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Thread: Best ways to Seven Stars or "Diamond in a Day" for Caesars properties around the US

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    Best ways to Seven Stars or "Diamond in a Day" for Caesars properties around the US

    ** Updated March 8, 2024 **

    One of the most frequent questions I get from people is, "How do I get Seven Stars or Diamond in the cheapest way?"

    This isn't an easy question to answer, because it depends where you live. If you are too far away from the best video poker games at Caesars properties, then it won't be cost-effective to travel across the country for a slightly better paytable than your local Caesars casino!

    Therefore, I will use this thread to list the BEST video poker games to play in order to earn Diamond or Seven Stars.

    Before we begin, here are some IMPORTANT facts which are universal to all Caesars properties:

    - You earn Diamond once you reach 15,000 tier credits in a calendar year. You earn Seven Stars once you reach 150,000 tier credits in a calendar year.

    - Most Caesars video poker machines earn one tier credit per $10 wagered in video poker. However, many properties have degraded this on the "better" video poker machines! If you see a notice on the machine that you earn tier credits more slowly (for example, one tier credit every $25 wagered), do not play these machines! With only a few exceptions as noted, the ones I will be listing below are all one tier per $10 wagered.

    - In order to earn tier credits most efficiently, you must earn the maximum number of bonus tier credits each time you play. This means that you must earn EXACTLY 2500 or 5000 tier credits in a day. This is because 2500 tier credits in a day earns you 5000 bonus credits, and 5000 tier credits in a day earns you 10,000 bonus credits. However, any credits earned beyond that will NOT earn you any further bonus credits! For example, playing 4,999 tier credits will still only earn you 5000 bonus tiers (the same as if you had only played 2500), and 12,000 tier credits would still earn you only 10,000 bonus tiers (the same as if you had only played 5000). Again, plan to play EXACTLY 2500 or EXACTLY 5000 tier credits in a day.

    - You can earn "Diamond in a Day" by earning 5000 base tier credits in one day (after the 10,000 bonus tiers). You can earn Diamond in two days by earning 2500 base tier credits each day.

    - It is important to understand that the "expected losses" are likely to be MUCH greater if earning Diamond, as you are unlikely to hit a royal, which accounts for about 2% of the machine's return. Also, if you fail to hit a royal while earning Seven Stars, you will REALLY suffer. If you do not hit a royal while earning Diamond, your expected loss will be approximately an additional $1,000 above what's listed. If you do not hit a royal while earning Seven Stars, your expected loss will be approximately an additional $10,000 above what's listed.

    - A "Caesars day" typically begins at around 6am and ends at 5:59am. It almost never begins and ends at midnight! This is important to keep in mind. Furthermore, each casino has different hours for when their "day" begins. Some are 3am, some are 4am, some are 5am, and some are 6am. Check with whichever casino you play to find this out, if you plan to play into the wee hours of the night. Keep in mind that the hours of the "Caesars day" are constant in each market. So if one casino in Vegas is 6:00am to 5:59am, so will the rest of the Caesars casinos in Vegas.

    - If the next "Caesars day" crosses over while you're playing, you must remove your card, wait 30 seconds, and put it back in, in order for the tier credits to count towards the "new day". So if you inserted your card slightly before 6am, make sure to re-insert it before playing after 6am, if this casino's day starts at 6am.

    - You should always play maximum credits, or you will get screwed when you hit a royal flush.

    - It is good practice to remove your card and put it back in about once per hour or so. When you do so, make sure that it shows your tier credits properly for that day on the little screen next to where you insert your card. If it's not correct, take out the card and reinsert it. If it's still not correct, go to Caesars Rewards and have them check on it. If you do not do this, it's possible you will get screwed out of the tier credits you earned, and it will be a huge pain in the ass to reinstate them.

    - If you played the previous day, it is wise to make sure the screen shows the proper date and the fact that you've earned 0 tiers for the current day. For example, if it's March 20, and if the screen says, "On March 19, you earned 7500 tier credits", then it's still "stuck" on the previous day. You will want to take out your card and put it back in, and look for it to say "On March 20, you earned 0 tier credits" before earning anything toward the current day.

    - Once earned, you keep your status until January 31, TWO calendar years later. For example, any status earned in 2020 will last until January 31, 2022. Therefore, it is not wise to earn Diamond or Seven Stars at the end of the year. Wait until the beginning of the next year to do it!

    Make sure you fully understand all of the above before attempting to earn Diamond or Seven Stars optimally!

    It is also important that you know the proper strategy for each video poker game:

    Jacks or Better: http://wizardofodds.com/games/video-...r/9-6/optimal/

    Bonus Poker: http://wizardofodds.com/games/video-...nus-poker/8-5/

    Double Bonus Poker Strategy: http://wizardofodds.com/games/video-...le-bonus/10-7/

    Double Double Bonus Poker Strategy: http://wizardofodds.com/games/video-...ble-bonus/9-6/

    Triple Double Bonus Poker Strategy: https://www.realmoneyaction.com/vide...oker-strategy/

    Deuces Wild Strategy: http://wizardofodds.com/games/video-...ll-pay/simple/

    You are allowed to print these out and bring them to the machine.

    You can also just bring these up on your phone. Technically this may not be allowed (because your phone is an "electronic device"), but I doubt anyone will care, since these are not interactive and are equivalent to a printed strategy card.

    If you do not play correct strategy, you will waste a lot of money, so make sure you have these either memorized or available to consult!

    In the next post, I will list each market where I know the games are good enough to be worth earning Diamond or Seven Stars.

    If your market is not listed, I either don't know it well enough, or you simply don't have a good option to earn Diamond or Seven Stars cheaply.

    I am also only listing options where one can earn at least 2500 tiers in a day without investing an insane number of hours in a day.

    I am assuming that the average video poker player can play about 500 hands per hour. It will take $25,000 of play ("coin-in") to earn 2500 tier credits in a day. So at a $1 machine ($5 per hand when maximum credits is played), this would take 5,000 hands -- or 10 hours for the average person to achieve. For this reason, I am making this the "cutoff", as I don't think it's realistic to expect anyone to play more than 10 hours in a day.

    On the flip side, I am not listing the very high limit machines (anything more than $5/credit), because their variance is too high for most players.



    Ways to Get Diamond Cheaply Without Gambling

    If you want to earn Diamond without playing, there are two ways. First off, you can get a status match with Wyndham, or you can get a status match to your existing players club card at non-Caesars casinos (you will need to show up and ask if your card can be matched). However, as of March 2022, things have changed. You can only status match with Wyndham if you either earned the status there, or got it via a credit card benefit. You can do the Wyndham match every year.

    Second, you can attempt to status match from other casinos. You can read about this here, but only new Caesars Rewards cards are eligible, and it only lasts for a year.

    Note that as of 2024, the "Founders Card" no longer gets you Caesars Diamond, so I have removed that section from this guide.

    Be aware that earning Diamond through a status match will NOT get you any freeplay or extra comps unless you earn them through play. However, you will get all of the basic Diamond benefits, which is the most important thing here.

    Feel free to add to or correct my list, which is updated as I get information.

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    Las Vegas (Updated December 29, 2022)

    The Las Vegas market has been degraded, and it's been this way for awhile.

    The sad truth is that it's just not very cost-effective to earn your status in Vegas.

    But if that's your only option, here's what you can play:

    There are some 9-5 Jacks or Better machines at $10/tier (98.45%), but honestly they aren't worth playing. These can be found at Horseshoe, Paris, Rio, and Caesars. You're better off playing 9-6 Jacks (found at Caesars) for 99.54% at $25 per tier credit earned, which will result in a lower average loss. These are all in the high limit room, and should be easy to locate.

    Additionally, there's this at Flamingo:


    Flamingo

    7-5 Super Double Double Bonus, 1-play, $1 per credit, progressive (98.61%, plus add 0.01% for every $20 you see the Royal above $4000). This game is similar to Double Double bonus, except the top payouts are higher. I do not have an optimal strategy to give you, so you should play it as you would Double Double Bonus. Might be worth trying if the progressive is high. If you see the Royal at $4780, it's a 99% game. This will earn credits slowly because it's only $1 per credit.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $695
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $6950

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    Lake Tahoe (updated December 28, 2022)

    Lake Tahoe was long of the best options you had to earn Diamond or Seven Stars at Caesars. Unfortunately, they removed the good machines (99.54% return and above) in December 2022, and this market is now just mediocre.

    In case you're wondering, semi-nearby Harrah's Northern California (Ione) has no machines which are even semi-decent, so don't bother with that property.



    Harrah's Lake Tahoe

    25-15-9-4-4 Deuces Wild ("LV Airport Deuces") $1/credit 1-play (98.91% return). Will take you 10 hours or so to earn 2500 tier credits -- maybe more if you're not that familiar with Deuces. At the California Bar.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $545
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5450



    Harvey's Lake Tahoe

    8-5 Bonus Poker 1-play, $1 per credit (99.17% return). There are six $1 progressive machines near the poker room (they are slant tops). There are four upright $1/$2/$5 machines (1 play) near the elevators. This is a 99.17% theoretical return, and is the best machine in Tahoe, but the $1/credit thing will make earning very slow.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $415
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4150

    9-6 Double Double Bonus, $1/$2/$5 per credit (98.98% return). There are some of these near the poker room, and others by the elevator. This is the best option if you want to earn Diamond relatively quickly (will take about 2 hours at $5/credit).
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $510
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5100

    9-5 Jacks or Better 3 play, $0.25/$0.50/$1 per credit (98.45% return). Located by elevators. This will take you about 3.5 hours if you triple play at the $1 level, but this isn't a very good return. Still better than Double Double Bonus if you don't have that much tougher strategy memorized.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $775
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $7750

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    Laughlin (Updated December 29, 2022)

    Harrah's Laughlin still has a few playable machines. Laughlin is located 95 miles southeast of Las Vegas, and is kind of like a mini-Vegas aimed at working class people. There's also the Colorado River there. It gets brutally hot in the summer, sometimes topping 120.

    8-5 Bonus Poker $5/$10 per credit, 1-play (99.17% return). There are only two of these in the high limit room. The rest of the machines on property pay below 98.5%.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $415
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4150




    Tropicana Laughlin is now a Caesars property.

    8-5 Bonus Poker $1/$2/$5 per credit, 1-play (99.17% return). You can find that machine in the Grand Junction high-end area surrounding the bar. The rest of the machines on property pay below 98.5%.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $415
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4150

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    Reno

    (Added December 28. 2022)

    Caesars increased its presence in Reno by their merger with Eldorado Gaming. They closed Harrah's Reno, but now have Circus Circus Reno, Eldorado Reno, and Silver Legacy. Circus Circus is useless for video poker, but Eldorado is the best option in the country right now.


    El Dorado

    8-5 Super Aces, $1 per credit, 5-25 coins (99.94% return). This is a great game. It has almost 100% return, relatively intuitive strategy (a little harder than regular bonus poker), and you can do 25 coins, meaning you can effectively play $25 per hand (same as $5/credit). Super Aces is a form of bonus poker which rewards quad aces extra -- half of a royal flush payout! Located near Starbucks. You do not need a kicker to get a big payout. However, don't get too excited by the extremely low "average losses" below. The quad aces comprises a whopping 9.5% of the game's return, so it becomes a horrible 90.5% payout average if you don't hit quad aces! And if you don't hit a royal or quad aces, your return will average 88.5%
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $30
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $300

    Joker Poker 2 Pair or Better, $1 per credit, 5-25 coins (99.92% return). This is a tough game to master, so you should probably avoid it. If you want to give it a shot, learn ALL of the strategy listed in this link. Similar to above, you can play 25 coins, which is effectively a $5/credit game. Located near the "Treasures of the El Dorado" area, and also some bartops.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $40
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $400

    9-5 White Hot Aces, $5/$10 per credit (99.80% return). Good alternative to Super Aces. Also gives bonus for certain kinds of quads, mainly aces. The strategy can be found here. Located in high limit room. If you fail to hit 4 aces, your return will be reduced by 5.6%, and failing to hit quad 2s-4s will reduce your payout by another 6.3%, so the variance can be fairly high on this game.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $100
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $1000

    9-5 Triple Bonus Plus, $5/$10 per credit (99.80% return). Due to the identical paytable, this is the identical game to the above 9-5 White Hot Aces. See the entry above for the info and strategy. These can be found in the high limit room. There are also some 25-coin 25c/50c/$1 machines located near the "Treasures of the El Dorado" area, and on some bartops.

    25-16-10-4-4 Deuces Wild ("Not So Ugly Deuces") $1/$5/$10 per credit (99.73% return): Lots of these machines around, some being 25c/50c/$1 machines with 25 or 50 coin options. You will find these at bartops, near the poker room, near the players club, and in high limit. Strategy for this game is here. Good game for lower variance and high returns.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $135
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $1350

    9-6 Bonus Deluxe $5/$10 per credit (99.64% return): Same strategy as Double Double Bonus Poker. Located in high limit room.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $180
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $1800

    9-6 Royal Aces Bonus $5/$10 per credit (99.58% return): Same strategy as Double Double Bonus Poker. Located in high limit room.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $220
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $2200

    9-6 Jacks or Better, $1-$10 per credit (99.54% return): Tons of these around, including high limit room.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $230
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $2300



    Silver Legacy

    9-5 Triple Bonus Plus, $1 per credit (99.80% return). The best returning machine, but it's only $1, so it will be slow. Gives bonus for certain kinds of quads, mainly aces. The strategy can be found here. Located near the escalator to Circus Circus. If you fail to hit 4 aces, your return will be reduced by 5.6%, and failing to hit quad 2s-4s will reduce your payout by another 6.3%, so the variance can be fairly high on this game.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $100
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $1000

    25-16-10-4-4 Deuces Wild ("Not So Ugly Deuces") $1 per credit (99.73% return): You will find these just outside the high limit area. Strategy for this game is here. Low variance but slow due to $1/credit.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $135
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $1350

    9-6 Bonus Deluxe 25c/50c/$1 per credit (99.64% return): Plays up to 25 coins, so it's like $5/credit at the $1 level. Same strategy as Double Double Bonus Poker. Located between craps tables and the men's room.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $180
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $1800

    9-6 Jacks or Better, $1 3-5 play, $0.10 100-play, $0.25 50-play (99.54% return): Located just outside high limit room. The 10c machine isn't low limit, as you can 100-play it, which ends up $50/hand (equivalent to playing $10/credit single play). This is the one to play if you want a simple strategy and high return.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $230
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $2300

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    Southern California (Updated November 24, 2023)

    It's hard to believe that the state of California, with its extensive list of casinos (second only to Nevada), has only two Caesars properties, and only one in the southern part of the state.

    Harrah's Resort Southern California, formerly known as Harrah's Rincon, is located in northern San Diego County.

    Unfortunately, all of the good video poker is gone from this property. The other Caesars property in the state, Harrah's Northern California, also has nothing playable.

    Bottom line: Don't try to earn Diamond or Seven Stars at either California property!

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    Phoenix Area (updated December 29, 2022)

    Harrah's Ak-Chin isn't a very good place to earn tier credits cheaply. It's not even in Phoenix -- it's somewhat south, in the middle of nowhere. But if you really don't want to leave Arizona...


    25-15-9-4-4 Deuces Wild ("LV Airport Deuces") $1/credit 1-play (98.91% return). Will take you 10 hours or so to earn 2500 tier credits -- maybe more if you're not that familiar with Deuces. Not a very good option.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $545
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5450

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    Atlantic City (Updated January 1, 2020)

    The good games at Caesars properties Atlantic City all have $20 per tier credit or worse, which will take twice as long to earn tier credits. I will list the $20/tier games, as some are good enough to justify playing for tiers if you're not going to be in a better market.


    Bally's Atlantic City

    9-6 Jacks or Better 1 play & 3 play, $1/$2/$5 per credit (99.54% return), 1 tier credit per $20 wagered. There's 3-play in Diamond Pointe immediately to the left after entering (three slant top machines). The single play machines are all upright -- seven Game Kings in section BB near steps to Tower elevators, four Game Kings in section HF, and two machines in section BI.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $460
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4600

    9-7-4 Triple Double Bonus, 1-play, $1/$2/$5 credit, 1 tier credit per $20 wagered, (99.58% return). On its face, this would appear to be the best option, as it has the highest return. Don't be fooled. It's a very volatile game and the strategy, which you can find here, isn't all that intuitive. There's also just 1 machine, located in high limit.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $420
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4200

    9-6 Double Double Bonus Aces and Faces, 1-play, $1/$2/$5 per credit, 1 tier credit per $20 wagered. (99.46% return): Same strategy as Double Double Bonus Poker. There are seven Game Kings in section BB near steps to Tower elevators, and four Game Kings in section HF -- the same machines housing the 9-6 Jacks or Better.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $540
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5400

    18-7-5 Joker Wild (Kings or Better), 1-play, $1/$2/$5 per credit, 1 tier credit per $20 wagered. (99.29% return): Strategy is here. There are seven Game Kings in section BB near steps to Tower elevators, and four Game Kings in section HF -- the same machines housing the 9-6 Jacks or Better.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $710
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $7100

    8-5 Bonus Aces and Faces, 1-play, $1/$2/$5 per credit, 1 tier credit per $20 wagered. (99.26% return): Same strategy as Bonus Poker. There are seven Game Kings in section BB near steps to Tower elevators, and four Game Kings in section HF -- the same machines housing the 9-6 Jacks or Better.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $740
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $7400

    9-7-5 Double Bonus Aces and Faces, 1-play, $1/$2/$5 per credit, 1 tier credit per $20 wagered. (99.24% return): Same strategy as Double Bonus Poker. There are seven Game Kings in section BB near steps to Tower elevators, and four Game Kings in section HF -- the same machines housing the 9-6 Jacks or Better.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $740
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $7400



    Caesars Atlantic City

    9-6 Jacks or Better 1-play, $1/$2/$5 per credit (99.54% return), 1 tier credit per $20 wagered. Three slant top machines are located in section CP. There's also three slant-top Game Kings in the high limit room which are $2 only.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $460
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4600

    8-5 Bonus Aces and Faces, 1-play, $1/$2/$5 per credit, 1 tier credit per $20 wagered. (99.26% return): Same strategy as Bonus Poker. Three slant top machines are located in section CP -- same machines housing Jacks or Better.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $740
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $7400



    Harrah's Atlantic City

    9-6 Jacks or Better 1-play, $1/$2 per credit, $5/10 per credit (99.54% return), 1 tier credit per $20 wagered. There's 8 slant tops in Diamond Cove, three slant tops in triangular formation in section DD, and 12 machines located near Brigantine entrance (all $1/$2 credits). For the $5/$10 machines, look for 6 slant top machines in Diamond Cove.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $460
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4600

    9-7-4 Triple Double Bonus, 1-play, $1/$2 per credit, $5/10 per credit, 1 tier credit per $20 wagered, (99.58% return). On its face, this would appear to be the best option, as it has the highest return. Don't be fooled. It's a very volatile game and the strategy, which you can find here, isn't all that intuitive. Same machines as Jacks or Better above.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $420
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4200

    9-6 Double Double Bonus Aces and Faces, 1-play, $1/$2 per credit, $5/10 per credit, 1 tier credit per $20 wagered. (99.46% return): Same strategy as Double Double Bonus Poker. Same machines as Jacks or Better above.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $540
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5400

    18-7-5 Joker Wild (Kings or Better), 1-play, $1/$2 per credit, $5/10 per credit, 1 tier credit per $20 wagered. (99.29% return): Strategy is here. Same machines as Jacks or Better above.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $710
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $7100

    8-5 Bonus Aces and Faces, 1-play, $1/$2 per credit, $5/10 per credit, 1 tier credit per $20 wagered. (99.26% return): Same strategy as Bonus Poker. Same machines as Jacks or Better above.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $740
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $7400

    9-7-5 Double Bonus Aces and Faces, 1-play, $1/$2 per credit, $5/10 per credit, 1 tier credit per $20 wagered. (99.24% return): Same strategy as Double Bonus Poker. Same machines as Jacks or Better above.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $740
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $7400

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    Mississippi (updated January 14, 2020)

    Mississippi has seen some downgrading.


    Harrah's Gulf Coast in Biloxi features a high-limit 9-6 Jacks or Better game, if you don't mind variance and you can take the fact that it's $25 per tier earned.

    9-6 Jacks or Better $5/$10/$25 per credit, 3/5/10 play (minimum $75 per hand), 1 tier earned per $25 wagered, (99.54% return).
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $575
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5750



    Horseshoe Tunica is a little bit more reasonable, though not great:

    9-7-5 Double Bonus Poker: $1 or $5 per credit, 1 play. 99.11% return. You'll probably want to play the $5/credit version, or it will take 10 hours to earn 2500 tiers. Note that this is Double Bonus Poker, not Double Double Bonus. These are located in "Game King" machines, in front of the buffet. The paytable is 9 for a full house, 7 for a flush, 5 for a straight, quads at 50/80/160, and 55 for a straight flush. Verify these payouts before playing.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $445
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4450

    9-6 Double Double Bonus, $1 or $5 per credit, 1-play (98.98% return). You'll probably want to play the $5/credit version, or it will take 10 hours to earn 2500 tiers. These are located in "Game King" machines, in front of the buffet. There are also some bartop versions of this game.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $510
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5100

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    Louisiana (updated January 14, 2020)

    All the way through 2015, Harrah's New Orleans was the best option to earn tier credits cheaply. Sadly, 2016 was met with a massive degradation of paytables.

    If you still want to play here, this is really your only option, which isn't very good:

    25-15-9-4-4 Deuces Wild ("LV Airport Deuces") $5/credit 1-play (98.91% return). 8 machines located near poker room. There's also $1 3/5/10 play in the high limit room.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $545
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5450



    Elsewhere in the state, you're a bit better off at Horseshoe Bossier City:

    8-5 Bonus Poker $5/credit, 3/5 play (99.17% return), minimum $75 per hand. Located in the high limit room.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $415
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4150

    8-5 Bonus Poker $1/credit, 50-play (99.17% return), minimum $40 per hand (8 hands mininum). Located in the high limit room.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $415
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4150

    10-7-5 Double Bonus Poker $5/credit, 3/5 play (99.17% return), minimum $75 per hand. Located in the high limit room.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $415
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4150

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    Illinois (Updated January 17, 2020)

    Harrah's Joliet has three video poker variants worth looking at, though none are great.

    9-6 Double Double Bonus Poker, $1/$2/$5 per credit, as well as $5/$10/$25 per credit, 1-play (98.98% return). If you don't have the patience to play the $1 progressive below, you can play at higher denominations and get this done faster. There are $1/$2/$5 slant top machines near the bar, and more $1/$2/$5 in Game King and Superstar Poker bartops. The high limit area also has $5/$10/$25 machines like this (slant tops). There's a few $1 machines located two rows from the bar, but if you're going to play $1, you might as well do the progressive (see below).
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $510
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5100

    9-6 Double Double Bonus Poker, $1/credit, 1-play with progressive (98.98% return or MORE). This is a "progressive" machine. These are new "Game King" machines located outside video poker alcove near left hand side of the bar. To figure out the actual return, look for the royal flush payout for max credits. For every $20 over $4000, add 0.01% to the return. Then look at 4 aces with any 2/3/4. For every $16 over $2000, add 0.01% again. Sadly, this only a 1-play, $1 machine, so it will still take you 10 hours to earn 2500 tier credits.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $510 (less with progressive as described above)
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5100 (less with progressive as described above)

    Double Bonus Poker: $1/credit, 3 play (99.11% return). Located outside the video poker alcove. This will earn tier credits faster due to the 3-play. Note that this is Double Bonus Poker, not Double Double Bonus. The paytable is 9 for a full house, 7 for a flush, 5 for a straight, quads at 50/80/160, and 50 for a straight flush. Verify these payouts before playing. You will find these on the "Triple Play" machines right outside the video poker alcove.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $445
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4450

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    North Carolina (Updated December 29, 2022)

    There are two Harrah's Cherokee casinos in North Carolina.

    One of them, simply called Harrah's Cherokee, has a number of very good (albeit somewhat high variance) machines to rack up tiers at minimum average loss. This is also a fairly nice place to visit, as it's right at the entrance of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and isn't too far from scenic Asheville.

    The other one, Harrah's Cherokee Valley River Casino & Hotel has no good games, aside from some super-high-limit ones.

    Below is a list of games at Harrah's Cherokee. All are located in the "new high limit room" (next to the table games area), unless otherwise indicated.

    These machines have $1/$2/$5 denominations, but only the $5 variation has the good pay table!

    Also, Harrah's Cherokee changed these games to $25 per tier credit sometime in 2019, but changed it back recently to $10 per tier credit. However, make sure to verify it's $10 per tier credit, by watching your tier credits build as you play.

    25-16-10-4-4 Deuces Wild ("Not So Ugly Deuces") $5 per credit, 1-play (99.73% return): Find these in new the new high limit room next to the table games area. Strategy for this game is here. Do NOT play the one near the center atrium spiral staircase, as that is $25/tier credit.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $135
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $1350

    The below machines can also be found in the new high limit room:

    9-6 Bonus Deluxe $5 per credit, 1-play (99.64% return): Same strategy as Double Double Bonus Poker. As this will be $25 per hand, expect some variance.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $180
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $1800

    9-5 White Hot Aces $5 per credit, 1-play (99.57% return): Same strategy as Double Double Bonus Poker. As this will be $25 per hand, expect some variance.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $215
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $2150

    9-6 Double Double Bonus Aces and Faces, $5 per credit, 1-play (99.46% return): Same strategy as Double Double Bonus Poker. As this will be $25 per hand, expect some variance.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $270
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $2700

    9-6 Double Double Bonus Plus, $5 per credit, 1-play (99.44% return): Same strategy as Double Double Bonus Poker. As this will be $25 per hand, expect some variance.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $280
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $2800

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    Iowa (updated January 17, 2020)

    The best machines at Horseshoe Council Bluffs are three 100-play machines 25c machines. These are only 98.98% return, and the 100-play brings out some pretty high variance, so you are best off finding another option if possible.

    9-6 Double Double Bonus 25c/credit, 100-play ($12.50-$125 per hand), (98.98% return). Located in the middle of the casino, about 50 yards due north of the players club.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $510
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5100

    25-15-9-4-4 Deuces Wild ("LV Airport Deuces") $1/credit 1-play (98.91% return). Will take you 10 hours or so to earn 2500 tier credits -- maybe more if you're not that familiar with Deuces. Not a very good option. These are bartop machines near Caesars rewards.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $545
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5450



    The same deuces game is also at Harrah's Council Bluffs.

    25-15-9-4-4 Deuces Wild ("LV Airport Deuces") $1/credit 1-play (98.91% return). Will take you 10 hours or so to earn 2500 tier credits -- maybe more if you're not that familiar with Deuces. Not a very good option. These are at the TAG bar, just inside the casino entrance.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $545
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5450

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    Indiana (Updated January 17, 2020)


    Horseshoe Hammond

    Horseshoe Hammond features some good games, but they all require $25 or $50 per tier credit, which makes most of them unplayable for reaching Diamond or Seven Stars economically.

    However, a few of the games are still good enough to where they are okayish to use to reach Diamond or Seven Stars, even with the $25 requirement. Those are listed below. Still, you are better off with the $10/tier options.

    8-5 Bonus Poker, $1 per credit, 9-play Spin Poker (99.17% return, $45 per hand). Regular, 8-5 bonus poker, but it requires 9-play in order to get the proper return for the Royal. On the bright side, this is the best machine offering $10/tier credit in Indiana, and it will get you to Diamond in a little more than 2 hours. Located near poker room.
    Make sure to verify that it is still $10/tier credit before playing!
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $415
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4150

    8-5-35 Bonus Poker, $5/$10/$25 per credit, 99.66% return, $25 per tier credit. I'm only listing this because the game is good enough to where the average loss is reasonable, but keep in mind that you'll be running 2.5x as much coin-in to get where you would normally. This machine pays 35 for all quads. Located in high limit room.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $425
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4250

    9-6 Bonus Poker Deluxe, $5/$10/$25 per credit, 99.66% return, $25 per tier credit. I'm only listing this because the game is good enough to where the average loss is reasonable, but keep in mind that you'll be running 2.5x as much coin-in to get where you would normally. Located in high limit room. Here is the strategy for this game.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $450
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4500

    9-6 Double Double Bonus $1/credit, 1-play,, (98.98% return plus progressive). Be aware that this will take you about 10 hours to earn 2500 tier credits. Not a very good option, though you will get a bit of a boost from the progressive. Located in the high limit room
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $510 (actually a little less due to the progressive)
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5100 (actually a little less due to the progressive)

    9-6 Double Double Bonus $1/credit, 100-play ($50 mininum per hand), (98.98% return). Located along a video poker aisle near the poker room.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $510
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5100


    Caesars Southern Indiana (info from January 2018 -- please update if you know)

    8-5 Bonus Poker $1 per credit, 1-play (99.17% return plus progressive). Located along the back wall of the 4th floor. It is not clear how many machines there are, please let me know if you find this and count them. As this is a 1-play machine, it will take about 10 hours to get 2500 base tier credits! However, this is the best returning machine at the property, especially because you get some added return from the progressive payout. Verify that you get 1 tier credit per $10 wagered. As of January 2018, this was the case.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $415 (actually a little less due to the progressive)
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4150 (actually a little less due to the progressive)

    Double Bonus Poker: $1/credit, 3 or 5 play. 99.11% return. Note that this is Double Bonus Poker, not Double Double Bonus. This is located on the 4th floor in the high limit area. It is not clear how many machines there are, please let me know if you find this and count them. The paytable is 9 for a full house, 7 for a flush, 5 for a straight, quads at 50/80/160, and 55 for a straight flush. Verify these payouts before playing. Also verify that you get 1 tier credit per $10 wagered. As of January 2018, this was the case.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $445
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $4450

    9-6 Double Double Bonus $1/credit, 1-play (98.98% return plus progressive). Be aware that this will take you about 10 hours to earn 2500 tier credits. Not a very good option, though you will get a bit of a boost from the progressive.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $510 (actually a little less due to the progressive)
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5100 (actually a little less due to the progressive)

    25-15-9-4-4 Deuces Wild ("LV Airport Deuces") $1/credit 1-play (98.91% return plus progressive). Will take you 10 hours or so to earn 2500 tier credits -- maybe more if you're not that familiar with Deuces. Not a very good option. You will get a bit of a boost from the progressive, though.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $545 (actually a little less due to the progressive)
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5450 (actually a little less due to the progressive)

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    The Best of the Best (partially updated December 29, 2022)

    If looking to earn tier credits cheaply, your best bet are games with both a high return and low variance. Also, games higher than $1, single-play are preferred, to speed up the process (so it doesn't take 10 hours to earn 2500 tiers!)

    Of all the games listed above (ignoring where they are located in the country), here would be my favorites to play for earning tier credits toward Diamond or Seven Stars:

    #1 Choice: El Dorado Reno. Lots of games available at 99.54%-99.96% return, with the standard $10/tier credit earning. Silver Legacy in Reno is also good.

    #2 Choice: Harrah's Cherokee, Not So Ugly Deuces (99.73%). You can earn tier credits quickly at this $5 machine, and you will only average a $1350 loss getting to Seven Stars with it! There will be some variance due to the $5/credit, but it won't be unbearable. If you can't play this game, the 99.64% Bonus Deluxe at the same casino is also a good choices.

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    General Information (updated January 17, 2020)

    For more info about Caesars Rewards (Total Rewards), read this thread: http://pokerfraudalert.com/forum/sho...-amp-A-Session

    It should be noted that, as of 2018, Seven Stars benefits have been greatly degraded. Therefore, it isn't really worth earning Seven Stars anymore, in my opinion. Most of the good remaining benefits also exist at Diamond, which is 10 times easier to obtain (15,000 tiers). If you like the Diamond Lounges (they're much better on the east coast, by the way), you will need 25,000 tiers to access those now.

    If you play a lot of events at the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas, I strongly recommend getting at least Diamond. This will allow you to use a special (much shorter) line to register events, and will give you priority seating (you can basically jump the line) for cash games. It will also give you other little advantages around the Rio.

    Where not to bother earning tiers:

    - All Vegas properties other than noted above
    - Harrah's North Kansas City
    - Harrah's Metropolis (Illinois)
    - Caesars Windsor (Canada)
    - Harrah's Cherokee Valley Murphy (North Carolina)
    - Harrah's Philadelphia
    - Horseshoe Baltimore

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    Long time radio listener.. first time poster. Thanks for the all the info Druff. I am going to cherokee soon, and will be playing video poker for the first time of my life going for diamond status. (and potentially getting a head start on seven stars). If i earn status now, how long will it last? I've studied the strategy a little (and will have it on my phone). Anything else a first time player should know?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ari View Post
    Long time radio listener.. first time poster. Thanks for the all the info Druff. I am going to cherokee soon, and will be playing video poker for the first time of my life going for diamond status. (and potentially getting a head start on seven stars). If i earn status now, how long will it last? I've studied the strategy a little (and will have it on my phone). Anything else a first time player should know?
    Ari, glad to see you here.

    You will have whichever status you earn until January 31, 2018.

    However, if you wait until January 2017 to earn it, you will have it until January 31, 2019, so you might want to delay it if possible.

    If you're going for Seven Stars, I would definitely wait until the beginning of the year before you start earning it, as your tier points go back to 0 on January 1 each year.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Druff View Post
    Iowa

    The best machines at Horseshoe Council Bluffs are three 100-play machines 25c machines. These are only 98.98% return, and the 100-play brings out some pretty high variance, so you are best off finding another option if possible.

    9-6 Double Double Bonus 25c/credit, 100-play ($125 per hand), (98.98% return). Located in the middle of the casino, about 50 yards due north of the players club.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $510
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5100

    Don't bother with the other Caesars property, Harrah's Council Bluffs. There are no games worth playing that can earn you tier credits at a reasonable average loss at that casino.
    What kind of bankroll would I need for this?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stepbangin View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Druff View Post
    Iowa

    The best machines at Horseshoe Council Bluffs are three 100-play machines 25c machines. These are only 98.98% return, and the 100-play brings out some pretty high variance, so you are best off finding another option if possible.

    9-6 Double Double Bonus 25c/credit, 100-play ($125 per hand), (98.98% return). Located in the middle of the casino, about 50 yards due north of the players club.
    Average loss getting to Diamond: $510
    Average loss getting to Seven Stars: $5100

    Don't bother with the other Caesars property, Harrah's Council Bluffs. There are no games worth playing that can earn you tier credits at a reasonable average loss at that casino.
    What kind of bankroll would I need for this?
    This is a very high-risk way of attaining Seven Stars. I guess it can be okay to get to Diamond, as that requires only 10% of the play compared to Seven Stars.

    The problem here is that you're wagering a staggering $125 per hand, since it's 100-play.

    While it's true that the 100-play factor will somewhat smooth out the "running bad on draws" problem, it can be absolutely brutal if you get dealt a lot of bad starting hands.

    Even ignoring the variance of this $125/hand machine, there is also a potential catastrophe waiting when you play a 98.98% return machine.

    The non-royal return of a 98.98% machine is 97.02%. That means you would lose $14,900 on the way to Seven Stars on average if you don't hit a royal! If you run badly on top of missing royals (such as lacking good quads), you could lose over $20,000. Ouch!

    I would avoid this machine for earning Seven Stars. If you just want Diamond and don't mind risking low-4-figures, then have at it.

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