Casino Reviews

Are Slot Machine Payouts Declining

March 21st, 2018 ernie Posted in Slot Machines No Comments »

Whether you have noticed or not, the answer to the question, are slot machine payouts declining, is yes. Reports suggest that payouts in the industry have declined. Known as slot hold, the percentage has increased to 6.4% on average. Average amounts wagered by gamblers declined. Yet revenue from slot players has increased as a result because the slot hold increased at the same time.  Many gamblers are staying away because of the perceived tightening of the slot payout.

Are Slot Machine Payouts Declining

Applied Analysis examined the casino markets of 16 states, including Nevada. The report they prepared found that the amount gamblers wagered and the revenue casinos earned from slots declined by double-digit percentages between 2007 and 2014. Slot hold is the amount that casinos keep from every dollar wagered. At the same time, slot hold percentage increased 6.2 percent.

Some states diverged from the overall trend. Most notably, Florida’s hold percentage declined from 9.5 percent in 2006 — when slot machines began operating in the state — to 6.41 percent in 2014, according to the report.

Nevada has much more competition and the results suggest better payouts overall. Nevada’s 6.4 percent slot hold last year was higher than it was when slot revenue peaked in 2007, but it was still the lowest of any state examined in the report.

Generally speaking, casinos that are in highly competitive locations such as Vegas have better payouts. Reports suggest that old Las Vegas or downtown, typically will pay out better returns, sometimes as much as 3% more than the strip. Averages suggest the strip pays out around 90% to 91%, while downtown is more competitive with approximately a 94% payout rate.

For more thoughts and ideas about slot machine payout ratios, click here.

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Have you noticed a decline in slot machine payout?

February 21st, 2018 ernie Posted in Slot Machines No Comments »

Have you noticed a decline in slot machine payout?We have certainly noticed a decline in payouts from slot machines in terms of large jackpots. There have been lots of small payouts. They keep you going and playing on the casino’s money, but really not enough to stop playing and go home with. We usually go with $100 and if we win $100, we usually keep playing. We are chasing the big win over $200 or much larger. They are very difficult to get. Frankly, most people just play and lose all of the money they came with. Our question to readers, Have you noticed a decline in slot machine payout?, if so let us know.

We did a little research and found that on review boards there is a mix of comments and thoughts about this subject. Some people have won and are quite excited, while others have noticed the same trend we have. Almost everyone I talk to at the slots says they are not winning as often as they used to. We are going to see if we can find any industry stats on this subject, however, based on state requirements in Nevada for example, the casinos must may a minimum on average. This payout varies by the casino and by state.

Have you noticed a decline in slot machine payout in Your State?

Our theory is that there are a lot more small payouts than there used to be and less large payouts. The casinos can manipulate the payout tables to pay a lot more small jackpots and less large ones and still meet the payout guidelines of the state they are in.

So what you might say. Well, human nature is to continue playing when you win a small jackpot of twenty or thirty dollars. You are at the casino for the evening and you are not ready to go home yet. These small wins allow you to keep playing without using your money and you may even have the feeling that you are on a hot machine. Before you know it your wins are gone and so is the stake you started with.

The casinos are playing this psychological game and reaping the rewards by increasing their overall take from slot machines. They have been successful at changing the gaming environment from one of trying to beat the casino to being entertained by interactive games that give us thrills and excitement. More and more people feel that they had a good night if they were able to paly for a long time and were entertained even if they lost their stake.

Comments?  For more thoughts and ideas about slot machine play, click here.

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Casino Slot Payback Percentages

January 21st, 2018 ernie Posted in Slot Machines 1 Comment »

casino slot payback percentagesCasino slot payback percentages vary by casino, location and even within the casino across various machines. However, they all must adhere to local state or provincial regulations that govern payout rates. The minimum appears to be 85%, although some locations set it to 88%. Typically, most casinos do not go that low, preferring to remain competitive with other forms og gambling and other casinos in the area. There is a lot of pressure on casino operators to remain attractive to their customers, while at the same time paying out taxes to local governments and making a profit. The payout based on our research typically ranges from around 92% to 95%, with a few machines advertised at 99%. Overall the casino must maintain an average payout of greater than 85%, which means that some machines will be set at this level, while others will be higher.

Casino Slot Payback Percentages

In Nevada for example, the minimum required payback is set at 86%. Some machines will be set to 99%, while the majority will be much lower. Penny slots are set at the lowest which is around 90%, while dollar slots and some video poker machines such as deuces wild have the highest payback at nearly 99%.

These payback amounts are an average and if you play long enough the average will be achieved. Of course you might experience long runs of losses in the process. That is what gambling is all about. The casino and the government agencies that benefit from gambling really do not care. Over the long run they know that they will collect their share of the amounts bet in line with the payback they have set the slot machines to.

Let’s assume you are playing a twenty-five cent video poker machine that is set to 99%. You are betting a total of $1.25 per hand. If you play 20 hands per hour, your betting $25 an hour. If you play for four hours that’s $100. In theory you should have lost only $1.00 on average. Some days you will lose the entire $100, while other days you win a jackpot and go home happy. That’s how gambling works, but on average the casino will always win.

For more details about slot machines, payouts, hold backs etc. Click here.



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Casino Slot Machine Payback

January 7th, 2018 ernie Posted in Slot Machines No Comments »

Casino Slot Machine PaybackCasino slot machine payback rates can vary a great deal however they are governed by three main requirements. The first is that local governments set the payback rate. This is done at usually the state level in the US and the provincial level in Canada. In some locations, it is as high as 88%. The lowest rate is 85%! What does this really mean? For every $100 you gamble, patrons can expect on average to see a return of only $85. While some may appear to pay out much more than this amount at times. The average will always be 85%.

Slot machine technicians set the payout rate. It cannot be varied without written approval from the gaming authority in the state. Random number generators determine the payout rates. Further programming limits the payout to 85% or higher. Depending on other factors which we will discuss in the next section. Rest assured that the casino will always get its share of the bet on average every time. There are two other pressure points that will govern the average payout actual rate. Profit, politics and local programs that may benefit from transfers of retained earnings to the city or county.

Casino Slot Machine Payback – Profit

Every casino is in the business to make a profit. The amount they can get away with in terms of payout really depends on the local competition in the areas. If the same owner owns them all, there is really no competition. They like to pretend that there is a competition between the several casinos, but there really isn’t. A casino will gauge the market and set the payback rate accordingly usually in the range of 88% to 92%.

The other factor that will influence the slot machine payback rate is the agreement that casinos have with local government. Many cities will receive a portion of the proceeds. This puts a lot of pressure on casino operators to generate revenues to pay this additional tax.

An additional layer of expense is added when a casino is sold. The new owners must pay the additional interest charges. It subtracts directly from the number of funds held back from payouts. Casinos can lower the payout or push volume or both to generate sufficient slot machine payback. Recently there has been a lot of pressure on casinos to increase profits. Paybacks have been declining, much to the distress of gamblers.

For more details about slot machines, payouts, holdbacks etc. Click here.




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Odds of Winning in a Casino

April 21st, 2017 ernie Posted in Slot Machines No Comments »

Odds of Winning in a CasinoMost people know that the odds of winning in a casino are not in their favor. The house always has an edge. Depending on the game you play, that edge can be quite large. While you may enjoy the game and even be entertained by it, the odds of winning are very much in the favor of the casino. There are ways to minimize this potential loss. Take advantage of free play, free meals and rooms and certainly the free drinks that may be served. Above all enjoy yourself and do not gamble more than you can afford. The following is a direct quotation from Casino City times and written by Arron Todd.

Best Odds of Winning in a Casino

1. Full Pay Deuces Wild Video Poker – Player edge of 0.77%

Yes, you read that right. There is a casino game that offers the player a small edge, when played optimally. The game is played remarkably differently than Jack or Better, so make sure you know the optimal strategy when you play. And just like Jacks or Better, make sure the paytable is to your advantage. If you can find a machine that’s paying natural royals at 800-to-1, four deuces at 200-to-1, wild royals at 25-to-1, five of a kind at 15-to-1, straight flushes at 9-to-1, four of a kind at 5-to-1, full houses at 3-to-1, straights and flushes at 2-to-1, and three of a kind at 1-to-1, you’ll make more money than you’ll lose over the long haul, if you play it right.

2. Blackjack – House edge of 0.28%

Blackjack has the lowest house edge of any game in the casino, with a few caveats. The 0.28 percent house edge assumes the most liberal of house rules, including rarely seen rules such as the dealer standing on soft 17 and late surrender. To determine the exact house edge in the game you’re playing visit the Wizard of Odds’

The house edge also assumes a perfect basic strategy. If you plan on hitting the blackjack tables during your next visit to the casino, try to memorize it to maximize your play.

3. Spanish 21 – House edge of 0.4%

Spanish 21 is a variant of blackjack, played with decks of 48 cards (10s are removed). The game can get a little crazy, because you can double down on any number of cards, surrender after doubling, and five, six, and seven-or-more card 21s are paid at 3-to-2, 2-to-1, and 3-to-1, respectively. The house edge for this game is low because it has a much more complex basic strategy than blackjack. But if you can master all the intricacies of the game, Spanish 21 can be a lot of fun and offer an exciting alternative to standard blackjack.

4. Jack or Better Video Poker – House edge of 0.46%

There are two key factors in making a 0.46 percent house edge a reality on a Jacks of Better video poker machine. The first factor involves finding the right machine. If you find a Jacks or Better machine paying 9-to-1 on a full house and 6-to-1 on a flush, you’ve probably found a full pay machine. The second involves learning an optimal strategy. If you plan on playing video poker on your next trip to the casino, make sure you know the right strategy and practice before you go.

5. Catch a Wave – House edge of 0.5%

Not sure if you can still find this game anywhere anymore, but it’s a favorite at the Casino City Home Poker Game, where a version of it is usually played in tournament style format between the cash game and the tournament. In this game, a player is dealt a card and must guess if the next card will be higher or lower. If the player guesses right six consecutive times, he is paid 6-to-1. He may also stand at any point (the player automatically loses his wager if he’s wrong, similar to busting in blackjack), at which the dealer will play out a hand in the same manner, but according to house rules. If the player’s “wave” is longer than the dealer, the player wins.

6. Baccarat (Banker) – House edge of 1.06%

Baccarat gets two-in-a-row on our list of best casino bets, as the Banker bet slightly eclipses the house bet with a house edge slightly over one percent. At a big high-limit table, the shoe travels from player to player, and the “dealer” makes the Banker bet and the rest of the table bets on the Player (though players have the option to make any bet they please). At a mini baccarat table, the casino provides the dealer.

7. Baccarat (Player) – House edge of 1.24%

The favorite game of James Bond (at least the Sean Connery and Roger Moore versions), baccarat is a game of tradition and ritual. The only real choice made is whether to bet on the player, the banker or the tie. Don’t bet the tie; a whopping 14.36 percent house edge keeps it off this list. The player bet has a respectable 1.24 percent house edge.

8. Craps (Don’t Pass/Don’t Come) – House edge of 1.36%

Also known as the “dark side,” betting on the Don’t Pass line is the opposite of betting the Pass line and is considered somewhat taboo at a craps table. Basically you’re betting that the shooter will fail. Even though it may be taboo, it comes at a slightly smaller price than betting on the pass line.

9. Craps (Pass/Come) – House edge of 1.41%

When you bet the pass line in craps, you’re betting that the shooter’s first roll will be a seven or 11 and not a two, three or 12. If it’s any other number, your bet stands and now you’re betting that the shooter will hit that “point” number again before a seven is rolled. The house edge is very small, just 1.41 percent.

10. Pai Gow Poker – House edge of 1.46%

In Pai Gow Poker, players are dealt seven cards and split them up into two hands, one with five cards and one with two cards. The five-card hand must have a higher poker rank than the two-card hand. The players’ hands are compared to the dealer’s hand, and if the player wins both, he wins the bet. If the player wins one but loses another, it’s a push, and if the dealer wins both, the player loses. The house gets the edge by taking a five-percent commission on all winning bets and winning all hands that push (e.g., your two-card ace-queen loses to the dealer’s ace-queen). You can reduce the house edge by banking, which means that your hand will win in pushes. Each player will be given an opportunity to bank in turn, should they choose to do so, in rotation with the dealer.

Worst Odds of Winning in a Casino

1. Craps (3, 11 and all easy hops; hard 4, 10; any craps) — House edge of 11.11%

If you’re not a craps player but have walked by a table and seen the number of chips in play and the excitement surrounding it, it’s no surprise that the game has an array of different betting options. In fact, of the hundred or so bets you can make on the craps table, two of them are included in our previously mentioned article that lists the 10 lowest house edge casino bets.

But there are certain bets a craps player should try to avoid, and these are three of them. Stay tuned for a few more that are even more lethal.

2. Craps (2, 12 and all hard hops) — House edge of 13.89%

OK, now that we’ve got all of the non-craps players out there intrigued, we should follow through and mention that Casino City is fortunate enough to have one of the game’s most notable authorities, Frank Scoblete, as a regular Gaming Guru contributor. And, coincidentally, Frank’s most recent column touches on why craps is so exciting. Be sure to check it out.

3. Baccarat (tie) — House edge of 14.36%

The volatile card game was first introduced in Europe over 500 years ago and is played between two hands— one by the “player” and one by the “banker.” It gained fame as the favorite game of the early James Bond movies, and more recently as a game that poker pro Phil Ivey was accused of “edge sorting,” and it’s popular with high rollers.

Baccarat wagers on the player and the bank found their way onto the list of our 10 lowest house edge casino bets at 1.24%, but when you bet on a “tie,” that number soars.

4. Slot machines — House edge can be as high as 15%

Slot machines generate the most revenue for a casino, and with such a wide array of games available, the house edges vary and can be as low as 3%. But there are plenty of games out there that carry a house edge in the range of 15%. Combine that with the hyper-fast rate of play, and you’ve got yourself a recipe for disaster.

5. Big Six — House edge between 16%-24%

There’s not a casino game much simpler — or more dangerous to your bankroll — as Big Six, often called Wheel of Fortune, Money Wheel or Big Wheel.

There are a number of variants, but the most common features a big wheel (see, it’s even got a real clever name) with $1, $2, $5, $10 and $20 bill symbols, as well as a joker and some other “wildcard” symbol, like a casino logo. You bet on which symbol the wheel will land on with the payout odds match the dollar amounts (2-to-1 on $2, 5-to-1 on $5, etc.) while the other non-numerical symbols cashing in at as much as 45-to-1.

The lowest house edge bets you can make is on $1 (11.11%), while the $5 and $20 bets come in with a whopping 22.22% with wager on the joker/logo bets increasing to 24.07%.

In other words, if you see the big wheel on the horizon in the casino, run the other way . . . fast!

6. Craps (any seven) — House edge between 16.67%

Craps rears its ugly head once again on the list. When the shooter rolls a seven at the craps table it can be a pivotal moment, and while betting any seven will be thrown pays a tidy 5-to-1, it’s one of the worst wagers you can make.

7. Casino War (tie) — House edge of 18.651%

If you’re like me, War was one of the first card games you played as a kid. But when I was flipping cards with my cousins on my living room floor 40 years ago, I never envisioned playing it in a casino. And judging from the house edge numbers, if I ever do, betting the tie is not recommended.

The typical Casino War game is played with six decks, and that’s when the house edge is 18.65%. The fewer cards used in the game, the higher that number goes. For instance, when using one deck, the house edge on a tie is 35.29%. The lesson? Keep your memories of playing War to when you were a child, not an adult in a casino.

8. Bonus Six (with insurance) — House edge of 23.83%

Bonus Six is a five-card stud-based game. A player can buy the insurance and then get the option to buy a sixth card.

The problem with doing that is that the house edge more than doubles. Rising from 10.42% without insurance to almost 24%. No thanks.

9. Keno — House edge of between 25% to 29%

You don’t have to be inside the walls of a casino to play keno. Heck, Massachusetts, the home of Casino City, is far from Nevada or Pennsylvania. But when it comes to a number of casinos, they are the proud Keno capital of the world. Terminals and screens with bouncing balls in that seem to be in every convenience store or bar you go into. The Bay State generated $900 million in Keno sales last fiscal year. Which accounts for an eye-popping one-quarter of all sales in the U.S.

That $900 million number isn’t so surprising when you consider the house – which in Massachusetts’ case is the government – edge is nearly 30%.

10. Sic Bo — House edge of 33.3%

Another game where the house edge varies wildly depending on the bet. Sic Bo, which means “dice pair,” can get quite expensive on certain wagers.

While the safest bet on the table is Small/Big, which carries a house edge of 2.78%. There are numerous others than run into the range of over 30%. Aa number so frighteningly high they should come with a Surgeon General’s warning.

This post was reposted from Casino City Times and written by Arron Todd


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