Joined: Jul 4, 2012
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July 4th, 2012 at 9:43:37 AM permalink
My husband and I argue constantly about whether or not there is any value in moving from a losing machine to a new/different machine. My husband argues that the odds are the odds and that you can play 100 different machines or just 1 and your odds are the same.

Duh! I fully understand odds. However, my thinking is that while odds statistically over LONG SPANS OF TIME remain the same, during short 1 day spans of time if you are stuck on a losing machine you should move to a different one that
( I think? ) has a different RNG that may be on a "winning cycle" so to speak.

I work hard at keeping my mind from tricking me with "fanciful" gambling false reasoning based on emotion or perception, but I don't think that is the case here. Am I a gambling fool by tricking myself into thinking moving machines makes any difference at all in the short run ? ( 3-5 day gambling trips/ FULL PAY of course : )
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July 4th, 2012 at 9:50:45 AM permalink
Your husband is correct. Changing machines will help you save money in a -EV game only because you are playing fewer hands.
100% risk of ruin
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July 4th, 2012 at 10:24:32 AM permalink
Do what is fun. Remember, you understand reality as if it were a story. If switching machines makes the story more fun and interesting, then do it.

Regarding machines, I once saw a lady hit a machine for a jackpot. After she was hand-paid, the attendant asked her to spin the jackpot away. She didn't want to, but she did... and hit the jackpot again.

Spins are independent of each other.
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July 4th, 2012 at 10:27:30 AM permalink
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July 4th, 2012 at 11:22:39 AM permalink
In the sense that getting up from one machine and selecting a different machine occupies your time and efforts but does not involve your pressing that red button, then it is indeed changing your experience but you could get the same effect at one machine by downing a beer and then pressing the red button.

Some slot machines are different and sometimes a slot machine can have an identical neighbor, in general its all based on a random number generator chip and the money that you put into the machine. Moving from machine to machine uses up the time. Thats about all, though.

Its best to read the instructions and the fine print on each machine though, no matter if you are there for one press of the button or for an hour's worth.
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July 4th, 2012 at 12:49:05 PM permalink
I know a guy that everytime he goes he puts $1 in 100
different machines and swears he always has more than
$100 when he's done. Who knows.
"It's not enough to succeed, your friends must fail." Gore Vidal
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July 4th, 2012 at 2:08:49 PM permalink
It has no affect on your odds, as you have already admitted, and that is due to the RNG's. (Random Number Generators)

I enjoy Craps, Blackjack, Roulette and especially Let It Ride, though I shouldn't play the last two due to the HE and I can almost never find a Let It Ride table, anyway. My first, last, forever and always love at the casino will be the slot machines, though. Video Poker works the same way, with respect to being RNG based, except there is a higher ER, but less variance in exchange, so I would say you're less likely to hit the big payday. The higher ER makes it better for VP, though.

The one thing that you should tell your husband is, "It can't hurt me," and that's because it can't. There is no machine that is going to be more likely to perform in the short run compared to any other machine, but it doesn't hurt you to move around. If you feel like you want to switch machines, then switch machines, because it doesn't make one iota of difference if you run $100 through one machine or play a $1.25 hand at eighty different machines. The only difference it makes to you is whether or not you feel like you have a better chance of winning.

You should concentrate on having a good time, first and foremost, and if languishing at one machine and losing makes you miserable, but losing by machine-hopping at least makes you feel like you had a shot, hop away.

There are only a few things that can hurt you in Slots (while imperfect play can hurt you in VP) that are shared with VP and here is what they are:

1.) Playing at a lower denomination machine.

-Higher denomination machines will often have a better ER, and often, in the world of VP, have better paytables resultant in a higher ER. However, you should play at the level that makes you comfortable and bring an amount of money that is likely to keep you entertained for as long as you want to be there. If you're only playing with $50, for example, and want to be there for at least two hours, a $1.00 (Max Bet: $5.00) would not be the machine of choice.

2.) Not Max Betting

-This will not always hurt you, but you have to look at Slots/VP paytables to determine whether or not they are perfectly graduated. They usually are not perfectly graduated. In other words, on a $1/credit 2 credits Max slot machine, if three sevens is the top prize for $2,500 on a one-credit bet and $5,000 on a two credit bet, and everything else for two credits is just the one credit payout *2, then you're not hurting yourself by betting one credit as opposed to two.

-If the payout is not perfectly graduated, for instance 2k on a One Credit bet, but 5k on a Two Credit bet, then you're hurting your ER by not betting two credits.

-I will also say that I do not always abide by this, but that's because I bet less sometimes until I think, "Free Games," are coming. That does not hurt my ER on a flat-top, but it does on a Progressive. You must always bet the max on a Progressive because the regular payouts are lower due to the fact that it is your money feeding the Progressive.

-If you only want to bet a quarter, though, simply look for a perfectly graudated payout structure regardless of the credits per line. If the machine has multiple lines, make sure that the Jackpot payout on the ninth line is not higher than that of other lines. If the payout/credits bet ratio is always the same for every result, then you can bet however you like and you are not hurting your ER.

-In the world of VP, I have very rarely seen a machine where there is not some sort of Royal Bonus for a Max Bet making the payout imperfectly graduated, but I have seen a handful of machines like that.

3.) Walk Away/Have A Plan

-If you walk in with the intention of either winning money or losing $50, then if you get up to $100, pocket the first $50 and don't play it anymore. There's no reason to endeavor to lose $50 if you already have won your intended $50. If you make it up to $150, then pocket $100 of it and play with the $50 that remains. I usually do not even do this, if I go in with $50 and a pull puts me above $100, then I play it either down to $100 or up to $150. It is very rare for a single pull to put you exactly at a multiple of $50, so I usually try to play it up or down to the next multiple of $50.

-It's my experience that you will double nearly 50% of the time, and when you don't, it is compensated for my Tripling-Up occasions or the occasional jackpot.

-I will admit to screwing up last night. I went in with $20 for slots, just kind of messing around, it's usually $50, and got up to $50. I had been hitting Free Games at a good quip, though, so I pursued. There is no harm there, by the way, hitting for them doesn't suddenly make them less likely! In any case, once I played down to $40, then I should have walked away +$20, but I didn't because I thought more Free Games were coming. The Free Games did come, surely enough, but my picks sucked. I never saw better than 10 Free Games w/ 2x multiplier until the entire $50 that I had gotten up to was gone.

-I've been on a serious hot streak recently and just got over-confident. I'm very upset with myself because, even though it is only $20 and I have won over $4,500 just in the last week, I endeavor to be a good slots player, and a good slots player walks away +100% after it has been played down to a multiple of the original wager.
Vultures can't be choosers.
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July 4th, 2012 at 8:49:11 PM permalink
Quote: Melizza

I work hard at keeping my mind from tricking me with "fanciful" gambling false reasoning based on emotion or perception

There's an excellent book called The New Gambler's Bible, by Arthur Reber, which, although it doesn't touch much on slots, does have an excellent chapter on intuition. Don't necessarily be so quick to discount (or to attempt to discount) those feelings -- they could be telling you something useful. Pay attention to emotion and perception and do what "feels" right. As others have noted, playing casino games is (or at least should be) about having fun, so if it's fun for you to move from one machine to another, do that. If you want to really beat the RNG, your options lie in monkey bar and light stick territory, which probably isn't a place that you're wanting to go. If you're not trying to beat the RNG, why not just have fun?

Quote: FleaStiff

pressing that red button

Does nobody pull the lever any more? I guess a lot of newer machines don't even have them. I've probably spent less than two hours of my life playing slots, but I still find myself lamenting the passing of the arm (even if it was just a big, strangely-shaped button there towards the end).
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July 4th, 2012 at 8:56:10 PM permalink
Quote: EvenBob

I know a guy that everytime he goes he puts $1 in 100
different machines and swears he always has more than
$100 when he's done. Who knows.

It's getting harder to find machines that will take a $1 bill anymore. I'm finding more with $5 minimum on the acceptors these days.
Each of us is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts. Preparing for a fight about your bad decision is not as smart as making a good decision.
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July 4th, 2012 at 8:57:36 PM permalink
I play like this when I've reset a low jackpot.

For instance knocking off the lowest 4 of a kind on a progressive meter.

edit to add, I move to a whole new bank of machines, not another of that same progressive.
Quasimodo? Does that name ring a bell?

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