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Publication numberUS20080207312 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 12/036,586
Publication dateAug 28, 2008
Filing dateFeb 25, 2008
Priority dateFeb 23, 2007
Publication number036586, 12036586, US 2008/0207312 A1, US 2008/207312 A1, US 20080207312 A1, US 20080207312A1, US 2008207312 A1, US 2008207312A1, US-A1-20080207312, US-A1-2008207312, US2008/0207312A1, US2008/207312A1, US20080207312 A1, US20080207312A1, US2008207312 A1, US2008207312A1
InventorsJerald C. Seelig, Lawrence M. Henshaw
Original AssigneeAtlantic City Coin & Slot Service Company, Inc.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Gaming system and gaming device with wager dependent payback
US 20080207312 A1
Abstract
A gaming system is disclosed that comprises at least one gaming device that allows a player to place a wager and play a game. The gaming system allows the payback of the gaming device to be varied dependent on the size of a wager placed by a player. Once the player has placed a wager, an active pay table is determined, for example using a formula having the wager as a variable or by using look-up tables. A random number is then generated and compared to the active pay table to determine the game outcome. The gaming system encourages and rewards placing higher wagers by providing high payback percentages for higher wagers.
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Claims(22)
1. A gaming system comprising:
(A) at least one gaming device configured to allow a player to place a wager and play a game;
(B) at least one memory that stores a wager dependent pay table information;
(C) at least one processor configured to determine an active pay table using a wager placed by a player and the wager dependent pay table information; and
(D) wherein the gaming system is configured to determine a game outcome using the active pay table.
2. The gaming system according to claim 1 wherein the wager dependent pay table information associates a first set of wagers with a first pay table and a second set of wagers with a second pay table.
3. The gaming system according to claim 2 wherein the wager dependent pay table information comprises at least one look-up table.
4. The gaming system according to claim 2 wherein the first pay table has a first payback and the second pay table has a second payback.
5. The gaming system according to claim 4:
(A) wherein the second set of wagers are of higher value than the first set of wagers; and
(B) wherein the second payback is higher than the first payback.
6. The gaming system according to claim 5 wherein the second pay table has a higher number of winning outcomes than the first pay table.
7. The gaming system according to claim 5 wherein the second pay table pays a higher multiple of a wager than the first pay table.
8. The gaming system according to claim 1 wherein the wager dependent pay table information comprises at least one formula comprising a wager as a variable of the at least one formula.
9. A gaming device comprising:
(A) means for allowing a player to place a wager and play a game;
(B) means for determining a pay table dependent on at least one wager; and
(C) means for determining a game outcome using the pay table.
10. The gaming device according to claim 9 wherein the means for determining the pay table comprises means for calculating the pay table.
11. The gaming device according to claim 9 wherein the means for determining the pay table comprises means for selecting the pay table from a plurality of pay tables using the wager.
12. The gaming device according to claim 9 further comprising means storing the plurality of pay tables.
13. The gaming device according to claim 12 wherein the plurality of pay tables each comprise a unique payback.
14. The gaming device according to claim 9 further comprising:
(A) means for generating a game determining event; and
(B) means for comparing the game determining event with the pay table to determine the game outcome.
15. The gaming device according to claim 9 further comprising display means comprising a variable display of payback information.
16. The gaming device according to claim 15 further comprising means for updating said display means to display payback information dependent on a placed wager.
17. A method for gaming comprising:
(A) receiving a wager;
(B) determining an active pay table dependent on the wager;
(C) generating a game determining event; and
(D) comparing the game determining event to the active pay table to determine a game outcome.
18. The method according to claim 17 wherein determining the active pay table comprises selecting a pay table from a plurality of pay tables.
19. The method according to claim 18 further comprising:
(A) determining a size of the wager; and
(B) selecting the pay table dependent on the size of the wager.
20. The method according to claim 19 wherein each of the plurality of pay tables has a unique payback, the method comprising:
(A) selecting the pay table with a high payback for a large wager; and
(B) selecting the pay table with a low payback for a small wager.
21. The method according to claim 17 wherein determining the active pay table comprises calculating a wager dependent pay table using a predetermined formula, wherein at least one variable of the predetermined formula comprises the wager.
22. The method according to claim 21 comprising calculating a base prize using the predetermined formula
Description
CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims priority to U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/891,227, filed Feb. 23, 2007, the contents of which are herein incorporated by reference.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to gaming systems and devices and in particular to gaming systems and devices providing gaming outcomes determined by pay tables.

BACKGROUND

Gaming devices such as slot machines are common in gaming establishments. The mechanism of playing a slot machine is well known. A player places a wager in respect of a single gaming event. In modern slot machines, the single gaming event is typically the generation of a random number that is compared against a pay table to determine if the single gaming event produced a winning outcome. A winning outcome will pay a multiple of the wager with the multiple being dependent on the probability of that winning outcome.

Despite different slot machines having different themes, they generally have a similar look and feel. Therefore, gaming devices will tend to be more successful if they have some point of difference over other gaming machines. One point of difference is the level of player interaction with the gaming machine. However, current gaming machines have very little capacity to allow players to set many of the parameters of play, with the exception of the wager amount.

SUMMARY OF ONE EMBODIMENT OF THE INVENTION Avantages of One or More Embodiments of the Present Invention

The various embodiments of the present invention may, but do not necessarily, achieve one or more of the following advantages:

the ability to vary a pay table once a wager is placed;

provide a variable payback dependent on a wager placed;

provide increased incentive for a player to wager a higher wager amount;

provide greater rewards to a player that wagers a higher wager amount;

provide increased win frequency to a player that wagers a higher wager amount;

provide increased prize multiples to a player that wagers a higher amount; and

provide greater revenues to a gaming operator.

These and other advantages may be realized by reference to the remaining portions of the specification, claims, and abstract.

Brief Description of One or More Embodiments of the Present Invention

In accordance with an embodiment of the disclosure, there is provided a gaming system in which at least one gaming device is configured to allow a player to place a wager and play a game. Wager dependent pay table information is stored in a memory. A processor determines an active pay table using a wager placed by a player and the wager dependent pay table information. The gaming system is configured to determine a game outcome using the active pay table.

In accordance with an embodiment of the disclosure, there is provided a gaming device having means allowing a player to place a wager and play a game. The gaming device has means for determining a pay table dependent on at least one wager and means for determining a game outcome using the pay table.

In accordance with an embodiment of the disclosure, there is provided a method for gaming including receiving a wager and determining an active pay table dependent on the wager. A game determining event is generated and compared to the active pay table to determine a game outcome.

The above description sets forth, rather broadly, a summary of one embodiment of the present invention so that the detailed description that follows may be better understood and contributions of the present invention to the art may be better appreciated. Some of the embodiments of the present invention may not include all of the features or characteristics listed in the above summary. There are, of course, additional features of the invention that will be described below and will form the subject matter of claims. In this respect, before explaining at least one embodiment of the invention in detail, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited in its application to the details of the construction and to the arrangement of the components set forth in the following description or as illustrated in the drawings. The invention is capable of other embodiments and of being practiced and carried out in various ways. Also, it is to be understood that the phraseology and terminology employed herein are for the purpose of description and should not be regarded as limiting.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is substantially a schematic view of one embodiment of the gaming system of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is substantially a view of a gaming machine.

FIG. 3 is substantially a flowchart of a gaming method of one embodiment of the present invention.

DESCRIPTION OF CERTAIN EMBODIMENTS OF THE PRESENT INVENTION

In the following detailed description of the embodiments, reference is made to the accompanying drawings, which form a part of this application. The drawings show, by way of illustration, specific embodiments in which the invention may be practiced. It is to be understood that other embodiments may be utilized and structural changes may be made without departing from the scope of the present invention.

The present invention comprises a gaming system. The gaming system 10 comprises at least one gaming device 12 that is configured to allow players to place wagers and play a game. Multiple gaming devices 12 may be networked within an establishment or within several establishments as is known in the art. An example of a gaming device 12, shown in more detail in FIG. 2, includes a coin slot 11 for receiving wagers such as coins or tokens and a payout slot 13 through which winnings may be paid. The person skilled in the art will readily understand that the gaming device 12 is illustrative only and that many variants may be made. For example, the gaming device 12 may be configured to receive bills, casino tokens, credit cards or many other forms of payment. Similarly, winnings may be paid by tokens, tickets, credit or through other facilities of the gaming establishment.

A game display 15 displays a game outcome. The game display may include mechanical spinning reels, video reels, a poker card display or any other suitable game display apparent to the person skilled in the art. Additional displays 14 may display further game information, such as a progressive jackpot total.

The gaming devices 12 are operatively associated with a server 20, which may include components such as a processor 21, memory 22 and random number generator 23. While the random number generator 23 is shown as a distinct component, a person skilled in the art will readily understand that the random number generator 23 may be embodied within the processor 21. The server 20 may be provided within the vicinity of the gaming devices 12 or may be provided elsewhere in the gaming establishment and communicate with the gaming devices 12 through a communication link (not shown), as is known. In an alternative embodiment, the gaming device 12 may be self-contained such that the functions of the server 20, in particular the memory 22 and the random number generator 23, are provided from within the gaming device 12.

Each of the gaming devices 12 are configured to operate a game program that allows players to place wagers and play games. The server 20 may store game programs and information, for example in memory 22, which can be downloaded to the gaming devices 12 and gaming devices 12 may transmit information to the server 20. A gaming device 12 may offer a plurality of different games. When a player selects one of the games, the selected game may be downloaded from the server 20 along with game related information, such as pay tables which may also be stored in memory 22. Pay tables are used to determine the outcome of each game and they control the odds of winning a game and the amounts paid out. The gaming devices may be in one location, such as a casino, or they may be in different locations.

In one example of a typical gaming machine operation, when a player advances a wager and initiates a game, the random number generator 23 generates a random number, which is then compared to the pay table to determine the gaming outcome. The display is controlled to create a display, such as a combination of reels, that reflects the game outcome.

An example of a pay table is illustrated in Table 1. For example, if the random number generated is 0.5, the game outcome would be no payout. If the random number generated is 0.7, the gaming machine would payout an amount equal to the proposed wager. If the random number generated is 0.96, the gaming machine would payout a multiple of five times the proposed wager.

TABLE 1
Number range Prize multiple
0.001-0.661 No Prize
0.662-0.856 1
0.857-0.956 2
0.957-0.981 5
0.982-0.996 10
0.997-0.999 50
1 100

A pay table is configured to provide a particular payback of the gaming device. Payback is a theoretical amount that a gaming device will pay back to players over a large number of games. Payback may be expressed as a percentage of wagers. For example, a 95% payback theoretically returns 95% of all of the wagers that are placed on a machine over a large number of games. Five percent of all wagers are theoretically retained by the gaming device operator (e.g., a casino). In Table 1, the pay back is configured to be 92%.

In one embodiment of the present invention, the gaming device allows a player to select a denomination from a plurality of denominations. For example, the gaming device may allow a player to select pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters, dollars, a fixed number of dollars, fictitious denominations or denominations of foreign currencies. In another embodiment, of the invention, the denomination is predetermined and the player is not allowed to select this.

The present invention allows players to place different wager amounts. A player may be asked to select a wager from a number of predetermined wager amounts and/or the player may specify any wager amount. For example, the player may be allowed to select from one, five, ten, fifty or one hundred units of the denomination or the player may select some other value using a user input device, such as a key pad or touch screen.

The gaming device and/or the server may store a plurality of pay tables, e.g., in memory 22, that are used to determine the outcome of each game. In one embodiment, a plurality of pay tables are provided for each denomination. Each pay table has a predetermined payback percentage, which may be unique. After the player has selected a wager, the gaming device selects one pay table from the plurality of pay tables. The selection may be based at least in part on the size of the wager placed by the player.

In one embodiment, the gaming device selects the pay table using only the size of the wager. For example, the selection may be determined as based on the criteria of the look-up table depicted in Table 2. If the player wagers $0.50, the gaming device will use Pay Table A which has a payback of 92%. If the player wagers $25.00, the gaming device will use Pay Table C which has a payback of 96%. That is, wagers of higher value are associated with a pay table that has a higher payback percentage.

TABLE 2
Wager amount Pay Table Payback Percentage
$0.01 to $1.00  A 92%
$1.01 to $10.00 B 94%
Above $10.00 C 96%

Many other pay tables and combinations of pay tables may be provided. For example, if the player is only allowed to select from a predetermined set of wagers, then a pay table may be provided for each wager in the set of wagers. In another example, instead of providing a pay table for a range of possible wagers, a separate pay table may be provided for each possible wager within that range. Each pay table may be slightly different from the next pay table to provide a different payback.

In one embodiment, only one pay table is provided. The payback of the pay table is adjusted using a formula in which at least one of the variables is the wager amount. In one embodiment, the formula may be expressed as:


P=XW

In this formula, P is the prize amount, W is the wager amount and X is a predetermined multiple. In one embodiment, P is the base prize amount and higher multiples of the base prize amount may be awarded for less probable game outcomes. The formula provided above is one example only and many other formulas will be apparent to a person skilled in the art. For example, an alternative formula may be expressed as:


P=A+XW,

where A is some constant base amount to which is added a multiple of X times the wager amount W.

A method for playing a game using the gaming system as described above is described with reference to the flowchart 100 of FIG. 3. The game commences at step 101 when a player advances a wager. An active pay table is then determined (step 102) dependent upon the wager. The active pay table may be determined within the gaming device 12, or through the server 20. Once an active pay table has been determined, a game determining event is performed (step 103). For example, a game determining event may comprise using the random number generator to generate a random number. In an alternative embodiment, a game determining outcome may comprise generating a pattern of symbols on a plurality of reels. The game determining event is then compared to the active pay table (step 104) to determine the game outcome.

The game outcome may then be communicated to the player and any winnings allocated (step 105). Winning outcomes may also trigger the playing of bonus or secondary games, as is known in the art, which may also be played with a wager dependent pay table. The wager dependent pay table for a bonus game may be different to a wager dependent pay table used for a primary game.

In one embodiment, the pay back of pay tables may be varied by varying the pay out amounts for randomly generated numbers that produce a winning outcome. Table 3 shows the pay table of Table 1 modified to increase the 1 prize multiple to 1.075, the 2 prize multiple to 2.03, the 5 prize multiple to 5.05 and the 10 prize multiple to 10.1. The pay table of Table 3 has a pay back of 94% and could thus be used for Pay Table B depicted in Table 2.

TABLE 3
Number range Prize multiple
0.001-0.661 No Prize
0.662-0.856 1.075
0.857-0.956 2.03
0.957-0.981 5.05
0.982-0.996 10.1
0.997-0.999 50
1 100

An advantage of this embodiment includes that a player who uses a higher wager has increased excitement by winning higher multiples of their wager when winning outcomes occur.

In one embodiment, the pay back of pay tables may be varied by varying the range of game determining events, e.g., randomly generated numbers that cause a winning outcome. An advantage of this embodiment includes that a player who uses a higher wager is rewarded with a high frequency of winning outcomes. Table 4 shows the pay table of Table 1 modified to provide a greater range of winning numbers for each of one, two, five and ten times prize multiples. The pay table of Table 4 has a pay back of 96% and could thus be used for Pay Table C depicted in Table 2.

TABLE 4
Number range Prize multiple
0.001-0.643 No Prize
0.642-0.848 1
0.849-0.953 2
0.954-0.980 5
0.981-0.996 10
0.997-0.999 50
1 100

In one embodiment, the pay back of the pay tables may be varied by adding additional game winning outcomes. For example, the payback percentage of Table 1 may be increased by adding a 4 prize multiple for a certain range of randomly generated numbers which pays four times the player's wager. Table 5 shows the pay table of Table 1 modified to add a 4 prize multiple for the range of numbers from 0.654 to 0.661. The payback of Table 5 is approximately 95%. Additional prizes need not be cash prizes but can include other prizes such as special bonuses, promotional prizes, merchandise etc.

TABLE 5
Number range Prize multiple
0.001-0.653 No Prize
0.654-0.661 4
0.662-0.856 1
0.857-0.956 2
0.957-0.981 5
0.982-0.996 10
0.997-0.999 50
1 100

A person skilled in the art will readily understand that combinations of these methods for varying the payback of a pay table may be used as well as other methods for varying the pay back of the pay tables.

In another example, in addition to a wager amount, the gaming device uses other criteria to select the payback percentage. These criteria may include other variables such as the player's play rate, average wager, time of day, special promotions etc. In one embodiment, other criteria may be accounted for by the provision of additional factors in the formula provided above, or by the provision of lookup tables. Such embodiments have additional advantages, for example by encouraging players to increase their play rate by providing a higher payback for higher play rates.

A person skilled in the art will readily understand that the above described embodiments may be configured to be performed with many different types of gaming devices and many different types of games. For example, a wager dependent pay table may be used for one or both of a primary or secondary game.

The players are informed of the different payback for different wager amounts, through signs or screen displays and they may adjust their play as desired. With reference again to the gaming machine 12 of FIG. 2, the display 14 may include a section 16 that provides a variable pay back display which is updated once a wager has been placed, for example using the processor 21 or other suitable display controller, to display updated payback information.

Many gaming establishments realize greater gains from players who place larger wagers. Although a game operator may, on average, retain a lower percentage of each higher wager, the total amount retained by the operator may be greater because the total amount wagered is greater. Therefore, a game operator may use the present invention to encourage players to place higher wagers and thereby increase their revenue.

While the gaming device 12 is depicted in the present embodiments as a slot machine, a person skilled in the art will readily understand that many other types of gaming devices may be used.

Although the description above contains many specifications, these should not be construed as limiting the scope of the invention but as merely providing illustrations of some of the embodiments of this invention. Thus, the scope of the invention should be determined by the appended claims and their legal equivalents rather than by the examples given.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US5816915 *May 2, 1997Oct 6, 1998Kadlic; Thomas P.Pick one poker method of play
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US8162742Nov 13, 2008Apr 24, 2012IgtAdjusting payback data based on skill
Classifications
U.S. Classification463/26
International ClassificationA63F9/24
Cooperative ClassificationG07F17/3244, G07F17/323
European ClassificationG07F17/32K, G07F17/32E4
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Mar 12, 2008ASAssignment
Owner name: ATLANTIC CITY COIN & SLOT SERVICE COMPANY, INC.,NE
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:SEELIG, JERALD C.;HENSHAW, LAWRENCE M.;US-ASSIGNMENT DATABASE UPDATED:20100329;REEL/FRAME:20641/662
Effective date: 20080229
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:SEELIG, JERALD C.;HENSHAW, LAWRENCE M.;REEL/FRAME:020641/0662