Just How Good Is Triple Double Bonus Poker?

Sep 11, 2007 12:10 AM

For a game that’s been around a long time, you really don’t see that many people playing Triple Double Bonus Poker. Why? Partially because it’s not readily available everywhere, and mostly because players are afraid of it.

But is it a good game to play with the opportunity to profit consistently without suffering bankroll-ending losses? Let’s take a look:

The very first sensible step any player who intends to play this game should take is to make absolutely sure it is played ONLY in the 9/7 version (pays 9 for the full house and 7 for the flush).

It is however, more predominantly available in short-pay versions such as 9/6, 9/5, 8/6 and 8/5 or less. So why am I so adamant on the full-pay table for this game when I’m not all that concerned whenever I play other games?

Triple Double Bonus (TDB) is a game that has an important need for the player to receive as many credits as possible on lower-end wins. That’s because trips only pay 2 on this game, and it can become very frustrating if the player experiences longer than normal quad droughts.

At the same time, TDB, even in full pay, is not what the math people like, because it is "only" a 99.6 percent play. Of course here’s where we go our separate ways. Nobody ever plays this game more than a few hours in any one session anyway, and everyone knows anything can happen at anytime. Besides, whether it’s a 96, 98, 100 or 102 percent game, the only way anyone’s ever going to win a session is by having good luck

And, that only if they’re able to quit when their predetermined win goal has been met or surpassed. That is a tall order, trust me.

The other side of the coin is a little more attractive for the skeptics. At 99.6 percent, it doesn’t take a lot of imagination to create a play greater than 100 by adding in all the comps, freebies, cash back, and anything else possible by tapping into the deepest parts of the slot clubs. In other words, as long as it’s the 9/7 version and the player learns how to play this game properly, it can be played by everybody.

Now for the strategy part, and this is another area where "the establishment" won’t agree. As you know, regardless of the payback percentage of the game, I do not believe anyone can ever beat video poker machines without doses of extraordinary luck. And, especially while sitting at the machines for hours upon hours every day and playing through all the jackpots. That only leads to losing big.

I use progressions in denomination and game volatility in most of my strategies because if you’re able to set attainable goals and quit when reached or surpassed — which means luck has come your way — you’re almost always going to go home a winner. Sometimes you can become a very BIG winner.

TDB strategy is no different other than progressing in game volatility since there’s only one game being played. But what’s unique about this game’s strategy is in how you cumulatively make up for the short pay on the trips. You have to, because 3-of-a-kinds occur in 7.4 percent of your hands, and in this shortened format of paying 2 instead of 3 it accounts for only 14.7% of the payback.

That’s accomplished first by bankroll - where a player must have a minimum of $11,175 on hand for any one session — and then by incorporating a dual-phased progression in both denomination and number of credits being played within each level. And no, critics and nay Sayers, this has no relation to Martingale since the player can lose 50 or 60 straight hands and still both win the session and never come close to approaching machine limits.

The strategy requires 100 credits be played at 25c; 200 at 50c; 300 at $1,400 at $2; and 500 at $5. A session’s MINI-GOAL (i.e., minimum cash out point) is just $5 before going back to begin again at quarters, while the session’s overall win goal is $250. Within each mini-session the player simply continues play until the minimum $5 win goal is met, or he busts out.

The bankroll allows for three session attempts, and with the number of exceedingly large jackpots the game has to offer and because there are a number of special plays that deviate from optimal play in order to take full advantage of every opportunity presented, huge wins will occur more often than huge losses (in addition to all the smaller wins) and if anyone chooses to look down the road some at their "long-term" potential — they will be far ahead.

What’s a "special play" that deviates from optimal strategy? Example: You’re dealt AAA94. If the hand were played millions of times, the best value would be obtained from holding AAA4 since four Aces with a 2, 3, or 4 pays a whopping 4,000 credits. But it is not the smart play when playing short-term strategy and trying to hit a win goal in a single session. In this case, the intelligent player would only hold the 3 Aces since four of them pay 800 and will get you to your win goal. Holding the "4" is simply wrong because it attempts to apply long-term rules to short term play.

There is also a profitable way to play this game in multi-play format (5-play ONLY) albeit the bankroll required for just a single session of play is a mostly prohibitive $14,475, equating out to $43,425 for those who want to do it right and have 3x a single session’s bankroll on hand. It may seem a lot for a rather small mini-session win goal of just $200, but based on my experience with my regular 5-play strategy the wins, when they come, are mostly 4 and sometimes 5 figures.

In TDB five-play strategy, the player plays 300 credits on 25c, 600 on 50c, 1,100 on dollars, 1,500 on $3 and 2,000 on $5. As with single play above, a 9/7 game MUST be played (they are available in this format in limited locations) and the kicker must NEVER be held with three Aces.

Naturally, if there’s time and the player’s comfort zone parameters are being met, more than one session can be played whenever desired. But one must know their limitations in both win requirements and stamina. After just one hour of play any video poker player’s sharpness begins to decline rapidly. Be honest with yourself first. Then get used to winning.

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