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Topic: Casino Control over Payouts Post Reply Post New Topic
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Volbuddy
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Quote Volbuddy Replybullet Topic: Casino Control over Payouts
    Posted: 04 Apr 2010 at 10:14am
I have been playing video poker for 15 years primarily in Tunica but also in Las Vegas and other locales. It is obvious in Tunica that the machines play totally differently than they did several years ago. I have tried to research the regulations controlling payouts on video poker as compared to other types of casino games but it is very difficult because the industry is not very forthcoming with this info. I have read that the only states that require "honest" games, that is those that actually pay the percentage return justified by the play of the player are Nevada and Louisiana. I have also read that video poker machines are equipped with the same capability as slot machines to control payouts between 84 and 100 per cent. If this is correct, video poker machines are just glorified slot machines. I have perfected my play to the point that I can play pretty close to optimum return and it is frustrating to kow that my return is contolled by some wizard behind the curtain. If anyone has any information pertaining to this issue, I would be very interested in hearing it.
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shadowman
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Quote shadowman Replybullet Posted: 04 Apr 2010 at 11:00am
http://www.mgc.state.ms.us/pdf/regs/mgcregs.pdf
 
See part IV Section 5 (page 182 of the PDF):
 
"Each possible permutation or combination of game elements which produce winning or losing game outcomes must be available for random selection at the initiation of each play."
 
Looks to me like the requirements are the same as Nevada.
 
The feature on VP machines allows selection of return percentages ends up with a different paytable for each percentage. So, the return of each game should be obvious.
 
Since MS limits returns on VP games to less than 100% then you should be losing money every year. Did you used to win? If you did then you were lucky. If you are now losing that may simply be a change in fortune.
 
I've had long runs of good luck and bad luck are various casinos. This is nothing unusual or nefarious.
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cddenver
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Quote cddenver Replybullet Posted: 04 Apr 2010 at 5:26pm
Originally posted by Volbuddy

I have tried to research the regulations controlling payouts on video poker as compared to other types of casino games but it is very difficult because the industry is not very forthcoming with this info.
 
I've checked the regulations for about half a dozen states online, and the sections on payouts and randomness aren't difficult to find.  The regs themselves are on each state's official website.  They're set by whatever agency in the state is responsible for gaming, not by any of the game manufacturers.  Casinos and game manufacturers are answerable to regulators; it's not the other way around.
 
Originally posted by Volbuddy

I have read that the only states that require "honest" games, that is those that actually pay the percentage return justified by the play of the player are Nevada and Louisiana. I have also read that video poker machines are equipped with the same capability as slot machines to control payouts between 84 and 100 per cent. If this is correct, video poker machines are just glorified slot machines.
 
As far as randomness goes, our regs here in Colorado are similar to those in Nevada - somewhat different wording, but the same intent.  For VP the payback percentages are long term numbers determined by standard probability theory based on paytables, randomness, and optimal play strategy.  The machines have no special code or switches inside of them to keep the return between those upper and lower bounds during short term play (individual sessions).
 
Originally posted by Volbuddy

I have perfected my play to the point that I can play pretty close to optimum return and it is frustrating to kow that my return is contolled by some wizard behind the curtain. 
 
There's no man behind the curtain controlling things.    For me a year's play is 100K's of hands and I've never finished a year at exactly the theoretical return for any of the games I play.  In fact, if a player came to me and said that he played only 9/6 DDB and that he finished a year at exactly 98.98% I'd be suspicious.
 
If we were to say that any off year is due to machines being turned down, then in good years we'd also have to say that casinos were turning up machines to pay more, right?  Doesn't make sense to me.  Smile
 
In another thread we just had some posts on the frequency of multipliers for STP.  Same basic thinking - the average for multipliers is one every 15 deals, but you'll see all kinds of interesting short term runs of multipliers (good and bad) with multipliers generated randomly.  If you kept track of the number of deals and multipliers per session you'd have very few sessions where you actually average a multiplier once every 15 deals.  But as time goes on, if you look at your play over all sessions you'll see your average for multipliers close to once every 15 deals.
 


Edited by cddenver - 04 Apr 2010 at 11:14pm
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pokeherguy
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Quote pokeherguy Replybullet Posted: 04 Apr 2010 at 11:07pm

I've been playing in Tunica for years almost entirely at Harrah's/Grand and have never had much reason to complain. I play at the $2 and $5 denomination level and 95% is DDB with a dab of TDDB. My only complaint is I've only hit 1 royal flush in 10 years there and have only seen 1 other hit at the $2 denomination. No doubt thier machines are greedy when it comes to royals but I hit everything else there like it's going out of style. I've had my cold speals there but it always comes back. I don't know if you have ever played in West Memphis but my best year there was not even close to my worst year in Tunica and that goes back 15 years.

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rascal
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Quote rascal Replybullet Posted: 05 Apr 2010 at 11:28am
This is a constant concern of any casino patron who does not have a full appreciation of the wild swings of chance and randomness. Playing on the Mississippi coast during the summer of 2002, I hit 21 Royals at various casinos, including two back to back. Even today, I still refer to that as the "Royal Summer." But it was chance, nothing more, because then Lady Luck swung the other way and I could not hit a Royal no matter what I did. I went without a Royal for almost 6 months.
The only way for a regulated casino to change the payout of video poker is through the paytables. It is one of the few games of chance where the player is completely aware of the odds when he sits down...assuming he will take 10 seconds to scan the paytable.
In almost every U.S. state where I regularly play, gaming regs are based on the strict Nevada regs. Most video poker machines are manufactured in Nevada, and by state law they must meet Nevada regs during the manufacturing process.
To answer your specific concerns about Mississippi regs, in fact, I consider it to be one of the most tightly regulated states, after Nevada. I would be more confident of playing in Mississippi than in Louisiana, because (a) Louisiana has a deeply inbred sense of corruption in everything it regulates, and (b) because the tax rate on jackpots is much lower in Mississippi (3%) than in Louisiana (6%), although you can get a credit or a refund of the Louisiana tax if you are from out of state, while Mississippi does not allow that.
The bottom line, Volbuddy (are you from TN?) is that video poker is a losing proposition. It is a less than 100% game in almost every instance, and even in those very rare situations where it is over 100%, very few players can play error free for hours.
No matter what a certain VP "expert" who filed bankruptcy will tell you, you cannot win long term on VP. It does not happen. The only way to win is to play once every few years, get very lucky, take your winnings home, and rarely or never return. Otherwise, the law of averages kicks in.
Casinos are for entertainment, and what the responsible VP player does is to attempt to minimize his/her losses with knowledgable, restrained play. But, over time, entertainment costs money. Otherwise, if the casinos could be beaten long term, how could they survive? Please do not believe any expert who tells you that he/she can win long term in VP.
(Notice, in my comments above referring to "regulated" casinos, I am not referring to Indian casinos. They are self-regulated and they claim to be fair, but I don't trust their fairness and thus, I never play there.)


Edited by rascal - 05 Apr 2010 at 11:33am
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brmcc74
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Quote brmcc74 Replybullet Posted: 05 Apr 2010 at 1:03pm
Rascal= Good post, I couldnt agree more. I get tired of the bs that I hear alot about people making a living off of it. It wouldnt be there if that were possible.
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cddenver
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Quote cddenver Replybullet Posted: 05 Apr 2010 at 1:21pm
Originally posted by rascal

on the strict Nevada regs. Most video poker machines are manufactured in Nevada, and by state law they must meet Nevada regs during the manufacturing process.
 
Nice post.  Smile  From a financial standpoint it's also cheaper to write game software and manufacture machines that meet the toughest standards (Nevada) and use that same hardware and software everywhere than it is to develop specialized versions for each individual state.


Edited by cddenver - 05 Apr 2010 at 1:22pm
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shadowman
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Quote shadowman Replybullet Posted: 05 Apr 2010 at 3:42pm
Originally posted by rascal

 
Casinos are for entertainment, and what the responsible VP player does is to attempt to minimize his/her losses with knowledgable, restrained play. But, over time, entertainment costs money. Otherwise, if the casinos could be beaten long term, how could they survive? Please do not believe any expert who tells you that he/she can win long term in VP.
(Notice, in my comments above referring to "regulated" casinos, I am not referring to Indian casinos. They are self-regulated and they claim to be fair, but I don't trust their fairness and thus, I never play there.)
 
I often see this claim that VP cannot be beaten. That is simply not true. It's simple math and simple logic that demonstrates it CAN be beaten. However, the key is that it is NOT EASY. That's why casinos can put out a few low denomination, beatable games.
 
If VP could not be beaten then casinos would not have pulled all the dollar and above FPDW a few years ago. They still have a few quarter games as "loss leaders" with significantly reduced points. If they can't be beaten then why reduce the points?
 
As far as making a living ... well, that's another story. Hard to find ANY beatable games above a dollar. Some progressives can be cherry picked when they get high, but otherwise the land is pretty barren. The reason is simply that positive return games can be beaten.
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spxChrome
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Quote spxChrome Replybullet Posted: 05 Apr 2010 at 7:24pm
[
Nice post.  Smile  From a financial standpoint...
[/QUOTE]
 
You will make more money from writing a book on how to win at VP. LOL
I'm just saying...
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spxChrome
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Quote spxChrome Replybullet Posted: 05 Apr 2010 at 7:26pm
The reason is simply that positive return games can be beaten.
 
I always try to win at the Buffet Big%20smile
I'm just saying...
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