Should "collecting" slots be illegal?

Siohmy

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I've been thinking about this for a little while. The basis of slots are that they are random. The slot effectively has no memory and the theory should hold that any possible outcome is available on any given spin. On a slot which has a collecting element about it, this is not true. When you spin on Kingmaker with all the multipliers at 1x for example clearly most of the potential big wins are not possible on the very first spin. Now how does a slot like this, and many others, meet the legal requirement for RTP?

This brings me onto how RTP is calculated. As we all know RTP is generally calculated be simulation over many millions, perhaps billions, of spins. But on collecting games how is this done? Surely to keep inline with how a slot should behave the simulation should simulate millions of "one time spins". I'd argue this is how it should always be done. After all you should not be relied upon to play unknown amount of spins in order to get to a feature/multiplier amount that satisfies the RTP criteria.

Let's say a slot manufacturer releases a slot which requires potentially many thousand spins to either get an "enhanced" feature or base game "sweet spot", with the shear number of games being released these days how is there any certainty that many will ever stick it out that long? How far will the manufacturers go with this and what is to stop a casino/manufacturer withdrawing the slot long before it has any chance of even remotely resembling the RTP it should be?
 

dunover

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I've been thinking about this for a little while. The basis of slots are that they are random. The slot effectively has no memory and the theory should hold that any possible outcome is available on any given spin. On a slot which has a collecting element about it, this is not true. When you spin on Kingmaker with all the multipliers at 1x for example clearly most of the potential big wins are not possible on the very first spin. Now how does a slot like this, and many others, meet the legal requirement for RTP?

This brings me onto how RTP is calculated. As we all know RTP is generally calculated be simulation over many millions, perhaps billions, of spins. But on collecting games how is this done? Surely to keep inline with how a slot should behave the simulation should simulate millions of "one time spins". I'd argue this is how it should always be done. After all you should not be relied upon to play unknown amount of spins in order to get to a feature/multiplier amount that satisfies the RTP criteria.

Let's say a slot manufacturer releases a slot which requires potentially many thousand spins to either get an "enhanced" feature or base game "sweet spot", with the shear number of games being released these days how is there any certainty that many will ever stick it out that long? How far will the manufacturers go with this and what is to stop a casino/manufacturer withdrawing the slot long before it has any chance of even remotely resembling the RTP it should be?
Slots developers are permitted to use different reel strips for certain features. On Kingmaker, the volatility increases as you build up multipliers and so does the base game performance before you trigger the feature after building up a high multiplier. So even in the short term it's nearly impossible to play it on minimum multiplier where the immediate RTP is temporarily lower. Testing would be done over billions of spins and would include the 'progressive' nature of the base game in the calculation and overall figure. On Kingmaker, you can get 5OAK purples or gems any spin but obviously they pay more as you go, after multipliers are added. Then consider the fact you can trigger the feature when the multiplier is at 65x or just 4 or 5x and this will also produce an average figure over billions of test spins.

I see what you are getting at, that if the testing used billions of spins that were ALL simulated as the first spin after the feature with a reset multiplier, then the figures would look very different. The Kingmaker RTP is pretty much a shadow of how progressive jackpots work, which are also calculated in relation to RTP effect over billions of spins, or else it would be impossible (if the slot stated "3% RTP goes to jackpot contributions") to fix this 3% in single first spins if that's all the testing ever sampled. The 3% is calculated across billions of spins and is taken from the base game which would pay say average 93% instead of the average 96%. So features with an element of a progressive nature like Kingmaker do the same kind of thing only on a far smaller and more frequent scale. So the 'millions of spins' as you state would include a pro-rata amount of first spins, spins on high multipliers or anything in between (base game part of the RTP) and would then include the feature RTP across every feature triggered in the testing whether at 4x multiplier or 70x, but it will average out to the stated feature portion of the RTP in the end.

P.S. Of course, if every player who ever tried Kingmaker decided to just have 50 spins, not get a feature then bin it off forever, the casino rake would be fantastic. But players don't behave like that, otherwise why would so many people chase the gold 'D' on Bonanza for thousands of futile spins? :mad:
 

lewisnadasurf

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Earth
I've been thinking about this for a little while. The basis of slots are that they are random. The slot effectively has no memory and the theory should hold that any possible outcome is available on any given spin. On a slot which has a collecting element about it, this is not true. When you spin on Kingmaker with all the multipliers at 1x for example clearly most of the potential big wins are not possible on the very first spin. Now how does a slot like this, and many others, meet the legal requirement for RTP?

This brings me onto how RTP is calculated. As we all know RTP is generally calculated be simulation over many millions, perhaps billions, of spins. But on collecting games how is this done? Surely to keep inline with how a slot should behave the simulation should simulate millions of "one time spins". I'd argue this is how it should always be done. After all you should not be relied upon to play unknown amount of spins in order to get to a feature/multiplier amount that satisfies the RTP criteria.

Let's say a slot manufacturer releases a slot which requires potentially many thousand spins to either get an "enhanced" feature or base game "sweet spot", with the shear number of games being released these days how is there any certainty that many will ever stick it out that long? How far will the manufacturers go with this and what is to stop a casino/manufacturer withdrawing the slot long before it has any chance of even remotely resembling the RTP it should be?

do you work for the UKGC?

if you don’t enjoy them don’t play them. They’ll quickly produce other slots.

should they ban the costa rewards ? Buy 5 coffees and get a 6th free? It’s the same Principle to keep the customer coming back.

this was meant in a more jovial fashion than my words above portrayed. But I’m too hungover and deep into the typing to press delete.
 

Siohmy

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Joined
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Location
Blighty
Slots developers are permitted to use different reel strips for certain features. On Kingmaker, the volatility increases as you build up multipliers and so does the base game performance before you trigger the feature after building up a high multiplier. So even in the short term it's nearly impossible to play it on minimum multiplier where the immediate RTP is temporarily lower. Testing would be done over billions of spins and would include the 'progressive' nature of the base game in the calculation and overall figure. On Kingmaker, you can get 5OAK purples or gems any spin but obviously they pay more as you go, after multipliers are added. Then consider the fact you can trigger the feature when the multiplier is at 65x or just 4 or 5x and this will also produce an average figure over billions of test spins.

I see what you are getting at, that if the testing used billions of spins that were ALL simulated as the first spin after the feature with a reset multiplier, then the figures would look very different. The Kingmaker RTP is pretty much a shadow of how progressive jackpots work, which are also calculated in relation to RTP effect over billions of spins, or else it would be impossible (if the slot stated "3% RTP goes to jackpot contributions") to fix this 3% in single first spins if that's all the testing ever sampled. The 3% is calculated across billions of spins and is taken from the base game which would pay say average 93% instead of the average 96%. So features with an element of a progressive nature like Kingmaker do the same kind of thing only on a far smaller and more frequent scale. So the 'millions of spins' as you state would include a pro-rata amount of first spins, spins on high multipliers or anything in between (base game part of the RTP) and would then include the feature RTP across every feature triggered in the testing whether at 4x multiplier or 70x, but it will average out to the stated feature portion of the RTP in the end.

P.S. Of course, if every player who ever tried Kingmaker decided to just have 50 spins, not get a feature then bin it off forever, the casino rake would be fantastic. But players don't behave like that, otherwise why would so many people chase the gold 'D' on Bonanza for thousands of futile spins? :mad:

Not sure I quite get the progressive analogy. At the end of the day any one spin can land a progressive jackpot but not any one spin can land, say, 5000x plus on Kingmaker. Should point out I just used Kingmaker as the first example that leapt into my head. Also, whilst you can land any combination of reel wins in one go the multiplier means that the available wins are limited. As for how the game progresses as the multipliers increase, as far as I am aware the base game cannot switch reel sets during the base game so the likelihood of hitting a particular combination should be the same at any muiltiplier.
 

Siohmy

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do you work for the UKGC?

if you don’t enjoy them don’t play them. They’ll quickly produce other slots.

should they ban the costa rewards ? Buy 5 coffees and get a 6th free? It’s the same Principle to keep the customer coming back.

this was meant in a more jovial fashion than my words above portrayed. But I’m too hungover and deep into the typing to press delete.

Ok, my choice of thread title is probably not the best. I'm fairly ambivalent towards collecting games and if I do play them run with the fixed spins per go and I'll collect the enhanced bonus when I naturally do rather than chasing. That said, many out there may not be able to resist ploughing the serious amount of dough into them to get that guaranteed feature albeit with a far from guaranteed good result. I'm more curious as to how these are handled from a testing point of view. At the end of the day, just how far can this go?
 

goatwack

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It's not as if these Ponzi slots guarantee a bumper payout at the end. So what purpose do they serve other than to fleece players to the bone?

It's these types of 'games' that are destroying the industry through sheer GREED. The likes of BTG have created these formulas that promise the world but deliver almost nothing, and players have become so indoctrinated that it excuses these companies' vile practices.

What would happen' with 'traditional' slots is that no matter how rough a drought one was having, sooner rather than later the game'd give back near enough what was put in. With these scratchcard slots they'll have you pouring money into them until the cows come home.

Completely sneaky blueprint designers have latched onto, you can't ban Bonus Buys and claim to be the guardians of Responsible Gambling whilst letting them get away with these 'mechanics' and 'math models'.

Get rid
 

dunover

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Not sure I quite get the progressive analogy. At the end of the day any one spin can land a progressive jackpot but not any one spin can land, say, 5000x plus on Kingmaker. Should point out I just used Kingmaker as the first example that leapt into my head. Also, whilst you can land any combination of reel wins in one go the multiplier means that the available wins are limited. As for how the game progresses as the multipliers increase, as far as I am aware the base game cannot switch reel sets during the base game so the likelihood of hitting a particular combination should be the same at any muiltiplier.
The analogy is that part of your game RTP is being held back to a later time, same as with progressive features. And you can trigger the feature on Kingmaker say on any spin too. And you could hit 5000x on Kingmaker with just the basic 4x feature entry, it's just far, far less likely.
 

snorky510238

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It’s easier to just take the logical approach and say slots workings, are ambiguously contrived to produce results (that’s the most diplomatic way I can put it).

Take games where you can gamble the feature for example. If the outcome of the gamble was random, along with the outcome of lost gambles allegedly not being known (if each spin was independent), plus the fact that it is impossible to know how many players will gamble the feature, how on earth can a game like that hit rtp? Unless there are other things controlling it.

The only alternative answer is that those type of games (along with token collecting). are exempt from testing for that said reason and providers have gone down that road for that very reason.

If they are tested (as I am sure someone, will point out they have to be), then it counts for nothing because theoretically several players could have built up huge multipliers and all, either quit the game (leaving a huge chunk in there), or all hit the bonus the day after testing, thus changing the current rtp drastically.
 

Lemon

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I agree with the OP and would argue that slots with short-term persistence induce players to spend more than they might have wished to, compared with a game which holds nothing over from one game to the next. As far as I'm aware with online slots the 'fill rate' has to remain linear on every spin; you cannot go along a trail until you're 1 step away from the end and then switch to reelstrips that reduce the chance of progressing further, for example. But even so, I don't like slots that behave in this way because they invoke the 'chase' mindset that can lead to loss of control. A lot of them have two or more trails and when one fills up the other is halfway there so it's hard to know when to stop playing, and only if you empty both trails at the same time can you be confident of the stated RTP%.
I am all for creativity in game design but some genres of slot don't sit right with me and 'collecting slots' are one of them.
 

Scott1baird

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For me with kingmaker your rtp doesn't tend to kick in till (and this is just me) you reach 7 or 8 x on purples which is when the game really starts to pay you back your rtp.
 

ChopleyIOM

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I'm not a big fan and agree with the fundamental argument that they distort the nature of what a truly random game should be.

(I mean, can you imagine a roulette wheel whereby you could only place certain bets after you'd already lost a chunk of cash, and up to that point betting on red or black only returned 1.8x stake if you won?)

To my mind the acceptable limit of this mechanic is something like Immortal Romance, whereby you unlock extra bonus features over time, but at a basic level the game can 'do' everything on any single spin from the first spin you make (including triggering the top paying Wild Desire). Yes there are different features on Immortal Romance to unlock but AFAIK the RTP is identical across all of them and they're more a choice of visuals/sound, potential duration and volatility.

Stuff like Lil' Devil and Kingmaker are a clear inducement to gamble further. Saying 'Oh well it remembers your progress for next time' is all well and good, but if you're at 37 out of 40 hearts on Lil' Devil and you bust out, you're going to redeposit at that point, even if you don't particularly want to.

Yes the T-RTP is the same, but a 4% house rake over £10,000 of wagering is better (for the casino) than 4% over £5,000 of wagering. The more players they can get, playing for longer, the more they make - and collect mechanics are a crystal clear inducement to players to do exactly that.

Some of them can be pretty tame in fairness, I'll occasionally grind out Marching Legions as it's a very high RTP slot and there's not much RTP in the bonus round, and I know it'll take about three hours (!) to get the bonus round that can pay poorly at the end of it - so I know what I'm letting myself in for. However even there the design of the 5 'rings' you have to fill is really fucking sneaky.

Overall there's no need for collect mechanics in games, they're there for one reason only, to keep more players playing (and losing!) for longer. On balance I wouldn't be sad to see them regulated against.
 

Jono777

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RE Immortal Romance as a once avid player/fan

Unsure if the RTP varies, I'd err on the side it does slightly but only maybe by 1-2%.

However, 100% sure I've read and been informed by those with 'inside' knowledge that there is a larger difference with player choices when it comes to variance.

AFAIK, the Amber bonus round is much higher variance than the Troy and Michael choices.
 

Reelsoffun

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Not sure I quite get the progressive analogy. At the end of the day any one spin can land a progressive jackpot but not any one spin can land, say, 5000x plus on Kingmaker. Should point out I just used Kingmaker as the first example that leapt into my head. Also, whilst you can land any combination of reel wins in one go the multiplier means that the available wins are limited. As for how the game progresses as the multipliers increase, as far as I am aware the base game cannot switch reel sets during the base game so the likelihood of hitting a particular combination should be the same at any muiltiplier.

Yes any one spin can win a progressive but even they would vary in amount based on if you hit it first spin or on 50,000th eg when all the contributions are added, could be a way bigger prize just as in kingmaker.

As for the base game cannot switch reel sets during base game, why cant they? They can and do in games and is perfectly allowed as its often used as a weighting tool etc.
 

Reelsoffun

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Ok, my choice of thread title is probably not the best. I'm fairly ambivalent towards collecting games and if I do play them run with the fixed spins per go and I'll collect the enhanced bonus when I naturally do rather than chasing. That said, many out there may not be able to resist ploughing the serious amount of dough into them to get that guaranteed feature albeit with a far from guaranteed good result. I'm more curious as to how these are handled from a testing point of view. At the end of the day, just how far can this go?

But the player can see from the start its a collectible game and chooses whether to play or not? Why take yet another choice away from players that cant control there gambling.

I for one nearly always close a game the minute i see a collectible type dynamic with the exception of the likes of royal, mint, extra chilli, lil devil as I just play them as any other game and the extra enhancement is a bonus now and again for loyalty etc
 

Reelsoffun

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I agree with the OP and would argue that slots with short-term persistence induce players to spend more than they might have wished to, compared with a game which holds nothing over from one game to the next. As far as I'm aware with online slots the 'fill rate' has to remain linear on every spin; you cannot go along a trail until you're 1 step away from the end and then switch to reelstrips that reduce the chance of progressing further, for example. But even so, I don't like slots that behave in this way because they invoke the 'chase' mindset that can lead to loss of control. A lot of them have two or more trails and when one fills up the other is halfway there so it's hard to know when to stop playing, and only if you empty both trails at the same time can you be confident of the stated RTP%.
I am all for creativity in game design but some genres of slot don't sit right with me and 'collecting slots' are one of them.


Yes the multi persistence ones like on vikings go berserk etc should be banned due to as you say your rarely faced with a clear exit point unlike games like kingmaker when you can exit after a feature for example.

Or even multi ones like extra chilli can be cleared stake by stake until all the "progress" has been cashed out as such.
 

shadow123

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Some of the Yggdrasil collecting games are pretty good, had nice wins on Dwarf Mine on low stakes.
Like to feed these games with left over bits after a withdrawal.
Cant see any reason why they should be made illegal,if you dont like them dont play,simples
The games that should be banned are the Barcrest Big Bet ones, very close to bonus buy but without a garrantee of actually getiing a feature.Notice the new Rainbow Riches Cluster game has a feature respin buy option ,bit dodgy.
 

Balthazar

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Yes the T-RTP is the same, but a 4% house rake over £10,000 of wagering is better (for the casino) than 4% over £5,000 of wagering. The more players they can get, playing for longer, the more they make - and collect mechanics are a crystal clear inducement to players to do exactly that.
And those who won't play until they collect the 40 hearts on Lil' Devil to complete le "full RTP cycle" are playing the slot at a significantly lower RTP than the one advertised.

I'm certainly not of fan of this concept. BTG's Monopoly is even worse since it never resets so it feels like you are constantly "investing" into future bonuses that you need to collect.

I agree with OP that every single spin should be independent from each other, not "remember" anything and have the exact same RTP. Different volatility like the bonus rounds on IR is a completely different thing and I've no problem with that.
 
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shadow123

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Good job you never played the MG pub slots,each player had their own pot which built up as you played, probably as far away from random as you can get.
Something which does affect the rtp on games are the "must be won by" jackpots in which the chance of winning one is not constant, if its just been won, there is not a hope in hell of it dropping again on the next
spin but the contribution is still taken from the rtp.
 

JordanR

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London
I agree with @Balthazar on Monopoly being the worst example of this collecting. The 'actual' RTP that operators pay out on it is far below the advertised amount and the only players that get the chance at true RTP are those wagering through small fortunes over countless hours of play.

I'd say we should vote with our fingers by not playing these games anymore, but you only really realise how bad it is by playing through a couple hundred spins and by then you're a loser whether you walk away or see it through.
 
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