Casino machines math how it works? 

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In this article, we will explore the math behind the online slots machine in Casinos. When machine designers design it, they do so while keeping one thing in mind - every player should get a percentage of what they paid, back. However, the amount paid back varies from machine to machine and also with casinos. Be it some normal casino, or most famous casino- they have a mechanism.

But there is this one thing that all the machines share, the longer you play on that machine, the closer will be the payouts to theoretical results. 

Offline or online, all the slot machines make use of a random selection process that brings them closer to the theoretical results. However, the random selection means that every time the lever is pulled, the combination of the reels are selected very randomly. Each pull of the handle is independent of the results of the previous pull.

The theoretical odds that I am talking about, they are programmed into every machine. This is the reason why you can actually calculate the exact payout percentage for any machine. 

Slot machines have a lot of wheels, and those are called reels, on each reel, there is a symbol printed. Those symbols represent a stop, so it may or may not come to rest on the pay line. And the location where those symbols stop may or may not be a part of that combination which results in a payout. So when calculated, the likelihood of winning depends on the number of reels & number of symbols on each reel. 

The Most Popular Slot

The most popular slot of the machine has three reels, and each reel has a total of twenty symbols on them. Now if you want to calculate the total number of possible combination of symbols, then you will have to multiply the total number of symbols on each reel with the number of stops on the remaining reels. That means 20*20*20 = 8,000 combinations of slot symbols. 

Now, let’s say, a jackpot is offered when the symbols 7 7 7 appear on each reel. And let us also imagine that there is just one 7 on each reel. In this case, the probability of you hitting the jackpot would be (1/20)*(1/20)*(1/20), or one in 8,000.

With Technology comes Difficulty

When mechanical slots were still popular, that means they are not popular now, so when they were still popular, it was not so difficult to count symbols on reels and determine the payout. However, now thanks to the microprocessor-controlled slots, this calculation has become near impossible. Now the number of stops per reel can go up to 256. Now, if you still want to know the payout, then reverse engineer it, which is not possible for anyone, unless you are a supercomputer.

However, remember the number of reels effects probability more significantly as compared to the number of symbols per reel. Let us see the difference that another reel makes - 

  • 32 stop, 3 Reel: 32*32*32 = 32,768 combinations
  • 22 stop, 4 Reel: 22*22*22*22 = 234,256 combinations

Now consider a five-reel machine - yeah, no, I am not spelling out that figure for you. 

Payout percentages

What does it mean when a machine screams payout percentages and attracts you towards itself? Well, when a machine says it will ‘payback 97.8%’, then it means, for every dollar, you insert in the machine, you will get 97.8 cents back. 

Look at this the other way, for every dollar, you insert in that machine, the casinos keep 2.2 cents with itself. Now you don’t gamble with just one dollar, do you? And you don’t win every time either, right? Imagine how much that casino is making then, no, I am not spelling this figure out for you either. 

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