RNG - Casino Random Number Generator
Random number generators a.k.a. RNGs are algorithms that decide the result of spins on video slot titles, virtual table games, online bingo cards, or instant win scratch cards. As there is no dealer or croupier when you play these virtual online casino games, the RNG is the best solution to deliver 100% natural and random results.
In this guide we will explore exactly how they work, how safe RNGs are, whether it is possible to cheat them, and the advantages to playing at online casinos that use RNGs!
How Does an RNG Work?
To understand how RNGs work, the best approach is to explain how they interact with some of the most popular online casino games, such as slots and table games! However, before we do that, let us build a picture of how the ‘random’ comes into play!
Random Results: Imagine a wheel of fortune spinning. On that wheel are multiple segments and each one represents a result. However, you cannot see the result until the wheel stops. When you press the ‘stop’ button, the wheel stops and reveals a result. Now RNGs are effectively strings of algorithmic code that holds every result a casino game can produce. What’s more is those results are constantly shuffling through 1,000s of combinations per millisecond!
Video Slot RNGs: Now imagine that each segment on the wheel holds every possible reel combination of an online video slot, which is exactly what RNGs hold. Now you have a completely random system to select results, and all the online casino developers did was to place this random selection process into RNGs. When you hit the spin button on a slot, you are effectively stopping the RNG on one of the reel symbol combinations held within the RNG’s code.
Did you know? When you press spin on a video slot, the RNG randomly stops on a reel combination immediately before the reels have spun. This means that the reels only spin for entertainment value factor! What fun would a slot be without spinning reels, correct?
Blackjack RNGs: Some people will tell you a table game RNG is less complex than a slot, but actually they both work in exactly the same way. Let us clarify using Blackjack as an example. When you press ‘deal’ on a virtual Blackjack table, the RNG stops and delivers your cards, and the dealer’s cards. It then continues shuffling. Next, when you press ‘hit’, ‘split’, or ‘double down’, the RNG will stop on a card, deliver that card to the table, and continue to shuffle. As a result, your actions determine when the RNG stops to deliver a random card wherever the shuffle is!
How can we know RNGs are safe?
The best way you can know an RNG is safe is by playing at an online casino that holds a license or one that hosts games from reputable software providers that hold a license and/or is verified by an online gambling authority.
Algorithm Testing: Online gambling licensing authorities make sure that the casino or the software provider has had each of its casino games tested by an algorithm testing company. iTech Labs is one company used globally and GLI (Gaming Laboratories International).
All the top online casino game developers and the world’s most reputable online casino licensing authorities use one of these algorithm testing companies to verify the game delivers truly random, safe, and fair results. It is also worth noting that many software developers like Microgaming, NetEnt, and Play’n Go voluntarily submit any newly released game’s RNG to a testing company to verify the algorithm!
Payout Percentage Reports: Authorities like eCOGRA, the MGA, and UKGC all require that online casinos produce a payout percentage report for each game. If a game shows a consistent 80% payout ratio, yet its RTP (Return to Player) is 96%, then there is obviously something fishy going on! Even more interestingly, some casinos will publish these reports publicly so you can see them for yourself.
Is it possible to cheat and RNG?
Early conceptions of RNGs did have their issues with hackers getting into the code enabling them to see the results. However, this mostly affected online poker players on multiplayer tables. Today, even if a hacker could break into the code, it is so complex with shuffles that pass-through thousands of combinations per millisecond, a hacker would find it hard to gain an advantage.
As for the casinos hacking RNGs, it is not possible. This is because games are delivered to the casino from the software provider’s network, which holds the key to RNGs. Therefore, the casino would need access to the developer’s system, which will not happen. Software developer networks are protected by sophisticated firewalls + 128-bit financial grade encryption. As such, if you play at a licensed casino or if the casino has no license but has games from reputable game development brands, the RNG is safe and fair.
What are the advantages of RNGs for players?
Rather than the casino selecting results according to the game’s RTP or house edge, every result is made random by an RNG. Each spin, dice rolls, cards dealt, or scratch is an individual instance. Neither you nor the casino can manipulate the results to gain an advantage, which means you get to play casino games with the same randomness a land-based casino offers! Consequently, there is no room for cheating, and you get honest results and honest gameplay!