RNG Casino Truths: Are Random Number Generators Impossible to Outsmart?

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After attending too many tech conferences in Las Vegas over the years, I have conditioned myself never to spend more than $100 per trip on a bit of flutter, hoping my random windfall will drop one day. I never break this self-imposed limit because I fear losing it all on a work trip and then spending the rest of my days living in a storm drain and becoming just another hard luck story.

Whatever personal rules you abide by, the reality is winning big on the turn of a card, the spin of a wheel, or the roll of a dice often has less to do with lady luck and more with random number generator (RNG) software.

Despite the many casino myths, rituals, and secret tricks shared in online forums, your fate is purely random.

But we have your back if you have ever wondered how RNG casino games generate random numbers and results or the role of RNGs in jackpot slots and video poker games in land-based slots.

Key Takeaways

  • Random Number Generators (RNGs) ensure fairness and unpredictability in digital casino games.
  • RNGs are either True Random (TRNGs) or Pseudorandom (PRNGs), ensuring unbiased outcomes.
  • Casino PRNGs generate numbers continuously, ensuring each game element is random.
  • RNGs are designed to be unpredictable, making it impossible to develop winning strategies.
  • Independent organizations rigorously test RNGs to guarantee fair and random outcomes.
  • Chasing losses due to the gambler’s fallacy can lead to significant financial problems.

What Is a Random Number Generator (RNG)?

A random number generator (RNG) is designed to produce a sequence of numbers without predictable patterns. RNGs play a crucial role in ensuring that the outcome of every casino game is entirely random and not influenced by anything else.

RNGs typically come in two different flavors. The first is true random number generators (TRNGs), which rely on unpredictable physical phenomena. The ball blowers used in keno and bingo, as well as roulette wheels and craps dice, are examples of TRNGs still employed in the casino world today.

There are also pseudorandom number generators (PRNGs), which use algorithms and initial seed values to generate sequences. In slot machines, PRNGs are often used to determine the symbols appearing on the reels after each spin.

Players seeking a fair and unpredictable gaming experience can rely on the advanced technology of an RNG online casino that independent auditors regularly audit to ensure every game is genuinely random.

What Is a Random Number Generator (RNG)?

How Casinos Use RNGs

Casinos leverage PRNGs to infuse randomness into their digital games, ensuring an unpredictable gaming experience without live dealers. These PRNG systems operate continuously, generating sequences of numbers that are instantaneously translated into various game elements.

In online slots, RNGs determine the symbols that land on the reels; in roulette, they select the numbered slots where the ball settles. Card games rely on RNGs to shuffle and deal with hands, while virtual bingo and dice games use them to generate numbers.

The outcomes produced by these RNGs are random, based on seed values—often derived from the system clock—processed through complex algorithms to ensure high accuracy and fairness.

This technology guarantees that every game round is unique and unbiased, mirroring the unpredictability found in traditional casino environments.

How to Beat Random Number Generators

Unfortunately, outsmarting or beating an RNG in a casino game is a myth. If anyone tells you differently, it usually means they are making money selling a get-rich-quick scheme and telling you their ‘secret’ rather than using it themselves.

RNG systems employ complex algorithms and seed values, often derived from high-precision timing sources, to generate outcomes that cannot be predicted or influenced.

To beat an RNG, you would need access to the proprietary software and the ability to manipulate the underlying algorithm—an endeavor that is practically impossible given the stringent security measures and protections in place by game developers and regulatory bodies.

The attraction of RNG casino games lies in their inherent randomness, which means that winning or losing is purely a matter of chance. This randomness defines games of chance, where outcomes cannot be anticipated or controlled.

When played online, even skill-based games like poker or blackjack, which famously involve strategic decisions, are subject to the unpredictability of RNGs. Every card dealt or number generated is a random event that ensures that pattern recognition or strategic planning cannot change the game’s unpredictability.

These are just a few reasons why so-called casino hacks sold online are nothing more than digital snake oil. Many people need to accept that the thrill of the game comes from its unpredictability rather than from the illusion of control.

Are Casino RNGs Fair?

Fairness in RNGs is paramount for maintaining trust in digital gaming environments, particularly online casinos. Reputable casinos engage independent third-party organizations such as eCOGRA, Gaming Labs International (GLI), and iTech Labs to test their RNG systems rigorously.

The tests evaluate the statistical randomness, non-repeatability, and unpredictability of the RNG outputs through sophisticated statistical methods, including the ‘diehard’ and ‘Chi-square’ tests. The process involves compiling source code, examining generated number sequences, and performing scaled output sampling.

Big-name casinos will not want to be caught failing an independent audit and risk losing their gambling license.

By adhering to these stringent standards, casinos can assure players that their RNGs produce random outcomes free from manipulation and foster a transparent and fair gaming experience.

Certified fair gaming sites prominently display their certification seals, signaling to players that the integrity of their games has been independently verified and maintained.

However, always be wary of lesser-known casinos that pop up online that need to follow these standards.

Pitfalls to Avoid While Playing RNG Casino Games

1. Don’t Chase Losses

One critical pitfall to avoid while playing RNG casino games is the tendency to chase losses. Many misbelieve that if an event happens more frequently than usual during a given period, it will happen less frequently in the future, or vice versa.

Gamblers believe that, logically, they are “due” for a win and will continue to play to recoup their losses.

However, RNG software dictates that every spin on an RNG slot machine or deal is independent of previous outcomes, and the likelihood of winning does not increase with each loss.

This misconception often leads to significant financial losses as players confuse chance with logic and continue to bet more money in a futile attempt to recover their losses.

2. Don’t Believe in Hot & Cold Streaks

Another common pitfall is the belief in hot and cold streaks. This bias leads gamblers to think that some machines or games go through phases of being “hot” (more likely to pay out) or “cold” (less likely to pay out).

In reality, RNGs are designed to produce random outcomes, making it impossible to predict when a game will pay out.

Unable to accept that everything is random, many gamblers overestimate their knowledge and skills. But no amount of strategy or skill can influence inherently random outcomes.

The logical side of every gambler’s brain knows all these pitfalls, but they will still fall victim to the gambler’s fallacy.

But they are arguably manipulated along the way. For example, casinos remove windows and clocks to distort your sense of time and ply you with free alcohol to diminish your self-control.

Although RNG games are based on chance, gamblers must always set strict limits on time and money spent. It’s also advisable to avoid the influence of free alcohol to ensure that you remain in control.

The Bottom Line

Every casino is designed to ensure it takes in more money than it pays out to ensure the house always wins. Contrary to gambling folklore, winning big at a casino is less about luck or skill, and your fate is more likely to be determined by sophisticated RNG software and the subtle manipulation of your senses.

While the allure of winning might tempt players to look for patterns or strategies to beat the system, the inherent randomness of RNGs means that each play is a separate, unpredictable event.

Embracing randomness might lead to more wins by avoiding the cycle of chasing losses.

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Neil C. Hughes
Senior Technology Writer
Neil C. Hughes
Senior Technology Writer

Neil is a freelance tech journalist with 20 years of experience in IT. He’s the host of the popular Tech Talks Daily Podcast, picking up a LinkedIn Top Voice for his influential insights in tech. Apart from Techopedia, his work can be found on INC, TNW, TechHQ, and Cybernews. Neil's favorite things in life range from wandering the tech conference show floors from Arizona to Armenia to enjoying a 5-day digital detox at Glastonbury Festival and supporting Derby County.  He believes technology works best when it brings people together.