All About Slots
As soon as you set foot in a casino (or you set a mouse-cursor in an online casino ) to play slots,
you should always be aware that playing slots carries a negative expected value. That means, if
everything goes as set, you'll end up losing money. Does that mean that it's impossible to beat slots?
Not at all!
Whether you're in a real or an online casino, you'll see that all slot machines have their payout
rate displayed on them. (BTW, you shouldn't ever play in a casino where the payouts are a secret).
These payouts will range between 75%-98%, with online slots usually paying out better than their
live counterparts. As long as the payout is under 100% it means you're faced with negative EV.
If - in theory, because you'll never see this in reality - the payout were 100%, you'd be in a
break-even situation. If it were above 100% you'd have positive EV, which would mean that you'd
get paid for repeatedly pulling on a lever, which - again - won't happen. (you could still end up
Now that we have the expected value set straight, let's see what the payout really means. A 90%
payout rate would mean that you'd be making exactly $9 on every $10 invested, if you were to play
on forever. Now that doesn't sound like a good investment, but please pay added attention to the
part of the previous sentence, where it says "if you were to play on forever". Now, that's not
going to happen either. That means, the payout rate is a theoretical value. In the short term,
the payout rate will exert a certain influence (so the bigger it is, the better off you are) but
it doesn't translate literally. Taking advantage of the variance, you can still hit a huge jackpot
on your very first spin, if that's what Lady Luck decides.
Therefore, the very first thing you need to seek out whenever you go into a casino with the intention
of playing slots, is the machine with the best payout rate. Several factors influence these payout
rates, like the number of pay-lines, the number of reels, the existence of wild symbols, bonuses,
progressive jackpots, etc. Once the reels are set in motion, there's not much strategy you can
employ, but obviously, you can still do certain things to maximize your chances.
Another such thing is bankroll management. In that respect, the first thing you need to keep in
sight is that gambling doesn't become an addiction for you. You need to wager on slots within your
means, this way you'll always have fun and be capable of focusing on the more subtle aspects.
Tilting is possible on slots too, make sure you avoid that.
Set up a fixed bankroll, money which you do not need to chip off the more essential parts of your
budget. If you know you'll play for $50, or $500/month, you'll run less risk of becoming addicted.
Like with so many other gambling games, staying in it long enough might be the key to success. Do
not play on slot machines that take $1-2 on every spin, if you only have $20 in your account. That
is one sure way to bust out faster than you thought possible and leave the casino disappointed.
Choose a machine with smaller denominations and make sure you play max coins at it. That will give
you a nice little edge when you hit a jackpot and payout time comes.