Pokertini App Review: Free Video Poker on iOS

At the recent Macworld | iWorld event, I had a chance to preview Smappsoft’s Pokertini in development, which has now officially launched and is available in the App Store. This game introduces a freemium model to the classic video poker format, which might appeal to enthusiasts of the genre. Pokertini offers a traditional video poker experience but includes several unique modifications, though they might not be as impactful as one would hope.

One notable feature is the ability to spread your wager across three separate hands. After the initial deal, you can redistribute your bet based on the potential of each hand before the next draw.

This strategy adds a layer of depth to the game, although it often feels more risky than rewarding. Despite the potential for big wins, it seems all too common to back the wrong hand, leading to losses more often than not.

The game also introduces “twists” purchasable with in-game coins, which can, for instance, prevent certain cards from appearing or alter the hand you’re dealt. While these twists might sound beneficial, they generally add an element of unpredictability rather than strategic advantage. The twists would be more appealing if they had a more significant impact, such as ensuring the appearance of a desired card, but this would likely skew the game’s balance towards profitability.

Additionally, the game interface is cluttered with advertisements, which can detract from the gameplay experience.

This is compounded by the presence of in-app purchases, making the game feel overly commercialized. The concept of exchanging real money for in-game currency, which doesn’t guarantee a return, might not resonate well with all players. A more subtle integration of in-app purchases, perhaps for cosmetic items like card designs or themes, might have been more palatable.

Despite these criticisms, I still find myself drawn to Pokertini for its core video poker gameplay. For fans of the genre, the game is certainly worth trying out, especially with the initial complimentary 1000 coins.

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Jeffrey is a dedicated writer for TUAW, bringing readers the latest news and insights on all things Apple. With a deep love for technology, Jeffrey has a knack for breaking down the complexities of the iPhone, iPad, MacBook, and Apple Watch into easy-to-understand articles. His engaging writing style and thorough research make him a trusted voice in the Apple community. When he’s not writing, Jeffrey enjoys exploring new apps and testing out the latest Apple gadgets.