Slot players often feel that slots do remember you and keep track of what you previously played, lost, or won. This is simply not true.
Random Number Generators (or RNG) were designed to dispel such rumors. And the science is not difficult to grasp; each randomly generated number is linked to any singular outcome that you see on your screen.
Whenever you fall into a losing streak, you might get paranoid and suspect every other thing but yourself as the cause of misfortune. It happens when friends blame controller pads playing video games, and even in politics when presidents lose elections.
In slots, the paranoia might worsen if you were winning at the demo version of the game. But to say that slots remember you and what you have played or won cannot be possible because of one little detail. There are no memory cards in slot machines, both in land-based and online casinos.
Can Slots Remember What You Previously Won?
Slot machines do not remember what you previously played, won, or even lost. Instead of a memory card, slots have a return to player (RTP) which essentially decides what players will get in the long run playing that game.
For slots to remember specifically what you have been playing, some things have to be in place. A camera has to be installed to capture your face, facial recognition software has to be present to recognize you any other time you come, and a memory card should also be present to keep a record of all games played. These simply do not exist and aren't even worth being put in place.
The RTP is calculated using the payouts that players over time have gotten as opposed to what they have wagered. The RTP is measured in percentages and ranges from game to game but is never 100%. The casino operator has a built-in house edge over players in the long run.
Each game's RTP, therefore, lets you know that you cannot escape a losing streak. This is more true playing in the long run. It also describes the fact that on average, the house has an advantage and, as a result, they really do not need to cheat.
But this does not mean that the RTP itself cannot be rigged, right? This is where third-party auditors come in. Every reputable casino has to pass tests from these auditors, whose job is to check that RNG, RTP, and bank reserves are all correct.
Do Online Slots Have Any Memory?
Although it may sound unbelievable, online slots have no memory of games you play. There is no large secret database of all the spins and payouts each player has ever won. Instead, each online slot machine embeds an RTP that provides the casino operator with a holding fee over time (i.e., the house edge).
It is not hard to understand why this is the case even as a novice. This is because online slots are regulated by licensing bodies and third-party auditors. These bodies carry out duties like making sure the outcomes of spins are generated randomly, and those accurate RTP percentages are put out for players to see.
Each outcome that you see on your screen when you hit the spin button is generated randomly. There are a finite number of possible outcomes on the reels of each slot game. These outcomes are interpreted to the computer as numbers so that when you hit the spin button, any of these numbers will be randomly selected. The outcome that this number is tied to is then shown to you on the reels in symbols.
The auditing bodies test the software that generates the outcomes for games. They review the code and algorithm that the RNG runs on to test that it does not have a pattern. And that it is random and unpredictable in generating these outcomes.
Online slots have their RTPs tested as well. The theoretical RTP is tested against the actual RTP that is realized after several wagers. The RTP percentage is calculated by dividing the total money won by the total money wagered over a period of time and multiplying by a hundred. If the actual RTP from testing is close to the theoretical RTP then the casino is good to go.
Slots at a good casino is a game of chance, as the RNG and RTP indicates. Therefore, a winning or a losing streak is perfectly normal and does not mean that slots remember you.
This article was published on November 29, 2020, and last updated on February 18, 2021.