Slot Machines Might Soon Require Some Skill

Slot Machines Might Soon Require Some Skill

It’s possible your next trip to Las Vegas could benefit from your many years of video game playing, Kotaku readers. The Las Vegas Sun reports the Nevada senate committee is currently mulling a bill that would would pave the way for regulators to allow games that reward skill.

Here’s how the publication puts it:

“That vision may be on its way to becoming reality. A state Senate committee is considering a bill that would let gaming regulators allow more skill, as opposed to chance, on the casino floor. The bill suggests, among other things, that regulators outline requirements for games of skill and allow flexibility in payout percentages or a game’s outcome.

If the bill becomes law, it could pave the way for a flood of slot machines with games that play more like Super Mario than Wheel of Fortune.”

A big reason folks are interested in modifying current games of chance is because casinos are having trouble attracting younger demographics who want to do more than slap a single button.

The question, of course, is whether games of skill would allow players to win every single time. The reason casinos work is because it’s much more likely you’re going to lose, but the opportunity to win big is what keeps you coming back. Skill-based games change the equation.

Chris LaPorte has been developing his own gambling games slightly outside the boundaries of current regulation, however, and believes he’s come up with a solution, even if he won’t share it.

“Have them call me, and I’ll show them,” he said. “There is definitely a way — my way — for the casino to be happy, just as much as the customer is happy with their experience.”

In the meantime, I’ll probably stick to being boring and betting on black or red in roulette.

Picture: Yamaguchi先生”


  • When we were in Vietnam we saw a table top game (something like this: with people basically camped by them all day and pumping endless tokens into them. I got a distinct pokie vibe.

    We eventually figured out that that the points converted to tokens, but I wasn’t sure if you could redeem them for cash or something else (there wasn’t shelves full of pointless crap that you exchange those tickets you get out of basketball machines or skeeball for).

    I gave it a try but it was a bit convoluted and seemed designed for you to fail a lot, as opposed to the typical arcade game that makes you fail most of the time to pump you for coins.

  • I have a great idea about how they could do this. You have a game that is somewhat skill based but has elements of chance, like say… Bejeweled. Now, every attempt at hitting a certain score or goal costs some finite resource, let’s call it “Energy”. When you start, you have a certain amount of this “energy” and after it runs out you can pay an amout to buy more “energy” and keep playing. It’ll completely revolutionise the gambling industry!

    There is also a certain amount of irony in saying that young people these days want to do more than slap a button when a lot of popular mobile games are one-button games.

      • Exactly. The most basic Free-To-Play model is pretty much skill-based gambling, especially when you look at the stories where people have spent hundreds to thousands of dollars each month on them.

        • I don’t know… gambling implies that there is a chance, however small, that you’ll win your money back and more. No matter how much time and money you put into a free to play game, it’s not giving any of that money back.

          The free to play model is more like the arcade model – “insert coin to continue”. You put your money in to be able to keep playing, but there’s no way it’s ever giving that money back again no matter how good you are. The difference is that even if you are good at a F2P game, it’s still going to stop and ask you for money, while an arcade game you can play for hours/days on a single coin if you’re good enough.

    • well it’s not unreasonable to think that mobile games may soon replace casinos in the same way that digital distribution is shaking up the music and movie industries

  • Is there a section of this article missing? Who is Chris LaPorte, and why is a quote from him that adds nothing of value to the article whatsoever included?

  • I envision walking into the new and improved ‘skills’ pokies room, only to find it full of Stacker games. Fuck I sank a lot of coin into that game.

  • I’m imagining things like Stacker. A riggable game that can be played repetitively or in short bursts.

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