Newsletter Signup
Stay informed with the
NEW Casino City Times newsletter!
Recent Articles
Best of John Robison

Gaming Guru

author's picture

Blazing 7s Strategy

14 September 2003

By John Robison

Why are casinos located on or near water?

The only reason some casinos are located on the water is because it's required by the state in which they're located. The "on-the-water" requirement is one way the states control where the casinos are placed.

Best of luck in and out of the casinos,

We live in Oklahoma with all the electronic slot machines. Is there any strategy to help win on these satellite-controlled machines?

I'm not familiar with the specific regulations in Oklahoma, so I don't know exactly how the slots there operate. But slots in just about every state work pretty much the same way.

The results of a spin on a slot machine are chosen at random by a computer program. There is no strategy you can use to win on these machines because the results are random.

That said, there are strategies you can use to have a better time playing the slots. For example, you can stretch your bankroll by playing one coin at a time in straight multipliers.

Another thing you can do is choose machines based on the type of slot-playing experience you desire. If you want a machine that hits frequently, play high hit frequency machines. If you don't mind feeding machines through dry spells, you can play low hit frequency machines, which have fewer, but larger hits.

I have articles on this site about the best number of coins to play in different types of machines and how to recognize low hit frequency machines.

Best of luck in and out of the casinos,

Take it from me, nine times out of ten you lose on the slots. They are a complete ripoff, and the casinos should be ashamed of themselves for ripping off many senior citizen women who play this crap and live on a fixed income. They offer comps, but once they get you in the building all they do is collect money.

It's a complete ripoff. The RNG is a bunch of bullshit also. It's a way out for the casinos to rip the people off more by saying they have no control.

Slots are for suckers, low IQ and mostly women.


Thanks for sharing.

Dear John,

Exactly what information does the insertion of your comp card give the casino? Obviously, it tells them how long you play at one or different machines, and how one "moves" around the casino via the slot machines. But how about winnings, and more important, losses at a slot machine?

If a spouse, in a divorce case, for example, wanted to know how much the other half spent at a casino, is it possible for lawyers to obtain this info via a court order?


Dear John,

Here's what happens when you insert your players card: The card reader sends a message to the computer system running the slot club management software with your account number, the ID number of the machine, and the starting values of various meters. As you play, the reader will send occasional "logical card out" messages to the main system with the current values of the meters. When you remove your card, a "physical card out" message is sent along with the ending values of the meters.

With these messages, the slot club management software can figure out how long you played each machine, how much action you gave, how much you won or lost, and whether you hit any jackpots.

You can request a win/loss statement from the slot club at the end of the year to help you with your taxes.

Casinos typically do not share information about an account with anyone who is not on the account. I suppose they would if a court ordered them to, but I don't know of any instance in which this has happened.

Best of luck in and out of the casinos,

What is the best way to play Blazing 7s for a jackpot?

There's nothing you can do to try to influence the machine into hitting the jackpot.

The best way to play a Blazing 7s is to remember that it is a low hit frequency machine and you may go through long dry spells. Also, it will drain your bankroll if you don't hit your share of sevens combinations.

I recommend having a bankroll large enough to fund 200-300 spins. Anything less and you have too great a chance of running out of money before getting a decent hit.

Best of luck in and out of the casinos,

Hi John,

On a progressive slot machine (example Wheel of Fortune), does the type of machine have higher/lower hitting odds as another? For example, I am playing a 5X machine and there is a Double Diamond to the left of me and a Triple Diamond to the right. Will that Double Diamond hit more often than the 5X machine or will they both hit the same?

What kind of % fluctuations can there be on a progressive? I know they say that the percentages are lower than if you played a straight Double Diamond, 5X, etc.?


Dear Nancy,

As a general rule, the higher the value of a multiplying wild symbol, the lower the hit frequency of the machine. So, a Double Diamond usually hits more frequently than a Triple Diamond, which hits more frequently than a 5X Pay.

Standalone progressives usually pay back about the same percentage as other machines of the same denomination in the casino. When they're part of a link though, they usually pay back a little less to cover the costs of running the link. Wide-area progressives pay back the least because the company running the link also gets a cut of each machine's win.

Best of luck in and out of the casinos,

Send your slot and video poker questions to John Robison, Slot Expert, at

John Robison
John Robison is an expert on slot machines and how to play them. John is a slot and video poker columnist and has written for many of gaming’s leading publications. He holds a master's degree in computer science from the prestigious Stevens Institute of Technology.

You may hear John give his slot and video poker tips live on The Good Times Show, hosted by Rudi Schiffer and Mike Schiffer, which is broadcast from Memphis on KXIQ 1180AM Friday afternoon from from 2PM to 5PM Central Time. John is on the show from 4:30 to 5. You can listen to archives of the show on the web anytime.

Books by John Robison:

The Slot Expert's Guide to Playing Slots