Gaming and Gaming Machines can be pretty ambiguous, and pokies in particular are all pretty much alike. Big shiny boxes with lights, video screens and buttons. Inside there’s not much to see. Just some computer chips that have been programmed to spit out random numbers and whiz-bang graphics and sounds. Did you expect to see some big impressive reels inside? Sorry, the reels aren’t real. They’re just graphics, like in a video game.
Contrary to belief, there’s no pattern or skill to gaming machines or ‘pokies’. It all comes down to chance, a bit like a lottery draw happening over and over again. What makes it this way is the random number generator that’s continually spitting out numbers. Much like a waterfall of numbers that never stops. You press the play button and five numbers are instantaneously plucked from the “waterfall”. This way, nobody, not the manufacturer, the venue, or you can predict what these numbers will be.
Those big impressive spinning reels are just decoration. There to make it seem fun. Imagine if the machine simply showed you the numbers instead of the reels spinning. Would you be as attracted to play then?
And those times where it looks like you’ve almost pulled off a jackpot. Sorry, there’s no such thing as a near miss. A miss is a miss. But it’s these exciting and so-called “near misses” and all the little wins that keep you stuck in your seat, playing for the jackpot.
In this case, it’s important to remember, that the moment you press that button, the game’s over. You just don’t know the outcome yet. Lots of people play the pokies without a problem. But, if you’re going to play then it’s important to know how pokies work and what to expect…
Firstly think of the pokies as just another type of entertainment. And the money you put in? That’s what you pay for it; it’s your ticket to the show. Decide what you’re going to spend before you start, and then stick to it.
Gambling can be addictive, especially with the excitement and entertainment that is involved with pokies in particular. This is where it’s important to know the signs of those who may struggle to stick their rules and budgets. Responsible Service of Gaming helps to identify the risks involved with not know your Myths from your Facts about gaming machines, and how to identify if you or someone you know may be suffering from a problem.