One of the biggest questions on peoples’ minds is whether online casino games such as pokies cheat. There is confusion over how software is developed and created, as well as the regulation that is implemented both at home in Australia and abroad. So how does this all tie in together and does it add up to fair gaming? This article takes a look at these aspects and reveals whether you should be concerned or excited about online gambling.
Software developers such as Microgaming that provide content for casinos online such as Royal Vegas are accredited by testing agencies regulated from the UK government where the company was first established. This organization is also part of eCOGRA, the e-Commerce and Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance organization, that oversees fair gaming practices in the online gaming market. Any casino that exists online must first meet these basic standards and have a reputable user built around timely payment, history and customer service such as Royal Vegas in order to remain in the market. This must first be understood in order to understand the legal basis upon which these casinos exist, for failing to comply with standards can result in a ban in the market coupled with possible penalties and fines.
Like video games that are developed featuring algorithms that require players to make the correct decisions such as when and how to shoot in combat games in order to move to the next level, casino games also have their own algorithms to determine winners and outcomes. In the gambling world the outcomes are based on certain skills such as poker and what are known as random number generators (RNGs), which are similar to generators you would see in arcades but with the chance to win money.
Since people want to play for money online, casino developers such as Microgaming need to consider the outcomes based on the amount being distributed into the game (i.e. amounts deposited) and the return. Arcade game software considers this aspect as well since there are energy costs that go into running the games, maintenance costs, as well as developers’ overall revenue for actually creating the software. This does not mean developers rig the games but rather that they are not able to give a 100% payout return to everyone. This means that players play by chance and skill, and for some people this turns into something profitable while others it means losses.
What confuses people is the way random number generators work. Software developers do not reveal the exact methods they implement in the same way Google does not reveal how its algorithm works in detail to the public. However, there are tidbits software makers such as Microgaming reveal that outline how they reach payout percentage marks, which are established in relation to each casino’s individual demands. For Royal Vegas’ 97% plus payout mark, lets take a look at what Microgaming says according to various interviews conducted with the company in this manner.
- Payouts depend on overall casino revenue and in some cases per a game. This means that if a casino rakes in $10,000 at least 97% of that needs to be returned to the customer. This is huge in fact, but here is where the casino benefits. Most people actually get ahead in a game and even if they make more money then what they initially deposit they are likely to throw it back into the game and lose. This is the fault of gamblers, and only on certain occasions does this prove wealthy for the player. Casinos therefore can make more money from the earnings it already gave to the player and therefore if that player loses them that is considered extra profit that does not need to be allocated into the payout percentage again since it was already allocated before.
- As mentioned, casinos may allocate payouts based on revenue generated from games. This is up for debate because the premise is built around the idea that a game raking in a larger percentage of money should pay to those players and not others partaking in other casino games at the casino. However, the issue with this is that players switch between games and usage is not limited to a certain area so we think there is clear evidence that amounts generated are up for grabs for everyone despite the game.
- Increased playing both does and does not increase earning opportunities. Simply put, if you are feeding more time and energy into playing then in a way you are contributing to help generating the algorithm’s payout mark, which in turn could spur quicker or high paybacks. But this does not mean a first-time player is at a huge disadvantage, as he or she may find their deposit and playing coincided at just the right time in which the algorithm would pay back. It’s a gamble, but then again these games are based around gambling so are we surprised?
- Device and browser usage is not linked to increased earnings. Regardless if you are playing on an iOS smartphone or tablet or a Windows-based PC, the software only considers the player’s performance in relation to the rest of the casino’s players and revenues generated.
Does being an Aussie put me at a disadvantage?
There is no evidence indicating that casino games give preference to IP addresses based on a certain location. Some casino players disagree with this notion and use VPNs to change their location when switching between games out of hope it will increase their chances of winning but this has yet to be proven clearly. More so, just because a citizen of Australia is playing a casino hub based in another country does not mean the casino has the right to give preferential treatment to locals, as this goes against international regulation and code of ethics in gaming.
Casino games are built for people to win but not everyone wins. These are games that are played for fun and exist because players are willing to pay in. Hopefully they will get something from it in return. Video game makers make money from games, hardware consoles and many other methods that cause people to spend lots of money but do not receive any prospect of a return, so we could argue this is even more unethical. Bottom line is that you should know these premises and adjust your playing accordingly by establishing a budget and timeframe for playing. Online casinos do not cheat people but make sure that you do not cheat yourself.