Tool-assisted game movies
When human skills are just not enough

Submission #6233: TheWinslinator's INTV Las Vegas Poker & Blackjack "Maximum Earnings" in 01:07.21

Console: Intellivision
Game name: Las Vegas Poker & Blackjack
Game version: any
ROM filename: Las Vegas Blackjack and Poker (1979) (Mattel).int
Branch: Maximum Earnings
Emulator: Bizhawk 1.13.2
Movie length: 01:07.21
FrameCount: 4027
Re-record count: 1542
Author's real name:
Author's nickname: TheWinslinator
Submitter: TheWinslinator
Submitted at: 2019-01-18 19:04:18
Text last edited at: 2019-02-10 15:30:46
Text last edited by: Memory
Download: Download (3505 bytes)
Status: decision: rejected
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Author's comments and explanations:
Las Vegas Poker & Blackjack: earned $9998 in 1:07.206. Yet another one to check off the Intellivision bucket list.

(Link to video)


1 Player I opted to only do one player in this TAS because having a second player also get maximum earnings wouldn't be any more entertaining, would make the TAS over twice as long, and would be a major nuisance trying to optimize both players' earnings at the same time.

Selecting Game There's four different card games you can play - [1] Five Card Stud, [2] Seven Card Stud, [3] Five Card Draw, and [4] Blackjack. Blackjack is by far the most optimal game to play as rounds are insanely shorter, and up to $999 can be bet at once compared to $99 in the other three.

Pressing [5] on the gamepad chooses a game at random and [6] chooses the game last played. [6] is the best means of selecting a game because it skips the dealer announcing what game was selected, saving 160 frames each time. Additionally, pressing [6] for the first game automatically selects Blackjack for some reason.

RNG The order of the cards dealt is determined by the frame the game type is selected (i.e. when deck shuffling stops). As a result, taking a longer time to select betting amount, hit, double down, etc. will not affect luck.

General Rules

TAS Summary

Round Frame Wallet Bet Outcome
1 19 1 1 Dealer stands
2 302 2 2 Dealer hits once
3 601 4 4 Blackjack
4 884 10 10 Blackjack
5 1147 25 25 Blackjack
6 1410 62 62 Dealer hits once
7 1721 124 124 Blackjack
8 2076 310 310 Blackjack
9 2432 775 769 Blackjack
10 2733 1928 964 Double Down, Dealer stands
11 3104 3856 964 Blackjack
12 3351 5302 964 Blackjack
13 3601 6748 964 Double Down, Dealer hits once
14 4007 8676 964 Blackjack
14 4027 final input
14 4252 9999


Outcome Frame Cost Bet Multiplier Effective Frame Cost
Blackjack 227 1.5x 151.3
Double Down, Dealer stands 338 2x 169
Double Down, Dealer hits once 389 2x 194.5
Dealer stands 230 1x 230
Dealer hits once 281 1x 281

Since each outcome requires a different number of frames to play out and can award different multiples of your bet, we need a way of estimating each outcome's relative advantage. Effective frame cost divides the frame cost by the bet multiplier, and estimates just that. A Blackjack is clearly the best hand, but is also fairly rare, meaning depending on how long we must wait to manipulate a Blackjack, it may be more optimal to choose a different outcome:

Bets Some dollar amounts wagered in this TAS may seem rather odd. For instance, in round 9 why did I bet $769 instead of $775? In order to type out two numbers consecutively, the game must recognize two separate inputs, which requires pausing for three frames. To avoid this, I instead bet the highest amount which does not contain consecutive numbers, 769.

Pressing the [Enter] key for your bet recalls what was bet on the previous game. Using this feature on rounds 11-14 saves three keystrokes per round. It can also be used on the first round to automatically bet all the money in your wallet.

As a result of these considerations, by round 14 I had $8676 instead of a potential $8866. Either way, the same number of turns would be required to reach $9999.

Possible Improvements? This TAS is the best result of the logical approach detailed above. However, with any TAS that's super luck-dependent like this one, it's always possible that nonintuitive choices early in the TAS could manipulate great luck later on. It's not possible for me to test every one of these scenarios (although I did test several), so I'll leave that task to other TASers should they decide to investigate that.

Suggested Publication Notes Las Vegas Poker & Blackjack was a pack-in game for the Intellivision Model 1. As a result, it sold over 1.9 million cartridges, making it the best-selling Intellivision game of all time.

Hit! Stick! Raise! Discard? Drop! You win! One or two players can play against the dealer in Las Vegas Poker & Blackjack. Rules are identical to Las Vegas table rules. You have a choice of Blackjack or three different Poker games, and if you win, you can carry your pretend winnings from one game to another. Keep in mind you'll need to be sharp to outplay the computerized dealer -- he knows what he's doing!

Through the powers of luck manipulation, TheWinslinator breaks Las Vegas and makes the dealer very angry by turning $1 into $9999 in just over a minute.

Suggested Screenshot Frame 4253-4372 (this is after the movie ends)

Memory: Judging

Memory: So there are a number of problems with this submission.

First off, FractalFusion managed to beat this TAS so it no longer beats all known records.

Secondly, the submission did not get a particularly great audience response which means the goal needs to be vaultable. However there are several things keeping this from being vaultable. One can merely set the amount of money one has to the cap from the beginning. It is possible to continue playing after reaching said cap. It does not meet the rules on full completion because it is merely a score cap and not the inability to score more points. Due to this, I do not see this goal as particularly vaultable.

In fact I cannot think of a goal for this game that would actually be vaultable. A single hand of blackjack would be fairly trivial and there doesn't seem to be any way to make it meet the criteria for games without clear endings. The other modes are poker which have similar problems. I might be overlooking something but I cannot find any way this game can enter vault.


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