In the following paragraphs, we bring you the most famous tricks, cheats and deceptions that were used to beat slot machines. They were far from the first or the last, but all the criminals came and were caught and punished. Otherwise, we probably would know about them in the first place.
Slot machines are among the most played gamble games in the world. Some of them also offer by far the highest winnings, except for the lottery, of course. It is no wonder that there have been a number of players in history who have tried to outwit these machines illegally.
There are many tips on how to win at slots. Most of them will not work, and none of them will tell you to cheat. Since casino, both land-based and online casino, are extremely secured environment. Most cheaters will inevitably end up in prison, just like all tricksters in the following examples.
Breaking The Source Code – Hacking Slots
The developers make all the slot machines not only to provide fun and the possibility of winning but also so that they can be monitored. But what happens when a programmer decides to modify the code a little, to his advantage? That’s precisely what Ronald Dale Harris, a programmer at the Nevada Gaming Commission, did.
For years, he cheated on slot machines by illegally modifying the source code of slot machines to pay out large sums of money, after inserting a specific sequence and number of coins. The scam was discovered much later in 1998. It all became known after his accomplice won $ 100,000 in Keno.
As technology has advanced, slot machines have begun to use various security features, such as a light sensor. In a large number of machines, the optical sensor worked separately from the physical one. This cheat work when two objects are thrown into the slot machine at once, one of which is a sharpened coin, and the other correspond in shape and size to a classic coin. Only it is a fake one.
The optical sensor checks the slightly abraded genuine coin and evaluates that it is indeed a coin, so both objects pass. However, the weight of the abraded coin at the second sensor does not match, so the sharpened coin is returned to the player. But, because the fake coin matches the weight, it will pass and add the player’s credit.
Louis “The Coin” Colavecchio used counterfeit hardened steel coins. He was initially prosperous before the casino noticed an excessive amount of these counterfeit coins in the machines. Due to the initial success of his crime, casinos slowly began to phase out the possibility of tossing coins and replacing them with paper notes.
“The Coin” was arrested in 1998 and released in 2006. But he quickly started cheating again, so it was only a matter of months before Louis was caught and imprisoned again.
Coins On A String – Yo-Yo effect
Not that Yo-Yo would fit in a slot machine, but here the fraudsters used the principle of this children’s toy. The coin, hung on a thin string, is simply pulled out of the machine after being inserted and read by a mechanical counter.
Due to technological progress, this method is utterly unusable today. Even so, this is a classic trick that can be seen in movies.
A Light Wand
Tommy Glenn Carmichael is one of the most famous criminals in the history of gambling. Technically skilled Carmichael started as one of the first television repairmen in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Subsequently, he became one of the most inventive slot machine cheaters in history.
His most famous trick was the so-called “light wand”, with which managed to deceive the optical sensor on slot machines. The machine then failed to detect how many coins were thrown into the machine and when to pay out the prize. The device then evaluates even small winnings as a jackpot.