Has Brian Ever Been Denied a Jackpot Due To Malfunction?

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Piggy Bankin' slot out of service

A recent news item about a player in New Jersey that was denied a jackpot due to a machine malfunction has fueled a new round of questions about the topic. Here’s a great example:

Has Brian ever been denied a jackpot by a casino for “machine malfunction”? Has he ever seen it happen to someone else? What makes the machine malfunction?

Rachel G.

In all the years Brian’s played on the slot floor, he has never been denied a jackpot he won due to a malfunction, and has never witnessed it. The closest we’ve ever come is that Brian had a game crash at the time of a bonus trigger:

YouTube player

Normally, a slot that crashes will reboot and pick right up where it left off. But this particular crash repeated each time upon reboot. In this case, the casino made a cash offer, Brian negotiated, and ultimately was paid out an agreed upon amount.

Our head writer at Flip The Switch had a slot break down during a bonus at another casino. The slot tech on the overnight shift when it happened could not get the machine back up. They paid him out the amount they confirmed was in the machine, and in the morning, when the head slot tech came in, he fixed the machine, the bonus was completed, and he got paid for his bonus.

In both instances, the casino technically went above and beyond, given the standard “Machine Malfunction Voids All Pays and Plays.” But this tends to be a last resort for casinos – they’re not looking to intentionally withhold a jackpot.

But we’ve seen examples where this has happened in the news. One of the more eye-popping was the $43 million jackpot a woman was said to have been denied due to a malfunction (the game’s designed top prize was $6,500). 

Slots are ultimately computers, and computers can occasionally glitch, despite all the rigorous testing that machines and games go through before launch. But it’s rare, and a scenario casinos hope to never encounter. But if it does happen, the rules still dictate the course of action: Machine Malfunctions Void All Pays and Plays.

Have a question? Submit yours here!


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