Slot Machine Terms
This is the size of each bet. You can play more than one coin per spin.
Coins Per Spin
This is the amount of coins that you can play for each spin.
When hoppers run out of coins, a fill is called for which simply means an attendant
gets a bag of coins from the cashier and refills the empty hopper.
The average distance between winning spins and non winning spins.
The Hold is the percentage of coins played that are kept by the machine, or
the house. On average, I've been told that, it is between 3% to 15%.
This is where the coins are held in the machine. Often hoppers are filled to
overflowing by players, so they don't only run empty they sometime are overflowing.
When this happens the excess coins drop into a bucket underneath the hopper.
This is the profit the casino takes.
The maximum amount of coins that can be played per spin.
A one armed bandit is simply another name for a slot machine. Origin of the
term - the single pull lever is the 'one arm', the fact that they used to be
rigged to never win is the 'bandit'.
Most slots have a single (or multiple) horizontal line at the middle of the
visible playing section. If a proper combination falls on that line, you get
paid. Hence, this line is the payline.
Payout percentages vary from Casino to Casino and even from slot to slot within
a particular Casino. You will often see signs posted regarding the percentage
of payout particularly at the dollar carousels. You might see as high as 98.2
% payback - however this does not mean that for every 100.00 you play you will
get a return of 98.20, hardly. What it does mean is that over the "long"
haul the machine will pay back the posted percentage. Calculated in all of this
are the small wins and the jackpot wins. You could put $500 into a dollar slot
machine and get very little back perhaps a hundred or two and even less. This
does not mean the percentage payout is incorrect, it simply means that you have
not experienced the 98.2% payback. The next guy coming along may feed a few
dollars into the slot machine and win a jackpot. In his case the payback far
exceeded 98.2% posted on the carousel. And so you can see that over a longer
period of time it all averages out to the posted percentage.
A pay cycle is defined as a period of time following a minimum number of bets
(or coin 'takes') during which the machine pays out coins in larger percentages.
This cycle is usually programmed into the slot machine's software to meet the
minimum payout schedule as per State law.
The listing of available winning combinations on a slot machine.
A top prize which grows, giving much larger possible prizes.
This type of slot machine offer growing jackpots dependent on the amount of
money that was played. A larger bankroll is required and all progressives are
at least three coin max slots with two jackpot levels.
Random Number Generator (RNG)
This is the computer program that determines which symbols line up on the reels.
Its sole purpose is to generate a sequence of numbers in milliseconds. Each
random number it generates corresponds to a reel combination. Even when a slot
machine is not being used, the RNG keeps doing its job of generating numbers.
Whatever random number was generated the split second you pull the handle (or
hit the "bet one" or "max bet" button) will result in the
corresponding reel combinations that appear on your screen. The RNG doesn't
care how much you bet, whether you bet one coin or five, whether you pulled
the handle or hit the spin button, whether it's your first play or last, whether
you are winning or losing, or whether you are playing with or without your slot
card. It just continually generates random numbers. If you happen to be the
lucky player that plays the very split second the RNG generated a number corresponding
to a jackpot reel combination, you'll be a big winner.
The reels of a slot machine are the cylindrical spinning pieces around which
all of the symbols are displayed. Most slot machines usually have three reels
but sometimes you will find a two reel, or four reel or even higher. The more
reels in the machine, the more permutations or possible combinations are able
to hit the payline. This means, in a multiple reel machine with a single jackpot
line (to hit it big you need to get just the right combo), your chances of hitting
that combo are slimmer than normal.
The symbols are graphics, pictures, images, or icons that are spread around
the reels. They can be cherries, lemons, bars, oranges - any one of many simple
recognizable images. Originally, Fay's first machine featured Liberty Bells,
and our common card symbols such as hearts and spades.
The take cycle is the opposite of the pay cycle. If you follow the pay / take
theory, then you might be inclined to assume that a pay cycle is followed by
a take cycle, whereby you may get the odd small return. But ultimately I believe
that slots end up taking for the great majority of the time. But hey, it's great
fun and you could get luck and hit it big time one day.
Slots tilt usually because they have run out of coins, it happens, or because
a coin is jammed in the mechanism. They stop paying and the tilt light comes
on. Coins owing the player are held in the slots memory and will pay after corrections
have been made to the problem.
The top payout, in coins on non progressive slots, playing max coins.
The amount of possible winning outcomes on the pay table.
Like a joker will count as any other symbol and on some slots multiply.