KSP
• Posts: 4
Joined: Dec 13, 2009
December 13th, 2009 at 3:07:21 PM permalink
I was at the Rio on Monday playing Double Double bonus on a super times pay machine and had a very strange session that led me to believe something was up with the machine. I was playing 6 quarters a line and three lines total for \$4.50 a hand. I played for approximately 25 minutes and did not get a single super times pay multiplier. I did however get 4 aces twice, once with a duece for \$500 and once without for \$200. I had to leave for the airport or I would have kept playing, more than anything to see if I ever got a multiplier. I've played a fair amount of video poker and have never seen anything like this. The odds of not getting a multiplier after approximately 200 hands combined with getting 4 aces twice have got to be off the charts.
Wizard
• Posts: 26619
Joined: Oct 14, 2009
December 13th, 2009 at 6:05:36 PM permalink
Quote: KSP

I was at the Rio on Monday playing Double Double bonus on a super times pay machine and had a very strange session that led me to believe something was up with the machine. I was playing 6 quarters a line and three lines total for \$4.50 a hand. I played for approximately 25 minutes and did not get a single super times pay multiplier. I did however get 4 aces twice, once with a duece for \$500 and once without for \$200. I had to leave for the airport or I would have kept playing, more than anything to see if I ever got a multiplier. I've played a fair amount of video poker and have never seen anything like this. The odds of not getting a multiplier after approximately 200 hands combined with getting 4 aces twice have got to be off the charts.

According to my page on Super Time Pay, the probability of getting a multiplier on any given hand is 1/15. So the probability of going 200 hands without a multiplier is (14/15)^200 = 1 in 983,206. The probability of getting four aces twice in 600 hands on the draw is 1 in 116, assuming optimal 9/6 DDB strategy.

However, this would make for terrible statistics if I were to conclude that the machine was cheating. The scientific method would be to formulate a hypothesis BEFORE you start playing, then gather evidence, and then see how well the evidence fits the hypothesis. It is easy to look back on a video poker sitting and find something unusual about it.
"For with much wisdom comes much sorrow." -- Ecclesiastes 1:18 (NIV)
KSP
• Posts: 4
Joined: Dec 13, 2009
December 14th, 2009 at 6:49:59 PM permalink
Thanks for the analysis, Wizard. If I had more time I definitely would have kept playing to see if I got a multiplier and approximately how many hands it took to get one. I'm sure others have similar stories, but this was by far the weirdest session I ever had. I guess I can't complain since I cashed out up \$600.

Just one more question: How would one go about trying to prove mathematically that the machine had the super time pay feature turned off or was set up to a frequency other than 1 in 15? I guess you could play a series of sessions of x hands per session, but how many of these would you need to run before you would feel comfortable drawing any conclusions.
Wizard
• Posts: 26619
Joined: Oct 14, 2009
December 14th, 2009 at 9:08:55 PM permalink
Assuming a machine were cheating, the more egregious the cheating, the smaller the sample size it would take to prove it beyond a reasonable doubt. It would also depend on how "reasonable" is defined. Although I strongly feel the game is fine, if you want to pursue this, a good next step would be to gather more data to try to determine what is going on. Next time, get an EXACT hand count, of both hands played and total multipliers. I'd be happy to examine any additional data you gather.
"For with much wisdom comes much sorrow." -- Ecclesiastes 1:18 (NIV)
KSP