Video Poker Strategy: Playing Deuces Wild
The basic game action of Deuces Wild Video Poker is very similar to the traditional Jacks or Better game with one major difference: 2s are wild. To compensate for the addition of so many wild cards, the bar for holding a winning hand is raised, even as special payouts for 5 of a Kind, a Wild Royal or four Deuces are added. You can't quite play Deuces Wild Video Poker using the same kind of "cruise control" that you might on other games, since you need at least a 3 of a Kind or better to win.
The two most important things to remember are that any pat hand should be kept unless you are one card away from a Straight Flush or if you have more than a pair of 2s in your hand to create a 4 of a Kind or better.
You'll receive a deuce in your hand once out of every three hands, roughly. If you're playing over the long term, you'll see this average out to once every 2.6 hands, or around 38% of the time. On average, you have about a 42% chance of getting a pair when you're initially dealt. Combining these two factors means that you'll get a pair and a deuce to make 3 of a Kind around 15% of the time on the initial deal. You have a 1/120 chance of getting a pair of deuces in your hand if you opt to discard all of your cards in a hand that doesn't currently have any 2s.
If you have a pair already, though, things get pretty interesting. The odds of naturally getting the third card to make a set are around 1/8, but with wild cards, the odds radically shift upwards. You've got a 37.5% chance of making 3 of a Kind with wild cards. If you have two pairs, you've got a 1/7 chance of getting a full house if you discard the extra card. Your odds of getting a 3 of a Kind if you opt to dump one of the pairs entirely is over 1/3 and since most Deuces Wild Video Poker games don't reward you for getting 2 Pairs, it's the smarter move.
Take the time to look at your Deuces Wild Video Poker hands and play a few single-handed games before starting to play multi-hand Video Poker. This way you can ensure that you have a good understanding of the game mechanics and can stop following the impulses that work in Jacks or Better but don't succeed in Deuces Wild.