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How Are Slot Machine Odds Calculated?

16 October, 2019 Gaming

slot-machine-odds


While slot machine games are the most popular casino games, a huge percentage of players of the game don't really understand how the odds of spinning reels works. Preying on the fact that a lot of interested gamblers don't understand such technicalities, you'll find a lot of so-called 'cheat sheets' online. Fortunately for you today, we are going to help you understand how the slot machine odds are calculated. Whether you play for free on platforms like http://onlineslotsx.com/ or you prefer real money play in online casinos, spare a few minutes to get more insight about slots.


Random Number Generators Keep the Game Tight & Fair


Thanks to RNGs, or Random Number Generators in full, it is virtually impossible to predict the outcome even with high RTP slot machines. Let's take an example of a five payline slot game where there is only a single 'jackpot payout,' paid out for matching five bell symbols. Remember, this theoretical machine also has other symbols, and you must match five of the same to win the jackpot on a $1 slot machine.


The lines are controlled by the RNGs, which will line up the symbols at random. With every spin, five different symbols will equally come upon each of the paying lines. Carrying out simple arithmetic, the probability of landing on a bell on one payline 1/5 and the same goes for the second, third, fourth and fifth in succession. Therefore, the odds of lining up five bells is (1/5)÷5, which gives you a 0.04~0.032% chance of hitting the jackpot.


However, considering that there is a total of five different symbols in the game, your chances of earning a win from lining up five of any of the symbols are set are 5x0.032%, which is 0.16%. So, you have a better chance of earning a win from lining up these other icons. But for the jackpot, you'll only be able to hit it once in every 625 spins of this theoretical slot machine game.


Factoring in the House Advantage


Now let's say the jackpot payout of this game was $625, making it a zero-sum game scheme. But then again, considering the fact that the house has to make a profit, the payouts are normally set at a slightly lower figure, often between 90% to 98% of the break-even frequency. Therefore, if this theoretical machine has a 96% payout rate, the jackpot would be $600.


Indeed, you could also get lucky and hit the jackpot on your 3rd spin to bag some juicy profits. Even so, in the long-term players can never get ahead of the law of averages; and the house edge will often still be maintained over any short-term change in results.


Casino managers refer to a slot machine house edge as the "hold." Hold percentages vary significantly from one game and are often smaller in pricier slots; typically about 2% on average for 5-dollar games. However, don't forget about the fact that you're likely to lose more cash in real terms at these pricier slot machines, given that you'll be loading more money through the machine every single hour.


Does Skill Help in Slots?


Well, yes and no. But how so? Fundamentally, slots are games of luck. They have no surefire winning strategy, but there's still a lot you can do to increase your edge. Unlike table and card games, for instance, slot machines are a negative equity game. While in card games like poker and blackjack where you play against actual opponents, or a system computer, you are always playing against the house in slots. That's what makes the game quite different compared to other casino games, even when you learn a few tricks to tip the scales.


 

 


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