Questions About the RNG and Slot Machine ‘Timing’

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Today we have two initially seemingly unrelated questions, but in fact the answers relate to each other. Let’s start with one that’s more functional:

Does the random number generator generate numbers all the time, even when sitting idle… or does it stop when the game sits idle?

Wendy P.

The Random Number Generator is always at work, generating hundreds or even thousands of fresh numbers a second, regardless of whether the game is in use or not. This ensures when that button is ultimately pressed, all is working as designed.

The purpose of the speed of the RNG comes in part out of the Nevada regulations that establish a minimum and how the RNG works. With Nevada often taking the lead on regulations, it sets the blueprint that then often governs machines elsewhere. So that’s the why – the regulations call for it.

Simple enough answer, and one that leads us to our second question today:

If I leave a machine, and someone else plays it and wins, would I have won if I stayed on it?


Because of the answer above, the odds of you having won that same hit or jackpot are exceedingly small. You would have had to hit the button at the exact same microsecond to be able to catch the same outcome that player did.

Of course, we’re human, so knowing that doesn’t make it any easier when you just concluded a frustrating session and then someone else sits down and starts winning. We know some players purposely move away from a machine in those scenarios so they can’t be witness to it if it happens.

But since slots don’t work on cycles, we’re happy to report it wasn’t a win you left behind. This is just one of those things that will get us on occasion emotionally, regardless of whether it ultimately would have worked out for us or not.

Also hopefully a simple enough answer! And we thank you both for your question.

Have a question? Submit yours here!

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