Slot machines are the most popular games in online casinos. BetandSlots presents a closer look at how slots are programmed.

Slot machines are the most popular games in online casinos. And in Las Vegas of course! Here we want to take a closer look at how slots are programmed. If you look at the range of casino games, you will find out that the slots area always offers the largest selection of games to play online.

We hope that in this BetandSlots article we can show you how an online slot works technically.

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How slots are programmed – The random number generator

The heart of every slot machine is the so-called random number generator. These number generators are part of every machine and are activated any time you click the spin button hoping to win some real money.

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Each RNG number represents a symbol on the slot machine. Depending on which combination of numbers the generator spits out when the reel stops, you see a combination of symbols. If these symbols are on the same payline, you win. If this is not the case, it is an unsuccessful spin.

The most important point on the Random Number Generator is the fact that this system has no memory or history. This means that every result of the RNG does not depend on previous results.

Every result of the generator is therefore purely coincidental. You can compare it to the game results in roulette. Again, each game result is completely independent of the result of the previous game round.

Are slots really random ?

Large software manufacturers invest a lot of money to ensure that the RNG is correctly programmed.  These manufacturers and online casinos themselves commission external companies to test the slot machines for correct functionality. Also to check that the payback percentage is according to standards in the long run.

These third-party companies periodically test all slot machines. This ensures that the random number generator works properly and without errors in the respective mobile casino.

Probabilities of winning and RTP

However, there is a probability that a certain symbol will appear at a certain point, which can be calculated. Assuming that a slot has three reels, three rows, and three different symbols, of which only one is a winning symbol and also that there is only one winning line, the number of possible combinations on the monitor would be exactly 3x3x3, 27 in total . 

Since only one combination, namely three winning symbols on a winning line, wins, the probability of winning is 1/27 = 0.037 or 3.37%.

In other words, if the game was long enough, the winning combination would appear on average in every 27th game. If the winnings were exactly 27 coins, this would also correspond to a payout ratio of 100%. 

However, as usual, the payout ratio is reduced by the so-called “House edge”, or the casino advantage. In the example, a payout of 26 euros would correspond to a payout ratio of 96.3%. This number is the RTP, meaning Return To Player.

Another option would be to insert zero profit symbols or symbols with a very low value. Most of these are the well-known playing card symbols or the lemons in the “fruit” machines.

What should I do if I think a slot machine is rigged?

While it is unlikely, a slot machine may malfunction. If people are affected by such a malfunction, it is important that slots players act correctly.

First of all, while playing slot you should take a screenshot of the game the moment the malfunction occurred. With this screenshot, you should then contact the customer service of the online casino operator immediately. 

Here you have the so-called log files of each spin available and the casino can understand whether it is actually a bug in the game.

Such a scenario is rather unlikely, but if it does occur, the most important thing is that you have a screenshot of the malfunction, otherwise it can be difficult to prove this malfunction.

How do slots work – Slot variants

The slot machines have the modern 3D video slots with some very many paylines, classic slots such as the “fruit” and “diamond” slots and the so-called jackpots. 

But video poker, as well as table and card gaming, are fundamentally not designed differently, only that additional rules of the game sometimes apply. In video poker, if the game is skillful and there is a paytable that fits the perfect game, payout ratios of over 100% are possible.

Many slots also have so-called gamble features. There is a chance to double, triple or even quintuple a win by playing another 50:50 game with guessing cards or colors. So-called multipliers, multiply your winnings, are also in the latest slot machines versions. In addition, many slots have a free spin mode, in which players can make winnings without straining their own bankroll when spinning.

Other games, including progressive jackpots, where the amount of the jackpot increases, the more players play the game also have bonus rounds. If several bonus symbols appear, there is a chance within the bonus rounds to achieve high winnings or even hit the jackpot.

The best-known game programmers include NetEnt, Novomatic, Merkur, Microgaming, Evolution, Yggdrasil, Bally or PLAY’n GO, etc.

Conclusion

Of course, there are many different types of slot machines. Some have five reels and 100 paylines and some have only three reels and five paylines. In principle, however, all slot machines work the same.

In the center of every slot machine are the so-called Random Number Generators. Those always determine the outcome of your spin. It is also important to be aware that a previous game round cannot influence the outcome of the next shoot. It is therefore completely irrelevant whether you won or lost in the previous shoots. Your chances of winning are always the same.

We hope that this article has given you an understanding of how slot machines are programmed. Now it is up to you whether you are lucky and become a slot winner at the numerous slot machines in the various online casinos.

Slots Frequently Asked Questions

What is a slot machine?

The slot machine, known variously as a fruit machine, puggy, poker machine/pokies, or simply slot, is a casino gambling machine that creates a game of chance for its customers.

When were slots invented?

In 1887 the first poker gambling machine was invented. It had 5 reels with a total of 50 cards on each. In order to increase the house edge the ten of spades and the jack of hearts were left out, which reduced the odds for a royal flush by half. This machine was placed in bars and it costed a nickel (5 cents) to play. It didn’t have a direct payout mechanism, so wins were paid at the bar.

When do slots payout?

Charles Augustus Fey invented the first slot machine which allowed automatic payouts in 1891. He reduced the complexity of reading a win, by replacing the 5 reels with just 3 and the 50 different playing cards with just 5 symbols – hearts, diamonds, spades, horseshoes, and a liberty bell. The highest payout was awarded for 3 bell symbols since the machine was named Liberty Bell. Since then, slot machines pay customers on the original logic, no matter how complex they have been evolved since!

Are slots rigged?

No one can be 100% certain. But best online casinos and operators with a valid license have all their online games periodically tested by third-party companies. This ensures that the random number generator works properly and without errors in the respective mobile casino. So, serious and trustworthy casinos have really random and honest slots.