Triple Double Bonus Poker

Triple Double Bonus Poker

Triple Double Bonus Poker is a video poker variation that offers increased payoffs for various 4 of a kind hands based on the ranking of the hand. It also offers bonus payoffs based on the kicker for that hand.

Like many VP games, Triple Double Bonus Poker is best understood as a variation of Bonus Poker, which is, in turn, a variation of Jacks or Better.

This page explains the differences between Triple Double Bonus Poker and other video poker variations. We also provide pay tables, payback percentage, and house edge details for the different versions of the game. We even provide a strategy guide and some insights into where to find this game in casinos online or off.

The Basics of Playing Triple Double Bonus Poker

We like to write video poker guides that are all-in-one, or complete, guides to the game. That's why we start these pages by explain how video poker in general works. We then look at the specifics of the variation in question.

If you know nothing about video poker games like Triple Double Bonus Poker, you might think it's just a fancy slot machine with a poker theme. To an extent, that's true. Slots and video poker games both have pay tables where they compare the symbols you get on the screen with pre-determine combinations to determine your payoffs.

The differences are significant, though.

On a slot machine, you have spinning reels-or at least animated spinning reels-with arbitrary symbols that are tied into a theme. These often include traditional symbols like fruit and bars.

On a video poker machine, you have no spinning reels-just spots where cards are dealt. And all the symbols are based on playing cards from a traditional 52-card deck.

The reason this is so significant is because the probability of getting a card from a 52-card deck is a known quantity. You know how likely it is to be dealt the ace of spades in a specific spot on the screen-it's a 1 in 52 shot.

Why does this matter?

The payback percentage for any gambling machine can be calculated by multiplying the probability of getting a win by the amount a win pays out. Add up the expected value for the pay table, and you have the payback percentage.

But on a slot machine, you're missing half the equation. In fact, slots are the only games in the casino where you can't calculate the house edge.

Video poker, on the other hand, is transparent by its nature as a card-based game.

We'll cover the specifics for the payback percentage on Triple Double Bonus in the appropriate section below, but understanding that the payback percentage is calculable on a VP game is essential.

The actual game-play is simplicity itself. To start, you insert your money into the Triple Double Bonus machine, which is labeled with a denomination. VP games commonly come in denominations like 25 cents, a dollar, and $5. You can find higher denominations in high roller rooms, too.

When you input your money, the game converts it into "coins" or "credits" based on the denomination of the machine. If, for example, you put $200 into a quarter machine, you'd have 800 credits. In a dollar machine, you'd only have 200 credits.

Then you decide how much to bet on your hand. You can bet 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 coins.

But there's only one correction decision:

Bet the max coins-5 units. Every time. If you can't afford to bet 5 coins, switch to a lower denomination machine.

The reason for this is the payout for the royal flush, the best hand in the game. When you bet 1, 2, 3, or 4 coins, the payoff for this hand is 200 for 1 or 250 for 1 (depending on the machine.) But when you bet 5 coins, the payoff for the royal flush is 800 for 1.

This has a big effect on your bottom line, but it's also an emotional decision to think about.

How would you feel if you only bet 4 coins on a Triple Double Bonus machine and got a royal flush?

Once you've made your max coin bet, the computer deals you a hand of 5 cares from a 52-card deck. You get to decide for each card whether you want to keep it or discard it. You can keep or discard any combination of the 5 cards in your hand, so there are 32 possible ways to play any given hand.

To keep a card, you just click on the "hold" button that corresponds to that card. Modern video poker games also have touchscreen technology, so you can hold cards by touching the monitor. When you decide to hold a card, it's flagged on the screen as a card you've held. You don't have to try to memorize what you did with each card.

Once you've finished making your decisions, the computer deals replacement cards for anything you discarded. You get paid off on the poker hand value of your final results.

This all happens much faster than you think. The average video poker player makes 600 decisions per hour.

Let's look at how the hands pay off next.

Triple Double Bonus Poker Pay Tables, Payback Percentage, and House Edge

Here's an example pay table for Triple Double Bonus Poker:

Hand/Coins 1 Coin 2 Coins 3 Coins 4 Coins 5 Coins
Royal flush 200 400 600 800 4000
Straight flush 50 100 150 200 250
4 of a kind - aces 2, 3, 4 kicker 800 1600 2400 3200 4000
4 of a kind - 2s, 3s, or 4s A, 2, 3, or 4 kicker 400 800 1200 1600 2000
4 of a kind - aces 5s - Ks kicker 160 320 460 640 800
4 of a kind - 2s, 3s, or 4s 5s - Ks kicker 80 160 240 320 400
4 of a kind - any other 50 100 150 200 250
Full house 9 18 27 36 45
Flush 7 14 21 28 35
Straight 4 8 12 16 20
3 of a kind 2 4 6 8 10
2 Pairs 1 2 3 4 5
Pair of jacks + 1 2 3 4 5

The first thing we'd like to point out is the payoff for a royal flush when you bet 5 coins. See the big jump? That's why you always bet 5 coins per hand.

The next thing you'll notice is the list of 4 of a kind hands. The entire concept of Bonus Poker is to offer bigger payoffs for that hand. The "Triple Double" designation has to do with the size of the payoffs and with the bigger payoffs based on the kickers.

Indeed, this is one of the differences between video poker and regular poker. In a regular poker game, the higher the ranking of the cards in the 4 of a kind, the more valuable the hand is. In Triple Double Bonus Poker, a 4 of a kind made up of 2s, 3s, or 4s is better than a 4 of a kind made up of 5s through kings.

The payoffs for some of these hands are high indeed. In fact, the payoff for 4 aces with a 2, 3, or 4 kicker is the same as the payoff for a royal flush. It's the best possible payout you could get.

If you're familiar with most other VP games and pay tables, you'll also notice that the payout for 2 pairs has been cut in half. It's usually 2 for 1, but in most Bonus Poker related games, it's reduced to even money to pay for the bonus payouts for the 4 of a kind hands.

The usual payoff for 3 of a kind is 3 for 1, but in this game, it's been reduced to 2 for 1-again, this pays for those huge payoffs on those 4 of a kind hands.

This has the effect of making the game more volatile. In other words, you'll win less money most of the time, but when you do hit big wins, they're bigger than you'd otherwise expect.

Since we know the probability of winding up with certain hands in poker, we're able to calculate the overall return for the game. You simply multiply the probability of finishing with each hand by the payoff for that hand, and then you add the returns together to get the overall return for the game.

For Example
You have a 19.7% chance of finishing with a pair of jacks, queens, kings, or aces. Since that pays even money, you add 19.7% to the expected return for the game.

You have a 12% chance of finishing with 2 pairs. This also pays even money, so you add 12% more to the payback percentage of the game.

You'll have 3 of a kind 7.4% of the time. Since it pays off at 2 for 1, you multiply 7.4% by 2 to get 14.8% to add to the payback percentage of the game.

And so on.

For the pay table we listed above, the payback percentage is 99.58%, which is exceptional. We always recommend sticking with video poker games where the payback percentage is greater than 99%.

If you're not familiar with payback percentage, here's how it works:

The payback percentage for a gambling machine represents the mathematically expected wins that the player can expect over thousands of spins. It's an average, and it's represented as a percentage.

The other side of the payback percentage is the house edge, which is the mathematically expected losses that the player can expect over thousands of spins. It too is an average, and you can calculate the house edge by subtracting the payback percentage from 100%.

The most important thing to keep in mind about the payback percentage and the house edge is that they don't apply in the short run. They're long-term averages. On a single hand of Triple Double Bonus, you might win a single unit, 2 or 3 units, or 800 units.

But if you average your net loss over 100,000 hands, chances are good they'll look much like the mathematical expectation.

Let's look at an example:

You're playing Triple Double Bonus with perfect strategy and with the pay table above. You're making an average of 600 bets per hour, and you're playing a dollar machine, so you're betting $5 every bet. That's $3000 in action.

The casino expects you to win back $2987.40. They expect you to lose $12.60 per hour. In the world of casino gambling, that's cheap entertainment. If you put $3000 into action at the roulette table, you'd lose an average of $157.80.

That brings us to another important point. The expected return stated assumes mathematically perfect play. Every mistake you make when deciding which cards to hold and which cards to discard means greater than expected losses in the long run.

That's not the only pay table you'll see for Triple Double Bonus, though. Here's another example pay table for the game:

Hand/Coins 1 Coin 2 Coins 3 Coins 4 Coins 5 Coins
Royal flush 200 400 600 800 4000
Straight flush 50 100 150 200 250
4 of a kind - aces 2, 3, 4 kicker 800 1600 2400 3200 4000
4 of a kind - 2s, 3s, or 4s A, 2, 3, or 4 kicker 400 800 1200 1600 2000
4 of a kind - aces 5s - Ks kicker 160 320 460 640 800
4 of a kind - 2s, 3s, or 4s 5s - Ks kicker 80 160 240 320 400
4 of a kind - any other 50 100 150 200 250
Full house 9 18 27 36 45
Flush 6 12 18 24 30
Straight 4 8 12 16 20
3 of a kind 2 4 6 8 10
2 Pairs 1 2 3 4 5
Pair of jacks + 1 2 3 4 5

*We've italicized the only change in this pay table.

It's been reduced from a 7 for 1 payoff to a 6 for 1 payoff. The result is a payback percentage of 98.15%. This is called a 9/6/4 Triple Double Bonus pay table, by the way. The numbers indicate the pay-off amounts for the full house, the flush, and the straight, respectively.

The previous pay table was a 9/7/4 Triple Double Bonus game. You'll also find Triple Double Bonus games in the following configurations with the following payback percentages:

  • 9/5/5 Triple Double Bonus - 98.5%
  • 9/7/3 Triple Double Bonus - 98.5%
  • 8/6/4 Triple Double Bonus - 97.1%
  • 9/5/4 Triple Double Bonus - 97%
  • 8/5/4 Triple Double Bonus - 96%
  • 7/5/4 Triple Double Bonus - 95%
  • 6/5/4 Triple Double Bonus - 93.9%

We recommend avoiding any Triple Double Bonus game other than the 9/7/4 version. If you're hard up for a game to play, you might consider 9/6/4 Triple Double Bonus, but we think the house edge is unacceptably high for that game.

Triple Double Bonus Poker Strategy

Your goal in any of these VP games is to play with as close to perfect strategy as possible. In the case of Triple Double Bonus Poker, you'll use the same strategy you would use in Double Bonus. The only change is that you need to pay attention to your kicker in Triple Double Bonus, because it makes such a big difference in the final payout for the hand.

But the kicker only matters when you're dealing with a 4 of a kind.

For the most part, when you play Triple Double Bonus Poker, you're going to try to let the game deal you a winner. You'll keep almost any pat hand, but if you have a chance to draw to 4 cards to a royal flush, you'll take that over most pat hands. (The only exception is a straight flush like 910JQK. The chance of getting a royal flush by discarding the 9 is too low to give up that big payout.)

Refer to our page on Double Bonus for a strategy to follow for this game, but keep in mind anytime you hold a pair the ranking of the cards in the pair.

Where to Find Triple Double Bonus Poker Online for Free or Real Money

Triple Double Bonus is more common online than some video poker variations, but not all online casinos offer the game. We recommend multiple trustworthy casinos online here on our site. We recommend visiting the casino you're considering. On their "games" page, you'll find a list of the video poker games available.

You can play free versions of Triple Double Bonus Poker online at sites like VideoPoker.com, but they're not high on our list of recommendations. We prefer gambling with real money unless we're trying to get a feel for the game. Yes, you risk losing money that way, but that's the entire point. You also have the opportunity to win money.

No risk, no reward.

Conclusion

Triple Double Bonus Poker is a fun variation of Bonus Poker and Double Bonus Poker that's aimed at players who enjoy volatile VP games. With the right pay table, the game offers a competitive payback percentage of 99.59%. Other variations of the game offer payback percentages in the 94% to 98% range. We, of course, recommend sticking with the full pay version of the game.

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