The Lowdown on Progressives
It’s hard to imagine now, but not very long ago, there were no progressive jackpots. They’ve only been around for 30 years – that’s when the technology was finally good enough for slot machines to be networked together. The famous Megabucks slots were the first to hit the market, and they’re still the ones everyone talks about. No wonder: at press time, the progressive jackpot for Megabucks in Nevada is a little over $10.3 million.
So how do these special jackpots work? It depends on what kind of progressive you’re dealing with. Some cover wider areas than others, and it’s not just slot machines where you can strike it super-rich. Video poker and Caribbean stud poker often have progressive jackpots available, too. You might even find them at the blackjack table or the roulette wheel.
From Little Acorns
The general concept behind the progressive jackpot is to take a little bit of the revenue from each spin (or hand) and pool it together into one continuously growing pile – continuous until someone wins the big prize. Then the jackpot is reset at whatever the base amount is, and the pile starts growing again. When the first Megabucks slots were installed in Las Vegas, 6% of the revenues from each spin were set aside for the progressive jackpo cheap handbags t. A typical bad-beat jackpot in poker might see $1 taken out of every pot that’s at least $20 in size.
The larger the player pool, the more quickly progressive jackpots escalate. With slots and video poker, there are three kinds of progressives: stand-alone, in-house, and wide-area. The stand-alone progressives aren’t part of any network; they just involve one machine. In-house progressives are linked within one casino, or one casino brand’s properties. Wide-area progressives have machines from different casinos and casino brands networked together to produce mega-jackpots, like the $10.3 million (and counting) up for grabs on Megabucks.
Once you’re familiar with how progressives work, and which machines offer which prizes, you can wait for situations where the jackpot has grown so large, each spin/hand you play has a positive expected value. It’ll take some research, and you’ll have to keep your ear to the ground, but how often can you walk into a casino and play a game that’s plus-EV?