You Can Win Big at a Casino! Myth or Truth?

A lot of gamblers think you can beat the odds and win with the right strategy.

ByABC News
April 30, 2007, 5:35 PM

May 1, 2007 — -- Gamblers are a superstitious breed. They've created lots of myths about gambling, like there are ways to beat the odds and win -- if you just know the right strategy.

Of course, people do win money. But think about the odds. It costs bundles of money to pay for all the glitzy buildings, spectacular attractions, all those employees and all the fat profits that casinos make. They don't make that money by losing to you.

Slot machines are the favorite game for most casino gamblers and they've inspired many myths. For instance, many players have theories such as one that casinos put their better-paying machines at the entrances or at the end of each row. That's what gamblers at the Borgata casino in Atlantic City said.

One man said, "They like to put them wherever there's high traffic so the people walking by see it and they go, 'Oh, I'm gonna play the slots because everybody's hitting.'"

"The higher-paying machines are closer to the aisles," one woman said. Another believes casinos do it to "draw more people in. I think it's an obvious strategy that they have."

"If that were the case, we wouldn't have anybody playing anywhere but the end aisles," said Larry Mullin, president and chief operating officer of the Borgata.

"You have the same chance of winning whether you're at the back of the casino, the middle of the casino, the north of the casino, the south of the casino, the fact is, you have the same chance of winning anywhere," Mullin said. "We need people winning everywhere in order to have people coming back here."

Other casino experts confirm it. It's a myth that the end of the aisle gives you an advantage. However, one truth is that the more expensive machines like the dollar machines pay out a higher percentage of what you put in than the quarter machines, and the quarter machines pay out more than the nickel machines.

Another myth is that a machine is "hot" or "cold" -- that eventually a machine is due to pay off.

"Sure, if you do play a machine long enough it's going to go through its hot and cold spurts," one woman said, pointing to the machines she and her friends were playing. "Right now these would be on a cold spurt, and we're all still sitting here playing. We're waiting for them to hit."