Guide to Playing Chase the Royal Video Poker

Chase the Royal video poker attracts those players who want to attain the
most elusive hand in all of video poker, the royal flush. Normally, the royal
flush comes along so rarely that it seems almost impossible to achieve. But this
variation of video poker persuades you to go for the hand and gives you a
fighting chance to obtain it.

For those who have played video poker before, either in a casino or on a
top gambling website, you likely are familiar with how the royal flush hand stands
above all others in terms of its desirability. On most pay tables for video poker,
it stands well above even the straight flush or four of a kind hands. You can usually
get more than 20 times the return for a royal flush than for any other five-card hand
you might make.

Royal Flush of Hearts

The only problem is that the hand, which consists of a 10, jack, queen, king
and ace of the same suit, is extremely difficult to achieve. Probabilities show
that your chances of being dealt a royal flush are literally only a little bit
better than one in a million. Even with the chance to draw new cards, your
chances are still extremely remote.

Chase the Royal video poker improves those chances by a little over four
times more than your common video poker game. It does this by encouraging you to
switch to three cards to a royal flush when you are dealt a pair of jacks,
queens, or kings that aren’t part of a larger hand. That dramatically reduces
your chances of hitting the royal flush on the draw.

In addition, Chase the Royal video poker features special payoffs for the
straight and the flush when you do choose that option. Those hands become much
more lucrative in this mode, giving you even more incentive to take the option
of switching to three cards to a royal flush.

Of course, by turning down a pair, you are giving up a sure-thing winning
hand that will return you even money at the least. It also has the potential to
improve to some impressive hands like a full house or four of a kind.

In addition, the pay tables for Chase the Royal video poker drastically
reduce payouts for full house and flush hands achieved by normal means. All of
this, combined with the fact that the game can only be played in multiple play
mode, makes it tough to sustain winnings if the Chase the Royal aspect isn’t
going your way.

The following article will explain the basics of video poker and then switch
to show how Chase the Royal video poker deviates from that. We’ll also look at
the different pay tables available for the game and talk about strategy.
Finally, we’ll explain why the game is known as high-volatility and we’ll
explore its benefits and drawbacks.

Basic Video Poker

Before you can understand how Chase the Royal video poker works, you must
possess a basic grasp of normal video poker. If you’ve ever played five-card
draw poker at a casino, or even at home, you should be able to understand it.
After all, the rules are pretty much the same and the probabilities of making certain winning hands
are also the same because video poker simulates playing with a standard 52-card deck.

Here is a basic walk-through of how video poker works:

  1. The Set-Up: First, you must insert money into
    the machine (or make sure your account is funded if you are playing online).
    Most machines let you choose your denomination, which usually range from a
    penny to a dollar. You will be asked to make a bet to start playing, and
    that bet can be between one and five coins, or credits, with each coin or
    credit being equal to the denomination amount.
  2. The Deal: The machine will deal you five cards
    which you will see on your screen. Your goal is to achieve some combination
    of cards that constitutes a winning hand. Winning hands range from a simple
    pair of jacks or better, all the way through the aforementioned royal flush.
  3. The Draw: Luckily, you have a chance to improve
    your hand if the deal doesn’t turn out to be exactly the way you’d want it
    to be. You can discard one through all five of your cards in the effort to
    improve your hand. Whatever cards you discard will be replaced with new ones
    from the same virtual deck from which you were dealt.
  4. Scoring and Playing Again: After the draw, your
    hand is done and the computer will score your hand to see if you’ve won
    anything. You can then play again, if you still have credits, or you can
    cash out. If you cash out, the machine will print out a ticket and you can
    redeem it for cash or use it elsewhere in the casino.

Video poker is a casino favorite because of all of the advantages it offers
to the player. On the one hand, you get to make decisions about your hand,
meaning that your skill level will have something to do with how much you win.
In addition, the probabilities mean that you have an idea of what to expect from
gameplay, which isn’t the case with slot machines.

In addition to that, video poker offers you the ease of play and freedom to
play at your own pace and comfort. Anyone who has ever played table games before
knows that there can be a lot of pressure in the midst of other gamblers and
casino employees. You could say that video poker offers the best of both slot
machines
and table games.

Multiple Play Mode

Chase the Royal video poker is found on machines that only allow you to play
in multiple play mode. This means that you will be playing three, five, or ten
hands at once. Read on to find out how that works.

The deal that you receive will govern all the hands that you play. For
example, let’s say that you receive the following deal in triple play mode:

Eight of Hearts, Nine of Clubs, Ten of Spades, Jack of Hearts, Ace of Clubs

You decide that your best chance on the draw would be to keep the four
consecutive cards, discard the ace, and go for the straight. As a result, you
will receive three different draws from decks containing everything but the five
cards you already received on the deal. For example, you might end up with:

Eight of Hearts, Nine of Clubs, Ten of Spades, Jack of Hearts, Queen of Hearts
Eight of Hearts, Nine of Clubs, Ten of Spades, Jack of Hearts, Jack of Diamonds
Eight of Hearts, Nine of Clubs, Ten of Spades, Jack of Hearts, Three of Clubs

As you can see, you made a straight of eight through queen on the first hand,
and you managed a pair of jacks with the second hand. The third hand was a
loser.

If you played five play or ten play Chase the Royal video poker, the process
would be the same, only you would be drawing for five hands or ten hands from
your original dealt hand. Keep in mind that you have to make bets for each of
these hands.

That means that if you were playing ten play and were betting the max bet
(which, as you’ll see, is the only way to activate Chase the Royals), you’d have
to bet 50 coins (or 10 times 5). It can be a pretty expensive undertaking, which
is why you should choose your denomination with care. Otherwise, you could find
yourself quickly spending your entire bankroll in a matter of minutes if you
don’t win quickly.

Chase the Royals Mode

You’ve now learned how to play video poker, and you understand the multiple
play style that is used by Chase the Royal video poker. Now it’s time to look at
how the special option of the game works. It basically gives you extra
opportunities to go after the royal flush hand.

The Chase the Royal option in Chase the Royal video poker is activated when
you play the max bet. If you don’t go with a max bet, you can play the normal
pay table of the game. You will be short-changing yourself, however, because the
best payback for the game comes when you go after those royal flush hands and
use the game to help you get them.

If you do play the max bet, you will have the opportunity to Chase the Royals
when you get a pair of jacks, queens, or kings that aren’t part of a better hand
in play. For example, look at these two hands:

Jack of Spades, Jack of Hearts, Three of Clubs, Four of Diamonds,  Seven of Hearts

Jack of Spades, Jack of Hearts, Two of Clubs, Two of Hearts, Five of Clubs

As you can see in the first hand, the jacks are the best part of the hand and
there is nothing else that makes for a winning combination. That hand would
indeed activate the choice to Chase the Royals.

By contrast, in the second hand, the jacks are one of two pairs in the hand.
Because a two pair is better than one pair, that hand doesn’t qualify for Chase
the Royals.

If you do have a hand like the first one in Chase the Royal video poker, you
can trade in the entirety of the hand for a new deal that will automatically
give you three cards to a royal flush. There is no telling what these cards will
be, but they must constitute a trio that, with two more specific cards on the
draw, will make up a royal flush.

For example, you might end up with:

Jack of Clubs, Queen of Clubs, King of Clubs
Ten of Diamonds, Queen of Diamonds, Ace of Diamonds
Queen of Hearts, King of Hearts, Ace of Hearts

As you can see, there are a number of possible combinations. Once the machine
gives you these three cards, it will immediately follow up by dealing two cards
from the remaining 49 cards in the deck.

Note that an entirely new deck comes into play in Chase the Royal video poker
once you choose to actually Chase the Royal. The cards that you received in the
first deal are back in play. That makes your probability to draw the first card
needed for the royal 1 in 49, and, if you get that, the probability to draw the
second becomes 1 in 48.

By using this option over the course of gameplay, you increase your chances
of receiving a royal flush by more than four times what you could expect from
gameplay on a regular machine. But that isn’t the only lure.

To really entice the player into this option, the machine also beefs up the
payouts for the flush and straight hands when you are in the Chase the Royal
mode. The flush pays off at a ratio of 12 to 1 and the straight at 10 to 1. No
matter which pay table you are using, those are both significantly higher ratios
than what you would achieve if you acquired those hands through the normal
deal-and-draw scenario.

Keep in mind that there is no rule saying that you have to go into that
special mode in Chase the Royal video poker if you get that initial high pair.
You can refuse it and play out the hand just as you would in normal video poker.

But you are really better off going for it each and every time. The high
payouts for the royal compared with the lowered payouts for hands like the full
house on Chase the Royal video poker pay tables make it worth your while to do
so.

Some other notable factors about Chase the Royal video poker that you should
know:

  • If you are dealt a royal flush, the payout is 2000 to 1. That is 2 ½
    times higher than what you would get if you drew to a royal flush in either
    standard or Chase the Royals mode. Most video poker games don’t differ in
    payouts for a dealt or a drawn royal flush.
  • Chase the Royal video poker will recognize when it is advantageous for
    you to ignore the Chase the Royals option, even if you do get a high pair.
    It won’t allow you to do so in those situations. For example, if you had a
    pair of jacks, but also had four cards to a royal in your dealt hand, it
    wouldn’t make sense for you to downgrade to three cards to a royal.
  • As is the case with most video poker games, Chase the Royal video poker
    pays off at a much lower ratio for a royal flush with one to four coins
    played than it does with five coins played. That is another reason why you
    should always play the max bet in this game.

High Volatility of Chase the Royal Video Poker

Video poker games are classified as being either high or low in volatility. A
common Jacks or Better game, for example, is low in volatility because the
average player can play for a long time with a relatively small bankroll without
any large swings in winning or losing. As you move up the ladder to bonus games,
the volatility increases because rare hands are paid at a higher rate while
common hands are paid at a lower rate.

Chase the Royal video poker is extremely high in volatility for several
factors. First, you’re playing multiple play mode, meaning bad deals come up
more often than good deals, which will hurt you exponentially. On top of that,
most pay tables available for the game (more on that below) compensate for the
increased chances of a royal flush by discounting hands that are commonly
achieved, like the full house or flush.

More than anything, though, the Chase the Royals option is really what ups
the volatility. We already explained that it strategically advises for you to
choose the option to dump the high pair and go for the three to a royal when it
comes up. By doing that, however, you are giving away a winning hand, which has
a good chance of being improved for what is still a relatively long shot at the
royal flush.

As a result, Chase the Royal video poker is a good game for those who don’t
really concern themselves with sustaining gameplay over a long time. If you’re
one of those people who really crave that opportunity for the royal and a
massive payoff, this is a game for you. Recreational players who want a long
session of video poker might wish to go elsewhere.

Pay Tables and Payback Percentages for Chase the Royal Video Poker

The pay tables and payback percentages for Chase the Royal video poker go
hand in hand. Pay tables tell you what your winning hands will return to you.
Payback percentages tell you what you can expect to receive from a machine in an
average session.

Chase the Royal video poker is essentially a format that can be laid on top
of most of the basic video poker pay tables that are available. The pay tables
that we are about to list are the full-pay versions of these games in Chase the
Royal mode. That means that they pay back the player at the highest level
available on the market.

That is determined by the payback percentages. When you sit down to play
video poker, you have the advantage of knowing how much you can expect to return
from the game in question on an average session. This amount is determined by
multiplying payback for each hand by the expected frequency with which you will
receive those hands.

Note that payback percentages are average totals and might not apply to a
single session. Just because a machine quotes a 99% payback and a 1% house edge
doesn’t mean that you’ll automatically return $990 from $1,000 put into a
machine (a $10 loss). You might get lucky and hit a royal flush or two, or you
might walk away having lost $500 of the $1,000 because you came up empty.

Nonetheless, if you played the game for a long period of time, you would
start to see the return for that specific game come near 99%. Let’s look at the
pay tables for the most common versions of Chase the Royal video poker followed
by how much they pay back on average.

6 / 5 Jacks or Better 1 Coin 2 Coins 3 Coins 4 Coins 5 Coins
Dealt royal flush 250 500 750 1000 10000
Chased royal flush 250 500 750 1000 4000
Straight flush 50 100 150 200 250
Four of a kind 25 50 75 100 125
Full house 6 12 18 24 30
Chased flush 12 24 36 48 60
Flush 5 10 15 20 25
Chased straight 10 20 30 40 50
Straight 4 8 12 16 20
Three of a kind 3 6 9 12 15
Two pair 2 4 6 8 10
One pair (j’s or better) 1 2 3 4 5
All other 0 0 0 0 0
6 / 5 Bonus Poker Deluxe 1 Coin 2 Coins 3 Coins 4 Coins 5 Coins
Dealt royal flush 250 500 750 1000 10000
Chased royal flush 250 500 750 1000 4000
Straight flush 50 100 150 200 250
Four of a kind 80 160 240 320 400
Full house 6 12 18 24 30
Chased flush 12 24 36 48 60
Flush 5 10 15 20 25
Chased straight 10 20 30 40 50
Straight 4 8 12 16 20
Three of a kind 3 6 9 12 15
Two pair 1 2 3 4 5
One pair (j’s or better) 1 2 3 4 5
All other 0 0 0 0 0
7 / 5 / 4 Double Bonus Poker 1 Coin 2 Coins 3 Coins 4 Coins 5 Coins
Dealt royal flush 250 500 750 1000 10000
Chased royal flush 250 500 750 1000 4000
Straight flush 50 100 150 200 250
Four of a kind (aces) 160 320 480 640 800
Four of a kind (2s – 4s) 80 160 240 320 400
Four of kind (5s – ks) 50 100 150 200 250
Full house 7 14 21 28 35
Chased flush 12 24 36 48 60
Flush 5 10 15 20 25
Chased straight 10 20 30 40 50
Straight 4 8 12 16 20
Three of a kind 3 6 9 12 15
Two pair 1 2 3 4 5
All other 0 0 0 0 0
8 / 5 Double Double Bonus 1 Coin 2 Coins 3 Coins 4 Coins 5 Coins
Dealt royal flush 250 500 750 1000 10000
Chased royal 250 500 750 1000 4000
Straight flush 50 100 150 200 250
Four aces (2 / 3 / 4 kicker) 400 800 1200 1600 2000
Four 2s / 3s / 4s (A / 2 / 3 / 4) 160 320 480 640 800
Four aces 160 320 480 640 800
Four 2s / 3s / 4s 80 160 240 320 400
Four ks – 5s 50 100 150 200 250
Full house 8 16 24 32 40
Chased flush 12 24 26 48 60
Flush 5 10 15 20 25
Chased straight 10 20 30 40 50
Straight 4 8 12 16 20
Three of a kind 3 6 9 12 15
Two pair 1 2 3 4 5
One pair (j’s or better) 1 2 3 4 5
All other 0 0 0 0 0
8 / 5 Triple Double Bonus 1 Coin 2 Coins 3 Coins 4 Coins 5 Coins
Dealt royal flush 250 500 750 1000 10000
Chased royal 250 500 750 1000 4000
Straight flush 50 100 150 200 250
Four aces (2 / 3 / 4 kicker) 800 1600 2400 3200 4000
Four 2s / 3s / 4s (A / 2 / 3 / 4) 400 800 1200 1600 2000
Four aces 160 320 480 640 800
Four 2s / 3s / 4s 80 160 240 320 400
Four ks – 5s 50 100 150 200 250
Full house 8 16 24 32 40
Chased flush 12 24 26 48 60
Flush 5 10 15 20 25
Chased straight 10 20 30 40 50
Straight 4 8 12 16 20
Three of a kind 2 4 6 8 10
Two pair 1 2 3 4 5
One pair (j’s or better) 1 2 3 4 5
All other 0 0 0 0 0
Game Payback Percentage
6/5 Jacks or Better 96.7%
6/5 Bonus Poker Deluxe 96.9%
7/5/4 Double Bonus Poker 95.3%
8/5 Double Double Bonus 98.9%
8/5 Triple Double Bonus 99.1%

Strategy for Chase the Royal Video Poker

Because Chase the Royal video poker is a kind of catch-all game that can be
applied to many different forms of video poker, it’s impossible to cite a common
strategy for holds and discards. You should always play to the pay table.
Because of that, you might play a hand completely differently in Jacks or Better
mode than you would in a Triple Double Bonus game.

We highly recommend that you dive into the video poker section of this site so that you can see how you might work out the proper
strategy for each of these games. That’s because the only way that you can max
out your winnings and achieve the payback percentages listed above is by making
the right choice each and every hand.

Barring that, we’ve already told you the two most important strategies that
govern a Chase the Royal video poker machine:

  1. Play the max bet
  2. Always chase the royals when given the chance

If you follow those two rules, find a full-pay pay table, and learn the
strategy for the specific variation in question, you’ll give yourself the best
chance at winning.

Pros and Cons of Chase the Royal Video Poker

Pros

  • Much improved chance for a royal flush hand
  • Improved payoffs for a flush and straights in Chase the Royals
    mode
  • Many variations and pay tables available to you
Cons

  • Extremely high volatility
  • Need to play max bets in multiple play makes for expensive game
  • Might be too complicated for beginners

Conclusion

If you’ve ever thought that a royal flush in video poker was nothing more
than a pipe dream, Chase the Royal video poker is the game that just might
convince you otherwise. Of course, you have to pay for the privilege for the
increased chances at the royal, but the opportunity to see that ten through ace
of the same suit on your screen just might prove to be worth it.