a) Machine has a maximum jackpot of $2,000.
b) Machine has a maximum jackpot of $10,000.
c) Machine has a progressive jackpot of $1,000,000+.
Would you rather have smaller, more frequent payouts or would you rather have the chance to go for broke and win a life changing jackpot?
I stay away from progressives as a rule, except for those that are not tied to a common jackpot pool. By that I mean I'll play Blazing 7s progressive machines because they each have their own progressive counter. I'd rather collect four small Blazing 7s JPs than try for one big one.
I'd pick the machine with the $1199 jackpot, so I don't have to deal with taxes.
The $5 Wheel of Fortune machine at the Tropicana in Atlantic City has the Wheel set up that way! No $5000 space, but lots of high $ spaces.
We have all seen the movies (The one that come to mind immediately are "What Happens in Vegas") where someone hits a ridiculous jackpot. I'm wondering (Yes I know the house edge is ridiculous on those machines) where I can find a machine that has a jackpot for like a couple million or something in Vegas. I'd like to give it a few spins, preferably something I can play without putting in a lot of money.
I'm guessing you've never been to vegas... You'll see them everywhere! Hell, just step off the plane and look right in front of you at the airport.
Generally, these are progressive jackpots, in clusters, all contributing to the jackpot. Sometimes the jackpot is pooled among the same type of machine in different casinos. Doesn't have to be casinos in the same company either.
Ever see a photo of a jackpot winner holding one of those giant checks, and the check has the logo of the slot manufacturer, but not the casino? THAT'S a jackpot that was pooled between a bunch of different company's casinos.
Until they hit, they keep growing. It's rare, but they do sometimes grow to over a million. So someone can report seeing a progressive that's over a million today. But if someone hits it tonight, you won't find it tomorrow.
But back to the original question...
Option A - $2000. Much more likely that I'd win something.
Then again, you're talking about someone that very rarely bothers playing slots. Far too mindless for me.
$1199? A LOT of slots pay $1199 for whatever prize should have been $1200, for exactly the reason you state. People don't mind that $1 extra dollar to not deal with the taxes. On the other hand, the casinos appreciate not having to deal with the paperwork.
I've also seen machines that had some prizes at $599 for the same reason (or perhaps they were older machines, and the law / limit changed since?)