Double Deuces Video Poker

Double Deuces video poker stands as a classic wild card video poker game with
a twist to make those wild cards even more enviable. As is usually the case with
Deuces Wild video poker game, a two in your hand is cause for celebration
because it can be changed into whatever card is most valuable to you. But Double
Deuces video poker also makes a hand consisting of four twos extremely
lucrative, paying much higher than any other winning hand other than the royal

Many people who play video poker for the first time gravitate to

Jacks or Better
machines. Jacks or Better is the game that most closely
resembles the five-card draw poker that people play at home. Payoffs are based
on the difficulty of achieving certain winning hands.

Video Poker Logo and Two 2 of Spades

Since Jacks or Better gameplay can get a bit stale for those with significant
video poker experience, video poker manufacturers came up with the idea of wild
card play. A wild card is any card that is designated before gameplay begins
that can be changed into whatever card helps the player the most. Wild cards
bring hands into play that would be extremely difficult to achieve when playing
Jacks or Better.

For example, hands like a four of a kind and straight flush come with
surprising regularity in wild card video poker, at least compared to Jacks or
Better. In most cases, twos, or deuces, are designated as the wild cards. That
makes sense because they are the least useful card in terms of making winning
poker hands during normal gameplay.

In the case of Double Deuces video poker, the Deuces Wild rules still apply.
If you receive a two, or multiple twos, in your hand, you can turn them into
whatever card works best for you. This puts all of those big hands within reach
and also gives you the opportunity for a five of a kind, something that can only
occur with a wild card.

But the big news about the pay table for Double Deuces video poker is how it
rewards a hand with four twos. The payoff easily dwarfs the payoffs for all
other winning hands in the game. In fact, it comes within shouting distance of
the payoff for the natural royal flush, which is almost always the highest
payout on a video poker machine.

In the following article, we’ll talk about learning gameplay and strategy for
Double Deuces video poker. We’ll also explain how the wild card concept affects
gameplay, and we’ll go over the pay tables and payback percentages. Finally,
we’ll look at the advantages and disadvantages connected with this game, so
you’ll know whether it’s the right game for you should you see it in a casino or
encounter it on a gambling website.

Learning Video Poker Gameplay

Have you played
five-card draw poker
with friends at home? If so, then you can learn video
poker in a snap. Even if you aren’t familiar with five-card draw, you’ll
probably get the hang of video poker after just a few hands.

If you have played the game before, you can skip to the next section and
learn about wild cards, since they come into play in Double Deuces video poker.
But, if not, take a few minutes to look through this tutorial. It will ensure
that you’re all set to play video poker the next time you’re at the casino, or
even if you’re checking out an online casino from the comfort of your own home.

Video poker is an excellent choice in terms of casino entertainment. The
average payback for players is very competitive compared to other games you
might play. It certainly ranks much higher in that department than slot machines
and is right near the top of the pack if you ranked it against table games as

Like table games, video poker allows you to use strategy and the knowledge of
probabilities to help affect your chances of winning. Meanwhile, it also
resembles slot machines in that you can play it while only having to interact
with the machine. In many ways, it provides the best of both possible casino

Now that you know why you should want to play video poker games like Double
Deuces video poker, let’s learn how to play it. Follow the steps below when you
walk up to the machine:

  1. Insert Your Money: Double Deuces video poker is
    somewhat of a throwback in that there are still some machines which allow
    you to put coins in as your bankroll. If not, you can insert cash or a
    redemption ticket. You will also choose a denomination that suits you, based
    on how many credits you want to play. Credits are the amount of money
    inserted divided by denomination.
  2. Make Your Bet: You will have the choice of
    betting anywhere between one and five credits per hand. While this choice is
    entirely up to you, it’s highly recommended that you go with five coins.
    When we get to the pay table section, you’ll see how this comes into play
    for the natural royal flush hand.
  3. Inspect Your Deal: You will see five cards come
    up on the screen in the same manner as if you were dealt five cards from a
    standard deck of 52. From these cards you will be tasked with making a
    winning hand, as determined by the specific pay table of Double Deuces video
    poker. This particular game pays back with a three of a kind or better;
    anything lower and you’ll lose your initial bet.
  4. Make Your Decision: Luckily, you aren’t stuck
    with what you’ve received in the deal. You’ll get one chance to discard
    cards that you don’t think are helping and have them replaced with other
    cards from the same deck that dealt you the initial five. This is known as
    the draw round, and it’s the final round of the hand.
  5. See If You’ve Won: Ideally, you will have made a
    final hand that is a winner on the pay table. If so, the machine will
    automatically add the appropriate credits to your bankroll. That completes
    the process.
  6. Do It Again or Quit: You can continue playing as
    long as there are credits left in your bankroll. Alternatively, you can cash
    out, redeem your winnings, and move on.

That’s basically it for most forms of video poker. If you learn that, you can
pretty much take on any game you’ll find in the casino or online. Now let’s
learn about wild cards.

Wild Cards

Wild cards really add excitement to the basic video poker concept. Playing
with wild cards, it’s hard to ever come across hands like the royal flush,
straight flush, or four of a kind. You might get lucky and get one or two of
those hands during a long session, but you can also play for a long stretch and
never see one.

With a wild card in play, you can expect those hands to come up much more
regularly. You even have a chance at a hand like a five of a kind that can only
be achieved in wild card play. So, how does it work?

Wild cards are designated by the game in question. In the case of Double
Deuces video poker, the four twos that can be found in the 52-card deck are
wild. That means that they can be transformed into any other card in the deck,
depending upon on what card, or cards, help your hand the most.

Let’s take a look at a sample deal:

Two of Spades, Seven of Hearts, Ten of Diamonds, Jack of Hearts, Queen of Hearts

Without a wild card, this hand doesn’t have too much going for it. The best
mathematical play in terms of what you should hold and discard would be to keep
the jack and queen of hearts as high suited connecting cards. But you would need
significant help on the draw to get you a lucrative winning hand.

Yet, in Double Deuces video poker, the two of spades is a wild card. That
means the card can be changed into whatever might help the most. Since you don’t
know what will be dealt to you on the draw, you can only guess at the

Considering the wild card, the deal now contains four hearts, which is just
one away from a flush. It also contains four cards to a straight, since the two
can be changed into a nine or king to join the ten, jack and queen. Most
enticing of all, it can be connected to the jack and queen of hearts to give you
three cards to a wild royal flush.

Let’s say that you decide to shoot for the wild royal flush and discard the
seven and the ten, leaving the wild card, jack, and the queen. Suppose this
comes in on the draw:

Two of Spades, Two of Hearts, Jack of Diamonds, Jack of Hearts, Queen of Hearts

You didn’t get your wild royal flush, but you did get another wild card and
paired up the jack. The wild cards are automatically changed into whatever makes
the hand most lucrative. In this case, they would also be turned into jacks,
giving you a four of a kind.

Keep in mind that you don’t have to do the mental gymnastics of figuring out
which cards the wild cards should become to make your hand the best after the
draw. The machine will automatically change the wild cards into the cards that
create the hand that pays out the most. You should understand how the wild card
works, however, so you can conceive of the possibilities on the deal and make
the right strategic decision on what to hold.

Double Deuces Video Poker Pay Table

As you can tell, the wild card aspect of the game creates some impressive
winning hands during gameplay for Double Deuces video poker. How much those
hands pay out depends on the pay table. You can find the pay table on the right
side of the screen, which is a good thing because it’s the most important piece
of information a video poker player is granted.

From the pay table, you should be able to tell how gameplay might progress
and what kind of bankroll you should create. It should also help you to decide
on a strategy in terms of what cards to hold and discard. Finally, the pay table
will tell you exactly what you can expect from the machine in question in terms
of what it yields to players as far as average payback goes.

Let’s make it simple and show you the most common pay table for Double Deuces
video poker, also known as 16-11 Double Deuces (for reasons we’ll explain in a

Hand 1 Coin 2 Coins 3 Coins 4 Coins 5 Coins
Natural royal flush 250 500 750 1000 4000
Four deuces 400 800 1200 1600 2000
Wild royal flush 25 50 75 100 125
Five of a kind 16 32 48 64 80
Straight flush 11 22 33 44 55
Four of a kind 4 8 12 16 20
Full house 3 6 9 12 15
Flush 2 4 6 8 10
Straight 2 4 6 8 10
Three of a kind 1 2 3 4 5

For those who are unfamiliar with reading pay tables, you simply have to
combine the rows with the columns. As an example, let’s say that you bet five
coins and made a straight flush. Following the “straight flush” row over to the
“5 coins” column will show that you’ve won 55 coins, or a profit of 50 coins
once you subtract the five that you bet.

The item that should stand out on this pay table, especially if you’re
familiar with video poker, is the payoff for the four deuces hand. It pays off
more than the natural royal flush for one through four coins played, and 50% as
much as the royal for five coins.

In most video poker variations, there is no hand that comes anywhere near the
royal flush at five coins played. For example, in Jacks or Better, the royal
pays off at 8000 coins for five-credit bets, just as in Double Deuces video
poker. The hand that comes closest to it is the straight flush, which only pays
off at 250 coins.

What that means is that the payoff for four deuces makes double deuces video
poker a great one for those looking for jackpot-style payments. The rest of the
pay table resembles most Deuces Wild variations. Perhaps the only difference is
toward the bottom of the pay table, where common hands like the full house or
flush may occasionally pay less in Double Deuces.

Keep in mind that there are other pay tables that you might encounter if you
come upon Double Deuces video poker. These pay tables will generally offer you
less in payback than the pay table listed above. (More on paybacks in a moment.)

Here is an example of another pay table, the 16-10 version of the game, that
you might find on a Double Deuces video poker machine:

Hand 1 Coin 2 Coins 3 Coins 4 Coins 5 Coins
Natural royal flush 250 500 750 1000 4000
Four deuces 400 800 1200 1600 2000
Wild royal flush 25 50 75 100 125
Five of a kind 16 32 48 64 80
Straight flush 10 20 30 40 50
4 of a kind 4 8 12 16 20
Full house 3 6 9 12 15
Flush 2 4 6 8 10
Straight 2 4 6 8 10
Three of a kind 1 2 3 4 5

The big difference here is a lesser payoff for the straight flush hand.
You’ll notice that the pay table above pays at 10 to 1 for the hand, while the
earlier pay table paid off at 11 to 1. Even slight deviations like this will
affect your overall payout, especially if you’re going to play the game for a
long period of time.

Other notes on the Double Deuces video poker pay table:

  • When compared with a Jacks or Better pay table, you’ll notice that these
    tables require hands that are tougher to make to get good payoff. The simple
    reason for that is the presence of the wild cards. If the pay table was
    similar to Jacks or Better and wild cards were involved, the player would
    have far too much of an advantage over the house.
  • You can see that the payoff for the royal flush takes a huge jump from
    one through four coins played to five coins played. That is why we
    recommended above that you always play five coins if you can. If you can’t,
    you should lower your denomination.
  • Also note that there is a distinction between a wild royal flush and a
    natural flush. Simply put, a natural royal flush is a hand consisting of a
    ten through ace of the same suit, with no wild card along to help out. It’s
    the hardest hand in the game to achieve, which is why it pays off so much.

Payback Percentages for Double Deuces Video Poker

A payback percentage is a calculation of how much a video poker game returns
to the player on average. Keep in mind that it doesn’t mean that you will return
that much every time you play. Luck will play a large part in your winnings or
losings if you only play the game for a short time.

Yet a player who goes back to a machine often and plays thousands of hands
will eventually see their percentage start to resemble the quoted percentage. In
the case of the first table we listed for Double Deuces video poker, the 16-11
version, that percentage sits at 99.62%.

That is a very competitive percentage; anything over 99% is a game that we
would recommend you to take on at the casino or play at a
top online casino site. A player who puts $10,000 in the machine can expect, on
average, to have a bankroll of $9,962 once all of the money is put through the
machine. That means a loss of $38.

But again, it’s crucial to understand that it’s only an average. Some players
will come out well ahead, while others will lose significantly more. Don’t
mistake the payback percentage and think it will automatically predict the
outcome of your session.

Also, remember that the pay table that you find will affect the payback
percentage. The first pay table that we showed above is for the “16-11” version
of the game, which means that the five of a kind pays 16 to 1 and the straight
flush pays 11 to 1. Other versions will drop the payout further.

Here are some examples you might encounter and the payback percentages that
are attached:

  • 16-10 Double Deuces: 99.17%
  • 15-10 Double Deuces: 98.86%
  • 15-9 Double Deuces: 98.43%

When looking at a Double Deuces video poker machine, focus on the payouts for
the five of a kind and the straight flush. They will let you know where you
stand in terms of your payback percentage.

Strategy for Double Deuces Video Poker

We showed you above how a typical hand for Double Deuces video poker, with
the wild card element, might play out. You saw how many different possibilities
existed in terms of what cards you could hold and discard. But only one play was

You might wonder how any play could be considered “correct” when the luck of
the draw will ultimately determine the hand. Well, the correct decision in any
form of video poker is the one that gives you the best chance of making the most

It’s similar to the payback percentage in that it relies on the concept of
playing the hand many, many times. If you played it once, you would be subject
to the whims of the draw. But if you could somehow play that hand an infinite
amount of times, there is a single hold and discard combination that would
return you the most money.

Knowing what the right hold and discard for every possible deal of the cards
is extremely difficult. It doesn’t get much easier with the wild cards in place.

Obviously, you always hold wild cards if you get them. But trying to
anticipate how they might be deployed once the draw has been held can be
confusing. Even expert players need some help in getting to that level of play.

Where might you acquire such help? Here are three suggestions:

  1. Free Play Online: You shouldn’t have a hard time
    finding some sort of Deuces Wild variation of video poker online in free
    play form. If you do, you can sit down and play to your heart’s content
    without risking any actual money to do so. The only issue is that free play,
    while giving you a good feel for the rhythm of playing, won’t teach you the
    right holds and discards like the following two methods will.
  2. Video Poker Training Software: We recommend that
    you go with the versions that need to be purchased, as free training
    software might be limited in terms of options. For example, you might not be
    able to play with the wild cards included on the free trainers, which
    obviously wouldn’t help you with Double Deuces video poker. In any case,
    video poker training software lets you play a simulated game and alerts you
    when you are making incorrect decisions in terms of holds and discards.
  3. Strategy Charts: These video poker strategy charts, which can be
    found online and printed for convenience, include a list of card
    combinations which you might receive on a deal while playing Double Deuces
    video poker or any other Deuces Wild game. You then have to look at your own
    hand and see which combinations you have that might match the ones on the
    page. Once you have found the highest-listed match, you can discard the
    cards in your hand that aren’t included.

Some Quick Tips for Playing Double Deuces Video Poker

  • Watch That Pay Table: People who are used to
    playing Jacks or Better might get caught up trying for hands that don’t pay
    all that much on Double Deuces. For example, a full house is a big earner in
    Jacks or Better but it doesn’t do much in this game. Always consult the pay
    table if you’re hung up on a hold or discard.
  • Send Them Back: When playing a wild card game,
    you’ll be more likely to throw away all of the cards from your deal if they
    don’t include a wild card than you would playing Jacks or Better. After all,
    having a wild card considerably ups your chances of forming a winning hand.
    It’s better to give yourself many chances at hitting one on the draw if you
    didn’t get one on the deal.
  • Play the Max: We’ve said it twice already, but
    we’ll say it again to really stress it. The only way you can reach the
    quoted payback percentages is by playing five credits every time. You might
    think you’re saving money by not betting five credits, but you will be
    costing yourself a ton if you hit a natural royal flush.

Pros and Cons of Playing Double Deuces Video Poker


  • Four deuces yield a payout similar to that of the natural royal flush
  • Wild cards create many exciting hands that would be otherwise hard to
  • Gameplay is easy if you understand the wild card

  • Lesser payouts for common hands
  • Might not be able to find the best pay tables
  • Strategizing with wild cards can get a little tricky for beginners


Double Deuces video poker not only gives you Deuces Wild action, but also
puts four deuces almost at par with the royal flush. Having two hands like that
to shoot for while playing can be a real thrill. Just keep in mind that you’ll
be getting a little less for certain common hands to make up for those gigantic