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View Full Version : Quick math poll for gambling dopers

Plavacek
06-20-2002, 11:59 PM
Suppose you are playing at a \$5 slot. Not a very likely occurence for most, but just suppose.
Furthermore, suppose the slot machine has a payouts table posted (as the NGC says every slot should).
Still furthermore, suppose an exerpt from said slot machine reads like this:

Any Three Bars
Coin 1: 15
Coin 2: 30
Coin 3: 45

You put in \$15 (ouch). You spin. "Any three bars" comes up. How much should the machine pay you?

Lamar Mundane
06-21-2002, 12:04 AM
45x\$15 = \$675.

Anamorphic
06-21-2002, 12:25 AM
No, I don't think so. '45' is the number of credits you win, and a credit on this machine would be \$5, not \$15. So your jackpot would be \$225.

I think.

Anamorphic
06-21-2002, 12:34 AM
Actually, the more I think about it, the more I'm sure I'm right. I take back the "I think" disclaimer.

I was just in Las Vegas this past weekend. I was playing a 'Wheel of Fortune' slot machine in between blackjack sessions. It was a 25 cent machine, and I was playing max credits (3 credits, 75 cents). The 'spin' thing came up, and I spun the wheel of fortune thing up top. It landed on 500 (yay!). I won \$125, not \$375.

Plavacek
06-21-2002, 12:53 AM
Quicker than I thought to get the two major schools of thought.
For the record, I'm with Lamar, based on trips to Vegas and Reno.
Everything I've played has always been payout=bet*number_in_pay_table, not payout=credit_value*number_in_pay_table.
An online casino (playing for fun) is with Anamorphic, and I'm about ready to call them on it. Hence the need for a sanity check.

The silly/misleading part of the Anamorphic way (sorry, target of opportunity :) ) is that the payout is in fact no higher for 3 credits than 1. That may well be the point.

Flymaster
06-21-2002, 07:43 AM
Given the payouts listed, I'd assume that you would get (15*5) + (30*5) + (45*5) = \$450. Remember, it says you get 45 on COIN three, not all coins, if you play three.

Enderw24
06-21-2002, 08:25 AM
It couldn't be \$625. If so, here would be the payouts:
Coin 1: \$75
Coin 2: \$300
Coin 3: \$675

Do you see the problem here? The \$ payouts are increasing at a significantly steep rate. The only way for the casinos to compensate for that and ensure that they stay ahead of the game is to reduce the chances of winning on coin 3 to a ridiculously low factor. However hard it is to win in the first place, divide that by 4 for game 2 and 9 for game 3.
I mean, maybe, maybe this is how it works. But I can see people getting bored (and going broke VERY quickly) if I only won 11% of the already low amount of the time I was winning on the 1 coin game.

Plavacek
06-21-2002, 10:11 AM
Actually Enderw24, that kind of math is pretty popular in Vegas. Progressive jackpots only pay out for max bet plays, and most top-level jackpots tack on a goodly percentage for people playing max bet.

The NGC even has a specific regulation about it:
I'm quoting http://gaming.state.nv.us/stats_regs/reg14_tech_stnds.doc
Standard 2, subsection 3 (always wanted to say that)

Gaming devices which are considered to be slot machines and which have a difference in theoretical payback percentage which exceeds 4 percent for a single-coin play versus maximum-bet play, must have electronically stored digital meters of at least 6 digits which record the number of plays made in each category of wager for which the theoretical payback percentage is different from the single-coin bet category.

I'll admit that 1) this is a rather extreme case, and 2) setting the max credit "bonus" up all the way down the table is a bit odd.

Oh, and Flymaster, congratulations on finding a third possible payout. Now if someone proposes geometric mean or Student's t-test fit, we may have every way this (superlative of ambiguous) paytable can be read.

Enough from me, I sense I'm in grave danger of forcing our brave mods to move this harmless thread.

Plavacek

Enderw24
06-21-2002, 01:36 PM
Oh progressive jackpots, sure, Plavacek. But not on every single payout. If I only won 11% of the x% of time I win on the one coin slots, I'd never play the 3 coin slots.
Well, not that I play slots at all. I play poker. But that's besides the point.

DMark
06-21-2002, 04:34 PM
Originally posted by Plavacek
Suppose you are playing at a \$5 slot.
Any Three Bars
Coin 1: 15
Coin 2: 30
Coin 3: 45

You put in \$15
You spin.
"Any three bars" comes up.
How much should the machine pay you?

45 coins.

Seems clear to me. Then again, I live in Las Vegas.
This is how "Wheel of Fortune" and "Megabucks" gets so high sometimes. You have to play maximum to win maximun. Often, people will only put in ONE coin in a three coin machine.
ie.
Three WHEEL OF FORTUNE symbols is the Big Prize.
if you have 1 coin in - you will win about 1000 to 1.
Two coins - 2000 to 1
Three coins - the progressive Jackpot which is often in the multi \$millions!

Three WOF symbols doesn't come that often - trust me - so when somebody gets it, and only has one coin in, it doesn't affect the progressive jackpot, which will now grow bigger as there is more time between winning combinations!
Rule of thumb on these big progressive machines - if you can't afford to put the maximum in, GO TO A DIFFERENT MACHINE!

Some machines (like the one you mentioned above) are simple, non-progressive. For the winning combo:
1 coin always wins 5
2 coins always wins 10
3 coins always wins 15

On those machines, doesn't make any difference how much you play, you still get the same 5 to 1 odds on what ever your bet is.

BTW...locals almost never play simple one-arm-bandit "slots" - those are for the tourists - (unless the jackpot gets really big).
Video poker is the game of choice, by far, for people who live here.