down to a royal flush, it may be wise to opt for a royal draw over three-of-a-kinds, two pair, and smaller hands.

    Although there are different strategies that can be used depending on the specific rules of a tournament, it’s important to remember that luck plays a significant role in video poker tournament play. The important thing is to enjoy yourself and hope all of your losses will be small and all of your wins will be big and swift.

    This month's Video Poker Tournament at Lady Luck Casino Vicksburg features the chance to win cash and fanplay! Those invited to the $10,000 Invitational Video Poker Tournament can register Friday, July 25 in VIP Services from 4:00 to 8:00 pm. The first and second round of the tournament will be played Saturday, July 26th. The second round will be played Sunday, July 27th with an awards ceremony following.

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