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Slot Machine Dictionary

Bonus
A special feature of the particular game theme, which is activated when certain symbols appear in a winning combination. In the bonus, the player is presented with several items on a screen from which to choose. As the player chooses items, a number of credits is revealed and awarded. Some bonuses use a mechanical device, such as a spinning wheel, that works in conjunction with the bonus to display the amount won.

Candle
A light on top of the slot machine. It flashes to alert the operator that change is needed, hand pay is requested or a potential problem with the machine.

Carousel
A grouping of slot machines, usually in a circle or oval formation.

Coin hopper
The container where the coins that are immediately available for payouts are held. The hopper is a mechanical device that rotates coins into the coin tray when a player collects credits/coins (by pressing a "Cash Out" button). When a certain preset coin capacity is reached, a coin diverter automatically redirects, or "drops", excess coin into a "drop bucket" or "drop box".

Credit meter
The visual L.E.D. display of the amount of money or credits on the machine.

Drop bucket or drop box
The container located in a slot machine's base where excess coins are diverted from the hopper. Typically, a drop bucket is used for low denomination slot machines and a drop box is used for high denomination slot machines. A drop box contains a hinged lid with one or more locks whereas a drop bucket does not contain a lid. The contents of drop buckets and drop boxes are collected and counted by the casino on a scheduled basis.

EGM
Short for "Electronic Gaming Machine".

Hand pay
A payout made by a slot attendant or cage, rather than the slot machine. A hand pay occurs when the amount of the payout exceeds the maximum amount that was preset by the slot machine's operator. Usually, the maximum amount is set at the level where the operator must begin to deduct taxes. A hand pay could also be necessary as a result of a short pay.

Hopper fill slip
A document used to record the replenishments of the coin in the coin hopper after it becomes depleted as a result of making payouts to players. The slip indicates the amount of coin placed into the hoppers, as well as the signatures of the employees involved in the transaction, the slot machine number and the location and the date.

Low Level or Slant Top
Slot machines that include a stool so you can sit and play. Stand Up or Upright slot machines are played while standing.

Optimal play
A payback percentage based on a gambler using the optimal strategy in a skill-based slot machine game.

Payline
A straight or zig-zagged line that crosses through one symbol on each reel, along which a winning combination is evaluated. Classic spinning reel machines usually have up to nine paylines, while video slot machines may have as many as one hundred.

Rollup
The process of dramatizing a win by playing sounds while the meters count up to the amount that has been won.

Short pay
A partial payout made by a slot machine, which is less than the amount due to the player. This occurs if the coin hopper has been depleted as a result of making earlier payouts to players. The remaining amount due to the player is either paid as a hand pay or an attendant will come and re-fill the machine.

Tilt
In the old mechanical days, slot machines had tilt switches. While modern machines no longer have tilt switches, any kind of mechanical failure (door switch in the wrong state, reel motor failure, etc) is still called a "tilt".

Theoretical Hold Worksheet
A document provided by the manufacturer for all slot machines, which indicates the theoretical percentage that the slot machine should hold based on adequate levels of coin-in. The worksheet also indicates the reel strip settings, number of coins that may be played, the payout schedule, the number of reels and other information descriptive of the particular type of slot machine.

Weight count
An American term, referring to the dollar amount of coins or tokens removed from a slot machine's drop bucket or drop box and counted by the casino's hard count team through the use of a weigh scale.

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