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Slot Machine Strategy: The Does and Don’ts of Slot Playing

Beneath the flashing screens and shiny exteriors, slot machines are all essentially the same. They all contain a random number generator (RNG) micro-computer that continuously generates random numbers, including when the machine is not in use. At the moment the lever is pulled or button is pushed, the numbers that were present at that instant cause their corresponding reel positions to manifest before your eyes.

Since every outcome is totally random, there is nothing you can really do to improve your odds of winning at a specific machine, short of exercising your powers of clairvoyance and/or telekinesis. Despite this, you can develop a slot machine strategy, as there are things you can do to locate the highest paying machines, and there are other things you should avoid doing in order to minimize risk.

The Different Types of Slot Machines

There are a remarkable variety of slot machines out there. They have different themes, jackpot sizes, coin denominations and maximum bets. So how do you know which types of machines you should play?

More Coins, Better Odds

Make sure to put the maximum number of coins in. In most cases you can only hit the jackpot by playing maximum coins. Most machines will have a payout table that shows the payout for each number of coins. Putting more coins in will generally increase your odds of winning.

Do Not Play Linked Progressive Jackpots

You may get excited at the chance of winning tens of thousands or even millions of dollars by playing the machines with progressive jackpots, but forget it. These machines have a much lower payout percentage than non-progressive machines. It’s typical for them to have around 82 per cent payout, compared with the high 90’s for many of the regular machines. Sure, play them for fun, but expect to lose more money than you will on regular machines. Above all, do not expect to win. If you’re really looking to develop a solid slot machine strategy, it will involve keeping away from these machines.

Know Thy Slot

Before you drop any coins into your selected machine, make sure to read the instructions carefully. You might find that you’ve hit the jackpot, only to discover that you didn’t put enough coins in to qualify for the big win!

Comp it Up

If you want to lose less money and get more perks, it’s very important to get a comp card by joining a slot club if you’re going to be playing slots a lot. Casinos will reward slot players with cash and other things based on how much you play slots over a period of time. You can get free meals, or discounts on meals or rooms, among other offerings.

Consider Playing Online

If you play online, the payout percentages are generally higher than they are in casinos. This is because online casinos don’t have nearly as many overhead costs as their land-based counterparts. Just make sure to play with well established casinos with a good reputation. Check around before signing up anywhere. Another good thing about playing online is that the casinos will often offer signup bonuses or free spins. For this reason, playing online alone can be an important part of slot machine strategy.

Talk to the Veterans

Even though a casino may advertise that their slots have a 98% payout rate, this will only be the case for a small number of their machines. One of your best bets to find a “loose” machine is to ask other people in the casino. Try asking the change person, or talk to the local players who play the slots frequently. They’ll generally stay away from the “tight” machines.

Watch Your Bankroll

Be careful to set a budget and not go over it. Never spend more than you can afford to spend. More than a few people have seen their lives engulfed by the one armed bandit thinking they will eventually figure out the perfect slot machine strategy – don’t’ let this happen to you.

Regardless of what your strategy is for playing slots, remember that it is a leisure activity and there is very little chance you will ever make money on a slot machine. So go in to socialize and to have fun, but leave your credit card at home.


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