First off, there is no sure way of winning every time. Otherwise I would never leave the casino and just keep winning. But there are steps to take in order to get the best bang for your buck!
Higher Denomination Machines
In last weeks blog, What are Payout Percentages, we discovered that the higher denomination a machine, the higher the payout percentage! So if you’re going to bet $5/spin you may as well play that on a 10c denomination machine or $1 machine rather than a penny machine. In the long run, you could win more. Notice I use the word ‘could’, because of course there will be that guy who bets 88cents and wins $10,000 – but probability is against him.
Avoid Progressive Machines.
When a machine has a large progressive machine with a Grand of $10,000 or more, a large portion of each bet goes to pay out that one person. And if it’s a wide area progressive jackpot (like Wheel of Fortune or Mega Bucks with jackpots in the millions), then your odds of winning and your payout percentage drops a further 5%. There is one exception…
Must Pay By.
Some Slot Machines have progressives that must be paid by a certain amount. Don’t be fooled though, if it must be paid by $500 and it’s at $490 – it could still take another $5,000 in bets for it to actually go off (based on it going up 1 cent for every $5 bet which is not uncommon). Knowing how close it actually is and how much those amounts go up per spin may actually give you the best odds of winning if you can figure it out mathematically in your favor!
Age before Beauty.
Older Casinos have to compete with newer prettier ones, so they may up their payout percentages to attract players. Old Vegas has slightly higher odds than the strip, and outside of there on the Boulder Strip, it’s even higher. Those large fountains and chandeliers don’t just pay for themselves!
Under the same category, older machines will often have bigger payout percentages. I’ve often heard that the exact same game that is 10 years older will payout more. Why? They were manufactured back when payout percentages were higher (a rumor I’ve heard from an actual slot manufacturer).
Leave while you’re ahead.
I know, I know, easier said than done. BUT, remembering my blog last week – if a slot machine is designed to payout 89% and you’re up 110% - RUN!!! Take those winnings because you have already beaten the system. Sure, you’re only up $20 – but if you keep playing you risk losing that $20 and the rest of your ticket!
Use Cash, not Tickets.
When I get home from a casino, I ALWAYS remember the biggest losing machines and I ask myself “WHY did I keep playing??”. Often times it’s because I stuck a large ticket in the machine. It’s as if it holds a lower value than cash. If I stick in a hundred, I’ll lose a hundred. If I put in a ticket for $379.34, I’m going to lose that just the same! File those tickets away and use cash.
Better SAFE than Sorry.
When you have a collection of tickets, cash them out. Take some of the profits from the games and put them in your pocket safe, the Winners Bank! At only $26, it’s the best investment you’ll ever make, and it will pay for itself the first time you use it. (and if you follow my Affiliate Link, you’ll Save 10% with code: BrianChris
Play with Friends.
I have good friends and I have baaaaaad ones. The bad ones will encourage me to keep playing while the others (usually the ones who don’t gamble as much….Marco….) will tell me to RUN more. Best to listen to the Marco’s of the world!
READ the Payouts.
This is definitely one thing I do NOT do. However, it is important, especially if playing video poker. Side by Side poker machines may payout different! My game is Jacks or Better, and you’ll only see me sitting down if it’s set to 9/6 (9to1 payout on full house, 6to1 payout on flush). Some casinos have 9/5 or 8/5 or even worse!
Watch me Play!
Be informed. Watch from my mistakes and see what works for me and what doesn’t. I don’t have all the answers, but I sure as heck have thousands of hours of proof on my channel.
This is probably a good time to remind you to check if you are subscribed to both my
DAILY Slot Channel and my LIVE Slot Channel. Are you? Then you’re winning already! And to find out where I’ll be next…read next weeks blog!
Brian xoxo ❤️
Payout Percentage for slot machines effectively means how much money on average over the lifetime of a slot machine, it pays back to you – in percent.
For example, if a single slot machine brings in $1 Million Dollars ‘Coin In’ and pays out $900,000 ‘Coin Out’ – then it has a 90% payout percentage (or 10% goes to the casino as profit). This is designed mathematically as the probability of what may transpire.
Casinos are able to adjust the payout percentage of a game based upon how the slot manufacturer set the game up and on local laws. Most slot machines will be pre-set with the ability to adjust from 85-95% payout. If a casino would like to encourage more patrons, then they may increase how much they pay back. Some older casinos who have to compete with the newer prettier casinos, for example, will usually have a higher payback. I’ve heard from some casinos who don’t serve alcohol having to increase their percentages so that they could compete with those who did serve.
While the majority of Indian Casinos are not legally obligated to report their payout percentages, other casinos are required to do so and can be found in the American Casino Guide. Many people assume that Indian Casinos (or even Bingo machines for that matter) are set lower because of this, but it’s not true. If a casino has poor payouts, then people would simply not go. And this year, I am KILLING it at the Indian casinos (knock on wood). In some locations like Las Vegas, the city does not announce the percentages by casino, but rather by location. Aka Strip Casinos, Downtown Casinos etc. Some states break down the payout percentages by denomination and others as a whole for the casino or even city!
Not all Slot Machines are created equal…
Penny Machines. Oh how I love thee. They are usually the most fun games with the best bonuses, music and graphics. But don’t be fooled – they have the WORST payout percentages. Penny machines can be set to payout around 89%. A misconception is that this means that 89% of people end up winning while only 11% lose. Or if you put in $100 into a machine - that you are guaranteed to cash out with at least $89. WRONG!! Here’s an example:
If one person puts $5 in a slot machine and wins $1,000 then they have a payout percentage of 2,000%. That means that a further 224 people (or so) who also put in $5 will have a 0% payout percentage (go broke). The grand total of that? An 89% payout percentage. (Of course, you’d have to add a lot more zeroes to my example to show a true comparison of a real slot machines life, and a lot more winners at varying amounts).
Progressive Slot Machines
When you see machines with large progressive jackpots – let’s say for this example they are set to a 90% payout. That certainly does not mean that 90% of people are winners. It’s probably more like (this is completely made up by my semi-educated guess) 0.001% win a jackpot, 10% make a good profit, 20% make a small profit, 20% break even and 50% lose all their money. Because of this, progressive machines are most difficult to pull a profit because most of the money that goes into the machine goes toward paying out that 1 PERSON who takes the top prize.
Wow, what a buzz kill. So what games should we play?
One clear fact is that higher denomination machines (not bet amount, but denomination) have higher payout percentages. Pennies are the lowest, followed by 2cent, 5c, 10c, 25c, 50c, $1 and so forth up to $100 and above. When you hit the $100 bet range or more, they can have close to a 95% payout! So why wouldn’t we all just bet on $100 machines? Again, they usually have a large progressive amount or Jackpot Amount that will account for most of the winnings thus generally making you a loser.
Does this mean that the casino can ‘flip a switch’ at any time and adjust the payout percentage?
No. No. No. Everyone, including myself, LOVES to blame a casino at times saying that “Oh this section is not paying out”, or “they’re under renovations and have to pay for it” or “It’s the holidays so they’ve flipped the switch!”. It’s just not true no matter how many times you say it. Sometimes you are just darned lucky, and sometimes you are not just darned unlucky. In order for a casino to adjust a payout percentage on a slot machine, they have to open it up and make adjustments to each individual machine. This process can take up to 45 minutes to do, so by the time they are done, the holiday would be over! So no, there is no man in a booth getting ready to shut it down. There was a time when casinos were hoping to go to server based machines, but it didn't happen.
Play within your limits. If you normally bet $5/spin, rather than play a penny machine with an 87% payout, why not play a $1 denomination machine for the same bet amount of $5/spin with a 92% payout! That’s why when you see me playing Lightning Link, I always do the 10cent denomination for $5 a spin rather than max betting the 1 cent version. When it does come to multi-denomination machines like Lightning Link, the jury is out as to whether the payout percentages actually change or not. I have heard that it depends on the manufacturer. So in that case, I’ll play Lightning Link in the High Limit room instead with the exact same 10cent denomination at $5/spin bets (the lowest on that machine). Or better still, try your hand at Video Poker for higher paybacks (assuming you know how to play!).
So why do I play penny slots after knowing all of this?
Can you blame me? They’re too much darn fun!! Imagine if all of my videos were on single line $1 machines or me just doing 2 spins on a $100 machine. No one watches for just that! So I will take the 5% cut in payout percentage if it means I have more fun.
Don’t forget, payout percentages are not advertised by casinos nor are they on slot machines, except….LIGHTNING ZAP!! This particular game, created by Everi, is set to start as a whopping 90% payback and they often advertise that at casinos! I’ve also noticed that while playing slots at Dotty’s in Vegas, the slot machines would encourage me to ‘up’ by denominations for higher payout percentages! I think if slot manufacturers caught on to that, it would be very smart. Wouldn’t you bet $3 instead of $2 if it told you your payout would go from 87% to 90%? It sure worked on me, although I ended up losing quicker.
Here's an AMAZING HIT I got in Reno on Lightning Zap on a $2 bet with a 24,450% payback! Is that right? It sounds too high...but when winning $2 on a $2 bet is 100%, I guess it adds up quickly!
There are of course even more tricks and tips to try and make the biggest bang for your buck. More on that next week!
Brian xoxo ❤️
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I suppose I always just assumed people would figure it out by watching the videos, but turns out this is a very popular question to ask. How do Group Slot Pulls work? I’m hoping this will answer all questions I’ve seen in the comments of my past videos.
First off, I have to get permission from a casino to be able to record there. Some casinos have open filming policies, so they reap the benefits of my attendance.
Basic rules are simple:
How do you choose the Games?
As far as the games we play, I usually narrow down the options to 3-5 games and have the participants vote on them. The games I choose are based off of denomination, bet amounts, as well as location in the casino. I have to ensure there will be enough space around a machine for a large group without causing an issue for other patrons or staff in the casino. I also try to make it so that each participant gets around 6-10 spins each. The minimum amount of spins I want to have on a single machine is 40. I figure that generally speaking that should be enough spins to get at least one bonus (sometimes we get multiple and other times none at all!). On occasion a casino will require that I choose the slot machines in advance so that they can inform security where we will be or even turn that machine off for us to play which is awesome. In those cases, I use my best judgement in choosing the machine for the group.
Legally speaking, there are some things I do to ensure no one leaves the casino with all the money on a spin they did. I will only use my players card in the machine. Sure, I get the points from it which results in me getting maybe $10-$20 in freeplay – but I do that to safeguard the money. (And believe me, I don’t run these huge events to make an extra $20, and I play enough on my own to already be in the top tiers). More importantly, some states say whosever card is in the machine is responsible for the money and the taxes. Imagine if you’re in a group of 20 people you’ve never met and one person spins the wheel and hits $10,000. They could easily demand that it’s their money and leave with it. Some casinos are really awesome and provide me with a specific players card for the group which will equally allow us to all share in the players points. I wish they all were able to accommodate this. The other safeguards I use is making everyone sign a waiver agreeing to our terms (where they also agree to having their image in my videos online).
I live far away, can I send you money to be in included in the group pull?
It sounds like an awesome idea to include a ton of people, however sadly it is against the law to gamble with other peoples money and then split the money. The person legally must be in the casino.
Who Pays the taxes?
I agree to cover up to $5,000 worth of wins in taxes. What that means, for my group pulls, is that if the group hits $10,000 in overall wins, I will personally cover the taxes on the first $5,000, and as a group, we would split the taxes on the second half. If however we hit $6,000 in hand pays but our overall win is only $1,000, then I won’t hold back anything. In general, we do not go over $5,000 in overall wins, in fact it has only happened once. That group only had to share a couple hundred dollars in taxes among 25 people which was around $20/person.
In some States, whoever does the SPINNING is responsible for paying the taxes. In those instances, I always leave it up to the player if they want to take that chance. I also keep it to just American residents to spin so we avoid any immediate tax withholdings from those in other countries. Canadians for example have to pay taxes immediately on the spot. So if they spun a jackpot, they’d pay hundreds in taxes and end up leaving the group pull negative! To avoid that hassle and headache, in such States, I regretfully keep it to just American residents - but I'll still call them up and do the spins in their name.
Bottom line, everything I do is to safeguard each other and myself. These events are put on for the enjoyment of others to not only get a chance to gamble with myself, #priceless haha, but more importantly give people the opportunity to play high limit slots when they otherwise may not have had that chance. And also give them their 5 seconds of fame!
Do you tip on the hand pays?
Just like in my own play, we always tip the slot attendants. Rather than pay them after every single hand pay, I pay them at the end. So if a group of 20 people is left with $5086.46, rather than pay them each back $254.32, each person would get $250 and the remaining $4.32 (or $86.40) would go to the staff as a thank you.
So do you WIN or LOSE overall in your Group Pulls?
When you consider that high limit slot machines have an average payout percentage of around 92% or so, you should really expect the same from a group pull. I’d say that most of the group pulls end up in a loss of around $20 a person, with a quarter of group pulls coming away winners of around $25 a person. On occasion we’ve had the group each walk away with over $100 in profit, once over $500 each in profit, and twice, we’ve had horrible a payback where we lost most of our money. To me (and most participants), it’s about the journey, the experience and the excitement! We play for 30 minutes to an hour spinning strictly high limit slots. We cheer, we jeer, we drink and we scream!! That in itself is an awesome value for your money. And if you walk away with some profit or a small loss – it’s all worth it in the end. If you read the comments on these videos from the participants, they always say they look forward to the next one! The camaraderie is infectious. Why go to the batting cages when you can play with a team! Heck, I will lose $200 in 1 minute on my own, I’m only so happy to lose $20 in 45 minutes!
To find out about upcoming Group Pulls or Events, it’s best to visit the Events page. To be the first person to find out about them, be sure to SIGN UP for our bi-weekly newsletter!
Here’s a look at BIGGEST Payout Percentage WIN as a group aboard our Rudies Cruise in 2018, and our BIGGEST Profit as a group in Las Vegas.
Next week we will delve into the world of payout percentages and what that means to a player…
Brian xoxo ❤️
"Why do you do backup spins and why do you do them at the same amount instead of going down to minimum bet?” - Lynne Nuibe
For starters, I didn’t come up with the ‘back-up spin’. I heard The Big Payback use it a while back and it caught on in my own play. I know a lot of you out there tell me you hear yourselves saying 'Rude' or 'Line it UP!", just like how I catch myself saying "For the Love" or "Girls and Pearls". Now I didn’t know why TBP did them at the time, but it sounded cool and sometimes worked out.
I have a few reasons why I do it. (Also, I always play at the dollar amount I feel comfortable playing, and so lowering a bet for a backup doesn’t make sense to me.) For me, they generally follow a bonus, a big win, or a big loss! Since we all know by now that slot machines are designed to take our money, it’s a good way to force yourself to get off!
After a bonus. Most bonuses are difficult to hit and usually where the most money is hidden. So after a bonus, chances of getting another one soon is slim.
After a big win. If it’s a big win, you probably won’t have another one, let’s be honest. So leave with it!
After a big loss. You know when you’re on a machine and you are just losing and losing and you are convinced it is ‘due to hit’ (no such thing) but deep down know it probably won’t happen? Well this forces you to get off after 1-3 more spins. I use this method a lot in my live streams. And never fret, because It will always be there tomorrow!
But WHY do I really do it? I compare it to how we teach our children that it’s time to leave the park or Grandma’s house. “Ok Charlie, you can play for 5 more minutes…3 minutes left…1 minute until we leave” and then you go. It eases the pain of having to leave (just as it does to get off a slot machine). I will either say that I’ll do 1-3 more backup spins - OR - sometimes I’ll say I’ll get off when I hit a certain dollar amount (higher or lower from where I’m at), which is a very similar method.
After that final back-up spin, I may do another if I won my money back or more. It has worked out for me numerous times, and sometimes not. I have no clue if I’m up or down from them (probably down, it’s slots!), but it’s the best way I’ve found to get off a machine.
Here’s a an AWESOME Video showing a great Back Up Spin or TWO!
Of course winning by yourself is fun, but winning with a GROUP is even better! Next week I'll discuss in detail, Group Pull Events!!
Brian Christopher xoxo ❤️
Brian Christopher is a popular YouTube Star specializing in Slot Machine Gambling Videos