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# That lovely RNG and Spin Poker

17 August 2014

QUESTION: Can random number generators in video keno be programmed not to hit certain numbers, or at least not as often? A example could all numbers under 12 –- the month numbers -- considering many folks play birthdays and that would stop them from winning as often or as much?

ANSWER: Not legally. In all U.S. jurisdictions that use RNG games, every random number must have an equal chance of being generated on every play. Any deviation from that would be caught in the testing lab before the game is licensed. That means every video keno number has an equal chance of being drawn, and every video poker card has an equal chance of being dealt.

Slots are different because of the "virtual reel." A reel with 20 symbols and 20 spaces can be made to behave as if it is much larger by assigning multiple random numbers to the same symbol or space. The numbers don't have to be in the same proportion as the symbols on the physical wheel. The programmer could assign a single random number to a 7, but assign five numbers to a single bar and 10 numbers to a single blank space. That enables the gamemaker to lengthen the odds to make larger jackpots possible.

QUESTION: My dad and I played almost exclusively Triple Play and Five Play Double Double Bonus Poker. Many, many times we were dealt a flush that included 3 to the royal. We always took the paying flush and moved on. In the back of my mind I kept asking myself if we should be dumping the flush and taking a shot at the royal.

ANSWER: You've been fine. Hold the pat flush over 3 to a royal.

If you only have four parts of a flush, then you should hold three to a royal unless it includes both an Ace and a 10. Hold the four parts of a flush instead of A-K-10, A-Q-10 or A-J-10, but hold any other three to a royal instead of four to a flush.

QUESTION: The best video poker pay tables where I play are on Spin Poker. It has 10-6 Double Double Bonus, 8-5 Super Aces, NSU Deuces, and all kinds of goodies. Is there any reason NOT to play those games on Spin Poker instead of lower-paying games on regular machines?

ANSWER: Spin Poker is a good option, one I’ve used myself in similar situations where it offers the best pay tables in the house. The cards are presented as symbols on spinning reels, but the odds are the same as if they were presented in the more traditional linear display. The odds will lead 10-6 Double Double Bonus toward a 99.96 percent return on a single-line game, and to a 99.96 percent return in Spin Poker.

A big plus is that although Spin Poker is designed with nine paylines – nine hands – you can bet five coins on one hand and get the full pay table. That’s not the case on all multihand games. If you bet five coins on Triple Play, you’re going to get two-coin bets on two hands and a one-coin bet on the third. That means you’ll get 250-for-1 pays on royals with that Triple Play bet, while you can get the full 4,000 for five coins on Spin Poker.

The one drawback that I see is that the spinning reels are distracting and slow. Even if you’re betting on only one hand, you have to wait for the reels to spin and all the cards to stop before your bet is settled. Your hands per hour will decrease, and on a game such as 10-6 Double Double Bonus where payback plus player rewards take you into profitable territory, that can be an annoyance.

Spin Poker was designed in the days that nine-payline games were the cutting edge in video slots. There was some hope that Spin Poker would become a crossover game, giving an attractive look to players making a move from video slots. It hasn’t really worked that way, instead settling into a small niche among video poker players.
Recent Articles
Best of John Grochowski
John Grochowski

John Grochowski is the best-selling author of The Craps Answer Book, The Slot Machine Answer Book and The Video Poker Answer Book. His weekly column is syndicated to newspapers and Web sites, and he contributes to many of the major magazines and newspapers in the gaming field, including Midwest Gaming and Travel, Slot Manager, Casino Journal, Strictly Slots and Casino Player.

Listen to John Grochowski's "Casino Answer Man" tips Tuesday through Friday at 5:18 p.m. on WLS-AM (890) in Chicago. Look for John Grochowski on Facebook and Twitter @GrochowskiJ.

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John Grochowski
John Grochowski is the best-selling author of The Craps Answer Book, The Slot Machine Answer Book and The Video Poker Answer Book. His weekly column is syndicated to newspapers and Web sites, and he contributes to many of the major magazines and newspapers in the gaming field, including Midwest Gaming and Travel, Slot Manager, Casino Journal, Strictly Slots and Casino Player.

Listen to John Grochowski's "Casino Answer Man" tips Tuesday through Friday at 5:18 p.m. on WLS-AM (890) in Chicago. Look for John Grochowski on Facebook and Twitter @GrochowskiJ.