Video Poker History

Video poker history starts when coin-operated drop card machines became popular in the saloons of San Francisco around 1900. The jackpot wasn’t always money; on some machines a Royal Flush would pay 100 cigars. Charles Fey’s card bells were able to make automatic payouts

It is not known how many of these “bell” machines were manufactured. Only one of them survived the San Francisco earthquake. It is on display in a restaurant owned by Charles Fey’s grandson in Reno, NV. These mechanical forerunners of today’s video poker machines went out of fashion and it wasn’t until the emergence of electronic games that video poker games became hugely popular

In 1975 the Fortune Coin Company introduced a draw poker machine that gained widespread acceptance. A company called A-1 Supply bought out another pioneer, which manufactured draw poker machines. Then A-1 Supply changed its name to International Game Technology. Today known as IGT, it’s the dominant producer of video poker and slot machines. That’s video poker history in a nutshell

Video poker is similar to five-card draw poker and is played on an electronic console akin to a slot machine. The game has become immensely popular and is now the mainstay of many land-based and online casinos

The popularity of video poker can be attributed to a number of reasons. Video poker games are relatively easy to learn. It’s the perfect alternative to slots for players who want a game that is not based purely on luck. Payout percentages are generally higher than on slot games

Players willing to learn perfect video poker strategy and seek out the best games can achieve payout percentages of over 100%