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cyrus
cyrus
Joined: Jan 23, 2015
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June 4th, 2015 at 8:37:02 AM permalink
Maybe this is a surprise to no one here...

The Pai Gow Poker table at my local joint has a mini computer screen built into the table which tells the dealer how to set his hand. He lays out the cards, pushes a button, and the screen shows him the house way. When I first saw it, I assumed it was camera based, ie somehow linked to the eye in the sky.

Last time I was there, his machine was initially malfunctioning, so he kept pushing different buttons and the screen was showing DIFFERENT hands for each button. I think it showed only the top hand for each. All players hands were still face down at the time.

My conclusion is the shuffling machine knows what cards it dealt to each player. Not sure if it's optical, ie it shuffles randomly and then "reads" the cards; or if it's RNG based, ie it uses RNG to assign all the hands, then finds/assembles those hands in order. I guess the second option would still require an optical card reader of some sort.

Call me old fashioned / superstitious / paranoid, but this creeps me out for some reason. I know I believe that auto shufflers produce random results. And I'm willing to play purely RNG driven games such as video poker. But for some weird reason the combination of the two seems creepy. The machine knows which physical cards it gave me. Perhaps I'd be more comfortable if the game were just purely electronic. But I think the fact they are using physical cards adds some mythical sense of "true randomness" and this optical reading is breaking that illusion.
noy2222
noy2222
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June 4th, 2015 at 8:47:46 AM permalink
RFID chips in the cards and a reader in the table makes more sense.
TwoFeathersATL
TwoFeathersATL
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June 4th, 2015 at 8:48:49 AM permalink
I wonder about the auto-shuffle machines myself. Not the game you mention necessarily, but just in general. If I'm gonna play, I'd REALLY like a random shuffle. I 'd REALLY like 6 or 8 or whatever Truly normal decks, no cards missing or added. How the hell do you know? There are probably individuals here that understand the workings of the auto-shuffle machines. Maybe they can help me understand, please.
Saw a mention in another thread yesterday talking about why anyone would EVER play at one of the Indian Casinos on tribal land and insinuated that the decks might not be 'standard'. Does this really happen? Is that why I'm losing? (That's a rhetorical question, ignore it) 2F
Youuuuuu MIGHT be a 'rascal' if.......(nevermind ;-)...2F
Ibeatyouraces
Ibeatyouraces
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June 4th, 2015 at 8:52:06 AM permalink
Quote: noy2222

RFID chips in the cards and a reader in the table makes more sense.


This is what they use on the final tables of the WSOP and other major tournaments now.
DUHHIIIIIIIII HEARD THAT!
Ibeatyouraces
Ibeatyouraces
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June 4th, 2015 at 8:54:14 AM permalink
Quote: TwoFeathersATL

Saw a mention in another thread yesterday talking about why anyone would EVER play at one of the Indian Casinos on tribal land and insinuated that the decks might not be 'standard'. Does this really happen? Is that why I'm losing? (That's a rhetorical question, ignore it) 2F


Soaring Eagle in Mount Pleasant, Michigan got caught shorting aces in their bj games.
DUHHIIIIIIIII HEARD THAT!
RaleighCraps
RaleighCraps
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June 4th, 2015 at 8:55:13 AM permalink
Quote: noy2222

RFID chips in the cards and a reader in the table makes more sense.



I think this would be a very expensive option, considering how often cards are changed out.

I am 99.9% certain that the shufflers use optical card recognition, read as the cards are dealt into the holding tray. I have heard of monster Pai Gow Poker hands that are not paid until the pit verifies on the shuffler that the monster hand was indeed dealt out on that shuffle.

I'm waiting for that perfect storm where a player gets the monster hand, but the shuffler has an electronic malfunction, and fails to read that the hand was dealt. So the casino voids the hand. I bet that one ends up in a court too.
Always borrow money from a pessimist; They don't expect to get paid back ! Be yourself and speak your thoughts. Those who matter won't mind, and those that mind, don't matter!
rsactuary
rsactuary
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June 4th, 2015 at 8:56:04 AM permalink
I've talked to pit bosses and asked what would happen if they put a new unshuffled deck into an automatic shuffler. How mixed up do the cards actually get?

They've never tried it, and they say they aren't allowed to. I sure would be curious.

(and I would like to see it done more on a single deck game like Pai Gai or Let it Ride to get a true sense of how well it's shuffling).
RaleighCraps
RaleighCraps
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June 4th, 2015 at 9:08:00 AM permalink
Quote: rsactuary

I've talked to pit bosses and asked what would happen if they put a new unshuffled deck into an automatic shuffler. How mixed up do the cards actually get?

They've never tried it, and they say they aren't allowed to. I sure would be curious.

(and I would like to see it done more on a single deck game like Pai Gai or Let it Ride to get a true sense of how well it's shuffling).



I don't know if the shufflers use a mechanical rifle or not, but I would not design one that way.

I would use an RNG to pick a number from 1 to 52, and then grab that position card from the stack, and put it in the 'shuffled' pile.
I would then use the RNG to pick a number from 1 to 51, and grab that position card from the stack, and place it on top of the 'shuffled' pile.
Keep repeating until all 52 cards are in the shuffled pile.
There would be no bias at all in this shuffle.
Always borrow money from a pessimist; They don't expect to get paid back ! Be yourself and speak your thoughts. Those who matter won't mind, and those that mind, don't matter!
jml24
jml24
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June 4th, 2015 at 9:39:45 AM permalink
Quote: RaleighCraps


I would use an RNG to pick a number from 1 to 52, and then grab that position card from the stack, and put it in the 'shuffled' pile.
I would then use the RNG to pick a number from 1 to 51, and grab that position card from the stack, and place it on top of the 'shuffled' pile.
Keep repeating until all 52 cards are in the shuffled pile.
There would be no bias at all in this shuffle.



This would be the best way to do it, but I am pretty sure no current machines do that because of the precision required to pick a card from a specific position in the deck. I believe there are people on this forum who know exactly how they actually work and have been able to exploit biases. My limited understanding is that they work approximately this way: They have several slots for cards to end up in. They pick cards off the deck and randomly choose slots for each card.

Regarding the original question, I am also pretty sure they use an optical reader that scans the cards as they come out of the machine. Optically recognizing cards is easy. The reason they use RFID cards at WSOP TV tables is so the players don't have to show the cards to the camera for them to get hole card info. To use an optical scanner the dealer would have to pull the cards out of a machine which would slow down the deal and probably annoy the players. At table games, they use cheap disposable paper cards and change them out on a regular basis. New games are designed to be dealt from a machine so that isn't a problem.

At PGP, the normal procedure is to not let players look at their hands until all cards are dealt so that a misdeal can be detected. At places that have a progressive they tend to be more strict about this. I am sure that the light on the machine which gives the OK for the hand to move forward is conditional on all the cards being read successfully. This guards against the case where a player is dealt a big hand but the machine didn't verify it properly.
rsactuary
rsactuary
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June 4th, 2015 at 9:41:39 AM permalink
Quote: RaleighCraps

I don't know if the shufflers use a mechanical rifle or not, but I would not design one that way.

I would use an RNG to pick a number from 1 to 52, and then grab that position card from the stack, and put it in the 'shuffled' pile.
I would then use the RNG to pick a number from 1 to 51, and grab that position card from the stack, and place it on top of the 'shuffled' pile.
Keep repeating until all 52 cards are in the shuffled pile.
There would be no bias at all in this shuffle.



Agreed on this approach, I believe that such a shuffler exists, because I saw it demonstrated on TV. They used a puff of air to remove the exact card chosen by random number. Haven't actually seen it in a casino though.

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