Slot Candles Light The Way
by Guide Bill Burton
Before entering the casino you should have some sort of game plan. This means you will have an idea which games you want to play and what limits you want to play at. You should know ahead of time how much money you plan to spend gambling. This is just a good money management principle to help insure that you will have enough money to last your visit.
If you play slots or video poker you should know ahead of time which denomination machine you want to play. Whether you play nickels, quarters or dollars your first priority when entering the casino if finding the right denomination machine for you. The casinos spread their machines all over the gaming floor either in carousels or banks.
The carousels are the circular groups of machines. There are usually three or more machines in the group. Some of the larger carousels will have an attendant placed in the middle to help with change. The machines in the carousels are usually the same denomination. It is rare to see a quarter machine in the middle of a dollar carrousel. Banks are the long rows of machines that dominate the casino floors. Usually the rows are back to back which allows the casino to put more machines in a smaller amount space. Its common to see one row of machines for one denomination while the machines in the row backing it in the bank is a different denomination.
When I'm in the casino I like to people watch. I don't know how many times I have seen an unsuspecting player put a coin in the machine only to see it drop right through. They may repeat this two or three times before they realize that they just put a quarter in a dollar machine. In my How To Read A Slot Machine article, I wrote that you should always look at the pay table. If you read the pay table you will usually see the denomination listed on the machine. This can be a little time consuming if you are just trying to identify banks of machines that have the denomination you are looking for. There is an easier way.
Look at the picture of the machine above. The tube with the lights on the top of the machine is called a "Candle." You probably all know that the candle's light goes on when you push the change button, but did you know that the candle will tell you the denomination of the machine? The bottom light is colored. This machine has a yellow light. All quarter machines have yellow lights. These candles are easy to spot because of their location on top of the machines. By knowing the color of the candle for the denomination you are looking for you can spot your machine of choice from across the casino floor. This little bit of knowledge will save you a lot of time. On the next page are pictures of the colored candles for the other denominations.