Regular readers of Flip The Switch by now know there’s a lot of things players do that have no impact on their payouts. So a player naturally asks:
If the machines are based on timing, why do players change their bet amount. I see players bet 1 cent/$5, 5 cent/$5, 10 cent/$5. If you’re going to bet $5.00 wouldn’t you be better off leaving the denom at 10 cents?Everett
Players do a lot of things for a lot of reasons, but we presume they do it because they’re hoping to get a better outcome. We’d call it “changing the timing,” but it’s a neutral step as you don’t ultimately know if it’s going to help or hurt the cause because you don’t know what spins you would have had if you left everything alone.
But we say it’s neutral because it’s not going to harm a player earlier, any more than slapping that button constantly in a Lightning Link bonus despite it not doing anything either. Ultimately players have a lot of superstitions.
Our position is it’s good to know what’s real and what’s not, but ultimately if it ultimately doesn’t harm a player into making more bets than they’re comfortable or playing bigger than they can afford, it’s not a big deal.
As far as the long term expected payback of a machine, you are correct that higher denominations are, pun intended a better bet. Casinos traditionally set higher denominations at higher long term paybacks.
While a single session (or set of sessions) could go well or poorly, play often enough and you’ll slowly converge on that expected payback over time. And playing at higher denominations means in the long run you’ll get more bang for your buck.
So yes, we do recommend doing so if given the choice of similar bets at different denominations, and presuming it works within your budget.
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