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The "Switch" in a Casino

This comes up more often than you would think. Here is how it usually goes:


Random Gambler #1: "She was winning way too much on her machine, so, the casino flipped the switch on her, and now she keeps losing."

Random Gambler #2: "The casinos are always packed on the weekends, never play then, since they flip the switch and tighten up the machines."

Random Gambler #3: "I lost my ass last night on the slots. The casino was running a huge Giveaway, and they have to pay for all that stuff somehow. Boy, did they flip the switch on us!"

Random Gambler #4: "I only play during the week, and between the hours of 8AM and 1PM. That is when they set the machines the loosest, so the casino can fluff up their payback percentages in reports"



It is called gambler fallacy.

This quote below is from an actual person that challenged me on this very topic once.

Them: "I am under the firm belief that time of day, day of the week, gift give-a-way days etc play a huge part in how the machines are setup programming wise." "You cannot tell me that the casino has some control over games"

I can absolutely tell you, and everyone, that the casino does not flip a switch and set machines from pay to steal.

Being grounded in reality, and understanding how casinos and slots work. What some are suggesting is just a logistical nightmare. Yes, some casinos do have server based slots. Maybe not the entire casino, but some. Gaming regulations require you to change the statistics on the machine after a change. The machine has to be idle, and a screen stating a change is being made must be shown. They cannot change anything while you are playing it. And since no one, that I have ever read, heard or spoken to, can say they saw an actual server based hold taking place, I'd venture to say no casino has actually done so. At least not wide spread. Maybe a title or two to promote more play. I'll get to that later.

And that is just for the machines that ARE server based. Older casinos, with many older titles would, need to fill out all the paperwork to the regulatory agencies in regards to a payback change. They would physically have to clear each and every slot machine. Pull and replace the chip (E-Prom) with the new RNG loaded on it (if they can even find a new chip for some older games) clear the hoppers of any cash/TITOs, report those over to the cage with each switch out.

THEN you have to give the machine a new ID number, since a new chip is now a new game regardless if the title stays the same. AND THEN do everything I just typed out in reverse to put the machines back to the way they were once the higher hold or return days are over with.

You are talking maybe an hour of work per machine. People you are paying in all those departments to do work to rake in a few extra points on the averages. They would need an army of people to do what you think they do. And they would need an empty casino to do it in.

Has this ever happened? Has a casino ever systematically changed their holds for a busy weekend, promo, drawing or any other such peak time? No. Machines are leased or purchased with a selected (or suggested) RNG already loaded. Say 10% hold. If the machine is not getting the type of play it should, it might be relocated or even reconfigured (by using the above) in order to entice action.

If none of that works, the machine is off the floor since it is not earning its keep. But that is done by machine, and certainly not by the entire casino floor at once.

Some of you might have very well seen signs on a slot that say "The progressive on this machine will be moved on/by a certain date". That is the casino giving warning that a machine is being pulled, and the progressive (by law) is being transferred to another machine. In rare instances the progressive money is given away via a drawing if it is not moved.

Why do casinos like server based slots? It says them the trouble of physically humping in and out completely new cabinets. Texas Tea not getting played? Buy the program for Cleopatra and change the title. No one playing Cleopatra at the $0.25 denom? Buy the penny version and see if that works. No matter the change, you have to tell on yourself.

You want to clear a bank of slots to have a tournament? No sweat with server based! This way, after the event, you don't have 4 rows of shitty old tournament slots sitting roped off for the next event in a month. Wasted space is wasted money.

Server based slots are so misunderstood! They do not exist for the casino to have the imaginary "switch". They exist so the casino can offer you more of what you want!

Anything you might have "witnessed" or heard while playing stating the opposite is purely anecdotal.

If word got out that a casino was doing anything like this, jacking up the holds on their machines with a switch, how long would it take before that casino was empty?

And flipping the coin, and the casino loosening up at certain times to promote business, if word got out that certain days were "Handpay bonus-a-rama" days, how long before the casino went bankrupt? And in either instance the pure amount of reporting, switching, and working on each machine in order to pull it off would never offset the gains the casino hopes to see in order to do this.

I have said it before, and right now, in print for the world to see, i will say it again... there is no Magic Switch!
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