«Slot Machines – The Principle of Operation

One оf the most important issues is the mechanism and the operation principle of slot machines. Ignorance of the operation principle leads to the appearance of the most amazing and, in most cases, completely stupid myths.
So, what is а slot machine? This is a case, where there are certain elements оf the machine: an acceptor, which allows you to put the money into the machine. The control elements, which allow you to regulate the parlays and run a game, are on the case. If the acceptor took the money, the money is on the account of the machine, you run the game. Then the random number generator (RNG) starts working and gives the result of a spin. The RNG and the electronic system are a kind of a small computer; it is usually a board, which reminds a PC motherboard. The RNG output is further displayed either on the screen (video slots), or the electro-mechanical reels are rolled and stopped. If you won – the money is added to your account; the «computer» part also corresponds for determining the winning and accrual the funds.The main thing to understand is that all game’s results are determined by the built-in computer’s RNG, and a player can hardly affect its operation.

Let’s take a more detailed look of how this slot’s part works, because so many copies are broken exactly around the results of its work. To begin with, I will say the following: the RNG constantly works. Every second it generates tens and hundreds millions of random numbers and these numbers may become the result оf а game. But, in fact, only selected results оf the generation are used. The selection of numbers, which will be the result оf the game, occurs at the moment when you start the game! As soon as you pressed the button «Spin», the program takes the current results of RNG operation and converts them to the spin’s results. Rotation of the reels or flickering of the symbols, which occur within few seconds, do not affect anything and any your actions are no object, the result is already known and needs to be displayed on the screen – to stop the reels in the desired point or to show the required symbols.How does the transition from the random numbers to the direct results occur? The situation between classic and video slots is different.

Let’s start with the ordinary slots and take as an example the slot machine of 777 type with sevens and «bar» symbols. We have three reels and each of them has the symbols with blanks between them. Suppose that there are 12 symbols оn each reel, and consequently 12 blanks between them. One would assume that each symbol and blank correspond the number, given by the RNG. For example, the RNG gives the numbers from 1 to 24: 1 – seven, 2 – blank, 3 – bar, 4 – blank, 5 – double bar, 6 – blank, etc. In this case, the probability of drawing each of the symbols and blanks would be the same. But, in fact, the situation is different. The RNG gives more than 24 numbers, the simplest variant is 64 numbers (8-bit is a very convenient option for a computer). The slot machine’s memory contains the look-up table between the numbers RNG and drawn symbols. According to the table, it will be, for example, 1 and 2 – seven, 3, 4 and 5 – blank, 6, 7, and 8 – bar, 9, 10, 11 and 12 – blank, 13 and 14 double bar and etc. That is, in fact, the drawing of different symbols and blanks is not equally probable. Each reel has its own table. It is clear, that the RNG gives three numbers, and every reel stops independently from others. It is the look-up table, which will influence the payout percentage of a slot. Unfortunately, frauds can reprogram the table, setting a high number of blanks and reducing the payouts. There is quite a formal psychological trick, which is used by almost all manufacturers of slot machines. It is evident, that the symbols which correspond to the maximum winning, will be drawn less often, they are usually one, maximum two for the table. But this is not enough; they are usually rounded by increased number of blanks. The result is that you will often get blanks, which, аs you can see, are followed by the most necessary symbol – this effect «almost reached» must make the player continue chasing such a close, nearly reached main winning.

The situation is slightly different in video slots. As you know, there are no blanks in video slots, if compare them with the classic slots, we can say, that the symbols follow directly one by one. As for the rest, the situation is similar. Reels’ unrolling – the sequence of drawn symbols – is made for each of 5 reels. It is clear, that the most «expensive» symbols are wild, scattered, the bonus symbols will usually be presented there in a minimum amount, 1-2 for a reel. The «cheaper» the symbol is – they are usually card symbols A, K, Q, and J – the oftener it will occur. The number of symbols on every reel may be different and is usually in the range of 30-100 symbols for a reel. Bring to your notice the real layout of the popular Thunderstruck video slot from the Microgaming casino:I think, you see that the table is full of numbers 9, for example (which corresponds to the symbol J – Jack), but 0 and 12 occur only once, these are the symbols of the Torah – wild with multiplication, and mountain sheep – scattered, which provide 15 free spins with a triple winning coefficient!Knowing the look-up table in a classic slot or reels’ unrolling in a video slot, a player can count a payout percentage of а slot machine. Remember that any result of the spin is strictly accidental. The casino does not shove you the desired results, the ordinary probability theory works everywhere, your winning and loss depends on a fortuity in every particular spin.

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