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Best of John Robison

Gaming Guru

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The Slot Expert's Guide to Winning at Slots and Video Poker

20 March 2000

You can hear me give my slot and video poker tips live on The Good Times Show, hosted by Rudi Schiffer with Frank Scoblete, which is broadcast live from Memphis on WHBQ over the air on 560AM and over the Internet on Yahoo! Broadcast on Saturday morning from 8-10 CT.


A caller to The Good Time Show asked for a simplified strategy to get him started playing video poker. This week, I described the strategy on the show.

This strategy will work on draw games with no wild cards, like 9/6 Jacks or Better and 8/5 Jacks or Better, which are the games I recommend beginners start with. The strategy is not 100% mathematically correct, but it will get you used to playing video poker with a mathematical strategy and not hunches.

Start at the top of the list and work your way down. Hold the hand specified by the first line that applies to the cards you were dealt.

  • Break everything but a straight flush for a 4-card royal flush.
  • Hold pat hand.
  • 4-card straight flush, outside and inside.
  • 3-card royal flush.
  • 4-card flush.
  • 4-card straight, inside and outside.
  • Pair of low cards (tens or less).
  • 3-card straight flush (if double inside, must have at least 1 high card).
  • 2-card royal flush.
  • 3 unsuited high cards (if one is an ace, hold only the other two cards).
  • 2 unsuited high cards.
  • 1 high card.
  • 3-card double inside straight flush with no high cards.
  • Draw 5.

Send your slot and video poker questions to John Robison, Slot Expert, at slotexpert@home.com.


For more information about slots and video poker, we recommend:

Break the One-Armed Bandits! by Frank Scoblete
Victory at Video Poker and Video Craps, Keno and Blackjack! by Frank Scoblete
Slot Conquest Audio Cassette Tape (60 minutes) with Frank Scoblete
Winning Strategies at Slots & Video Poker! Video tape hosted by Academy Award Winner James Coburn, Written by Frank Scoblete
The Slot Machine Answer Book by John Grochowski
John Robison

John Robison is an expert on slot machines and how to play them. John is a slot and video poker columnist and has written for many of gaming’s leading publications. He holds a master's degree in computer science from the prestigious Stevens Institute of Technology.

You may hear John give his slot and video poker tips live on The Good Times Show, hosted by Rudi Schiffer and Mike Schiffer, which is broadcast from Memphis on KXIQ 1180AM Friday afternoon from from 2PM to 5PM Central Time. John is on the show from 4:30 to 5. You can listen to archives of the show on the web anytime.

Books by John Robison:

The Slot Expert's Guide to Playing Slots
John Robison
John Robison is an expert on slot machines and how to play them. John is a slot and video poker columnist and has written for many of gaming’s leading publications. He holds a master's degree in computer science from the prestigious Stevens Institute of Technology.

You may hear John give his slot and video poker tips live on The Good Times Show, hosted by Rudi Schiffer and Mike Schiffer, which is broadcast from Memphis on KXIQ 1180AM Friday afternoon from from 2PM to 5PM Central Time. John is on the show from 4:30 to 5. You can listen to archives of the show on the web anytime.

Books by John Robison:

The Slot Expert's Guide to Playing Slots