Maths and Statistics against Slots

The one fixed characteristic of slot machines is their randomness. The result of each spin is determined by a Random Number Generator (RNG). Random Number Generators are essentially an algorithm that uses mathematical formulas to generate random numbers. So if slot machines use mathematics, is there not a way that you can use mathematics to give you the upper hand while playing slots at Mega reel? Or at least minimise your losses.

The Mathematics behind Slots

Every time that you press spin on a slot machine, the RNG produces a random number (e.g. between one and a million) for each of the slot reels. Each number corresponds with one of the symbols. The more numbers are assigned to a symbol, the more that specific symbol pays out. A chip inside the slot then determines whether or not the randomly generated numbers constitutes winning combination.

Using Maths to Calculate Your Odds of Winning

In order to do this you would need two types of information. What a winning combination pays and the probability of landing that combination. Usually you know what a particular combination pays, as it is given to you in the paytable. However, how do you calculate the probability of landing a specific combination?

Let’s use the example of a traditional fruit machine. The slot has 3 reels, 3 rows and five symbols (banana, strawberry, watermelon, orange and grape) in total. Only three of a kind winning combinations pay out. Say three bananas pay out 2,500, strawberries equal 1,000, watermelons 400, orange 50, and grape only 5.

To calculate the probability of landing a banana combination, you would need to know how many stops there are. The example slot above has 45 stops, and one of them would be the banana. Calculate the probability by using the following formula: (1/45)* (1/45)* (1/45). This will give you a probability of 0.001% of hitting all three bananas.

To calculate your overall chances of winning, simply multiply each combinations probability with what it pays to receive your returns, and then sum all the results. You would have to do this for each and every winning combination in a slot. Which can be way too time-consuming, especially with modern machines that have a lot more and longer winning combinations.

Statistics on Winning a Slot Game

According to statistics your odds of winning at a slot game remains the same, whether you spin one or a hundred times. Thanks to Random Number Generators, each new spin occurs independently. Say for example the odds of winning at a slot is 1:1,000,000. Each time you spin those odds will remain the same. This immediately disproves the belief that that more spins bring you closer to the jackpot.

Slots are created to pay back less than what they take, otherwise the casinos would make no profit. While you cannot use mathematics to beat the slot per se, you can use it calculate your odds and based on that decide whether or not that slot is worth your while.


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