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Ask About Slot Machines

21 May 2024

Important Points

The casino world is indisputably the slot world. That is a plain and simple fact. Somewhere between 60 and 90 percent of an individual casino’s revenue comes from slots. The slot players are the royalty of Lady Luck’s world and have been since 1984 when both Las Vegas and Atlantic City made more from the machines than from the table games.

Still, most slot players and most casino players of all types have little or no idea of how these marvelous machines stay, well, marvelous. Today I will give you some insider aspects of slot machines to help unravel what to many of us is a dark, mysterious environment where those machines exist.

QUESTION: I have read about a thing called the RNG and just the other day someone told me it is now called the PRNG and the “P” stands for pseudo. What gives? Have they changed the computer that runs these machines or what?

ANSWER: No, the program that we all tend to call the RNG, as in the Random Number Generator, is actually and has always been the Pseudo Random Number Generator. The confusion comes in when we think that humans can actually create random numbers by programming them. We can’t.

What we can do is come close enough to randomness to allow the selection principle of the machine to seem as if it is actually random.

I was surprised when I heard about the “pseudo” too. To me slot machines are true wizardry whether they are run by an RNG or a PRNG because wizards don’t need to answer questions. They just do what they are programmed to do.

QUESTION: If the program is not truly, really random can’t some really bright computer person get in there and find out what is going to be the next big hit? Someone such as that could make a killing, right?

ANSWER: I do remember reading, maybe 30 years ago, that someone did actually crack the PRNG and did something such as that. He was caught, arrested, and the slots became even more sophisticated because of him. I don’t know what prison he went to but since then I think the PRNG programs are even more difficult to crack.

QUESTION: Some so-called authorities say that slot machines won’t get cold and then are due to get hot. Hot machines will also become cold. This is called the “It’s due” philosophy. What do you make of that?

ANSWER: Since the slot machines are just about random, nothing is actually due. Just to make this simple (so I can understand it), let us say that we have numbers from 1 to 10. They are picked randomly (close to it!) and the first six picks are all the number 7. All the numbers have a one in 10 chance of coming up. On the next selection is 7 more or less due? Or is it still one in 10?

It is still one in 10. All the numbers are still one in 10.

Now, we do another 40 picks and all the numbers but 9 have been selected at least once. Is the 9 now due? No, it is not. It is possible that we could go even more selections without a 9 showing. It must be due some time, right? Yes, but only once in 10 selections so that one in 10 is the key probability.

Okay, in the real universe we can assume with little difficulty that sooner (the next selection) or later (some time later) the 9 will show. But it has never been due. The “It’s due” idea is wrong in a random game. (I felt that way about my first kiss when I was a teenager: "Come on Lord, can't I have it now?")

QUESTION: I know someone who claims she has never lost on the slots when she goes to the casinos. She goes monthly and has for many years. Do you think she is telling the truth or that she is a big liar?

ANSWER: If she goes regularly for years to the casinos and plays any decent length of time at the slot machines, then no, I do not think she has never lost on a trip. She just may be an enthusiastic player and only remembers those times that she has won.

Players can have long winning streaks (and long losing streaks). That is not unusual and maybe she is in a long winning streak. I doubt it would go on for years though. Slot machines have high house edges and it is really tough to beat them consistently.

If I were betting on this, I would put my money on “no, she has never never not lost at the slot machines.”

QUESTION: Slots are very popular but I have no idea why people play them. Weren’t they once called the “one-armed bandits?” Do you have an opinion of why so many people play those machines?

ANSWER: I am guessing there are as many reasons for playing slot machines as there are for playing any casino game. I think people enjoy betting their money in different ways and slot machines offer one way. People might prefer them because they can play without having other players watching them. They have more privacy on the slot machines.

All the best in and out of the casinos!

Frank Scoblete’s books are available from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble, Kindle, e-books, libraries and bookstores.
Frank Scoblete

Frank Scoblete is the #1 best selling gaming author in America. His newest books are Slots Conquest: How to Beat the Slot Machines; Everything Casino Poker: Get the Edge at Video Poker, Texas Hold'em, Omaha Hi-Lo and Pai Gow Poker!; Beat Blackjack Now: The Easiest Way to Get the Edge; Casino Craps: Shoot to Win!; Cutting Edge Craps: Advanced Strategies for Serious Players; Casino Conquest: Beat the Casinos at Their Own Games! and The Virgin Kiss.

Frank and Casino City Times columnist Jerry "Stickman" teach private lessons in dice control. Frank's books are available at Amazon.com, in bookstores or by mail order. Call 1-800-944-0406 or write to Frank Scoblete Enterprises, PO Box 446, Malverne, NY 11565. Frank can also be reached by email at fscobe@optonline.net.

Frank Scoblete Websites:

www.goldentouchcraps.com
www.goldentouchblackjack.com

Books by Frank Scoblete:

> More Books By Frank Scoblete

Frank Scoblete
Frank Scoblete is the #1 best selling gaming author in America. His newest books are Slots Conquest: How to Beat the Slot Machines; Everything Casino Poker: Get the Edge at Video Poker, Texas Hold'em, Omaha Hi-Lo and Pai Gow Poker!; Beat Blackjack Now: The Easiest Way to Get the Edge; Casino Craps: Shoot to Win!; Cutting Edge Craps: Advanced Strategies for Serious Players; Casino Conquest: Beat the Casinos at Their Own Games! and The Virgin Kiss.

Frank and Casino City Times columnist Jerry "Stickman" teach private lessons in dice control. Frank's books are available at Amazon.com, in bookstores or by mail order. Call 1-800-944-0406 or write to Frank Scoblete Enterprises, PO Box 446, Malverne, NY 11565. Frank can also be reached by email at fscobe@optonline.net.

Frank Scoblete Websites:

www.goldentouchcraps.com
www.goldentouchblackjack.com

Books by Frank Scoblete:

The Captain's Special Report

> More Books By Frank Scoblete