I just noticed that you hit the all fruit for 2848 coins in this photo. For an 8 coin bet I would have to say you were definitely in positive territory on this play.
Oh yes, almost certainly. The game pays a supplemental fixed (scalable) award for the all-fruit, something like 300 coins for my bet size, so the pool was probably at about 2,500 when I hit it. I would think the break-even is down around 1,000 or less, depending on the usual factors of course. That's not something that occurs frequently unless the degenerates are spending freely, although of course it's hard to know because playable games are unlikely to sit idle for very long.
Anyway, back to PvZ... They have 3 progressives. The progressives are available regardless of your bet size. If you hit a progressive, it pays the "base" amount plus the "added" amount (ie, the meter increase). The base amount scales with your bet, but the added amount is constant, regardless of your bet. So, for example, the lowest progressive starts at $10 if you bet 1 unit and $50 if you bet 5 units. But, once there is $10 added to it, betting 1 unit gets you a $20 payout, and betting 5 units gets you a $60 payout -- only 3x the payout for 5x the bet.
Also, the progressive amount are displayed on a big screen (it's one progressive per machine; they are not banked) but it displays the amount that corresponds to the last amount bet. So for example if the machine on the left has $5 added and the last player was making 1-unit bets, it would say $15 for the smallest progressive. But if the machine beside it has no money added but the last player was playing 5 units, it would say $50 for the smallest progressive. So, the point is, you can't just look at the screen and see what the progressive meter is... you also need to factor in the last amount bet.
I vaguely recall Mickey writing about something similar in Montana, where technician maintenance activity reset the jackpots, killing some of his good plays.
Yes, this is something I have to go through periodically here. Whenever they install a new game on a machine the progressive meters on the other games go back to reset. Then it's a few months before I start getting plays on those machines again. What they do here is illegal in Nevada. You can't take progressive money away from the public there. But they get away with it here. I don't complain to Montana Gaming because I don't want them to know who I am....and they might do something stupid like ban progressive games.