Tips for Playing Over Poker

Over Poker is a new format of video poker released by the online gaming software developer Cryptologic at its online casinos like InterCasino. In the normal variants of video poker players have two options in treating dealt cards. Players can either hold the card or discard it. If the player discards a card then it is replaced. In Over Poker a third move has been introduced. This is "Move Up". The Move Up shifts the card to a higher level and a fresh card is dealt at the lower level. If in moving the card up a new level is started then a wager equal to the base wager is deducted from the player’s account. This adds a cost to the player and hence this move should be used only if it gives the player a better chance of getting a winning hand at the higher level. Some tips on when Move Up should be used are discussed in this article.

In the first instance the Move Up should never be exercised if it weakens the hand at the lower level. The worst case is when a winning combination is destroyed at the lower level in the hope of getting a winning combination at the higher level. For example if the player has two queens at the lower level he is sure of getting a payout. Shifting one of the queens to a higher level is nothing short of gambling suicide. If the player has a ten and a jack at the lower level he does not break a winning combination by shifting the jack up. But if he gains nothing by doing so he should not let go of the opportunity of getting a straight at the lower level.

The article now discusses when players should exercise Move Up. In doing so it is being assumed that they are not weakening the lower hand. In the first instance the situation considered is when the player would be starting a new level and incurring the extra cost. The payouts begin with Jacks or Better and this is the most probable winning combination. Therefore a new level should not be started with a card other than a jack, queen, king or ace.

Now the question arises of moving a card up to a level that has already been started. If the player is making a winning combination at a higher level without losing anything at the lower level then obviously he should exercise the Move Up option. But let us consider some cases when this is not so. Suppose the player has only a jack at the higher level. Should he move a ten up so as to try for a straight? The answer is that he should not. The probability of getting a straight is not very high when there are three cards yet to be dealt. It is better that the player discards the ten at the lower level. However suppose that the player has only a jack at the higher level then he should move a queen up. It is not for getting a straight that he is doing this but for the chance of getting a pair of queens. The possibility of getting a straight is a bonus.

These are very simple cases that illustrate the thought processes required in formulating Over Poker strategy. The optimum strategy will have to factor in all the cards at the lower and higher levels and hence will be more complicated.

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