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How Random are Near Miss Slot Paylines

By Chuckmonster on Saturday, 29th July 2006 2:42pm
  » filed under Las Vegas  comments: 0


How many times has this happened to you? You're at your favorite Triple Diamond slot and the wheels are spinning... first reel lights up a Triple Diamond {BONG!} Second reel lights up a Triple Diamond {BONG!} Third reel stops in no-mans land with the jackpot Triple Diamond one tick below the Payline. Your heart leaps in excitement then complete despair as you curse the machines and swear to never gamble again. Then you turn to friends and say "this one's gonna hit" and spin the reels again. We'll guess this has happened to you a bunch of times.

The question is... are slots programmed to show "near misses" in order to perpetuate longer play? In AC and Nevada, 'near-miss programming' is illegal. But your local tribal or riverboat joint might have some different rules. The Reno Gazette-Journal goes a little bit further with their explanation:

Because the reel display of slot machines is controlled by computer software, a slot could be programmed to frequently display combinations that are close to winning combinations. Repeatedly displaying treasure chest, treasure chest and a non-treasure chest can tease players into a playing frenzy because they think they’re almost winning.

We also need to consider with 20 symbols on a reel and possibly 256 stopping points, treasure chests can appear above or below the payline and seem as a “near-miss.” But even so, slot machines cannot be specifically programmed to show “winning combinations” at a mathematically impossible frequency. The “near miss” must be just as likely to occur as any other equally randomly distributed combination.



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