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Close Encounters Of The Winning Kind in Poker

Amazing true stories of close calls and astounding wins

By John Grochowski

“When it comes to electronic gaming, all things are possible on any given play.”


It was one of those all too rare days, a close encounter of the winning kind. Several wins, in fact, encountered close together.

I was playing Super Aces on a quarter Five Play Poker machine, and just a few hands after I started I drew four Aces for 2,000 credits. I relaxed. I wouldn’t be going back to my wallet at all on this day.

A couple of minutes later, quad Aces came up again. Three plays later, two of my five hands showed for Aces. Shortly thereafter came a royal flush to pad my bankroll by 4,000 more credits.

Finally, after about 15 minutes of play, I was dealt three Aces. I turned to a woman next to me who had hit the Aces a couple of times herself, and said, “Do you think I can get them again?” She smiled and said, “I hope so.”

Poker Games

Up they came. Twice.

When it comes to electronic gaming, all things are possible on any given play. Some are more possible than others—there are a lot more blank-space combinations than lifestyle-changing jackpots hidden in those random numbers on a three-reel slot, more little wins of less than your wager than bonus events on a video slot, more low pairs than royal flushes in video poker.

Still, the random number generator that determines what we see on screens or reels is as random as humans can program computers to be. It leaves open the possibility of big wins encountered close together, and even back-to-back wins.

For years, I’ve collected stories of other players’ close-together wins, tales like these:

Robin: On my birthday, I was playing the $1 Wheel of Fortune. I was on a Red, White and Blue machine, and I hit the Red, White and Blue 7’s for $1,600! While I was waiting for the payout, I put $20 in the machine and within two spins I hit the Red, White and Blue 7s again for another $1,600!

I also had a day to remember one month later. I was playing a $1 Double Double Bonus Poker machine. I hit four Aces with a kicker for $2,000, followed two hands later by a Royal flush for $4,000. I couldn’t believe my luck.

Paula: My big thrill came on Super Jackpot Party, the video game, on nickels. I hadn’t been doing too well, and I had a losing spin, but suddenly I heard “Surprise Party!” It took me to the bonus, and I just couldn’t miss. I got this thing called “Whack a Pooper” where you hit the pooper characters with a mallet, and got another bonus where this character dances and you get more credits. I got multipliers. When it was all over, I’d won more than 2,000 nickels.

It went back to the regular game, and would you believe on the next spin I got a Jackpot Party? Back to the bonus! It didn’t go quite as well this time, but I won another 500 nickels and a few more. It was fun!

Pete: I’ve never had two jackpots in a row, but I did witness it in Las Vegas. While taking a break from video poker, I won a slot jackpot. While I was waiting for a hand-pay on the Red, White and Blue slot, I heard a lady yell out in back of me and saw she had the top jackpot on a Double Diamond. After they paid her, she hit it again. Never saw that before, and haven’t since.

Jack: My wife was playing a Five Times Pay machine. She hit a 5 with a white 7 and another 5—that was $931. They paid her off, and on her next spin she got a 5, 5 and a red 7. That was $1,100. Two thousand dollars less than five minutes apart, on back-to-back spins.

Anna: I always save some time for Blazing 7s; I seem to hit a lot of jackpots on that game. One day, my husband and I were playing next to each other, and I hit the Blazing 7s for an $1,137 progressive. I was screaming, my husband was hugging me, and we didn’t even notice that his spin had landed on the 7s, too! He got $1,000. He was just a few second after me.

Dave: I was playing a quarter Bonus Poker progressive. The meter was up to $1,480 when I was dealt a pair of Jacks but also three to a royal. For some reason, I went for it and got the royal. The sad part was, I was driving on a ticket and didn’t have a photo ID, so all they would do is give me was a receipt until I got my license back.

The following Sunday, I went back to collect my winnings and brought along $200 to play with. (All major winnings always go into my wallet and not back into the machines). Anyway…I hit another royal on a Double Bonus machine. After they paid me, I turned around and played the Bonus Poker Deluxe machine right behind me and got another. I walked off with $3,800.

Diane: About nine or 10 months ago, I was playing at a quarter Triple Play game. I was dealt three deuces, and I held them and threw away the other two cards. On one line, I drew the fourth deuce. After the attendant paid me the $250, they asked me to play again to clear it off. I was dealt one deuce and threw away the other cards, and on one line, I caught the other three deuces. Back-to-back hands on the same machine—it does happen.

Close together, back-to-back, it does happen…as that last player said. Losing sessions are more frequent, and long periods between jackpots can be frustrating. But when that close encounter of the winning kind happens, it makes for a day to remember.

Close Encounters Of The Winning Kind in Poker.

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