Table games versus slot machines
By Frank Scoblete
Here is a simple question: Which players have more fun, table game players or slot players? The easy answer would be to say that everyone enjoys casinos in their own way and leave it at that.
Come on, I can’t leave it at that. Obviously something drives slot players to play slots and something drives table-game players to play at the tables. Something also drives them back to these forms of casino playing time and time again. I have to think that second something has something to do with those games making them happy.
So I decided to do an unofficial, unscientific survey of some players to see what they had to say about their favorite games and what draws them back to play them time and again.
From Barry: I enjoy craps because you have a whole bunch of people around rooting for the exact same thing, except for players who are betting against the other players. Those players [known as “don’t” players] I hate. So that is my fun at the game, enjoying rooting for most of us to win and rooting for the “don’t” players to lose. My wife plays the machines but I really have no interest in sitting in front of a slot machine all day long. They’d give me a headache.
From Mary: I really enjoy the alone time at the machines. It is just me and the machine and I like that. At the tables you have to deal with a lot of people and I do that at work every day. When I come to the casino I want to get away from all of that. I actually enjoy just playing by myself. It almost feels as if I am a kid again and I am a long way from those times I can tell you. So it is me and the machine. I like that.
From TN Tom: On slots you get to dream. I used to play tables and you really couldn’t make a killing at any of those games without having to win an amazing number of bets. You just can’t do that in the real world. You can start with a thousand dollars and if you win two or three thousand that is great luck. I couldn’t fantasize when I played those games. But with slots I dream of hitting a big jackpot, maybe a life-changing jackpot. So with each decision it is possible that my whole life can turn around. I can see myself smoking the finest cigars even though I don’t smoke; drinking the most expensive liquor even though I don’t drink. Slot machine wins can turn the whole world upside down. You can’t get that feeling at any of the major table games.
From Betty: Give me a good blackjack game. You get to talk to the people at the table; you get to make decisions on every hand you receive. There is a skill level at blackjack that I love but that skill is played with other people around you and the socializing is a big part of the fun. I can spend hours at the blackjack tables if I have good players there and friendly dealers. It’s a great game. I really look forward to playing it.
From Bill: I have won several big jackpots on the machines. The feeling of winning big is amazing; there is nothing like it. I can sit at a machine for hours and totally lose track of the time. It is like going into another world for me. With all the stress of life, getting away to the casino is actually a relaxing experience for me with a chance to also win some money. It doesn’t get better than that.
From Michael J: I don’t like playing slots. You lose more spins than you win. It isn’t even close. I like a game where it kind of goes back and forth between you and the casino. I win a few; the casino wins a few. I want a decent chance to come home with some money and I think you have a better chance to do that at table games than at the machines.
From Janet: Machines have two big things going for them. The first is that you decide how you want to play. You can play fast or slow or in between. There is no dealer trying to push the speed of the game as they do at the tables. You can play any type of machine you want. You can go for the big wins on the progressive machines or you can try for little wins but more of them on the stand alone machines. You also never have to deal with moody dealers or moody or angry players. Slot machines don’t annoy you or give you any lip.
From Leah: I play both. I like to play pai gow poker but a lot of casinos don’t have that game or maybe they have one table but a lot of the time it is full. There are always slot machines available even on crowded weekends so you can always get a game. It is also easier to move from machine to machine but that is not always possible at the tables when the casino is crowded.
Okay, based on the above opinions the winner of the table games versus slot machines is…a draw.
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Frank Scoblete’s newest books are Slots Conquest: How to Beat the Slot Machines! featuring advantage-play slots; Everything Casino Poker: Get the Edge at Video Poker, Texas Hold’em, Omaha Hi-Lo and Pai Gow Poker! All available from Amazon.com, or at your favorite bookstore, or by mail-order by calling 1-800-944-0406. Join Frank on his web site at www.frankscoblete.com.