Daily News Poker News Online Gaming News Investor News Vegas News Featured Articles
Strategies & Tips Books & Movies
Gaming Life Gaming Tips Comps & Promos
HOME > Gaming > Ask the Slot Expert: Does 4-coin slot machine hit jackpot more frequently than 3-coin machine?

Ask the Slot Expert: Does 4-coin slot machine hit jackpot more frequently than 3-coin machine?

26 March 2014

By John Robison, Slot Expert™

I am trying to find my “Win-Loss” statement for 2012 from the Atlantic Club Casino, in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The casino closed in January, and I have not been able to find any phone number or contact information for them.

Quite a turn of events in Atlantic City. At the turn of the century (20th to 21st), Atlantic City needed more casinos to meet the demand. Just over a decade later, it needs to close casinos to keep supply in line with demand as many gamblers decide to go to closer casinos in New York and Pennsylvania.

Even though the property was small and out of the way, I liked it when it was the Atlantic City Hilton. I hadn't been to it after it stopped being a Hilton.

The assets were sold to Caesars Entertainment and Tropicana Entertainment. Caesars bought the building and Tropicana bought the gaming equipment and customer lists. Your best bet is to contact Tropicana's slot club to see if they have the slot play data and can prepare your statement.

We can all take this situation as another reason why we should keep our own win/loss diary.

Let’s say we are talking about Mr. Money Bags and Lucky Duck. Some of those machines are 25-cent machines with a maximum bet of 75 cents. If you hit all three moneybags/lucky duck symbols, you win 10,000 coins, which is $2500.

There is another set of those 25-cent machines that are $1 max bet. They, however, have four progressives attached to them with the smallest being $10, next about $25, gold is $124 and diamond is $1100. To win the diamond, you have to get the three lucky duck/money bags symbols.

To me, it would make more sense to play the 75-cent max bet where I could have a chance at $2500 rather than the max of $1000 playing a dollar.

Are both machines set to hit the three top symbols the same or is the smaller jackpot machine that is a dollar max bet set to hit the top symbols more often?

I have never won more than $500. I'm looking for my best chances.

Is the probability of hitting the three jackpot symbols the same on both machines? Maybe, maybe not. We have no way to know without looking at each machine's PAR sheet, which tells how likely each winning combination is on the machine. It's possible that the probabilities are the same. It's also possible that one machine hits its jackpot more frequently than the other.

If the probabilities are different, you'd think that the machine with the dollar max bet would hit the jackpot more frequently. Its jackpot is only 1000 times its max bet, while the other machine's jackpot is 3333 (2500/0.75) times its max bet.

But slot programmers have a lot of flexibility when the lower-paying combinations are added into the mix. The three-coin machine may be stingy with its lower-paying combinations so it can hit its jackpot more frequently, like a Blazing 7s machine doesn't hit bar combinations too frequently so it can hit the 7s combinations more frequently.

If I had to bet one way or the other, I'd bet that the four-coin machine hits its jackpot more frequently than the three-coin machine, but I can't know for sure without being able to review the specs on the machines.

If the chances of hitting the jackpot are the same on each machine and your goal is to hit the jackpot, it does make more sense to play the $2500 jackpot machine. But we don't know that the chances are the same.

Play the three-coin machine. Play the four-coin machine. Play them both. It's your choice.

Send your slot and video poker questions to John Robison, Slot Expert™, at slotexpert@slotexpert.com. Because of the volume of mail I receive, I regret that I can't reply to every question.

Copyright © John Robison. Slot Expert and Ask the Slot Expert are trademarks of John Robison.

John Robison
John Robison is an expert on slot machines and how to play them. John is a slot and video poker columnist and has written for many of gaming's leading publications. Hear John on "The Good Times Radio Gaming Show," broadcast from Memphis on KXIQ 1180AM Friday afternoons. You can listen to archives of the show online anytime.

More about John Robison
More articles by John Robison

Books by John Robison:

The Slot Expert's Guide to Playing Slots
More books by John Robison
Sign up for Casino City's Newsletter and a Chance to Win an exciting Casino City Prize