LET IT RIDE / POKER RIDE / POKER PURSUIT
Let It Ride is also known as Let 'Em Ride, Let Them Ride, Poker Ride, Ride On Poker, Free Ride, and Poker Pursuit. The many names may relate to the traditional game name "Let It Ride" being copyrighted by Shuffle Master. The game is a poker variation involving two raises, as the two community cards are flipped over. The game's high house edge and high variance makes it a poor choice for bonus play when other games are available.
Rules and Play
After placing a bet, the player is dealt a 5 card poker hand -- 3 cards face up and 2 community cards face down. After viewing the first 3 cards, the player has the opportunity to raise and double his bet. The bet raises are done in one of two ways. Either the player adds to his bet with each raise. Or the player begins with 3 bets, then removes one of the bets, if he chooses not to raise. Both methods have the same result. After the raise, one of the two community cards is flipped over, so the 4 of the 5 cards are visible. The player then has a chance to raise again. Next the final card is flipped over, revealing the full 5-card hand. The player is paid according to the listed paytable. The minimum paying hand is a pair of 10s.
Most softwares use the standard paytable. This includes Microgaming (Poker Ride), Playtech, RealTime Gaming, Cryptologic, Odds On, World Gaming, and Net Ent. Microgaming offers a second version of the game called Poker Pursuit, with a slightly worse payout. Rival uses an improved paytable. The bonus casino at 5Dimes offers a choice of many improved paytables. 5Dimes offered two paytables with a small player edge in the past, but as of July 2013, the minimum house edge appears to be 0.95%, assuming default strategy. With paytable specific strategy optimizations, the lowest house edge occurs on the 5Dimes "Plateau Bonus" paytable, with a house edge of 0.5%. Boss Media, Wagerworks, Chartwell, and Grand Virtual do not offer Let It Ride.
|Hand||Odds||5Dimes "Super Bonus"||5Dimes "Royal Bonus"||Rival Payout||Standard Payout||Microgaming Poker Pursuit|
|Royal Flush||1 in 650,000||15.3 to 1||2500 to 1||250 to 1||1000 to 1||999 to 1|
|Straight Flush||1 in 72,000||15.3 to 1||400 to 1||50 to 1||200 to 1||199 to 1|
|4 of a Kind||1 in 4200||15.3 to 1||65 to 1||25 to 1||50 to 1||49 to 1|
|Full House||1 in 695||15.3 to 1||12 to 1||12 to 1||11 to 1||11 to 1|
|Flush||1 in 510||15.3 to 1||9 to 1||10 to 1||8 to 1||8 to 1|
|Straight||1 in 255||15.3 to 1||6 to 1||8 to 1||5 to 1||5 to 1|
|3 of a Kind||1 in 47||1.3 to 1||3 to 1||3 to 1||3 to 1||3 to 1|
|2 Pair||1 in 21||1.3 to 1||2 to 1||2 to 1||2 to 1||2 to 1|
|Tens or Better||1 in 6||1.3 to 1||1 to 1||1 to 1||1 to 1||1 to 1|
|Nothing||3 in 4|
|House Edge (in terms of Initial Bet)||0.95%||0.98%||2.96%||3.51%||3.57%|
|House Edge per Unit Wagered||0.77%||0.80%||2.40%||2.85%||2.90%|
Optional Bonus Bet
Let It Ride offers an optional bonus bet. Like most side bets, the house edge of the bonus bet is significantly larger than the house edge of the main game. A summary is below:
|Hand||Hand Odds||World Gaming||Playtech, Net Ent, Kismet||Cryptologic, Odds On||Microgaming||Futurebet|
|Royal Flush||1 in 650,000||Jackpot||20,000||30,000||Jackpot||Jackpot*|
|Straight Flush||1 in 72,000||10% of JP||2000||3000||10% of JP||10% of JP|
|4 of a Kind||1 in 4200||150||100||400||500||500|
|Full House||1 in 695||100||75||200||100||100|
|Flush||1 in 510||50||50||50||50||50|
|Straight||1 in 255||--||25||25||--||--|
|3 of a Kind||1 in 47||--||9||5||--||--|
|Two Pair||1 in 21||--||6||--||--||--|
|Pair or Less||13 out of 14||--||--||--||--||--|
|Typical House Edge||-54%?*||13.77%||22.61%||5 to 60%||~55%*|
|Jackpot Range||~420k?*||None||None||30 to 200k||~45k?*|
|Break Even Point||245k||None||None||220k||220k|
Futurebet payouts maximum payouts may be limited to 15k, 75k, or some other number, rather than the full jackpot
Let It Ride strategy is far less complex than video poker. With a 3 card hand, raise if you have a paying hand or 3 to a straight flush with the following conditions -- no gaps, 1 gap & high card, or 2 gaps & 2 high cards. With a 4 card hand, raise if you have a paying hand, 4 to a flush, or 4 to a straight with the following conditions -- no gaps or 4 high cards. Note that "high card" indicates 10 or above. The house edge can be improved by ~0.003% with the following exceptions to the above strategy. Do not raise on a 3 to a straight flush with A23, A24, A34, or 234. And do not raise on a 4 to a straight with A234.
The hands 4 to a straight with no gaps & 0 high cards, and 4 to a straight with 1 gap & 4 high cards following have the same house edge per initial bet with and without a raise. However, the house edge per unit wagered is lower with a raise. It is to your advantage to make a raise on these bets when completing a wagering requirement, but you may prefer not to raise when making a single bet.
Microgaming offers an autoplay function for this game. I believe raises are programmed for an optimal return, although I have not confirmed under all conditions.
Variance and Bet Size
The standard deviation per hand of Let It Ride is 5.17, and the standard deviation per unit wagered is 4.66. The latter value of 4.66 is more appropriate for estimating range of return while completing a wagering requirement.
With a variance this high, there is a good chance of busting prior to completing wagering requirements. You may wish to use a non-traditional betting strategy. You can start out by selecting a normal bet size. If you get a big win, then switch to a small bet size and grind out the wagering, or switch to a lower variance game. This strategy significantly increases average return and decreases time commitment. It also greatly reduces the chance of spending long periods wagering without having winnings to show for it. The downside is an increased risk of busting.
The table below shows the chance of ending above the deposit balance with unlimited bankroll, after completing a wagering requirement with 4 bet sizes (size of Ante bet). See the Return & Variance Calculator for more specific estimates.
|Bet Size||Playthrough Requirement|
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