For example, I can tell you that reports in October 2005 show Trump Taj Mahal had the loosest dollar slots in Atlantic City. They returned an average of 93.9 percent. The tightest dollar slots were at Harrah’s; they paid a stingy 91.5 percent. The absolute tightest slots in Atlantic City were Showboat’s nickel slots. They paid 88.1 percent.
The figures are published monthly and they vary a bit over time, so you shouldn’t judge a casino only by one chart. But I can tell you that Showboat’s nickels were tightest in September and August, too. Read the charts for a few months and it’s easy to see which casinos and machines are consistently looser.
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Define Your Game
Slot charts are an important first step, but they have limitations. They don’t tell you where the best games are in a particular casino, and in some jurisdictions the numbers are published by region rather than property. For example, the charts show that North Las Vegas is looser than the Strip, but they don’t say how Texas Station stacks up against the Flamingo.
Another limitation of the charts is that video poker is included in the numbers. As you know, video poker (played with optimal strategy) has a significantly higher payback, and that tends to skew the figures upward.
So the next step in slots optimal strategy is a personal choice. Where do you want to play? What games do you like? You already know the variables. But how will you apply them? Here are some options to consider.
[More optimal strategies for slots including comprehensive strategies for advanced play can be found in The Smarter Bet Guide to Slots and Video Poker.]
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