Nevada video poker remains on top

Mar 26, 2002 12:53 AM

It’s time to whip the world back into shape again: The video poker experience available in the Silver State is so far ahead of anywhere else that there’s not even a measurement for such a disparity. Come to think of it, the entire state offers an overall too-good-to-be-true package of excitement, entertainment, outdoor activities, two of the world’s most beautiful lakes, of course gaming, what I believe to be the new culinary capital of the world, the country’s finest weather ”” and don’t forget the most attractive cocktail waitresses on the planet. Who would want to play anywhere else?

Well, I don’t live in Nevada, and it’s not only because everybody can’t live there. I won’t play anywhere else, but my Play Strategies dictate that I leave after winning what I came into town to win ”” and immediately. I’m one of the few you’ll ever hear say that I used to be a compulsive video poker player/loser. Even fewer ”” maybe no one else ”” will tell how they’ve recovered from that play-every-day—they-can disease and have gone on to greatly overcome their lifetime losses while playing far fewer hours than they used to.

Living in Arizona, there’s ample opportunity to play at any of the robust and popular Native American run casinos in the Phoenix area. But I don’t, and I never will. In Nevada I have reasonable trust that the Gaming Commission does a good job in assuring the absolute randomness of all video poker machines. I’m just not sure enough in Arizona. My questions have been returned with fuzzy answers, and the best I can tell is that the games are regulated by the tribes. Because that bothers me, my choice is to stay away.

I’m sure there are other state run casinos across the country that have excellent regulatory policies, but I just don’t have the time to study them nor do I see a reason to play at their casinos. In Atlantic City, for instance, I believe what I hear about their games being fair, but I won’t play unless I do my own internal study. And the video poker games in their casinos are radically different from Nevada’s. In short, if you like Jokers, go to AC. If you like Aces, head to Nevada. Connecticut has a couple of fine ”” no, first-class Indian casinos, but walk out after the fun’s over and you’re in the middle of the woods. What about all the new places popping up on reservations across California? Frankly speaking, if you’re so close to any of the fun spots across Nevada, I have no idea why anyone would want to stop halfway there and miss out on all the entertainment that lies ahead.

So why is the video poker second to none in Nevada? Availability, variety, denominations, the newest games, coinless machines if desired, and of course everybody’s favorite ”” the growing numbers of full-pay and 100%-plus games. But that’s not all a player/visitor like myself looks for. I take advantage of everything the state has to offer. Since my wife works at one of the aerospace firms, on some long weekends

or occasionally for vacationing we’ll go to our favorite spot on the map: The Hyatt Cottages at Incline Village on Lake Tahoe ”” summer or winter. Used to be she’d have to come overseas to visit me in some uncomfortable, noisy, crowded city, but now a more relaxing place we have yet to find. Of course we can always get into traffic if we want to take a drive around the lake to the South Shore where all the big casinos are ”” and we sometimes do ”” but even that has it’s own type of not-so-fast atmosphere.

All in all, you just can’t beat the overall package of fun that Nevada has to offer. You like gourmet restaurants and endless buffets? They’re everywhere. You enjoy bars with premium pours that you can’t find at your local pub? Look no further than your favorite casino. You prefer lounge acts? How’s A to Z sound? And what about video poker? If you understand you’ll have plenty of bad luck along with not so much good luck ”” but you prepare for when the good type happens to come along and don’t overplay you’re welcome ”” you’ll learn how to reap every single benefit this fantastic state has given me, and now you, the opportunity to experience.