Nov 13, 2018 We interviewed some frequent slot players and casino workers. We got these inside tips on how to increase your chances of winning. You won't want to miss thi.
Everyone would like to know how to win at slots, but the truth is that winning at slot machines isn’t any harder than losing at slot machines. You put your money in the machine, spin the reels, and hope for the best. Slot machines are meant to be fun; they’re not intended to provide the player with an income.
In fact, the reality is just the opposite. Slots are there to provide the casino owners with an income. How that works is one of the subjects of this page.
On the other hand, you can minimize your losses and increase your enjoyment of slots games by understanding how they work. You can also learn which slots pay back the most money. In the long run, the house will still have an edge over you, but understanding how much you can expect to lose in a given venue can help you make better bankroll management decisions.
In fact, it might be a good idea to modify you definition of “winning at slots”. Instead of considering yourself a winner if you bring home a big profit, consider yourself a winner any time you played and had a lot of fun.
How Slots Work
All slot machines in modern casinos use a random number generator (an “RNG) to determine the results of each spin. An RNG is a tiny computer that does nothing but constantly generate numbers. When you push the spin button, that microcomputer selects a number which determines the outcome. In fact, this happens before the reels have even stopped spinning.
On modern slot machines, the reels are just there for show. From a practical standpoint, you could put a quarter in a machine, push a button, and have the screen flash: “You lose!” or “You win $10”. The mechanism that determined the outcome would be the same, but who would want to play a game like that, especially if you know that the house has a mathematical edge over the player.
The spinning reels, the sound effects, and the bonus games are all there to make the game more interesting to play. If you don’t like the artwork, the music, or any other aspect of a slots game, don’t bother playing it, because those are the real rewards of playing. The chance of getting lucky and winning a jackpot is a real reward, too, but don’t ignore the other aspects of the game.
The random number generator is programmed to pay back a certain percentage of the money paid into it over a period of time. This period of time is known in gambling math as “the long run”, and it’s a lot longer than most people think. We’re talking about tens of thousands of spins, not dozens or hundreds.
This percentage that’s programmed into these machines is always less than 100%. If a slots game were programmed to pay back more than 100% of the money put into it, it would lose money for the casino.
Casinos aren’t in business to lose money.
The trick is to find slot machines that have the highest payout percentages.
Which Slots Pay Back the Most Money
If every slot machine game in the world had a payback percentage posted on the machine somewhere, it would be easy to determine which slots pay back the most money. You could limit your play to machines with a payback percentage of over 95% for example.
It’s too bad casinos don’t provide that information on specific games, though.
You can find information about specific locations and their payback percentages, though. Some gambling guides and magazines publish this information. For example, The American Casino Guide provides certified information about the payout percentages in various states. Not all states reveal this information, but it’s not a huge leap of logic to expect better payback percentages in states that do reveal this information.
For example, the overall payback percentage for slots in Black Hawk, Colorado is 92.8%. In Central City, Colorado, it’s 92.93%, and in Cripple Creek, it’s 93.66%. Alabama doesn’t release the numbers on their payback percentages.
Which casinos do you think offer the better game?
A couple of guidelines hold true no matter where you play, though. One of those is that payouts are better in large cities with lots of gambling. For example, the payouts in Vegas are higher overall than the payouts in Colorado. And the payouts improve when you play for higher stakes. For example, penny slots in Vegas average around 88% to 91%, but dollars slots average between 93% and 96%. Finally, slot machines at airports usually offer the lowest payouts.
What does that mean for the player? It means that over the long run, if you wager $x on a particular game, you’ll win back $x times the payback percentage for that machine. If you’re playing a dollar slot machine on the Strip in Las Vegas, for example, and the payout percentage is around 93%, then if you place $10,000 in wagers, you’ll win back $9300. You lost $700.
That’s only a long term mathematical expectation, though. In the short run, anything can happen, and that’s what keeps people playing.
How to Maximize Your Winnings and Minimize Your Losses
There are three ways to maximize your winnings and minimize your losses. The first is to always join the slots club, and always use your member card while you play. Slots club members get a percentage of their play returned to them in the form of casino rewards and cash back. This is normally a tiny percentage (think 0.1% or 0.2%), but it adds up, especially if you play a lot.
How To Pick A Winning Slot Machine
Don’t buy into the myth that playing with your slots club card lowers your expected return on the game, either. That’s not true. The random number generator in these games has no way of knowing whether or not you’re using your slots club card or not.
The second way to increase your winnings and minimize your losses is to use effective bankroll management techniques. This means limiting the amount of time that you play, limiting the amount of money that you’re willing to lose in any session and in any given gambling trip, and finding other fun things to do with your time besides just playing the slots.
Finally, try to play the machines with the highest payout percentage. Over the long run, if you keep playing, you’ll probably eventually wind up a loser at the slots (unless you hit a huge progressive jackpot), but you’ll lose your money more slowly and get more entertainment value for the money you gambled.
Readers ask if quick reflexes are the key to winning
By John Grochowski
I keep a list of questions that I’m most often asked about slot machines. You could probably tick off some of them: “Are games programmed to go cold after a big win?” “Do you get less payback when you use your rewards card?” And the big one, “Can you tell me how to win?”
Those have been standards ever since I started writing about casinos and casino games 20 years ago. But recently, another question has been shooting up the charts. I have it all the way up at No. 2 on the readers’ hit parade:
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“I’ve noticed on a lot of video slot games that if I hit the button a second time while the reels are spinning, they stop right away. I was wondering if I could use this to my advantage. If I see the bonus triggers or the jackpot symbols at the top, should I quickly hit the button again and try to stop the reels?”
I had that thought myself the first time I accidentally double-hit a button and saw the reels click to an immediate halt. Could this be an answer to the chart-topping question, “how to win on the slots?”
Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. In nearly all slot games that allow you to stop the reels, there is no skill or timing involved on your part. The random number generator has already determined your outcome when you hit the button to spin the reels, and you’re going to get the same result regardless of whether you stop the reels early, or let them halt in their own time.
When you play a slot machine, the game isn’t actually being played out on the reels, whether it uses “real” reels or video reels. It’s being played internally, on the game’s random number generator. The reels are just a player-friendly interface, and are told where to stop by the RNG. If there’s a malfunction and the reel display doesn’t match the numbers generated, it’s the RNG that counts. Large jackpots can be denied—and have been denied—if a check shows the random numbers on the internal computer chip don’t match the winning symbols on the reels.
But this is extremely rare. The engineering is good enough that almost all the time, the RNG and reel display are going to match up. This doesn’t change if you double-hit the bet button. If the RNG has spit out a random number that tells the first reel to stop on a single bar, then you’re going to get a single bar—regardless of whether you hit the button a second time for a “quick stop,” or just let them take their own sweet time.
There are rare exceptions. When I’ve answered similar questions in the past, I’ve mentioned IGT’s Reel Edge games. In their original incarnation, Reel Edge games enabled players to touch and stop the reels one at a time. There was actual skill involved. Your timing in stopping the reels determined the outcome. The reels spun very, very fast, so it was going take a keen eye and sharp reflexes to get better than random results, but it was possible.
I gave it a try, and found my reflexes just weren’t fast enough to generate more than my normal share of winners. In the original three-reel Blood Life game, I identified a green 7 as the easiest symbol to pick out as it whizzed by. I touched each reel individually as I saw a green 7 reach the top of the slot window, and managed to stop 7s on all three reels. Alas, I failed to land them all on the same payline. Some younger folks with quicker reactions may have been able to do better.
I don’t know if any of the first generation of Reel Edge games remain on casino floors. They were never widespread, and I don’t get lists from casinos or manufacturers telling me what games are available in any given casino. The new generation of Reel Edge puts the skill-based portions of the games in the bonus events.
/sky-poker-free-money-codes/. Blood Life’s updated video incarnation, Blood Life Legends, allows you to test your skill with a joystick to guide a bat through the ups, downs, twists and turns of a cave as you try to collect gems for bonuses. There is actual skill involved, but it’s not the reel-stopping experience readers have been asking about.
On most slot games, even in the bonus events you’re getting an illusion of skill rather than actual skill. And when it comes to stopping the reels, it’s the random number generator, not your reflexes, that determines the results.
What about my readers’ other top questions?
To answer another—no, games are not programmed to go cold after big wins. Results remain as random as humans can program a computer to be. As long as the RNG keeps doing its thing, any big jackpot, any hot streak, and any cold streak eventually fade away into statistical insignificance, and the machine comes very close to its expected payback percentage.
No, you don’t get less payback when you use your rewards card. The player rewards system doesn’t interact with the RNG.
And no, with rare exceptions, there is no way to beat the slots except by being in the right place at the right time. There have been opportunities for small profit on games with banked bonuses such as the old WMS game Piggy Bankin’, where the sharpies would start to play only when there were enough coins in the bank to give the player an edge.
Tricks To Winning Slot Machines
Such games are not common. Just as with stopping the reels early, your results are up to chance and the RNG.