Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS20070060252 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/286,789
Publication dateMar 15, 2007
Filing dateNov 23, 2005
Priority dateAug 24, 2005
Publication number11286789, 286789, US 2007/0060252 A1, US 2007/060252 A1, US 20070060252 A1, US 20070060252A1, US 2007060252 A1, US 2007060252A1, US-A1-20070060252, US-A1-2007060252, US2007/0060252A1, US2007/060252A1, US20070060252 A1, US20070060252A1, US2007060252 A1, US2007060252A1
InventorsWilliam Taylor
Original AssigneeTaylor William A
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Gaming device with player selectable settings
US 20070060252 A1
Abstract
A gaming device in which a player may select from several mathematical bias settings of volatility. Each setting results in different volatility, the mathematical parameter of statistical dispersion of results between fewer numbers of lower rewards and larger numbers of greater rewards. The player may receive indicia of the settings of volatility and may alter volatility settings during various stages of play. The player may alter reel strips in order to accomplish volatility changes or other methods of change of the volatility of the game may be provided.
Images(7)
Previous page
Next page
Claims(17)
1. A method of providing game play to a player, the method of providing game play comprising:
a) offering to such player a chance game;
b) the chance game having at least a first outcome having a first probability of occurrence having associated therewith a first award to the player,
c) the chance game having at least a second outcome having a second probability of occurrence having associated therewith a second award to the player,
d) offering to such player the option to alter the volatility of the chance game,
e) accepting from such player a selection of alteration of volatility of the chance game,
f) altering volatility of the chance game according to the selection made by such player, and
g) allowing such player to play the game.
2. The method of providing game play of claim 1, further comprising:
d1) offering to such player indicia of the volatility of such game.
3. The method of providing game play of claim 2, further comprising:
d2) offering to such player indicia of a plurality of choices of volatility of such game.
4. The method of providing game play of claim 1, wherein step f) of altering volatility of the chance game further comprises:
f1) altering the first probability of occurrence.
5. The method of providing game play of claim 1, wherein step f) of altering volatility of the chance game further comprises:
f2) altering the second probability of occurrence.
6. The method of providing game play of claim 1, wherein step f) of altering volatility of the chance game further comprises:
f3) altering the first award.
7. The method of providing game play of claim 1, wherein step f) of altering volatility of the chance game further comprises:
f4) altering the second award.
8. The method of providing game play of claim 1, wherein step f) of altering volatility of the chance game further comprises:
f5) decreasing the first probability while increasing the second probability.
9. The method of providing game play of claim 1, further comprising:
a1) requiring a wager by the player in order to play the game.
10. The method of providing game play of claim 1, further comprising:
h) allowing the player to repeat step g).
11. The method of providing game play of claim 1, further comprising:
i) allowing the player to repeat steps d) through g).
12. The method of providing game play of claim 1, wherein such first outcome further comprises providing appearance of a first number of a first symbol, and further wherein such second outcome further comprises providing appearance of a second number of a second symbol, and further wherein altering volatility of the chance game further comprises reducing the total number the first symbol and increasing the total number of the second symbol.
13. The method of providing game play of claim 1, further comprising the step of:
j) offering the player the opportunity to place a side wager in order to increase probability of the first outcome, wherein the first outcome is a first set of winning combinations.
14. The method of providing game play of claim 1, further comprising the step of:
k) offering the player a side credit if they accept reduced probability of the first outcome, wherein the first outcome is a first set of winning combinations.
15. A method of providing game play to a player, the method of providing game play comprising:
a) offering to such player a chance game;
b) the chance game having at least a first outcome having a first probability of occurrence having associated therewith a first award to the player,
c) the chance game having at least a second outcome having a second probability of occurrence having associated therewith a second award to the player,
d) offering to such player the option to alter the standard deviation of the first and second probabilities of the chance game over a first time frame,
e) accepting from such player a selection of alteration of standard deviation of the first and second probabilities of the chance game over the first time frame,
f) altering standard deviation of the first and second probabilities of the chance game over the first time frame according to the selection made by such player, and
g) allowing such player to play the chance game.
16. An improved game of chance, wherein the improvement comprises:
a first mode of play offering a first volatility,
a second mode of play offering a second volatility,
indicia of the first volatility and second volatility, and
a first control offering the player the option to play the game in either of the first mode of play or the second mode of play.
17. The improved game of chance of claim 16, wherein such first mode of play further comprises providing appearance of a first number of a first symbol and a second number of a second symbol, and such second mode of play further comprises providing appearance of a third number of the first symbol and a fourth number of the second symbol, wherein the first and third numbers are not equal and wherein the second and fourth numbers are not equal.
Description
  • [0001]
    This application claims priority to U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 60/710,929 filed Aug. 24, 2005, which is incorporated by reference in its entirety herein.
  • COPYRIGHT NOTICE
  • [0002]
    A portion of the disclosure of this patent document contains or may contain material that is subject to copyright protection. The copyright owner has no objection to photocopy reproduction of the patent document or the patent disclosure exactly as appearing in the Patent and Trademark Office patent file or records, but otherwise all copyright rights whatsoever are reserved. 37 CFR 1.71(d).
  • FIELD OF THE INVENTION
  • [0003]
    The invention relates to gambling devices generally and in particular to gaming devices such as slot machines.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • [0004]
    Slot machines are a form of gaming device well known in the art. Most spin 3 to 5 reels and reward the player according to a published pay schedule that relates to where the reels stop and which symbols are shown across the display portion of the machine. It is common to offer bonus games, alternative wagering methods and other variations to excite players and generate more play.
  • [0005]
    Slot machine math is critically important to creation of legal and successful games. Gaming device operators such as casinos rely on a house advantage to maintain profitability, and while players gamble to win in the short run, operators win in the long run.
  • [0006]
    The following helps to explain some terms commonly used in slot machine mathematics:
  • [0007]
    Probability (P). Probability is the chance of an event or an outcome usually expressed as a decimal. May also be called odds, often expressed as 1 chance in N trials, or 1 in N.
  • [0008]
    Cycle (C). The cycle is the number of possible events/combinations on a reel-based slot machine. A game with 3 reels containing 22 stopping positions on each has 22*22*22 possible combinations, or a cycle of 10648. This need not refer to an ordered cycle, nor is it necessarily true that any one given combination will occur in 10648 trials of the device. Obviously, different numbers of reels and/or different numbers of stopping positions will usually result in different cycles. A game with 2 reels having 10 positions will have a cycle of 10*10 or 100 possible events, which could possibly be fairly repetitive, while a game with 5 reels each having 200 stopping positions will have 200*200*200*200*200 (32 times 10 to the 10th power) possible events, a number much larger than the actual reasonable life of a machine as measured in spins.
  • [0009]
    Hit Frequency (HF). Hit frequency measures how often winner/s occur usually expressed as a percentage. This is also called a win percentage.
  • [0010]
    Hold Percentage (HP). The portion of bets kept by the operator over the Cycle expressed as a percentage is called the hold percentage HP. This is also called the house advantage.
  • [0011]
    Payback Percentage (PB). One less the Hold Percentage (1-HP) is the payback percentage PB. It is the portion of bets returned to players over the Cycle. This is also called the return or simply the payback.
  • [0012]
    Wager (W). The amount risked or bet by the player. Usually a defined dollar value, but this may be expressed in terms of credits or other things of value.
  • [0013]
    Award (A). The payoff for an outcome. Also called payout. A pay table usually lists all of the possible awards by outcome. Note that while event is usually used to refer to a single combination of reel positions, outcome usually refers to a set of symbols, the set of symbols usually being the basis for an award. (These terms may be used interchangeably herein.) Random Number Generator (RNG). A computer algorithm that generates random or pseudo random numbers used in gaming devices such as slot and poker machines.
  • [0014]
    It is important to understand that these various mathematical expressions are related to each other, for example, PB=1−HP, and of course HP=f(A, W, HF) and so on. However, while these differing quantities are related, they are not identical, and thus an alteration of Hit Frequency is NOT the same as an alteration in Hold Percentage and in fact may not directly lead to an alteration in Hold Percentage.
  • [0015]
    Since players tire of the same old games and play methods, it is desirable to create new gaming devices with greater appeal and new features. New and appealing games stimulate customer play, generate more revenue for game operators and ultimately lead to greater placements of such gaming devices.
  • [0016]
    Players also like having choices. Several methods have been created to give players more choice and control over their gaming experience. More choices for players often result in new games, gaming devices or play methods that generate more play and ultimately more sales.
  • [0017]
    Some games today are multi-denominational. These let the player choose the value of their credits without leaving their machine. When feeling lucky they might play in terms of $1.00 per credit or if they're low on funds or during a cold spell they might play the same game at only $0.01 per credit.
  • [0018]
    Many devices today are multi-games that allow the player to select which of several or many game titles they wish to play at the same gaming device.
  • [0019]
    In U.S. Pat. No. 5,851,147 to Stupak, players can choose which poker pay table they wish to play against. Changes in the pay table usually require a different play strategy for optimal results. A problem with this method is that casual players can't assess the right play strategy for each choice. Playing the wrong strategy reduces the payback and lowers the player return. This patent does not teach a device that specifically allows a player to select a pay table based upon the mathematical concept of volatility.
  • [0020]
    In U.S. Pat. No. 6,068,552 to Walker, players can select from certain game parameters, which are automatically offset by certain parameters, to assure a constant house advantage. There are several problems with this method. First, most players are ill equipped to make knowledgeable changes, which may have complicated and undesirable repercussions. For example, the implications of swapping a bar for a seven symbol on reel 3 may not be understood unless the player is a statistician. Second, Walker is hamstrung by a limited number of selectable parameters. For example, he does not offer a hit frequency parameter. Third, Walker's options for responding to players' selections are severely restricted, because he is fixed upon maintaining a constant house advantage. This patent does not teach that a player may make choices based upon volatility.
  • [0021]
    Since in general more choice leads to greater satisfaction, better entertainment value, more play and ultimately more placements, it is an objective of the present invention to provide gaming patrons quality choices that are easy to understand and straightforward to implement.
  • [0022]
    It is a further objective of the present invention to provide new mathematical variables that a player may manipulate.
  • SUMMARY
  • [0023]
    In one embodiment of a gaming machine subscribing to the present invention a player may select in advance a portion of game volatility. In a typical embodiment a player may choose from 3 payback predispositions (three levels of volatility): normal, more frequent winners of generally lesser value or less frequent winners of generally greater value, specifically presented to the player in these or similar terms.
  • [0024]
    Unlike reference devices, the player makes a choice based upon volatility itself, rather than upon changes to other mathematical parameters that may or may not serve to alter volatility in a way the player may or may not understand.
  • SUMMARY IN REFERENCE TO CLAIMS
  • [0025]
    It is therefore a first aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play to a player, the method of providing game play comprising:
  • [0000]
    a) offering to such player a chance game;
  • [0000]
    b) the chance game having at least a first outcome having a first probability of occurrence having associated therewith a first award to the player,
  • [0000]
    c) the chance game having at least a second outcome having a second probability of occurrence having associated therewith a second award to the player,
  • [0000]
    d) offering to such player the option to alter the volatility of the chance game,
  • [0000]
    e) accepting from such player a selection of alteration of volatility of the chance game,
  • [0000]
    f) altering volatility of the chance game according to the selection made by such player, and
  • [0000]
    g) allowing such player to play the game.
  • [0026]
    It is therefore a second aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play, further comprising:
  • [0000]
    d1) offering to such player indicia of the volatility of such game.
  • [0027]
    It is therefore another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play further comprising:
  • [0000]
    d2) offering to such player indicia of a plurality of choices of volatility of such game.
  • [0028]
    It is therefore another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play, wherein step f) of altering volatility of the chance game further comprises:
  • [0000]
    f1) altering the first probability of occurrence.
  • [0029]
    It is therefore another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play, wherein step f) of altering volatility of the chance game further comprises:
  • [0000]
    f2) altering the second probability of occurrence.
  • [0030]
    It is therefore another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play, wherein step f) of altering volatility of the chance game further comprises:
  • [0000]
    f3) altering the first award.
  • [0031]
    It is therefore another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play, wherein step f) of altering volatility of the chance game further comprises:
  • [0000]
    f4) altering the second award.
  • [0032]
    It is therefore another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play, wherein step f) of altering volatility of the chance game further comprises:
  • [0000]
    f5) decreasing the first probability while increasing the second probability.
  • [0033]
    It is therefore another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play, further comprising:
  • [0000]
    a1) requiring a wager by the player in order to play the game.
  • [0034]
    It is therefore yet another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play, further comprising:
  • [0000]
    h) allowing the player to repeat step g).
  • [0035]
    It is therefore yet another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play, further comprising:
  • [0000]
    i) allowing the player to repeat steps d) through g).
  • [0036]
    It is therefore yet another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play, wherein such first outcome further comprises providing appearance of a first number of a first symbol, and further wherein such second outcome further comprises providing appearance of a second number of a second symbol, and further wherein altering volatility of the chance game further comprises reducing the total number the first symbol and increasing the total number of the second symbol.
  • [0037]
    It is therefore yet another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play further comprising the step of:
  • [0000]
    j) offering the player the opportunity to place a side wager in order to increase probability of the first outcome, wherein the first outcome is a first set of winning combinations.
  • [0038]
    It is therefore yet another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play further comprising the step of:
  • [0000]
    k) offering the player a side credit if they accept reduced probability of the first outcome, wherein the first outcome is a first set of winning combinations.
  • [0039]
    It is therefore yet another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide a method of providing game play to a player, the method of providing game play comprising:
  • [0000]
    a) offering to such player a chance game;
  • [0000]
    b) the chance game having at least a first outcome having a first probability of occurrence having associated therewith a first award to the player,
  • [0000]
    c) the chance game having at least a second outcome having a second probability of occurrence having associated therewith a second award to the player,
  • [0000]
    d) offering to such player the option to alter the standard deviation of the first and second probabilities of the chance game over a first time frame,
  • [0000]
    e) accepting from such player a selection of alteration of standard deviation of the first and second probabilities of the chance game over the first time frame,
  • [0000]
    f) altering standard deviation of the first and second probabilities of the chance game over the first time frame according to the selection made by such player, and
  • [0000]
    g) allowing such player to play the chance game.
  • [0040]
    It is therefore yet another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide an improved game of chance, wherein the improvement comprises:
  • [0041]
    a first mode of play offering a first volatility,
  • [0042]
    a second mode of play offering a second volatility,
  • [0043]
    indicia of the first volatility and second volatility, and
  • [0044]
    a first control offering the player the option to play the game in either of the first mode of play or the second mode of play.
  • [0045]
    It is therefore yet another aspect, objective, advantage and embodiment of the present invention to provide an improved game of chance, wherein the improvement comprises: wherein such first mode of play further comprises providing appearance of a first number of a first symbol and a second number of a second symbol, and such second mode of play further comprises providing appearance of a third number of the first symbol and a fourth number of the second symbol, wherein the first and third numbers are not equal and wherein the second and fourth numbers are not equal.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • [0046]
    FIG. 1 a is a front view of a simplified slot machine of the video type, in which a player might use “soft buttons” to select differing levels of volatility.
  • [0047]
    FIG. 1 b is a front view of a simplified slot machine of the video type, in which a player might use hardware buttons to select differing levels of volatility.
  • [0048]
    FIG. 2 a is a front orthogonal view of a simplified exemplary “mechanical” reel for use in a mechanical slot machine in a “normal volatility” mode of play. In actual practice, mechanical slot machines are now rare and “reel strips” are usually logical data structures within the programming of the machine.
  • [0049]
    FIG. 2 b is a front orthogonal view of a simplified exemplary mechanical reel for use in a mechanical slot machine in a “more frequent, lower reward” mode of play.
  • [0050]
    FIG. 2 c is a front orthogonal view of a simplified exemplary mechanical reel for use in a mechanical slot machine in a “bigger wins, less frequent wins” mode of play.
  • [0051]
    FIG. 3 is a flow chart of a method embodiment of the present invention showing the basic steps of play.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE EMBODIMENTS
  • [0052]
    The various mathematical constants discussed in the background of the invention, HP, PB, HP, A, W, HF, P and the like are related, but are separate mathematical values. Thus for example the house advantage HP is a function of award, hit frequency, wager and so on, which themselves are typically functions of percentage chances of a given outcome, number of events or outcomes in the cycle and so on. Thus HP=f(A, HF, W), and HF=f(P1 . . . PN), C) and so on. (In this case, P1 indicates the probability P of a 1st possible event or outcome, while PN indicates the probability of the Nth possible event or outcome of the cycle.) However, it is important to understand that variations in one characteristic may not necessarily alter another. As an example, the HP may stay the same, despite an increase in A, awards, if there is a corresponding increase in W, the wagers required.
  • [0053]
    Volatility is a term used to describe the variation in player or investor returns, however, it is more than merely the overall payback percentage: it is related to standard deviation in that it is a measure of statistical dispersion of events or outcomes. Volatility is a measure of hit frequency and the size of potential winners or the overall manner in which players are paid back. As a financial measurement, volatility is normally used in relation to investment decisions, thus one definition is as follows: A statistical measure of the tendency of a market or security to rise or fall sharply within a period of time. A more definitive definition may be as follows: Volatility is the standard deviation of the change in value of a financial instrument within a specific time horizon. It is often used to quantify the risk of the instrument over that time period. Volatility is typically expressed in annualized terms, and it may either be an absolute number (100$5$) or a fraction of the initial value (100$5%).
  • [0054]
    Thus a shorthand definition for volatility may be the standard deviation considered within a defined time period. However, while time frames are normally defined in terms of stock trading sessions, years or the like, time frames may be considered in a new way: as a number of trials of a gaming machine.
  • [0055]
    In more particularity, volatility relates to the fact that most gaming device do not return a steady and invariant award based on a wager but rather, sometimes return nothing and other times return a very high reward. Thus, volatility is a feature of slot machines that makes them “fun to play”. Mathematically, it may be said that volatility V is a function of other quantities: V=f(HF, A, W, HP, etc). In greater particularity, V is a function of standard deviation, SD. For purposes of this application, V may be defined to be either V=f(SD) or V=SD/HF. Varying these quantities may alter V but stating that HF, HP, A, W so some other factor is altered does not necessarily prove that V is altered. Contrawise, V may vary even when one other specific factor is held constant, or even when two or more factors remain constant. Thus alterations in V may occur as a result of alterations in other factors, but mere alteration of other factors does not inherently necessitate an alteration in V. Standard deviation may be calculated on the basis of various values: average award per play, the distribution of awards, HF per play and so on. In particular, SD may in a preferred embodiment be calculated on the basis of all possible awards assigned to each and every combination throughout the cycle (designated for this application as AN) from a zero award up to the maximum award the player may receive. Thus SD(AN) will be calculated to include a large number of “zero” awards in this embodiment as they are typically assigned to non-winning symbol combinations. Note that calculations of SD may be based upon events or outcomes.
  • [0056]
    As an example “A”, a machine that returned a fixed amount, perhaps $0.90 of every $1.00 bet each time it was played would have zero standard deviation over ANY time frame, would therefore have zero volatility and would be noticeably boring to play. Volatility is that feature of a game that causes many plays to lose but some plays to win. In an example game “B”, occasionally a player wins $900.00 for a $1.00 bet, but only does so an average of one time out of one thousand plays (returning zero the rest of the time). Example B, considered in terms of a time frame measured in trials of the game, would have a considerably higher standard deviation over that time frame than example “A”. However, the time frame for the measurement is crucial: to a player who played game “B” only a few dozen times, the apparent volatility of the game “B” would probably seem to also be zero, unless the player were fortunate enough to win within the short time frame defined as a few dozen trials. Thus volatility is the feature of explosiveness that makes a gambling game interesting to play. While both examples might return a 90% payback percentage over the game cycle, the latter example “B” exhibits great volatility over a long time frame and would receive play from casino customers, while no sensible individual would ever bother to play the former example “A”.
  • [0057]
    That said, individual tolerance for volatility varies a great deal. While a game that offered a payback once per one thousand plays would in fact receive plays, the typical individual needs more frequent positive reinforcement to enjoy play of a game. Thus, certain gamblers might choose the level of volatility exhibited by the latter example, but most gamblers would prefer a lower level of volatility. An example “C” might be a game which returns a $90 award or payout at a rate of one time per one hundred plays, while an example “D” might be a game which returns an award of $9 one time in ten. In each case the volatility is changed. While the end result of this progression (zero volatility example “A” above) is patently uninteresting, the typical slot player actually tends towards a lower volatility and most slot games reflect this: rewards are small and frequent. (Multi-state lotteries are an example of extreme volatility: odds of winning may be many millions to one against, yet the payoff is extremely large.)
  • [0058]
    As noted, volatility is different from PB, payback percentage: volatility is a factor of payback percentage but it is not identical to it. A payback percentage of 90% (used in all four examples above) nonetheless allows for wildly different levels of volatility. This example is fairly simple and does not cover all aspects of the present invention. As noted, the PB is constant at 0.9 across all four of examples “A” through “D”. In the present invention, PB (and thus HP) may be altered. This may be desirable from the game manufacturer/casino perspective if it is discovered that player #2 requires a higher payback percentage, such as 0.95. In that event, player #2 will want a game (example “E”) which has both PB and volatility (“V”) altered from the play that player #1 may desire. In practice, gambling itself is sufficiently entertaining that players will voluntarily play machines with a lower PB or higher PB (pay back) in order to obtain a higher or perhaps lower level of volatility V, simply becoming bored with machines having a small potential reward or a low HF.
  • [0059]
    In practice, known slot machines offer a fixed level of volatility. As a result, a player seeking a higher or lower level of volatility must move from game to game, spending the considerable amounts of time necessary to locate a game with the types of payoffs that player desires. As an example, player #1 may desire a higher level of volatility and may gravitate to a machine such as machine “B” in the example above, while player #2 may desire a lower level of volatility and may tend to play a machine such as machine “C” or “E” above. Both machines “B” and “C” might have the same payback percentage, yet neither player may like the other player's favored machine, and player #1 may well not like machine “E” having the higher PB constant. However, locating the desired machine may become frustrating and cause a player to leave a casino prior to finding the satisfactory level of volatility.
  • [0060]
    Other machines allow customization of certain features that may or may not alter volatility depending upon alterations chosen by the player without any knowledge of the term volatility or the impact on volatility of the customized choices they make. U.S. Pat. No. 5,851,147 to Stupak, and U.S. Pat. No. 6,068,552 to Walker, are both examples of this. The '147 patent allows players to select a paytable to play against, the '552 patent even allows players to customize a reel strip, wagers or the like. However, neither of these patents specifically mentions alterations to the level of volatility or even standard deviation or hit frequency, for that matter. It seems reasonable that player alterations to these machines may under some conditions or in some embodiments alter V, yet no such teaching is presented, and the examples and wording in these patents make it clear that it is not “necessarily inherent” that changes in V occur. Thus for example a machine according to such a patent that increases HF of one winning combination while decreasing HF of another winning combination MAY be altering V, but it may equally well not alter V.
  • [0061]
    Paybacks on slot machines typically depend on the reels and pay schedule. Slot machines reels are mapped with a number of symbols. The size and composition of the reel maps or reelstrips determine possible outcomes and thereby the probability of event/s or outcome/s. The reelstrips and pay table are the 2 major variables that determine player payback percentages or returns in this example.
  • [0062]
    In one embodiment of a gaming device subscribing to the present invention, a player may select volatility from 3 settings on a slot machine. Effectively this embodiment varies the reelstrips while holding the pay table constant to achieve the desired characteristics of each setting.
  • [0063]
    FIG. 1 a is a front view of a simplified slot machine of the video type according to a first embodiment of the invention, in which a player might use “soft buttons” to select differing levels of volatility while FIG. 1 b is a front view of a second embodiment of the invention in which a player might use hardware buttons to select differing levels of volatility. Machines 100 a, 100 b have video screens 102 a, 102 b, coin acceptors 112 a, 112 b, credit card slots 110 a, 110 b, and a plurality of buttons. Softbuttons 104, 106, 108 may be used in the first embodiment to select different modes of play or settings of volatility. In another embodiment, that of FIG. 1 b, normal buttons 114 b, 116 b, 118 b may be used to select differing levels of volatility. The first setting (used by pushing softbutton 106) is “normal”. This represents the baseline mathematical model as provided by the game designers.
  • [0064]
    The next setting is “win more often” (alternatively, “More Frequent Wins” or another phrase such as “high volatility”, a catchy phrase like “Lotta Wins!” or the like). Selection of button 108 of FIG. 1 a may provide this mode game play. This setting alters play of the game by providing a higher HF at a lower average level of awards. This may be carried out in various ways. In one presently preferred embodiment, the machine in this mode substitutes one higher paying symbol from the reelstrip with a lower paying symbol found more commonly on the other reel strips of the machine. Thus, combinations using that lower paying symbol occur more often, but these more frequent combinations are lower paying combinations. The substituted symbol then suffers reduced odds of occurring, meaning that fewer of the higher paying awards may occur.
  • [0065]
    In other embodiments, there are other methods of altering the results of the trials so as to achieve this outcome: alteration of odds of an individual symbol coming up rather than the number of that symbol, for example, symbols may be weighted internally, the number of reel positions themselves may be changed, blanks may be added, relative frequency may be changed indirectly by not changing a given symbol but by changing the number of others, a symbol may be granted other characteristics such as making it a wildcard and so on. This alteration in volatility may occur by means of known systems such as the symbol substitution discussed: note that symbol substitution or pay table alterations by themselves are not alone the subject matter of this patent, but rather player alteration of volatility, a different mathematical quantity from numbers of symbols on a reel strip, PB, A, W, HB and so on.
  • [0066]
    The third and final setting is “less frequent winners . . . ” (alternatively, Bigger Winners). Starting from the normal setting this selection substitutes one lower paying symbol with a higher paying symbol. Thus, higher paying combinations occur more often at the expense of lower paying combinations.
  • [0067]
    A simplified example shows how this works in practice. TABLE. 1, COLUMN 1 shows the reelstrips for reel 1. There are 10 symbols on this reel. In the normal setting, 4 are plums, 3 are oranges, 2 are bars and 1 is sevens. (Reels 2 through 5 are the same as reel 1 in the normal state regardless of the selected setting.) TABLE. 2 shows the pay table (which remains constant throughout), the number of hits for each winning occurrence, the total cycle of all possible combinations (also constant throughout) and the frequency of each winning occurrence in the normal setting.
    TABLE 1
    REEL STRIPS
    Reel 1 Symbols
    Position 1. NORMAL 2. MORE FREQUENT 3. BIGGER WINS
    1 SEVENS SEVENS SEVENS
    2 PLUMS PLUMS PLUMS
    3 ORANGES ORANGES ORANGES
    4 PLUMS PLUMS PLUMS
    5 BARS BARS BARS
    6 PLUMS PLUMS SEVENS
    7 ORANGES ORANGES ORANGES
    8 BARS PLUMS BARS
    9 ORANGES ORANGES ORANGES
    10 PLUMS PLUMS PLUMS
  • [0068]
    Now, in practice the “normal” setting may be found as COLUMN 1 of TABLE 1. However, the player is offered the option of altering volatility V in this invention.
    GAME SETTING 1: Normal
    3 in a row 4 in a row 5 in a row
    PAYS
    Sevens 20 50 1000
    Bars 10 20 100
    Oranges 5 10 50
    Plums 2 5 20
    3 in a row 4 in a row 5 in a row Total
    HITS
    Sevens 90 9 1 100
    Bars 640 128 32 800
    Oranges 1890 567 243 2700
    Plums 3840 1536 1024 6400
    Sum 6460 2240 1300 10000
    COMBIN
    Cycle 10{circumflex over ( )}5 = 100000
    FREQ
    Sevens 0.090% 0.009% 0.001% 0.100%
    Bars 0.640% 0.128% 0.032% 0.800%
    Oranges 1.890% 0.567% 0.243% 2.700%
    Plums 3.840% 1.536% 1.024% 6.400%
    Sum 6.460% 2.240% 1.300% 10.000%
  • [0069]
    When the player selects COLUMN 2 of TABLE 1, “more frequent” wins, reel position 8 is changed from bars to plums. TABLE-3 will show the results.
    TABLE 3
    GAME SETTING 2: More Frequent Wins
    3 in a row 4 in a row 5 in a row
    PAYS
    Sevens 20 50 1000
    Bars 10 20 100
    Oranges 5 10 50
    Plums 2 5 20
    3 in a row 4 in a row 5 in a row Total
    HITS
    Sevens 90 9 1 100
    Bars 320 64 16 400
    Oranges 1890 567 243 2700
    Plums 4800 1920 1280 8000
    Sum 7100 2560 1540 11200
    COMBIN
    Cycle 10{circumflex over ( )}5 = 100000
    FREQ
    Sevens 0.090% 0.009% 0.001% 0.100%
    Bars 0.320% 0.064% 0.016% 0.400%
    Oranges 1.890% 0.567% 0.243% 2.700%
    Plums 4.800% 1.920% 1.280% 8.000%
    Sum 7.100% 2.560% 1.540% 11.200%
  • [0070]
    As can be seen from TABLE 3 this change from game setting 1 (COLUMN 1 of TABLE 1) increases the overall hit frequency from 10.0% to 11.2%. There are now relatively more plum winning combinations (from 6400 to 8000) and relatively fewer bar winning combinations (from 800 to 400). Overall, the complete cycle of 10,000 plays will offer the player an increased number of wins: 120 more wins. However, the size of the wins may be decreased if plums are a less valuable win than are bars.
  • [0071]
    It may be seen that various effects on the “house percentage”, or “house advantage” HP may occur. If the relative value of mathematical constant “A”, the award of the plum winning combinations versus the A value of the bar winning combinations is low enough, the reduction in volatility may result in embodiments in which the lower volatility increases the HP, the house percentage, thus benefiting the casino. If the value of plum combination awards is somewhat higher, there may exist a level and embodiment at which HP is not altered. At yet a higher ratio of plum awards over bar awards, HP may decrease: the player may overall receive a benefit in such an embodiment.
  • [0072]
    If the player chooses “setting 3”, COLUMN 3 of TABLE 1, bigger winners, reel position 6 is changed from plums to sevens. As can be seen from TABLE 4 this reduces the overall hit frequency from 10.0% to 8.5%. But, there are now relatively more of the higher paying seven winners, which have increased from 100 to 200 hits per cycle. Of course, this has come at the expense of the lower paying plum winners (reduced from 6400 to 4800 per cycle). And as noted previously, the effect on HP may be variable: HP may increase, decrease or stay the same in differing embodiments.
    TABLE 4
    GAME SETTING 3: Bigger Winners
    3 in a row 4 in a row 5 in a row
    PAYS
    Sevens 20 50 1000
    Bars 10 20 100
    Oranges 5 10 50
    Plums 2 5 20
    3 in a row 4 in a row 5 in a row Total
    HITS
    Sevens 180 18 2 200
    Bars 640 128 32 800
    Oranges 1890 567 243 2700
    Plums 2880 1152 768 4800
    Sum 5590 1865 1045 8500
    COMBIN
    Cycle 10{circumflex over ( )}5 = 100000
    FREQ
    Sevens 0.180% 0.018% 0.002% 0.200%
    Bars 0.640% 0.128% 0.032% 0.800%
    Oranges 1.890% 0.567% 0.243% 2.700%
    Plums 2.880% 1.152% 0.768% 4.800%
    Sum 5.590% 1.865% 1.045% 8.500%
  • [0073]
    By changing only 1 symbol on reel 1, significant changes are made to the play characteristics and volatility of the game. (Note that in this simplified example the overall game return or payback percentage PB as well as hit frequency HF do change, an attribute that may or may not be implemented in an actual design.) Thus the player decides whether to play a more volatile game or not in a manner that is mathematically correct, aesthetically pleasing and commercially viable.
  • [0074]
    While programmed reel strips are advantageous in the present invention due to the prevalence of electronic gambling machines, the same device may be arranged in hardware as well. FIG. 2 a is a front orthogonal view of a simplified exemplary “mechanical” reel 200 a for use in a mechanical slot machine in a “normal volatility” mode of play. In actual practice, mechanical slot machines are now rare and “reel strips” are usually logical data structures within the programming of the machine. FIG. 2 b is a front orthogonal view of a simplified exemplary mechanical reel 200 b for use in a mechanical slot machine in a “more frequent, lower reward” mode of play while FIG. 2 c is a front orthogonal view of a simplified exemplary mechanical reel 200 c for use in a mechanical slot machine in a “bigger wins, less frequent wins” mode of play.
  • [0075]
    In FIG. 2 a, reel may have a number of positions such as position 202 a and 202 b. In the “normal” mode of play, position 202 a may be occupied by a lower paying symbol such as a plum while position 202 b may be occupied by a higher paying symbol such as a “7”.
  • [0076]
    When the player elects a “more wins” mode of play in which the average award A actually goes down but the hit frequency HF goes up, reel 200 b of FIG. 2 b may be used instead. In a machine, a reel may be physically substituted into place, one reel may be deactivated and another one activated, symbols on the reel may be altered (the mechanical reels may have electronically or mechanically controlled choices of symbols to display) and so on. In practice, a lower paying symbol such as a plum may replace a higher paying symbol such as “7”. Since other reels of the game feature more plums than “7” symbols, the net result is an increase in the number of winning combinations as the newly added plum may line up with more like symbols, but the average value of A across all possible winning combinations goes down.
  • [0077]
    Should a player elect higher volatility, reel 200 c of FIG. 2 c may be used. In this event, position 204 c retains its symbol but a position 202 c having a lower paying symbol such as a plum may have that symbol removed and a less common but more valuable symbol such as “7” may be added. Volatility is thus increased, and the possibility of a large payout A may be increased, but the overall hit frequency HF may decrease.
  • [0078]
    Note that in the examples described, each reel position is equally weighted, which is the normal practice in the art. The proportion of outcomes are weighted by virtue of the number and type of symbols distributed upon the reels. That is, the unequal distribution or weighting of outcomes occurs only because certain symbols occur more frequently on the reel than other symbols. A different weighting method may be used in which actual reel positions have different likelihoods of occurrence. In any embodiments in which either different reel position symbols or different position weights are used so that different events throughout the cycle are not weighted equally, if, for example, the RNG ranges associated with the reelmaps are skewed it may be necessary or desirable to weight the events (or outcomes) when calculating the value of SD and/or SD(AN) as discussed above.
  • [0079]
    FIG. 3 is a flow chart of a method embodiment of the present invention showing the basic steps of play. It may be seen that the steps of play are generally as follows:
  • [0000]
    a) offering to such player a chance game requiring a wager by the player in order to play the game
  • [0000]
    b) the chance game having at least a first outcome having a first probability of occurrence having associated therewith a first award to the player
  • [0000]
    c) the chance game having at least a second outcome having a second probability of occurrence having associated therewith a second award to the player
  • [0000]
    d) offering to such player the option to alter the volatility of the chance game such as indication of the volatility of the game and/or a plurality of choices of volatility of the such game
  • [0000]
    e) accepting from such player a selection of alteration of volatility of the chance game
  • [0080]
    f) altering volatility of the chance game according to the selection made by such player including but not limited to altering the first probability of occurrence, altering the second probability of occurrence, altering the first award, altering the second award, decreasing the first probability while increasing the second probability and combinations thereof
  • [0000]
    h) allowing the player to repeat some or all of the above steps.
  • [0081]
    It may be seen that in alternative embodiments, other methods of alteration of the volatility of the game may be provided to the player.
  • [0082]
    In embodiments such as the embodiment of FIG. 1, the best mode now contemplated and presently preferred embodiment of the invention, the changes to volatility may be explained and made known to the player. In such embodiments, the softbuttons 104, 106, 108 may have indicia of increasing or decreasing levels of volatility. This is in marked contrast to prior art devices allowing players to alter reel strips, pay tables or other game parameters without necessarily inherently altering volatility. Yet the mathematical constant “volatility” is a crucial psychological differentiation between games.
  • [0083]
    Volatility is a critical aspect of game play today. Formerly, for players to get different payback characteristics meant experimenting with different machines. While payback percentages are often advertised, volatility and hit frequency information is not. Thus, only by playing a machine for a period of time could a player get a feel for what kind of payback experience, hit frequency and hence, volatility, they could expect. Trial and error on slot machines is an expensive way to for players to obtain such information.
  • [0084]
    Manufacturers recognize the importance of volatility. Some games, such as Aristocrat's Agassi, offer the player choices of different numbers of free spins and multiplier values only during an infrequent bonus round. Others like IGT's Hundred or Nothing, as the name implies, take almost the opposite approach paying wins of 100 or nothing at all. These games are examples of fixed volatility games: when parameters cannot be changed, the game is automatically one with fixed volatility. When other parameters are changed, the result may or may not alter volatility, but this change is not necessarily certain to occur. Never before has a choice of volatility been offered in a base game as in this invention.
  • [0085]
    The present device may also be retrofitted to already existing games such as the two previously mentioned. A player may like other characteristics of one game (such as Agassi's visual appeal, but not approve of the volatility of the game. The game manufacturer may add to a popular existing game the functionality of the present invention so as to broaden the appeal of the game, even without changing other aspects of the play of such a game. Similarly, the games of the '147 reference and the '552 patents may be altered by the addition of the present invention: in addition to allowing players to alter pay tables or reel strip entries or the like, such games may offer players the ability to necessarily alter volatility. (Note that the '552 patent, for example, teaches that HP, the house advantage, is to remain constant across all modes of play, an aspect of the '552 patent which teaches away from the flexible house advantage of the present invention. If the present invention were to be added to the device of the '552 patent, it would be necessary to use an embodiment of the present invention which allows the HP to remain constant when the player selects or alters V.)
  • [0086]
    The player of games embodying the present invention may select characteristics of the game over which they formerly held no control. Control allows players a positive feeling about their gambling experience. They may by means of the present invention have direct influence and actual involvement over how their game functions, its play character and the manner in which they are paid back, leading to higher satisfaction and better return business.
  • [0087]
    Some players prefer more playing time for their wager, and so prefer a lot of smaller winners. More frequent small winners generally extend playing time on device, which is a well-known and desirable attribute of gaming devices in the art today. The present invention encourages this behavior by allowing garners to customize the specific mathematical attribute under discussion, V.
  • [0088]
    This invention may be used in virtually any slot machine and any other gaming device that uses a pay table. Poker type machines such as the embodiment of FIG. 1 b may benefit, for example the deck may be varied while holding the pay table constant, or the pay table may be varied while holding the deck constant, or by other means.
  • [0089]
    The present invention is straightforward, simple to understand and relatively inexpensive for a manufacturer to implement. It is mathematically correct, aesthetically pleasing and commercially viable.
  • [0090]
    A large number of alternative embodiments exist to practice the present invention. In one alternative embodiment, hit frequency may be used to alter volatility. In such embodiments volatility, which like standard deviation is a measure of statistical dispersion, is altered by means of hit frequency. Player selections may simply be offered as Fewer Hits <=> Normal <=> More Hits, a result leading to different HP and BP as well.
  • [0091]
    In another alternative embodiment the number of possible player settings of volatility are not 3, but 5. The number of choices may be any agreeable number or infinitely variable.
  • [0092]
    In another embodiment the means of changing volatility entails changing the composition of any reel or reels, and any number of symbols may be changed.
  • [0093]
    In another alternative embodiment, there may be a cost involved to change volatility, as in a side bet or additional bet. Thus, in such embodiments W, the wager, may be directly or indirectly changed. In such embodiments, as an example, the alterations of volatility may alter basic W: a desired increase in volatility may require an increase in the wager W. In other such embodiments, the player may place a “side bet” which increases certain winning combinations values or A to a higher level. In yet other variations, the player may actually receive a “side credit” for reducing winning combinations.
  • [0094]
    In another alternative, the pay table may be changed in conjunction with reelstrip changes. As noted previously, the various mathematical constants discussed, HP, PB, HP, A, W, HF, P and the like are related, but are separate entities. Thus pay tables may be altered (as shown in references) without necessarily altering V, or V may be altered by means of or along with alterations in pay tables.
  • [0095]
    In another alternative embodiments setting selections may be made at any time during play. The player might elect to change volatility between rounds of betting, before, during or after a round of betting, and so on. The player choice may in embodiments be allowed to change frequently or may be fixed for periods of time or spans in terms of number of plays. One example would be a player offered the opportunity to alter V after knowing the winning combination, but at the expense of “locking in” a set number of plays the player must take at the new setting of V before they will be allowed to cash out their winnings. However the best mode now contemplated and presently preferred embodiment allows the player to alter volatility before wagering.
  • [0096]
    In yet another alternative, player selections may be accomplished by means of selecting characters or personas instead of settings. For example, selecting “Granny Greenbacks” may provide the payback nature ascribed to “More Hits”, while “High Roller Harry” may effectively select the predisposition or bias associated with Fewer Hits of Greater Value. Thus the indicia of volatility may be personified by video characters offered by the machine. Video characters may offer different levels of volatility of play, may have differing names, may have differing images displayed on the game machine during play, may have differing sounds or voices produced during play, may alter other game parameters, may represent fictional players playing against the real player under certain game rules, and combinations thereof.
  • [0097]
    In another alternative the overall game return or payback percentage may or may not change in fact or materially between game volatility setting selections. In yet another alternative embodiment, the game may or may not tell players what the actual effects or implications of their selections are. That is, the game may or may not display the fact that the hit frequency has gone up from 10.0% to 11.0% during a switch in volatility mode, and/or that the payback percentage changes from 92.0% to 91.9% or 92.1% or some other value during the same switch of mode.
  • [0098]
    In another alternative volatility adjustments may be achieved by stratifying or otherwise constraining the random number generator, or by any legally and practically acceptable means, so that certain symbol combinations and/or winning events occur more often than others with or without changing the pay table or reelstrips. The RNG range itself may be altered for any symbol/s. If 10 symbols each have 1 place on a reel and the RNG range is 10000, each symbol would normally correspond to 0-999, 1000-1999, and so on. This could be skewed to 0-499, 500-1999, etc., to adjust the relative or absolute frequencies without modifying the reelstrips themselves.
  • [0099]
    Similarly, other game events may be added (or withdrawn) to adjust volatility as desired. These events might include random or mystery pays that are not related to reel events at all. For example, adding a random award of 10 for no reason related to play of the base game may increase the hit frequency and/or volatility, with or without the player's receiving indicia of the change of V or HF.
  • [0100]
    In yet another alternative, the player may decide which symbols are substituted for which while the machine provides indicia of the effect of the change upon volatility, or in which the player alters the level of volatility while watching the corresponding changes to the game which result if the symbols are changed to effect the desired volatility change. The player may even choose the number and composition of reels (number and type of symbols per reel), including the size of the reel/s and the number of stopping positions per reel/s while receiving indicia of the resulting change in volatility, or the player may alter volatility and see the resulting alterations to the reels necessary to effect the desired change in volatility or standard deviation across a time frame. New symbols may be anything including blanks, while some may be deleted entirely, while the machine provides indicia of the effect of the change upon volatility, or in which the player alters the level of volatility while watching the corresponding changes to the game which result if the symbols are changed to effect the desired volatility change. If the resulting game would returns a mathematical payback percentage exceeding pre-determined limits, then the cost to play (ie, the wager, ante, side or additional bet) may be simply adjusted to compensate and ensure a competitive or agreeable return for the operator in a known manner. Alternatively, the pay table may be modified or reduced to achieve any desired level of volatility by similar mechanisms. Similarly, if the resulting game would return a mathematical payback percentage below pre-determined limits, then the cost to play (ie, the wager, ante, side or additional bet) may be decreased to compensate. The pay table may also be modified or increased to achieve any desired return, while the machine provides indicia of the effect of the change upon volatility, or in which the player alters the level of volatility while watching the corresponding changes to the game which result if the symbols are changed to effect the desired volatility change
  • [0101]
    In another alternative, the player choices presented or volatility changes of any kind may be dictated by events within the game itself, including a bonus round or rounds, such as obtaining any certain symbol, symbol combination, event, series or combination of events. For example, up arrow symbols might increase the relative hit frequency and down arrows decrease it for any symbol, combination of symbols, the game overall or any portion thereof.
  • [0102]
    In another family of alternative embodiments the game rules themselves may be changed to accomplish volatility changes. Paylines (required symbol positioning of winners), wild symbols or any winning outcome may be newly defined, redefined or otherwise modified as necessary to achieve the level of volatility desired by the player.
  • [0103]
    In another alternative embodiment the games may be networked and volatility changes shared across multiple machines. Network versions may optionally employ any or all of the above elements in any combination. Network play may be competitive or collaborative. Gaming devices may be standalone machines or function as terminals as in the case of server-based gaming or lottery games.
  • [0104]
    The disclosure is provided to allow practice of the invention by those skilled in the art without undue experimentation, including the best mode presently contemplated and the presently preferred embodiment. There are numerous variations falling within the scope of the present invention. Any subset or combination of the above methods, player selections, means or forms of wagering or paying, finding winners and losers and/or displaying or otherwise presenting outcomes may be used. This invention may be employed with any combination of games or options including, but not limited to, bonuses, random or mystery awards, multipliers, progressives, other games, player skill components, other features, side bets, wagering or play methods. This invention may be employed in whole or in part, or itself as a bonus, add-on or otherwise in conjunction with new or traditional gaming devices or methods. Thus, these and all embodiments described should be viewed as illustrative, rather than limiting. Nothing in this disclosure is to be taken to limit the scope of the invention, which is susceptible to numerous alterations, equivalents and substitutions without departing from the scope and spirit of the invention. The scope of the invention is to be understood from the appended claims.
Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US5841147 *Aug 29, 1997Nov 24, 1998Newport News Shipbuilding And Dry Dock CompanyIntermodal modular spent nuclear fuel transportation system
US6068552 *Mar 31, 1998May 30, 2000Walker Digital, LlcGaming device and method of operation thereof
US20020025846 *Jul 25, 2001Feb 28, 2002Aristocrat Technologies Australia Pty Ltd.Gaming machine with player choice bonus games
US20020163122 *Jun 20, 2002Nov 7, 2002Olaf VancuraMethods and apparatus for a casino game
US20030176215 *Mar 12, 2002Sep 18, 2003Palmer Gregg J.Gaming device having varying risk player selections
US20040242302 *Jun 9, 2004Dec 2, 2004Baerlocher Anthony J.Gaming device having a bonus round with multiple random generation and multiple return/risk scenarios
US20050043092 *Oct 1, 2004Feb 24, 2005Atronic International GmbhGaming machine with selectable features
US20050215311 *May 9, 2005Sep 29, 2005Wms GamingGaming machine having enhanced bonus game play schemes
US20060084496 *Oct 18, 2005Apr 20, 2006Jaffe Joel RWagering game with alterable-math feature
US20100016055 *Jun 14, 2006Jan 21, 2010Englman Allon GGaming Machine Having Player Selectable Volatility
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US8087999Jan 3, 2012IgtGaming system and method of operating a gaming system providing wagering control features for wagering games
US8113935 *Mar 12, 2007Feb 14, 2012IgtSystem and method for presenting payout ranges and audiovisual clips at a gaming device
US8235809 *Aug 7, 2012Konami Gaming, Inc.Gaming machine allowing a player to change the volatility of a game based on an amount of play history
US8251797Aug 28, 2012Brian FinnSlot machine game with symbol personalization
US8262467Oct 1, 2008Sep 11, 2012Wms Gaming Inc.Wagering game system for providing gaming establishment with guaranteed theoretical winning percentage
US8308549Nov 14, 2008Nov 13, 2012IgtGaming system and method for adjusting the average expected payback associated with a play of a wagering game
US8313369Oct 14, 2009Nov 20, 2012Patent Investments & Licensing CompanyOutcome determination method for gaming device
US8342954Jan 1, 2013IgtGaming system and method of operating a gaming system providing wagering control features for wagering games
US8506380Nov 14, 2008Aug 13, 2013IgtGaming system, gaming device, and method for enabling a player to select volatility using game symbols
US8574063 *Mar 30, 2007Nov 5, 2013Cadillac JackPayout systems and methods
US8602865Aug 6, 2007Dec 10, 2013IgtGaming system and method providing a group bonus event for linked gaming devices
US8602866Mar 18, 2009Dec 10, 2013Patent Investment & Licensing CompanyMethod and apparatus for generating a virtual win
US8632388Nov 13, 2008Jan 21, 2014IgtGaming device and method of providing an adjusted paytable for a number of future plays of a game
US8632400Apr 29, 2008Jan 21, 2014Patent Investment & Licensing CompanyGaming device with personality
US8657662Sep 4, 2008Feb 25, 2014Patent Investment & Licensing CompanyGaming device having variable speed of play
US8690668Oct 30, 2012Apr 8, 2014IgtGaming system and method for adjusting the average expected payback associated with a play of a wagering game
US8702490Jul 24, 2009Apr 22, 2014Patent Investment & Licensing CompanyGaming device having multiple game play option
US8734235Dec 17, 2012May 27, 2014IgtGaming system and method of operating a gaming system providing wagering control features for wagering games
US8784190Feb 23, 2012Jul 22, 2014IgtGaming system and method providing optimized incentives to delay expected termination of a gaming session
US8814661Dec 20, 2011Aug 26, 2014IgtGaming machines having normal and hot modes
US8834261Feb 23, 2012Sep 16, 2014IgtGaming system and method providing one or more incentives to delay expected termination of a gaming session
US8876590Jul 30, 2013Nov 4, 2014IgtGaming system, gaming device, and method for enabling a player to select volatility using game symbols
US8888588 *Jan 14, 2014Nov 18, 2014Bally Gaming, Inc.Game rating system for gaming devices
US8944907 *Jun 6, 2012Feb 3, 2015Cadillac Jack, Inc.Electronic gaming device with rearrangeable reels
US8956214Nov 1, 2012Feb 17, 2015Patent Investment & Licensing CompanyOutcome determination method for gaming device
US9039520 *Sep 18, 2013May 26, 2015Cadillac Jack, Inc.Payout systems and methods
US9076307 *Jun 6, 2008Jul 7, 2015Bally Technologies Anz Pty LtdMethods and apparatus for an EGM bonus feature
US9111421 *Mar 21, 2011Aug 18, 2015Bally Gaming, Inc.Wagering game with hot pick bonus
US9142094Nov 25, 2013Sep 22, 2015IgtGaming system and method providing a group bonus event for liked gaming devices
US9165435Feb 24, 2014Oct 20, 2015Patent Investment & Licensing CompanyGaming device having advance game information analyzer
US9177440Aug 4, 2014Nov 3, 2015IgtGaming system and method providing one or more incentives to delay expected termination of a gaming session
US9230409 *Apr 15, 2013Jan 5, 2016Cadillac Jack, Inc.Electronic gaming device with quasi-persistent synchronized reel games
US9299220Oct 15, 2014Mar 29, 2016IgtGaming system, gaming device, and method for enabling a player to select volatility using game symbols
US20070167221 *Mar 12, 2007Jul 19, 2007Walker Jay SSystem and method for presenting payout ranges and audiovisual clips at a gaming device
US20080058075 *Aug 27, 2007Mar 6, 2008Walker Jay SWagering games featuring audiovisual output and indicia related thereto
US20080242398 *Mar 30, 2007Oct 2, 2008Cadillac Jack, Inc.Payout Systems and Methods
US20080268935 *Apr 30, 2008Oct 30, 2008Acres-Fiore, Inc.Gaming device and method utilizing at least two rng outcomes
US20080274783 *Jul 16, 2008Nov 6, 2008Walker Jay SSession play with high volatility bet option
US20090005156 *Jun 6, 2008Jan 1, 2009Aruze Corp.Gaming Machine And Gaming Method Thereof
US20090042644 *Aug 6, 2007Feb 12, 2009IgtGaming system and method providing a group bonus event for linked gaming devices
US20090088253 *Sep 28, 2007Apr 2, 2009IgtGaming system and method of operating a gaming system providing wagering control features for wagering games
US20090117978 *May 29, 2008May 7, 2009Aristocrat Technologies Australia Pty LimitedMethod of gaming, a gaming system and a game controller
US20090124373 *Jul 1, 2008May 14, 2009Acres-Fiore, Inc.Player value determination system
US20090131156 *Nov 11, 2008May 21, 2009Acres-Fiore Inc.Method for configuring gaming devices via a network
US20090239648 *Mar 18, 2009Sep 24, 2009Acres-Fiore PatentsMethod and apparatus for altering gaming device configuration responsive to information related to a player of the gaming device
US20090247284 *Mar 25, 2008Oct 1, 2009Konami Gaming, Inc.Gaming machine changing the volatility of the game
US20090264171 *Oct 22, 2009Acres-Fiore, Inc.Generating a score related to play on gaming devices
US20090275375 *Nov 5, 2009Acres-Fiore, Inc.Multiple outcome display for gaming devices
US20090326356 *Dec 31, 2009Medtronic, Inc.Cardiac signal sensor control
US20100004047 *Jan 7, 2010Acres-Fiore, Inc.Player selectable gaming volatility
US20100041461 *Aug 5, 2009Feb 18, 2010Incredible TechnologiesGambling games with volatility indication and selection
US20100056241 *Oct 6, 2009Mar 4, 2010Acres-Fiore PatentsPoker gaming device having variable speed of play
US20100056248 *Sep 4, 2008Mar 4, 2010Acres-Fiore, Inc.Gaming device having variable speed of play
US20100056249 *Jul 28, 2009Mar 4, 2010Aruze Corp.Gaming machine for varying number of trigger symbols and control method thereof
US20100124969 *Nov 14, 2008May 20, 2010IgtGaming system, gaming device, and method for enabling a player to select volatility using game symbols
US20100124971 *Nov 14, 2008May 20, 2010IgtGaming system and method for adjusting the average expected payback associated with a play of a wagering game
US20100124980 *Nov 17, 2008May 20, 2010Acres-Fiore Patentsmethod for configuring casino operations
US20100240437 *Sep 23, 2010Incredible TechnologiesGaming machine with universe of preselected outcomes with method for determining preselected outcomes
US20110081964 *Apr 7, 2011Acres-Fiore PatentsMethod and system for implementing mystery bonus in place of base game results on gaming machine
US20110086690 *Oct 14, 2009Apr 14, 2011Acres-Fiore PatentsOutcome determination method for gaming device
US20110117990 *May 19, 2011Wilkins Kevan LRapid bonus features using overlaid symbols
US20120034966 *Feb 9, 2012Bally Gaming, Inc.Wagering Game with Hot Pick Bonus
US20120122535 *Jan 19, 2012May 17, 2012Scott SimsMethod of Gaming, A Gaming System and a Game Controller
US20120270632 *Jun 6, 2008Oct 25, 2012Shuffle Master Australasia Pty LimitedMethod and arrangements for displaying an egm bonus feature
US20130273997 *Feb 19, 2013Oct 17, 2013Wms Gaming Inc.Systems, methods and devices for playing wagering games with player-controlled volatility-changing mechanisms
US20130331166 *Jun 6, 2012Dec 12, 2013Cadillac JackElectronic gaming device with rearrangeable reels
US20140024440 *Sep 18, 2013Jan 23, 2014Cadillac JackPayout systems and methods
US20140148241 *Jan 14, 2014May 29, 2014Bally Gaming, Inc.Game rating system for gaming devices
US20140309010 *Apr 15, 2013Oct 16, 2014Cadillac JackElectronic gaming device with quasi-persistent synchronized reel games
US20140349734 *May 28, 2013Nov 27, 2014IgtGaming system and method providing a game having a player-adjustable volatility
WO2009046117A1 *Oct 1, 2008Apr 9, 2009Wms Gaming Inc.Wagering game system for providing gaming establishment with guaranteed theoretical winning percentage
Classifications
U.S. Classification463/16
International ClassificationA63F9/24
Cooperative ClassificationG07F17/3262, G07F17/32
European ClassificationG07F17/32M2, G07F17/32