How Long Must I Play a Slots Machine?

Gonzo’s Quest Slots Machine


As an avid slots player I’ve asked myself this question many times: ‘‘How long must I play a certain slot game?’‘ I’m going to give you some valuable pointers that will stand you in good stead when playing slots online.

This is where your stake comes in. In this article I broke my bankroll down into stakes. Let’s assume that your stake is $20 and your bankroll is $200. Let’s start off by grabbing your $20 stake.

When Playing Slots I Use the Following Technique. I Call it the Easy Slot Test (EST)  Technique.

  • I first decide how many credits I plan to play based on the number of lines times the multiplier. Depending on the type of machine it varies greatly.
  •  Start off by playing 10 spins. You might pick another number, personally I use 10 spins. Whatever number you pick stick with it. 
  • I then multiply the number of credits I plan to play by the number of spins to determine the total amount I will invest in the machine before I move on. For instance, if I’m playing a penny machine and I decide to play 56 credits per spin and 10 spins in total, then the total amount I am planning to risk is 560 credits.
  •  I then start to count off ten spins.  After the tenth spin I should have my original stake, 2,000 credits ($20) on a penny machine, subtract the 560 credits for the ten spins. I should have 1,440 (2,000-560=1,440). 
  • Then I take the difference between the number of credits I have, taking into account the few payouts I’ve won and the 1,440 credits to determine the amount I did win. Divide this number by 56 to determine the amount of pulls you still have left. Let’s assume I’ve won something on my 10 spins and I now have 1,780 credits in the machine. This means I still have 370 (1,780-1,440) credits or 6 (340/56) spins left. 
  • I then count off 6 spins and repeat the process from steps 3. When my credits fall to 1,440 or less I cash out and leave the machine. If I manage to get more than 2,000 credits I started with then I continue in the same way, except I now have more than the 10 spins I started with. Suppose I have 2,450 credits after my first 10 spins. This means I still have 2,450 credits or 18 (1,010/56) spins left. I cash out my winnings. 

An alternative way to perform this test is to play with a small denomination say $5 and either play until you lose it or you start to win. Both techniques normally deliver good results. If I have more cash than my initial bankroll, I can make a full play on the last spin. There is nothing worse than playing 1 credit as your last pull and winning the bonus game. This happened to me a couple of times. 

The amount you are willing to commit to test a loose slot machine is based entirely on your bankroll and the size of your stakes. In the above examples I’ve used modes stakes. If you decide to play with bigger stakes the amount will change accordingly but not the idea of playing a fixed number of spins to test for a loose slot machine. 

It’s easy just to keep on slotting money into a machine hoping that you’ll win the jackpot. There are literally thousands of slot machines online. I cannot emphasize how important it is to keep on moving from one machine to another until you find a loose one. 

Regardless of whether you use a fixed amount of cash to perform the loose slot test, it is important that you move on if you don’t get a positive result.

What to Do When You Have a Winning Machine

I’ve seen it so many times when players find a paying slot machine they just end up giving all the cash they’ve won back. I have also seen players receive a good payout, cash their winnings out and leave. It just reinforces what I already knew-most players simply don’t know how to play a winning machine. 

I’d like to give you some advice on how to keep more of your winnings when you do find a slots machine that is paying out. Keep in mind that every time you press the spin button the results are random. If you look at the set of randomly generated numbers it is very likely that they will contain a pattern in at least some portion of the numbers if you have a large enough set. Professor Gregory Chaitin, mathematician and computer scientist demonstrated this when he showed that there are patterns in every system, even a system of randomly generated numbers. 

Some players know this, especially when they get a number of payouts in a short time. If they hit a dry spell they wait for the machine to start paying out again. If you are getting more back from the slot machine than you are putting in then you’re ahead of the game.

Handy Tips When Playing Slots

Set yourself a lower and upper limit. The lower limit is meant to be the number of credits you will stop at. The upper limit is the number of credits at which you will cash out. This also depends on your bankroll. If you’re a high roller I suggest you play medium to high variance slot machines.

Let’s assume your budget is $5,000. Divide your bankroll into 10 equal parts ($500 per session). Personally I prefer the NetEnt slots not only do they offer regular payouts but their graphics are superior to that of other software providers. My favorite games are Gonzo’s Quest, Jack Hammer Fishy Business, Blood Suckers and Aliens.

Nowadays most online casinos list the payouts of their most popular games. Start with the ones that gives you more bang for your buck with 10 spins at $10 per spin ($100). Most slots the house edge is usually from 0.1%, when a very loose machine might payback 98.9% to 15%, a tight machine might only back back 85%. If the machine does not payout within 10 spins move on to the next one. 

Why is the House Edge So Important?

Whatever game you’re playing you will eventually lose all your money if you play long enough. Let’s have a look at the following assumptions:

  • You start with $100.
  • You wager $1 per spin.
  • The payout percentage of the machine is 97%.
  • You are getting the average return with each spin.
  • You decide not to cash out your winnings and leave.

How Long Would Your Cash Last?

Your bankroll will be depleted within 4,500 spins. Initially this might sound like a lot of spins but if you consider how little time it takes to press the spin button, you’ll lose your cash within an hour or two. If you increase your bet to $5 per spin your cash will be depleted within an half an hour. 

Try the dollar a minute test. Twenty dollars will last the average slots player 20 minutes. If you can do better than this you’re ahead of the game.  If you found this article interesting I’d appreciate it if you can like it or share it on your social network. Good luck!


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