Update! Bob now has a weekly column in our video poker forum, check it out here:
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Bob Dancer is a prolific video poker expert that has over 15 years of experience in the video poker and writing world. He started out in 1994 with a meager $6,000 bankroll and decided to make video poker his specialty. With casino bonuses and expert strategy at the video poker machines, Bob and his wife were able to accumulate a massive amount of money over the ensuing years, including a six month stretch where they took home $1,000,000.
He got his start in gaming in the early 1970s as a professional backgammon player. The strategic game provided enough money to keep him afloat but there wasn't enough money in the sport to keep him satisfied forever. It did, however, shape the mind the mind of the young man who would one day become one of gambling's most trusted writers.
Eventually Bob took on a job as a data administrator to achieve a steadier, more dependable income than what the backgammon games could provide. During his time at this new job, he continued his studies of backgammon theory and blackjack card counting but he didn't get to put in a lot of time at the tables.
Taking a Shot
Nine years later, the company Bob worked for merged with another company and he was out of a job just like that. He didn't have any other careers lined up at the moment so he decided it was as good a time as ever to give professional gambling an honest shot.
He started out playing his long time favorite backgammon and made a brief foray into the blackjack card counting world. The blackjack games weren't as good to him but his time at the casinos exposed him to the game of video poker. That was when everything changed.
During the early nineties, Bob devoted more and more time to video poker and eventually learned how to beat the games at a decent clip. He learned that with perfect strategy, certain video poker machines in Las Vegas could be beaten over the long run. Before long, Bob had built himself a formidable bankroll by modifying Stanford Wong's early strategies to be more accurate and profitable.
He soon met and married a Taiwanese-American woman named Ginnie Shen who also went by the name Virginia Woo. The two of them moved to Las Vegas together and became gambling partners for the next several years. The times were great while they lasted but Bob and Ginnie split ways in 1994.
Making a Run
Two years later, at a country western dance, Bob met the woman who would one day become his next wife. Her name was Shirley Smith and he soon got her involved in card counting and video poker strategy. They became a team and together they managed to make a living at various Las Vegas casinos, culminating in a six month run where they won over $1,000,000.
Believe it or not, "Dancer" is not Bob's real last name. He changed his name to a pseudonym years ago for both privacy and protection from certain casinos banning him from the property. Even though professional video poker players are generally received with much more warmth than professional blackjack players, there are still a few live casinos out there that don't appreciate Bob's skills.
The name was picked, he says, on the spot at a casino one time and he stuck with it. Without having much of a chance to think up a name, he simply named himself after his favorite hobby: dancing. Interestingly, it was through a mutual dance partner that Bob became acquainted with Chris "Jesus" Ferguson before either one of them was very well known.
He continues to scout out and play at video poker games to this day but he also does quite a bit more writing. Bob has written an impressive list of books that tackle video poker and general casino gambling from just about every angle imaginable. There's even a fiction book to his name (and yes, this fiction book includes a healthy dose of video poker).
If you ever get a chance to check out some of Bob's written works, you should definitely do so. His video poker articles are incredibly in-depth and he analyzes not only game-specific strategies but also casino comp programs and tax issues to help you gain the greatest advantage possible in video poker.
Free Bob Dancer Classes and Resources
In addition to all his writing, Bob Dancer also teaches video poker seminars in Vegas-area casinos. These seminars are completely free to attend and they cover both beginner and advanced video poker strategy. All you have to do is show up and pay attention.
In fact, a part of the reason Bob has been so successful is because he offers so many free resources. This guy has been writing for a long time and you can find dozens of his articles for free right on his website (BobDancer.com). He's not one of those fly-by-night get rich quick casino authors you see all the time. He provides a valuable resource and makes his money when people decide to purchase his books and DVDs.
His most popular work is "Million Dollar Video Poker," in which he recounts the seven years it took him to become a successful video poker player. The book also explains his six month, $1,000,000 video poker run with his wife.
Despite all his successes, Bob remains a busy man to this day. He writes regularly for multiple video poker publications (including our site), operates a newsletter tailored to casino executives, and he runs a twelve person casino consulting firm.
Bob is also a member of the video poker hall of fame. His works have set the standard for video poker writing and Bob's understanding of the game is surpassed only in his ability to put it all in writing. His clear, simple writing style makes it so that even the most novice of video poker enthusiasts can understand and implement the winning video poker tactics that have made Bob Dancer a millionaire.