There are so many different forms of gambling, each with their own unique thrill for the players. These include lotteries, bingo, card games such as poker or blackjack, scratch cards, betting on sporting events, slot machines and playing casino games.
Gambling always involves three key elements:
• the amount of money wagered
• the risk or chance involved
• the prize.
The outcome of most wagers is instant, such as the roll of a dice or a roulette spin, whereas others have longer time frames, such as the outcome of future sporting events.
Gambling itself is all about statistical variance, most commonly defined as ‘luck.’ There is an unpredictable pattern of outcomes, with a mixture of odds for the punter, in which even experienced players can lose. There are certain skills though that players can use to help them to understand gambling better, which may have an impact on the outcome of a game in their favour.
Learn new techniques
There are ways in which players can improve their gambling techniques. With so many different games to play and places to make bets, it makes sense for players to have some basic knowledge on how to improve their odds of winning, no matter the choice of game, be it slot machines or a game of poker with friends.
Players should firstly have some basic understanding of the game they are wanting to play, by doing some reading on the rules of the game and how money can be won when playing.
Slot machines for example, offer a ‘gamble’ feature which is a secondary game you can only play when you win a prize on a spin, but this option to ‘gamble’ risks your prize, particularly if this secondary chance of winning carries a smaller return than the chances of winning in the basic game.
Winning at slots, and other gambling games, often relies on players being able to understand the basic rules of the games they are playing. It may sound simple, but how can you possibly expect to win a game when you don’t understand the ins and outs of it?
Trial and error
Slot machines contribute significantly to the overall profits made by casinos, both online and offline.
Players could take a ‘trial and error’ approach, which is characterised by repeated varied attempts at playing different games until finding success, as a form of practice. In the UK alone, around £14.5 billion was spent on gambling between 2017- 2018, a huge sum of money. The majority of that cash was spent on games with large house odds that shift the power to the gambling provider such as blackjack and roulette.
Around £3 billion of the total gross gambling yield of the UK was made up from online and land-based slot machines last year. That is despite these machines often representing the highest chance of returns for players.
Every slot game in the UK is legally obliged to advertise its Return to Player (RTP) percentage, which is, on average the percentage of money a player can expect to retain whilst playing slots.
There are of course slot machines with low RTP figures, however the vast majority sit above 96% representing good value for players, especially in comparison to traditional table games.
To increase your chances of getting a big win and pick up some of the best tips in the business, check out this blog at 888 Casino written by gambling expert John Grochowski on how to win at slots.
Slot machine tips
The joy of playing a slot machine is the ever-present chance of winning big, like this couple did.
Slot machines allow players to choose games that fit their goals and personality, with games that provide maximum jackpot opportunities, to extended play and giving out frequent smaller wins.
• Stick within your budget. To improve the odds, players should stick within their budget and lower their bets or stop playing altogether if they have hit their financial limit. Players could also consider starting small to win big, by placing smaller bets and work up to betting larger sums of money.
• Use strategies. Players often enjoy improving their games and getting more return from every bet they place, and some use strategies or ‘gambling systems’ which can be used universally across different games. Gambling strategies are referred to as a plan of action, designed to be used in playing games with the aim of achieving longer term benefits and rewards. There are no fixed rules in a betting strategy, whereas a gambling system is referred to as a set of procedures which is applied in the gaming process and bound by fixed rules.
• Spot the opportunities. No strategy or system can guarantee overall winnings, but those experienced players use their knowledge to improve their winning odds and do not always follow fixed systems to do this, rather they look for potential possibilities to win and are better able to distinguish good opportunities over not so viable ones.
Slot machine outcomes are random and work in a similar way to roulette, but there are more possibilities. Slots have targeted payback percentages that are built into their programming meaning the odds of a game will eventually lead to expected returns. However, players should be mindful that there is no guarantee that they will be the ones to hit the jackpot and waiting for the winnings to be a certain size does not increase the chances of winning it.
There’s no hard and fast way to guarantee a winning combination on a slot machine, but being informed on your game will boost your chances of winning.
Amongst gamblers there is always a unique desire to find a ‘silver bullet’, or a way to drastically change their gambling fortunes. Unfortunately in gambling, as in life there is no easy fix.
No gambling strategy or system exists that will make you rich overnight, and if they do exist, they’re probably not legal! The only way to guarantee better returns and better results is to dedicate time and energy into learning about the games that you like to play.
If you’re a poker fan, learn hand combinations and pot odds to the best of your ability. If you’re fond of blackjack, work out the probabilities of certain combinations, and if slots are your thing, do your homework on the game you’re playing.