Behind The Scenes Of Your Favorite Machines

 Behind The Scenes Of Your Favorite Machines

Players usually don’t notice, or even have a chance to see, behind-the-scenes procedures that are important to the house.

One issue is setting up video poker games. Modern machines offer a wide selection of games, and you touch an icon for the one you want to play. If the casino had to set up the pay table for each individual game, it would eat up a lot of time. And time is money.

International Game Technology, which dominates the video poker market, has moved to ease set-up with its All-Star Poker II and All-Star Poker III units. Both come loaded with game options. You touch a tab on the screen to select game families, and then within the families choose specific games. For example, Ultimate X is a game family, and if you chose it, you can then choose among games such as Jacks or Better, Bonus Poker and Double Double Bonus Poker. Same deal if you choose the Triple Play/Five Play/Ten Play Poker family – after selecting the family, you can pick the game.

Put that all together, and there is the potential to offer hundreds of games on the same machine.

Each All-Star II and All-Star III unit enables the operator to select high, medium or low pay tables. Set-up could be as simple as selecting medium as a default, and be done with it. But what if the operator wants a mix, with some games set at high pay tables as a customer attraction? That can be done on a game by game basis.

Such customizing can be time-consuming, and it could take 45 minutes to an hour to set up a machine. But IGT speeds the process by enabling operators to store the information on a USB stick after they’ve set up one machine. Then they can take the USB stick to multiple machines, and quickly set them up to the same pay tables.

As players, we don’t see the process, but it’s a good thing for us it exists. When you see a machine that has 9-6 Double Double Bonus Poker (99.0 percent with expert play) or Not So Ugly Deuces Wild (99.7) even though the rest of the machine is populated by low payers such as 7-5 Jacks or Better (96.2) and 6-5 Bonus Poker (96.9), we can be happy there’s an easy, fast way to customize instead of just defaulting to all low-payers.

Leave a comment