How do casinos make money with slot machines?

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The simple answer to this question is that slot games are designed in a way that they pay out less than players bet in the long run.

Imagine a simple game: you give me €1 and flip a coin. If you get heads, I’ll give you €1.50 back. If you get tails, you lose. It’s quite obvious that the chances are on my side. You can win if you are lucky and play only a few rounds, but I have a clear advantage in the long run. The randomness of this game is fair, but the long-term chances aren’t.

Slots are similar, just much more complicated. The math of a slot game is defined by:
  • sets of symbols on virtual reels;
  • win sizes in the paytable;
  • rules and probabilities of all bonus features;
  • settings of all bonus features.
Game math combined with fair random numbers gives the casino a long-term advantage over players. And that is how casinos make money.