New (really?) poker games

Mar 13, 2006 4:43 AM

Video poker players are a dedicated lot, whether it’s to their precious Deuces Wild, Joker Poker, Bonus Poker or even Double Bonus Poker.

Their popularity is especially apparent in the locals-oriented casinos of Nevada, which often feature floors with 60 percent or more video poker machines.

The fact that players are somewhat "die hard" in their dedication to a handful of poker games doesn’t deter gaming giant IGT from coming out with new versions of the popular game.

Here are a few of the innovative video poker games recently released by the Las Vegas-based manufacturer.

Pick-a-Pair Poker: The Triple Play, Five Play and Ten Play Pick-a-Pair Poker theme deals two cards face-up in all active hands, plus two stacks of three cards each, with the top card of each stack face-up.

After selecting one of the stacks, the top card joins the two dealt cards in all active hands. The remaining face-down cards in the chosen stack then fill out the active hands with luck-of-the-draw cards from one 52-card deck for each hand. This is straight-ahead satisfying poker players tend to love.

Anything’s Wild Poker: Play this new game and pick your own wild card. Now, you don’t have to limit your strategy to deuces wild. Choose a favorite card, follow a gut feeling, or go with a superstitious whim. Whatever the inspiration, players are in control of what’s wild in this game, and can change their wild card choice at any time between games.

Depending on how the machine you play is set up, you can wager from 1 to 100 credits per hand in the single-hand model, or 5 to 30 credits per hand in the multi-hand version. Either way, a max bet natural royal flush earns the top award of 800 credits times the total bet!

Five Aces Bonus Poker: Don’t get nervous, you don’t need an extra ace up your sleeve. This game uses one 52-card deck, plus one extra ace slipped into the deck that can really spice up a hand. The fifth ace means more chances for four aces, four aces with that juicy "kicker," and a BIG jackpot for all five aces! Imagine playing the Double Double Bonus Poker theme with a fifth ace added to the deck. This gives you more shots at that holy grail of hands — aces with a kicker — and has the added attraction of a five-ace hand that pays a top award of 6,000 coins. Wow! Look for it in both single- and multi-hand versions. There are no funky bonuses; no "extra spins." Just a juicy new top award and plenty of opportunities to hit it big with four, or even five aces!

Bonus Hand Triple Play: This new game yields free hands with dealt winner. And, we all know, that more hands means more chances to win. When dealt a full house, flush, straight, three-of-a-kind, or two pair, you’ll receive one free hand for each hand played. The free hands — up to a maximum of six — are played during the next game, along with the regular hands for that game, at the same bet level as the initiating hands. To liven things up, a free hand can also initiate additional free hands. Any remaining free hands carry forward until all free hands have been played, up to a maximum of 100 free hands.

Chase the Royal Draw Poker: For those who like to chase royal flushes (and who among us doesn’t!), this game offers up to four times the number of royal flushes as traditional draw poker, plus three multi-hand game formats — Triple Play, Five Play and Ten Play versions. Here’s how it works: Players can trade cards when dealt a pair of jacks, queens, or kings. In an exchange, the game deals three cards from a single-suit deck of ten through ace seed cards toward a royal flush. The three cards replace the original five-card hand, and are duplicated in all active hands. Two additional cards are drawn to complete each hand, each from a unique deck.