What Makes a Slot Successful?

June 28, 2024 by No Comments

A narrow notch, groove or opening in something: a slot for a coin in a vending machine; a slot in the primaries of a bird that allows air to flow smoothly over the wings. Also: an allotted position in a queue or series, as for boarding a plane or checking into a hotel room.

Casinos and game manufacturers have been trying to understand what makes a slot successful for nearly four decades. It’s a puzzle that has never been solved, and the companies that develop the games are constantly searching for ways to capture players’ attention and keep them playing. One method they have used is research and data collection. The company that specializes in this, ReelMetrics, calls it a quest for “sticky slots.”

The first step is understanding what people like about a particular slot game. This often involves hands-on experience, as developers play the game repeatedly to see what works and what doesn’t. It can also involve scrutinizing the games already in circulation, says Cody Herrick, director of game design at Ainsworth Game Technology.

Another approach is to use popular culture as a guide. Slots based on gripping TV shows or movies tend to attract more attention from gamers than titles that are purely mechanical. Some slots, such as the online Big Bass Splash game, even mimic the plot of a show like Deal or No Deal. Developers have also found success creating immersive games that take place in the wild, such as a fishing trip on a lake, where catches of different sizes trigger bonuses.