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Extra Draw Frenzy Poker

The casino and gambling machine industries market a lot of video poker variations that are basically bonus features layered on top of an existing game. Extra Draw Frenzy Poker is one of these variations. You have a base game, but if you get 3 of a kind, you also get to play between 3 and 7 bonus hands.

This page examines the intricacies of how this game is played, what the pay tables and payouts look like, and what the correct strategy is. We conclude with some observations about what online options for playing for free or real money are.

How to Play Extra Draw Frenzy Video Poker

Understanding Extra Draw Frenzy Poker requires a certain amount of understanding of video poker in general. Luckily, most video poker games are easy enough to play. They’re almost all based on 5 card draw poker, which almost everyone has played at some point in their youth.

You insert your money into the game, and it awards you with credits based on the amount you’ve inserted. Different games are available in different denominations. Quarters are popular, as are dollars. The game starts when you decide how many coins you want to wager.

You have the option to wager anywhere from 1 to 5 coins on a hand, but you should ALWAYS opt for a 5-coin bet.

That’s because the payout for the top hand in any video poker game is for a royal flush, which pays off at 800 to 1. But if you wager fewer than 5 coins, the game only pays 250 to 1 for that hand. That’s a big difference to your bottom line in the long run.

Once you’ve placed your bet, the game deals you a 5 card hand. You get to discard between 0 and 5 cards. Once you’re dealt replacement cards for your discards, your hand is compared to the pay table. Based on the value of the poker hand you wind up with, you’re paid off.

Some video poker games are played in a multi-line format. In those games (and Extra Draw Frenzy is one of these), you get 3, 5, 10, or even more hands to play at the same time. You have to activate those additional hands with additional bets, though—they’re not free. Here’s how the extra hands work:

You get the same starting hand with each hand. Whatever decision you make regarding which cards you’re going to discard applies to all of those hands. But the replacement cards are each dealt from a different deck, so you’re likely to wind up with different results for each hand.

All of those aspects of game play are common to most video poker games. Not all of them have a multi-hand option, but that’s becoming more common all the time.

Here’s the feature that differentiates Extra Draw Frenzy from the other games:

You have to bet an extra coin on each hand to activate the feature. When you do, any time you get a 3 of a kind, you’re deal 3 to 7 bonus hands to play.

The number of extra hands seems to be determined randomly. You only get the bonus hands if you’re dealt a natural 3 of a kind—wild card hands don’t count.

Extra Draw Poker is available with the following base games:

Pay Tables, Payouts, and Payback Percentage

The pay tables are the same for these games as their base game. So if you’re playing an Extra Draw Frenzy Jacks or Better game, you’ll be playing the same game as Jacks or Better, only with the additional bonus hands added to the game.

Since you’re paying an extra coin for the privilege of getting the bonus hands, the extra money you’ll sometimes win averages out to no net advantage. In other words, yes, you will occasionally win extra cash on those extra hands. But not so much that the return on the game changes more than 1/100 of a percentage point.

Pay tables for all of the base games can be found on the appropriate pages of this site. We’ve also included the payback percentage for each of those games. You can just assume that Extra Draw Frenzy Poker has the same long-term expectation as the base game.

But one thing you should keep in mind with this game is that the volatility goes up. “Volatility” is a word which describes how spiky your swings of fortune are in the short run. Since you’re betting an extra coin on each hand, you’ll be losing more than normal over time. But you’ll occasionally make up for when you get dealt a 3 of a kind and get those bonus hands.

Extra Draw Frenzy Poker Strategy

Like many video poker variations that feature a simple bonus feature layered on top of the base game, you don’t have to make any strategy adjustments to play with perfect strategy. You just use the appropriate strategy chart for the base game in use.

You’ll find those strategy charts on the appropriate game pages on our site. Just click on the names of the game in the text above (they’re linked).

Here’s how a strategy chart works in video poker, by the way:

  • It presents you with a list of hands, ordered from best to worst.
  • You start at the top and methodically work your way down the list until you get to a hand which matches what’s in your hand.
  • Then you stop and hold those cards.

These charts represent the mathematically optimal way to play. If you want to achieve the payback percentages that we reference on these game pages, you’ll have to learn how to play with the correct strategy. Playing without using the strategy can result in a lower payback percentage averaging between 1% and 4%, depending on how good your “card sense” is.

Online Extra Draw Frenzy for Free or Real Money

Extra Draw Frenzy Poker is a neat game, but it’s not something that’s become commonly available at online casinos. As far as we know, there are no online versions of this game that are available for real money. But all the base games that the game uses are available at most of the casinos we list on our site.

If you want to see a demo/free money version of the game, VideoPoker.com has one available. But you can’t play it for real money. It’s neat if you want to get an idea of what the game is like before visiting a casino, but it’s probably not worth an extra trip to their website. It’s definitely not worth the price of a subscription there. (Although, depending on how serious you are as a video poker player, the other features on that site might make it worth your while.)

Summary

Extra Draw Frenzy is another example of a video poker game that isn’t really a variant at all. It’s just a bonus feature layered on top of an existing game and given a flashy name.

That being said, it’s as good as or better than most of these types of variations. In some cases these variations only seem like a good idea, but on closer examination, they wind up having a lower payback percentage. That’s not the case with Extra Draw Frenzy Poker.