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Recap: Q&A with VP of Slots Buddy Frank

Every other week, we host a Q&A with our VP of Slots Buddy Frank on our Facebook page to give you the rare opportunity to ask ANY question about slots, how they work, when we’ll be getting new games, etc.

Check out some of the questions from this week’s conversation below:

Which slots give you the best odds…..pennies, quarters or dollars?

With rare exceptions, the higher the denomination, the looser the odds. We have 11 $100 slots if you want to test this theory ;)

Is it true that the average payout for slots is 35%?

35%?!! No. That’s almost as bad as the California lottery at 55% payback. The state law in Nevada limits casinos to 75%. In California, the law permits 80%. However, despite the law, few operator even get close to 90% (mainly back east). I would guess that most of my competitors here in Southern California set their average at 91% to 94%.

When the payout percentage is set for a multi-game machine like Game King, are all of the games set for the same percentage, or each individually? Does Video Keno fall under these “payout percentages” or are the real Keno odds used?

Generally, they are all different. However, the pokers are fairly close within a single cabinet. Here at Pechanga, there is less than three percentage points of difference between the tightest and the loosest poker machine on the floors. But on a single multi-game cabinet, there is less than one percent difference from tight to loose. Keno is generally three points tighter than poker. Video reels games on GameKing machines tend to be five or more points tighter (but they have bigger payouts for the winners).

In the new slot game LORD OF THE RINGS, what is the significance of the Player’s Life login and website? Is this something that will be seen in all new slot games?

Interactivity with slots and the Web is definitely coming. The Lord of the Rings is just one example (in that game you can advance the bonuses and game play themes by playing in the casino …or…playing on-line for free.) Some other options I’ve seen are the ability to “copy” a winning slot jackpot screen and email it to friends. We have our own Facebook games you should check out here.

It seems like the slots have gotten tighter over the years. Have the odds changed?

You’ll never believe this; but the odds on the same types of machines have gotten looser over the years. (In other words, the 5¢; 25¢ and $1 games are the same or looser). However, for the last three years most casinos have added hundreds of 1¢ machines. They are tighter than the older $1 machines for example…but a lot more fun to play and you can play them longer for the same amount of spend (despite slightly worse odds.).

Why not bring back some slots with coins?

When the tickets first arrived; we had thousands of complaints…until guest stared playing them. They didn’t miss the dirty hands, the “empty hoppers,” and machine jams. The folks working in the casino had a dramatic reduction in strains and pains due to lifting, wrapping and exchanging coins and the machines didn’t break down as often. Also, they allowed the penny machine to blossom. The coin hoppers didn’t handle pennies or dimes very well and jammed all the time. I do miss the noise from dollars hitting the trays, but not that much!