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odiousgambit
odiousgambit
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Mission146
May 28th, 2021 at 2:55:14 PM permalink
You can vote if you want.

You know, it really is true that the Wizard has terrific free resources for the VP player, and I want to get that right out front here and say so. I very much suspect it is underappreciated. 

Recently the wife and I were able to visit Harrah's Cherokee Hotel and Casino Resort to meet up with member Doc and his wife, and to play Craps with him, and also to play video poker, bet on hockey at the sports book, and spend some time in the nearby National Forest. Noting a particular thing here about VP, but for more info on VP machine arrangement, and the general casino and area experience, I did a blog post for that.

H's Cherokee remains quite devoted to providing lots of video poker. It would be easy to immediately bury Caesars instead of praising them for this VP offering, but, speaking for myself anyway, I have definitely been finding little or no 'even halfway acceptable' VP in the other new casinos that have opened up nearer to me. Still, you may find I am damning by faint praise below, but I will acknowledge the effort such as it is, and after all it is enough to get me excited about going there. 


The praise is genuine if faint, and as you can probably guess, the reason for less than 100% enthusiasm is that it is hard to find good paytables that suit me. I will admit I have a special focus, one that evidently is not necessarily widely shared and may well be disappearing: I look for 25 cent machines with payouts for the Royal at less than $1200 at maxbet. As far as I'm concerned, getting a W2-g is a real mistake, out of the question in my book. Yet, I have to believe 25 cent machines are going to get more and more rare ... it's the $1200 threshold that is refusing to adjust to inflation. Perhaps my future has no VP, so enjoy it now?


VPfree2.com had some information on where to find good paytables. It is a bit confusing to me as they slip into jargon, but from what I can tell what's listed is $2+ machines that were found by someone that pay around 99%. 


The Bonus Poker seemed to be the best bet for me generally, and I was finding 7/5 machines that I could play for a quarter. This would get me 98% return* for maxbet as opposed to the 99% + to expect if I had found an 8/5 machine early on [see blog]. With the 7/5's I decided to play for just a quarter [not maxbet] for each draw on the basis of expecting a lower -EV than with maxbet, on the theory that even such lower return will be less loss against 25 cents than higher return against $1.25. I did not check this out till now, though. I went to the Wizard's Video Poker Strategy Calculator, link below, and put in the value 250 units instead of 800 for hitting the Royal in an otherwise typical 7/5 paytable. This resulted in 96.78% return. Next, checking it out for EV per each draw. 


0.9678 times 25 cents is 24.2 cents, -0.8 cents av loss per draw
while 0.98 times 125 is 122.5 for a -2.5 cent av. loss per draw


I am sort of sad to see that this advice I had heard is correct. As for the 99% return, although I just tend to accept 1% HE without complaint, I guess a look at that is in order too.  Taking the 8/5 paytable that has 75 units for the SF and that the Wizard calls "Bonus Poker — 99.07%" , then changing with the calculator the Royal from 800 to 250, we get reduction to 97.8%. 


0.978 times 25c = 24.45c and 0.55 cents loss per draw
0.9907 times 125c = 123.84c and 1.16 cents loss per draw

Admittedly, the whole story involves what you might be getting in comps as well, but they are evidently paying next to nothing for the kind of VP I was playing. Did I blow and you get a higher percent back with maxbet? Doubt it but my player's card account certainly got close to zippo with betting only a quarter per draw. 

One answer to such dilemmas is to rely on the fact that if you keep your total action the same, then perspective changes and the lower HE percentage, playing maxbet, wins out as smarter. This you can do, but it means quitting earlier; by a factor of 5 times earlier it seems. Up till now I've been the kind of VP player that just goes for as many draws as I can before I tire out. It'd be hard to change. 

Another factor is the 'bummer' of hitting the Royal when playing only a quarter. Yes, that has happened to me playing this non-maxbet way [a different time and place], and it was the only time I ever hit the Royal. Bummer is the right word. It's something to think about. 

https://wizardofodds.com/games/video-poker/strategy/calculator/


*I didn't note the other paytable details that would nail down the exact return, but the ones shown on the Wizard's page show none less than 98% if it's 7/5. Likewise, the above analyzer gave 98% at 800 units for the Royal while otherwise evidently typical 7/5. Admittedly, I was being very trusting at this casino, it is possible to find an apparently OK paytable that has something that torpedoes the return. That's a dirty trick, but possible, and I should have checked ..... https://wizardofodds.com/games/video-poker/tables/bonus-poker/  
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!” She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
vegas
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odiousgambitMission146
May 28th, 2021 at 3:31:37 PM permalink
It might save you money playing one quarter but you have to enjoy it as well. Hitting a one coin royal is like kissing your sister....the thrill just isn't there. If you hit a small four of a kind it only pays 6.25 and again no thrill.

So the question is are you playing for enjoyment or to try and lose less money? If you are playing a less than 100% game you are destined to lose eventually so might as well have some fun.

There are games at Mohegan Sun that let you bet from 1 to 25 coins but the best news is each coin pays 800 for the royal. So on one coin you still get the value of the royal. It is still a losing game because of the pay table but the royal thrill is still there even at one coin
50-50-90 Rule: Anytime you have a 50-50 chance of getting something right, there is a 90% probability you'll get it wrong
DRich
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Mission146
May 28th, 2021 at 3:43:14 PM permalink
By compact I don't think North Carolina allows slot machine paybacks greater than 98%.
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Hunterhill
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odiousgambitMission146
May 28th, 2021 at 5:27:31 PM permalink
Quote: DRich

By compact I don't think North Carolina allows slot machine paybacks greater than 98%.


They have vp over 99%
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odiousgambit
odiousgambit
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Mission146
May 28th, 2021 at 5:43:57 PM permalink
Quote: Hunterhill

They have vp over 99%

VPFree2.com confirms this
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!” She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
odiousgambit
odiousgambit
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Mission146
May 28th, 2021 at 5:46:44 PM permalink
Quote: vegas

There are games at Mohegan Sun that let you bet from 1 to 25 coins but the best news is each coin pays 800 for the royal. So on one coin you still get the value of the royal. It is still a losing game because of the pay table but the royal thrill is still there even at one coin

Evidently, if I understand VPfree2.com, H's Cherokee has this too, but for $2 one coin table. Or $5 or more. In fact I wasn't sure what I was looking at at that site and you just cleared it up
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!” She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
Mission146
Mission146
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odiousgambit
May 29th, 2021 at 4:10:39 AM permalink
I wouldn't call it faint praise, that was just praise.

Dumping on Caesars is always in fashion, but you do have to kind of give a casino credit for offering, really, anything 98%+ when they don't really have much in the way of competition in that area.

At least, not until some of the Virginia casinos start opening. Maybe you'll get some good quarter VP in that general area, after all. I wouldn't bet on it...I mean, I would bet on it if it were good VP, I just wouldn't bet on...

Oh hell, you know what I mean.
https://wizardofvegas.com/forum/off-topic/gripes/11182-pet-peeves/120/#post815219
redietz
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odiousgambitMission146
May 29th, 2021 at 9:29:51 AM permalink
I live a couple of hours from Cherokee. It's closer as the crow flies, or if you have a VTOL aircraft, but for we who drive civilian vehicles, it's two hours.

Anyway, I strongly suggest a read of a five-part series featuring a trip to Cherokee that had just been completed by Jean Scott over at the Las Vegas Advisor. Her blog gives a fairly complete accounting of the highest percentage available video poker. She went for Diamond in a Day and played the $5 machine, which had the highest payout. As mentioned earlier in this thread, there are $2 machines also with better payouts than what you can find on quarters. To play that $5 machine properly, as Scott did, probably requires a bankroll in the 20K range if you're committed to the Diamond in a Day strategy.

I want to also mention that if you look up the previous Scott blog from a few years back detailing her last trip to Cherokee (maybe three years ago), she encountered an issue that I also encountered at Cherokee and mentioned in posts before I even read her summary. Namely that despite Cherokee being a spiffy and good-looking place, some of the vp machines had annoyingly sticky buttons that would slow you down and create an occasional error. I have never run into both me and Jean Scott mentioning something off the wall like that, so that was interesting.

Anyway, Cherokee is a big, nice-looking place, kind of similar in size and design to Pechanga in California. Rooms on weekends are brutally expensive. They keep expanding, so they are obviously making a boatload of money. They get well-known entertainment on occasion, and quite a range. You think the backwoods of North Carolina would be all country and such, but I saw Billy Idol there maybe seven or eight years ago, and the place was surprisingly packed to the rafters. Before Paula Deen got fired for racism, she had a restaurant in the casino. The food was good, but boy the place did not spare the butter.
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100xOdds
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odiousgambitMission146
May 29th, 2021 at 8:30:19 PM permalink
cherokee has the best vp in all of caesars.
according to vpfree: $5 99.73% DeucesWild44 at $10 per tc.
You can make Diamond in a Day real QUICK. (vs my 8+ hrs)

was planning on going in jan/feb 2019 but read how the road sucks to drive there from the regional airport in the winter.

basically, find a cheap last minute flight to their regional airport from my area (frequent deals in the winter) *AND* a clear weather report there (ie: no snow) *AND* pray it doesnt snow when I leave 4 days later.

not worth the worry.
went to AC and played $2 9/7 db (99.11%) to re-make diamond Plus.

but now with El Dorado buying caesars and cutting costs everywhere, i dont think im going to re-make Diamond in 2022.
(Been Diamond since ~2015)
Last edited by: 100xOdds on May 30, 2021
Craps is paradise (Pair of dice). Lets hear it for the SpeedCount Mathletes :)

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