Popular Slot Machine Myths DEBUNKED

Across the globe, the number of people who enjoy playing online slot machines is on the rise. However, few players understand the inner workings of slot machines and as a result many misconceptions and myths surround this form of gambling. These myths attempt to explain why some slot machines appear to be ‘looser’ than others or why some players seem to be luckier than others.

RNG Example

Misconceptions can be dangerous because they influence players’ gaming strategies and can lead players to play for longer than they should.

This article examines some of the most popular myths associated with slots.

Myth: Casinos Can Easily Change Slot Machines’ Payout Percentages

Many players believe that casinos can easily alter the payout percentages on slot machines in order to make the machines ‘looser’ or ‘tighter’.

Explained: This belief is completely unfounded: the payout percentage of a particular machine is programmed into the slot by the manufacturer and in order to change the payout percentage an expensive computer chip needs to be replaced by the manufacturer. The casino instructs the manufacturer on what the payout percentage should be, but once this percentage is programmed into the online slot it is a lengthy, costly process to reset it. Many online casinos advertise their payout percentages to players and there are various regulatory bodies, such as eCOGRA, that monitor the gambling industry and ensure that the payout percentage advertised to clients is adhered to.

Myth: When You Play Influences Your Chances of Winning

Countless players who enjoy both online and land based gambling believe that at certain times of the day or night slot machines are likely to pay out more.

Explained: This myth relates to the one discussed above and is based on the assumption that casinos can easily alter the payout percentage of a machine. However, as explained above, it is a lengthy and expensive procedure to alter a slots payout percentage and casinos would not go to all that trouble merely to lure more players during quiet hours of the morning.

Myth: If a Slot Machine Has Not Paid Out in a While, It Is Sure To Pay Out Soon

This is one of the most dangerous slot machine myths, because it causes players to continue playing in the belief that they are bound to hit a jackpot soon.

Explained: Online slots make use of a Random Number Generator (RNG) and the RNG ensures that each spin is entirely random and independent of previous spins. In other words, if you have been playing on a machine for a while without any wins that in no way means that you are due for a win – you could simply be having an unlucky gaming session.

Myth: If a Jackpot Has Just Been Won on a Slot Machine, You Should Avoid That Slot

This myth relates to the one mentioned above and stems from the belief that slot machines are programmed to tighten up when a jackpot has been struck or to pay out if a couple of rounds have passed that yielded no wins.

Explained: As mentioned above, the Random Number Generator used in slot machines ensures that each spin is completely independent of previous spins – the slot does not keep a record of previous spins in order to determine when a jackpot is due. When one considers this misconception it is easy to understand why players would believe that they are less likely to win on a machine that has just paid out a large sum. However, in reality your odds of winning on a machine that has recently paid out a jackpot are the same as your odds of winnings on a machine that has yielded a dry streak.

Myth: The Symbols on Each of the Reels Can Be Used To Determine Your Odds of Winning

This myth contains a kernel of truth as this used to be the case with mechanical slot machines. When slot machines were first invented you could use a mathematical formula to determine your chances of winning on that slot machine.

Explained: However, this is no longer the case with modern online slots that rely on Random Number Generators. There are no fixed odds that apply to video slot machines. You can consult the slot machine’s paytable and attempt to establish if the slot offers low or high variance and sometimes you can even find out what a particular slot machine’s payout percentage is, but, although these elements influence your chances of winning, they cannot be used to determine the fixed odds of winning for your individual playing session.

Myth: A Specific Payout Cycle is Programmed

Many players believe that slots run according to a predetermined cycle that is repeated once the cycle is completed.

Explained: This misconception ties into two of the abovementioned myths, namely that you are less likely to win on a slot that recently paid out a jackpot and slot machines that have yielded a dry streak are bound to pay out generous amounts soon. As mentioned throughout this article, modern slot machines make use of Random Number Generators and these computer programs ensure that each spin of the reels is entirely random. The RNG is at work even when the slot machine is not in play and continually cycles through numbers.

At the exact second when you press the spin button is when the RNG selects the combinations that will fall on the reels. In other words, every second may potentially yield a different outcome and there is no set cycle that is followed. The RNG devices are regularly inspected by gambling regulatory bodies to ensure that they function as they should.

Myths and Misconceptions Discredited

Myths and misconceptions regarding slots cause players to adjust their gambling strategies in ways that may not be beneficial.

This article examined some of the most popular myths associated with slot machines and showed that these myths are not founded on any factual basis. It is important to separate fact from fiction when it comes to gambling and to bear in mind that gambling should be seen as a fun, recreational activity that is ultimately governed by luck.