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Best of John Grochowski
A shuffle through the gaming mailbag5 August 2008
A. I'd have gone for the royal. Keep the straight, and your five-coin bet brings you 20 coins on Double Double Bonus, or 25 on any Double Bonus games worth playing. (Hint: If straights pay only 4-for-1 at Double Bonus, don't play. Look for a better game.)
Break up the straight, and you risk getting nothing, but you have a 1 in 47 chance at a royal worth 4,000 coins. In addition, you could still draw one of the other two 10s for a straight, or a different club for a flush, or pair up one of the high cards. You'd have some kind of winner on 23 of the 47 possible draws.
That chance at the royal brings your average return on that hand up to more than 90 coins per trial, with the exact figure depending on pay table. The bigger reward is well worth the risk of winding up with a losing hand.
Temptation is strong to stick with a nice, safe winner, but if it was my hand, I'd have discarded the 10 of hearts, crossed my fingers and hoped for the big one.
A. Bonus round possibilities are set by a random number generator, but your choices do make a difference. Let's say you're playing Jackpot Party and the gift box on the bottom left corner is hiding a 200-credit bonus while the one next to it is hiding a party pooper that ends the round. When you pick, you have a chance at that 200-credit bonus that will allow you to continue picking. You also have the chance at a pooper that will end it there, and you have the chance at any of the other outcomes hidden by gift boxes on the screen.
Your final bonus is not predetermined. It could be thousands of credits, it could be the minimum for hitting the pooper on the first pick, and it could be anything in between.
The random number generator just sets the possibilities. It does not just give you a set bonus.
A. Slot comps are based on your play, regardless of whether your credits came from cash or a voucher.
You can see that in casinos that let you know their formula up front. At the Empress Casino in Joliet, Illinois, for example, every $4 you wager on slots, or $8 on video poker, brings one point, and every 500 points brings $5 in cash back at the lowest club tier, with higher tier players needing only 450 or 425 points for their five bucks. It doesn't matter whether the credits for the wagers came from vouchers or fresh money, the points accumulate on the basis of your wagers.
You're going to see such systems go into effect at the tables in the next few years as more casinos invest in the technology to track your wagers electronically. The technology exists now, but it's expensive. As the price comes down, more casinos will go that direction, and your comps will be based on actual wagers rather than the pit trying to track buy-ins and average bet sizes.
This article is provided by the Frank Scoblete Network. Melissa A. Kaplan is the network's managing editor. If you would like to use this article on your website, please contact Casino City Press, the exclusive web syndication outlet for the Frank Scoblete Network. To contact Frank, please e-mail him at email@example.com.
Best of John Grochowski