Double Bonus Poker is a version of Jacks or Better that offers bigger payouts when you hit a four of a kind. Read on to learn what separates this style from regular Bonus Poker, how to get the lowest house edge when playing on the Web, and which Australian online casinos carry the best real money Double Bonus games.
Best casinos to play video poker online
Best video poker casinos
Each of our recommended gambling sites in the table above carries Double Bonus Poker, along with dozens more real money video poker titles for desktop download (Windows PC) and instant browser play (PC & Mac OS). They all offer hundreds of virtual casino games from the world’s top gambling software developer, Microgaming, and boast the coveted seal of approval from the independent testing agency eCOGRA (eCommerce Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance). Every one of these trusted Web casinos accepts the Aussie dollar and uses SSL (Secure Socket Layer) encryption technology – so you can be certain every cash transaction is conducted under the same strict security levels you get with your bank.
Online double bonus payouts
In terms of gameplay, Double Bonus Poker is just like any other form of Web-based video poker: you get five cards, you discard and draw, and then you either get paid out or not depending on the quality of your completed hand. Where Double Bonus differs is how much you get back for drawing certain combinations – namely, the various four of a kinds.
In standard 9/6 Jacks or Better video poker, all quads pay 25 for 1 – regardless of the rank of the cards. In Double Bonus, however, four of a kinds fall into three separate categories:
- Aces – pays 160
- Deuces, Threes or Fours – pays 80
- Fives through Kings – pays 50
These returns are exactly twice the amount as we get in regular Bonus Poker – which offers 80 coins for a four of a kind in Aces, 40 for Deuces, Threes and Fours, and only 25 for Fives through Kings. But that’s not the only difference between the two formats, nor even the most significant.
Theoretical returns & house edge
Take a look at this chart comparing payouts for various hands in Bonus Poker and Double Bonus:
|Hand||Bonus Poker payout||Double Bonus payout|
|Four 5-K||25||50||Full house||8||9|
On the surface, it seems like Double Bonus is a much better option from the punter’s point of view, right? Wrong – because believe it or not, standard 8/5 Bonus Poker actually has the lower house edge.
The Microgaming version of online Double Bonus video poker carries a theoretical return of 99.11 per cent – i.e. when playing with perfect strategy, over time you can expect to lose 0.89 per cent of your bankroll to the casino. In comparison, Bonus Poker offers a projected return of 99.17 per cent and a house edge of only 0.83 per cent, which makes it better value for Aussie gamblers in the long run.
How can this be? Double Bonus has enormous payouts on four of a kinds, better returns on full houses, flushes and straights, and yet it holds a higher house edge? The reason lies right at the foot of the pay table. In virtual Double Bonus Poker, two pair pays 1 for 1; but in Bonus video poker, the same hand returns at 2 for 1. As the probability of drawing two pairs (0.12) is far greater than the likelihood of hitting, say, four Aces (0.0002), the difference in payouts for the more common hand has a much more profound effect on the house edge.
Double Bonus Poker strategy
Below is the traditional strategy guide for real cash Double Bonus Poker. When dealt your initial hand, always choose the highest-ranked option on this list. Sometimes, you may be forced into a counter-intuitive manoeuvre. For example: if you have three Aces and a pair of Jacks, the correct strategic move is to play the three of a kind (in the hope of drawing a fourth Ace) rather than keep the full house.
- Royal flush, four of a kind, straight flush
- Four cards to a royal flush
- Three Aces
- Full house, flush
- Any other three of a kind
- Four cards to a straight flush
- Pair of Aces
- Two pair
- Suited K Q J or Q J 10
- Four cards to a flush
- Pair of Kings, Queens, or Jacks
- Any other three cards to a royal flush
- Four cards to a straight – no gap
- Pair of Deuces, Threes, or Fours
- Suited 9 10 J or 9 J Q
- Any other pair
- Three cards to a straight flush – no gaps, or one gap + one high card
- Three cards to a straight flush – two high cards
- Four cards to a straight – three high cards
- Suited K Q, K J, or Q J
- Three cards to a straight flush – one gap, or two gaps + one high card
- Three cards to a flush – two high cards
- Suited A K, A Q, or A J
- Four cards to a straight – two high cards
- Unsuited K Q J or Q J 10
- Four cards to a straight – one high card
- Suited J 10
- Three cards to a flush – one high card
- Any other three cards to a straight flush
- Suited Q 10
- Unsuited K Q, K J or Q J
- Ace or Jack
- Suited K 10
- King or Queen
- Four cards to a straight – no high cards
- Three cards to a flush – no high cards
- Discard all