One of the repeating questions we’ve received since Flip The Switch launched is around the understanding of progressives. Here’s an example of a question we received:
How do I know on slots when the progressives are close to going out?Orin
On a traditional progressive, the answer is: You don’t. They will continue to grow in many cases, and some will hit a cap. Capped, or growing, progressives don’t have any specific point they have to hit – they just have specific odds of hitting, and over time they will hit.
This can lead some progressives to grow for an unusually long time; near home we had an Ultimate Fire Link bank of machines with a Mega that had grown from a starting point of $10,000 to $57,000 and counting, and still had not been won by anyone.
There is an exception to this rule though, and that is the concept of Must Hit By progressives. These work in a very different way and are designed differently. The general idea is they start from a certain point, and must be won by a certain point.
A great example of these in action is the Rocket Rollup progressives on games like Brian Christopher’s Pop N’ Pays More. They reset at certain numbers, and must be awarded by a certain point. The closer they are to their “must hit by” point, the more likely they are to go off, simply because there’s less space between their current point and their top end.
The way Must Hit By progressives are designed can differ by manufacturer, but a common scenario is that when it resets, a random number is selected in the range, and when the progressive grows to that point, that’s the point when it is awarded. Generally the progressive grows as bets are made, but on occasion they can be designed to grow as wins are achieved.
How can you tell if a progressive is a Must Hit By? Well, because the rules of a slot must be front and center, and because Must Hit Bys are an attraction point for slot makers, it usually says so right next to those numbers. They’ll usually tell you what their highest point can be.
Must Hit Bys, like other progressives, can be easier or harder to hit. The Rocket Rollup progressives on Gaming Arts games are designed to be achieved more often, while the Ainsworth ones can be challenging, but also more rewarding as a result of that difficulty.
So, like other machine progressives for the best opportunities, checking where the Must Hit Bys are relative to other machines can help make it easier to decide what to play. After all, why not play the one that has a better chance of taking one home?