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Impact of structural characteristics of electronic gaming machines (EGMs) (2014)

About the study

The project by Schottler Consulting identified structural characteristics of Electronic Gaming Machines (EGMs) within Australia and examined how different structural characteristics affected gambling behaviour (including particularly how EGM structural characteristics affect problem gamblers).

The research findings suggest that free spins are highly coveted by EGM players and that problem gamblers were more excited by win multipliers during free spins than non-problem gamblers. Winning a 'feature' (i.e., most popularly a role playing of a character; impression of a game of skill; and funny characters for problem gamblers) during a free spin was also exciting for players. Impression of skill features may contribute to the perception that the outcome of a game can be influenced.

Winning something was considered better and more exciting than winning nothing. Players are highly driven to play most or all available EGM lines. Problem gamblers are more likely to think that that have to play all lines to avoid 'missing wins' than non-problem gamblers. Gamble features in EGM are infrequently used by players.

Players' cognitive processes are highly geared towards seeing near miss events during EGM play. Problem gamblers are more pre-disposed to seeing 'near miss' events than non-problem gamblers.

Players reported confusions around the considerably variable credit values offered for common cards symbols in EGMs. Players also identified mistaken identity of the $1 EGMs thinking they were 1 cent EGMs and difficulty locating the 'collect' buttons for cashing out.

This research is useful in that it provides information on the possible effects of a wide range of EGM structural characteristics on EGM player cognitions and behaviours.

This study was funded by Gambling Research Australia.

Read the report​.​

How to cite this report

Schottler Consulting 2015, Impact of structural characteristics of electronic gaming machines (EGMs). Gambling Research Australia. Melbourne.

Main list of gambling research reports he​re.