Most slots players have dreamed about using slot machine hacks and cheats to bring down the house. I’ll walk you through some of the most successful slot machine cheats, as well as some outdated techniques that will fail every time.
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Some of these video slot machine hacks and cheats used to work, but they don’t any longer. Before I begin, let me start with a disclaimer. Hacking slot machines is against the law in most countries. I do not advise it, and LegitGamblingSites.com does not endorse it.
Let’s see how slot machines work and whether you can cheat slots today.
Casino Slot Machine Hacks
There are some slot machine hacks that worked on old-school slots. I don’t recommend trying these today. They won’t work on modern slot machines which have evolved to deal with them. If you try these and get caught, you’ll likely get banned from the casino for life. Nonetheless, they did work once upon a time, and if you happen to find a classic slot machine in a bar, you might be able to try some of these.
The Yo-Yo Slot Hack
I have a confession to make before I tell you about this slot hack. I have used this successfully, but not on slot machines. I pulled it off once or twice on the vending machines in my high school and scored a free bottle of Coca Cola or two.
The idea is to tie a thin string around a coin and deposit it. When a deposit is registered, you yank the string and pull it out. If you know anything about modern slot machines, you probably just laughed out loud. Out of all the slot machine hacks and cheats, this most definitely would not work today.
The Counterfeit Coin Trick
Before scanning technology became widespread, slot machines used to accept bets based on the weight of the coin. The question of how to hack slot machines had a real answer: Use fake coins which were the same weight as real ones. They used similar metals or hard material, and they got away with it for a long time.
Again, technology has caught up and rendered this slot machine cheat impotent. Ask any experienced player, and they’ll tell you that it’s difficult enough to get a slot to accept some real coins, never mind counterfeit ones!
Tampering With Payout Switches
Throughout gaming history, slot machine hacks and cheats have brought on some hilarious inventions. A number of them involve guitar strings and metal wires. At one point, players would attach hooks and metal claws to the end of metal wire or strings and feed it through the cooling system of the slot machine. They’d rattle around for a while, and eventually, they’d hit the payout switch.
Slot Machine Money Roll
This hack would never work on an electronic slot machine. To understand why, you should read our report on Random Number Generators (RNG). There are no physical switches which activate payouts in modern slot machines. The only thing tampering with slot machines will get you these days is a place on the sidewalk when the casino security team catches you.
Slot Machine Cheat Codes
As slot machines evolved past basic mechanical parts and made use of technology like RNGs and electronic sensors, computer programmers became a key part of keeping them honest.
What happens when the computer programmer who’s supposed to do his job lets temptation get the better of him? Just ask Ronald Dale Harris. He was in charge of finding and fixing software flaws. He was a high-level programmer and worked for the Nevada Gaming Control Board in the 1990s. One day, for whatever reason, he decided to modify some slots so it would pay out when he entered a certain sequence of coins.
Harris got away with this for a long time, but his accomplice got busted when they tried the same thing on keno. Harris was locked up for seven years, but he got out in two for good behavior. I doubt he has ever tried to hack casino slot machines again, especially since all Vegas casinos have banned him.
A Mobile Slot Machine Hack Which Really Worked
What happens when you take cash-rich American casinos, Russian mobsters, high-tech equipment, and a team of jet-setting slot players and put them together? No, this isn’t the plot of a bad B movie, this slot machine hack really happened. In fact, it may still be happening today.
In the summer of 2014, a casino in St. Louis noticed some of its machines had paid out much more than they should have according to their payback averages. After watching the security footage of the casino, they found the same man winning again and again, and they knew he was a slot machine hacker right away. They just had to figure out how he was doing it. They noticed three things:
- He was holding his iPhone close to the screen when playing
- He was winning on Aristocrat slots
- And he was “jabbing” the spin button suddenly after long pauses
It soon became apparent that lots of other casinos had been the victims of slot machine hacking, and the same man was involved in most of the slot machine hacks and cheats. Authorities tracked down Murat Bilev and discovered he was part of a Russian team which had successfully hacked slots from the United States to Macau, bilking the casinos for millions.
After arresting him on a return trip to the US, Bilev spilled the beans. He was part of a Russian slot machine hacking team which figured out the exact timing of how the PRNGs work in Aristocrat slots. His phone was equipped was a slot machine hacking app which told him exactly when to press the spin button, hence the sudden hand movements after long pauses.
Bilev was sentenced to two years in prison and deported from the USA. However, authorities worry that the scam has evolved and there are still teams out there using slot machine hacks and cheats today.
Are slot machine hacking apps available online? Yes, but if you get caught using them, you’ll end up in the slammer like Murat Bilev. I’d strongly advise against it.
What If You Do Discover a Slot Machine Hack?
If you do figure out how to hack casino slot machines, you’ll face a moral and legal choice: to steal or not to steal.
I’d advise you not to. You see, there’s an alternative option, and it could be just as lucrative. Contact the casino slot machine company, tell them you’ve found a bug, and make a contract for a reward if you show them and are proven correct.
Some slots companies will dismiss you as a quack, but believe it or not, lots of them will give you an audience, especially if they suspect there’s a bug in their slot machine software.
Heck, you could even get a job as a consultant. After all, you’ve figured out a slot machine flaw that their coders didn’t recognize.
Can You Really Hack Slot Machines?
If you read the full article on slot machine hacks and cheats above, then you’ll know the answer is yes. But it takes some serious skills and connections. Both of the successful slot machine hackers mentioned here ended up in prison. And you have to ask yourself, is it really worth it?
I personally don’t think so. For me, slot machines are about the thrill of potentially winning a life-changing jackpot. I don’t even particularly want to win by cheating. I’d worry about being found out and having to look over my shoulder for the rest of my days.
Instead, I advise you to relax, have fun, learn all you can about how slots work, and forget slot machine hacks and cheats. If there’s such a thing as karma, you might even get rewarded for deciding not to try slot machine hacks!
Introduction to Understanding Advantage Play Slots
As a slot machine enthusiast, have you heard intriguing rumors of the secret world of advantage players? Perhaps you saw the “Susan B. Anthony” used to reward a poorly treated casino reviewer at the end of the third Ocean’s movie? Here, I separate fact from fantasy. Let’s start understanding advantage play slots.
This article has the following sections:
- Introduction to Understanding Advantage Play Slots
- What’s an Advantage Play, Anyway?
- Understanding Advantage Play Slots #1: Game Themes
- Understanding Advantage Play Slots #2: Team Approach
- Understanding Advantage Play Slots #3: Modern Casinos
- Sooner or Later, Advantage Plays Stop Working
- Summary of Understanding Advantage Play Slots
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What’s an Advantage Play, Anyway?
In the gaming industry, an advantage play occurs whenever a gambler improves their odds of winning using gameplay knowledge not ordinarily available.
To help understand the general principle, consider a common non-gaming example: Credit card programs. Credit card companies exist offering cash-back for purchases. Chase Sapphire and Capital One Silver come to mind. Perhaps you’ve seen the television commercials with Samuel L. Jackson?
A credit card advantage play of such programs is to figure out how to make many, and I mean a lot of purchases to maximize cash-back. For example, perhaps you pay your rent or mortgage with that credit card.
Instead of paying directly with a credit card, which typically isn’t possible, you could find a reputable company that pays your rent or mortgage by check while you pay for the service via credit card. If the cash-back exceeds the small fee for the exchange, it’s an advantage play.
Or maybe you’re an entrepreneur with an Amazon fulfillment business. Perhaps you buy several items, put them together as a nice kit, then sell the package on Amazon. Why wouldn’t you purchase those single items with a cash-back credit card? If you sell at high-volume, you could push $10,000, or a whole lot more, through that credit card each month.
An advantage play example from the gaming industry, for table games, is card counting. This form of advantage play has a long and rich history. There’s even a major motion movie about blackjack card counting from 2008, 21.
But we’re interested in advantage plays involving slot machine casino gambling. In the next sections, we’ll work toward understanding advantage play slots, including my own relatively unique perspective for the modern casino environment.
Understanding Advantage Play Slots #1: Game Themes
The most popular slots advantage plays discussed online are about specific slot machine game themes. Every game theme has gameplay rules, which might have loopholes of which players can take advantage.
The essential approach to game theme advantage plays usually occurs during gameplay, although not always, which I’ll discuss in a moment. Class II competition-style slot machine game themes typically include a decision point for the player where there is a right or wrong answer.
Advantage players figure out in advance which answer is correct, sometimes only after extensive effort and research.
The difficulty with this approach is the assumption that it’s also an advantage play which applies to Class III Vegas-style games of chance at non-tribal casinos as well as Class II skill-based games typically only available at tribal casinos.
Do gameplay advantage plays exist for Class III slot machines? Once, they did. It was even somewhat prevalent, even as recently as 30 years ago. But, today? Not really.
What is my justification for this position? It’s based on thorough gaming regulations, including state-by-state testing of all game themes by independent laboratories. Very, very few game theme loopholes make it through such rigorous testing. See Advantage Play Against Slots (AP Heat Advantage Play) by Eliot Jacobson, Ph.D., published on March 6, 2017.
But I didn’t state that Class III slot machine advantage plays don’t exist. I said, they don’t really exist. What did I mean by this?
What I meant by this are the several circumstances where advantage plays can exist, if you want to expend the effort to find them. Just keep in mind that any serious advantage player carefully balances energy and cost with potential profit.
Put another way, figuring it out must be worth it. Some enterprising online individuals claim to have figured out a few game theme loopholes and share them freely. See Analyzing 4 Different Slots Advantage Play Methods by Randy Ray, published on May 11, 2019.
A few, usually new, audience members will ask my opinion for the best slot machines to play. My serious reply is those machines on which you win. Most of my audience agrees. In my opinion, looking for mistakes in game themes that made it past gaming regulators is a waste of time given how rare this occurrence has become.
However, lots of slots players think what casinos want them to think: Play your favorite slot machine game theme because, since it’s your favorite, you’ll win. Such an attitude from your casino isn’t gambling advice. It’s only marketing.
We’ve discussed game theme decision points and game theme loopholes, but there’s more. Another advantage play is to find slot machines with specific game themes played somewhat. A previous player could have paid for getting a slot machine closer to paying out.
A typical example is progressive slot machines with a must-win-by maximum jackpot. This amount is typically unknown. But extensive observation by an advantage player (AP) could allow them to figure it out, so they then only play progressives close to this limit.
The advantage play approach to progressive slot machines requires a great deal of patience to accomplish. If you’re interested in learning more about this approach, see my articles on progressive slots winning strategies:
Understanding Advantage Play Slots #2: Team Approach
Serious advantage players are typically part of closed communities. When an AP figures out how to take advantage of a slot machine, whether progressive, Class II, or otherwise, they are quite naturally secretive about it.
As I’ll discuss in a later section, many advantage plays are somewhat fragile. They are undoubtedly expensive in either time or money, sometimes both, to figure out. Therefore, APs will protect them like an investment.
But APs sometimes can’t figure out an advantage play without a team. Or they figure out an advantage play, as with a bank of networked progressive machines close to its jackpot limit, where every seat should have a team member sitting in it for the best chance of a return on investment.
Advantage players have figured out the cheapest way to learn a new advantage play is to watch known advantage players, then do what they do. These APs swoop in at the last moment to try to profit, such as taking one of those seats at an about-to-win bank of progressive slot machines.
Finally, it’s human nature to brag about our accomplishments. APs can and do make this mistake, but perhaps less often as they gain more experience at advantage plays. However, a regular slots player might put two-and-two together after observing an experienced AP winning. After all, most casinos are typically open to the public.
Another aspect of the team approach is the distraction it can provide. As mentioned previously, card-counting has a rich history. In the early days, one of the difficulties with card-counting was casino recognition from past winning sessions.
What was the card-counting APs response? Disguises. With modern casinos and a requirement for government-issued IDs, disguising an individual is very limited unless you happen to have an identical twin.
But you could explain the advantage play you’ve figured out to a team of trusted individuals, perhaps family members. They could then perform the advantage play for a pre-determined profit share.
Understanding Advantage Play Slots #3: Modern Casinos
With modern-day casinos and gaming regulations, slot machine advantage plays have undergone a sea change. It’s no longer possible to drop coins with a complicated pattern, which might cause a win, if that advantage play ever worked in the first place.
Using terminology from the Ocean’s 13 movie, a “Susan B. Anthony” con doesn’t matter any longer because U.S. casinos no longer use coin-operated slot machines. But that doesn’t mean advantage plays no longer exist. It means they’ve changed with the times.
Around 2012, slot machine manufacturers started offering operating systems to help casinos handle larger crowd sizes with ease, efficiency, and a smaller workforce. One of these innovations was a central computer server hardwired to every slot machine.
With it, casino operators could reduce their army of slots mechanics to a much smaller, and therefore cheaper, group. Instead of the mechanics changing the odds of winning every one to two weeks as needed to meet state gaming requirements, the computer server could do it electronically several times a day.
In this way, the casino saved money in two important ways: a smaller workforce devoted mostly to machine maintenance and a vast improvement in their ability to meet financial performance metrics from multiple weeks to several times daily.
Yes, slot machines still operate randomly under these new casino operating systems. But because the odds of winning can be remotely adjusted several times daily. Therefore, the odds of winning, while still random, are different before and after. And one is better than the other.
The task of the modern-day slot machine advantage player is to figure out which is which. Are the best odds in the morning, afternoon, or evening? Is it on busy days at the casino or non-busy days? On a holiday evening or the morning day after a holiday?
Modern casino operating systems have much more excellent control over slot machines than ever. While this slot machine control is by a computer, the computer is itself controlled by humans. And humans love to tinker. And humans also make mistakes.
Rather than explain my winning slots strategies based on casino business practices here, I’ll refer you to my many website articles and podcast episodes on that topic.
Sooner or Later, Advantage Plays Stop Working
The types of advantage plays are effectively endless, but they all have one common disadvantage: Sooner or later, they stop working. Why? Because sometimes an advantage play is a disadvantage for someone or something else.
If a business practice is an advantage play, or even if it’s going too well, it’s not uncommon for that business to shut it down. Sometimes, there’s also a time limit on how long it lasts, making it more of a promotion than a business practice.
Vegas Slot Machines For Sale
Because individual advantage plays stop working eventually, successful APs keep working on the next advantage play. For APs, figuring out advantage plays is a never-ending process.
But, as with most situations, there’s an advantage play for this, too. Some advantage plays go unnoticed because they are not dramatic. Any disadvantage to the casino is so small that it goes unnoticed.
Put another way the weakest advantage plays last the longest. One massive jackpot would be wonderful, but does it matter if it takes a year or two to make the same gaming profit at a much less noticeable level? Being less noticeable now is better for future advantage plays.
Some advantage plays are a change in perspective. Casino operators see a reduced workforce and daily performance metrics as their advantage play. That some modern APs, such as myself, have turned those business practices on their head doesn’t matter.
As I’ve previously mentioned, advantage players consider the time and cost of an advantage play versus its potential profit. As advantage players, casino operators make these same calculations with their millions or billions of dollars in gaming revenue.
As with card-counting, casinos adapted to players using that advantage play. In return, card counters wore disguises. Then casinos added more decks. Players figured out the math for using packs of decks.
And so it went, back and forth, until we now have casino surveillance of card games pattern recognition, automatic shufflers of a large number of decks, or even infinite decks,
Slot machine advantage plays, although more secretive, have already had to deal with counter-responses from casinos. While casinos had good business reasons to switch over from coins to ticket-in, ticket-out readers, doing so had a major impact on coin drop sequence advantage plays, whether they were effective advantage plays or not.
Modern slot machine advantage plays which currently work will stop working because casinos will develop counter-measures or change their business practices for some other reason. They do that, you know.
I’ve seen this happen. For me, some significant advantage plays went away after nine months. But I responded by figuring out the next advantage play. That’s what all APs, modern or not, do.
And maybe the new slot machine advantage plays I’ve figured out and used successfully, my winning slots strategies, will work at other casinos for you. I’m sharing them for two reasons. First, I have a (well-paid aerospace engineering) day job, which prevents me from using my winning strategies elsewhere, outside of an occasional weekend getaway.
Second, I’m doing that thing which APs do. I’ve determined that it is an advantage play to share this information with you. With enough time and effort, there is a potential profit in serving a community of slots players. I hope so, anyway. I’ve got massive student loans to pay.
Modern Slot Machine For Sale
Summary of Understanding Advantage Play Slots
Slot Machine Models
Advantage plays have always been a bit mysterious because sharing them is counter-productive to winning at slots when using them.
But sharing is caring, so I’ve written this article on understanding advantage play slots from a modern-day perspective.
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