With better graphics, interactive bonus games and innovative designs, the slot machines in the online casino are becoming more and more sophisticated. Many game manufacturers compete with each other and want to offer the ultimate entertainment package. Behind the amusing and charming exterior, however, there are almost always the same mechanisms that give the house an advantage. Even so, we love to play slot machines in the hope of being one of the lucky winners.
In the following article we take a closer look at the mechanics of a slot machine, why we lose in the long run, how we can improve our chances of winning and why we still enjoy playing so much.
The basics – slot machines leave everything to chance (ZZG)
Slot machines have no memory. You never know, at any point in time, how many times a player has won or lost. The result of previous games has no influence on the next. No spin depends on the other, each one is completely arbitrary. The result is always a coincidence. This is ensured by a random number generator (ZZG) that is used in every slot machine (in English: ‘random number generator’ – RNG).
A simple example: Imagine a cube. The chance of hitting one of the six sides in a throw is the same for each side and is 1/6. It does not matter which result occurred with the previous throw. The chances of hitting a certain side are always the same for everyone. Slot machines work in a similar way. But there are far more than just six conceivable outcomes. Thousands of combinations are possible. But which symbol combination appears on the reels at the end is always pure coincidence.
However, unlike with the dice, the probability of the many possible combinations in a slot is not the same for all. This is ensured by the hit frequency (in English: ‘hit frequency’), which specifies how often a certain symbol combination appears on the reels. For an illustration, let’s go back to our cube. Let us assume that the six eyes on the dice indicate the highest payout of a slot, while the one stands for the smallest possible win. Instead of giving each side of the dice the same chance of 1/6 when thrown, the game manufacturers program the dice so that on average the six now only appears every twelfth time and the one every third time. If we roll the dice, the outcome of the next roll is still determined randomly,
Let’s go one step further and clarify this principle with our own, fictitious slot machine. We call it “The Happy Aquarium” and just give it five different symbols to keep it as simple as possible: treasure chest, golden fish, purple fish, yellow fish and red fish.
|Five treasure chests||2500||0.001%|
|Five golden fish||1000||0.015%|
|Five purple fish||400||0.05%|
|Five yellow fish||50||0.5%|
|Five red fish||5||7%|
|All in all||3955||7,566%|
Wie die Tabelle zeigt, bietet unser Slot eine Wahrscheinlichkeit (Trefferhäufigkeit) von 1/100.000 (0,001%), die fünf Symbole mit der höchsten Auszahlung (Schatztruhe) zu erhalten, während die Wahrscheinlichkeit, fünf andere gleiche Symbole zu treffen, bei 1/13 (7.566%) liegt. So ähnlich sieht das auch in echten Spielautomaten aus. Jeder Automat ist in dieser Hinsicht anders und unterscheidet sich bei Auszahlungen und Trefferhäufigkeit. In der Regel bewegt sich die Trefferhäufigkeit bei Slots um die 40%, um irgendeine Gewinnkombination zu erhalten.