The Math Behind Slots: Do Casinos Have an Edge?
When you win successive games of slots, you start feeling lucky, don’t you? But is it only your luck that is instrumental behind your success? The answer will be negative. Mathematics also has a significant role to play in determining whether you win or lose. Mathematics forms the foundation of the game of slots. It ensures that there is a fair game between the casino and the players. Players often ignore this part and, as a result, fall prey to many misconceptions.
This article will aim to simplify the mathematics behind slot machines. It also sheds light on how a fair game is ensured between the players and the casino. It also aims to dig out the answer to the vital question- Do casinos have the edge? But before we do that, let us see how a slot machine works.
How Does a Slot Machine Work?
One primary reason why millions of dollars are put into slot machines every day by players all around the globe is that they are simple to operate. You need to put some money into the machine, select your bet, and press spin. If you are lucky enough to end up winning something, you can cash out. It is what players see in a slot machine. But what happens inside the device is quite impressive on its own.
When a player presses spin on a slot machine, a random-number-generating algorithm sets to work. It is the algorithm that determines whether you win and by how much. Inside every machine, the amount and the frequency of payout are pre-set. Games that offer lower payouts offer more than games paying out huge bounties.
How Do the Payouts Occur?
In the slot machines, the paytables are set to payout fixed amounts at fixed frequencies, and this goes for every slot machine. Hence, the popular myth about ‘hot’ and ‘cold’ machines is just that – a myth.
As these pay tables aren’t biased and always pay a certain percentage of the money put into the machine, the game is of pure chance. The revenue of the casino comes from the remaining percentage that isn’t paid out.
Now, how is it that some players win money and others don’t if a certain percentage is always paid out? The answer is simple. If a player is lucky, the machine pays a portion of the total payout during his turn. If he isn’t that lucky, he goes home empty-handed, and the machine doles out the money to some other player. Only one thing is for sure- some player or the other always takes back the money. Try your luck in a slot machine if you feel lucky on a beautiful day!
What Guarantees a Fair Game Between Players and Casinos?
Now that you know that maths favours the casinos, one obvious question that you might have in your mind is – ‘Why don’t the casinos take all the money?’. Two factors stop the casinos from doing so.
Firstly, if nobody wins any money playing slots, nobody would play slots. That will be a massive setback for the casinos as that would mean less money put by the players inside the casino, and the attraction would go downhill.
Secondly, there are regulations in place that mandate casinos to pay out a certain percentage of the total money put in. It is part of this percentage that players win. Somebody gets a considerable chunk while others get more modest ones. You should favour an online casino that offers a higher percentage as the payout.
Now that you know the maths behind slot machines, it is likely that you would set aside superstitions regarding devices when you go hunting for the lion’s share of that particular percentage. Happy hunting!