My mentor (Bob Dancer, unbeknownst to him) made a comment on one of my articles, that I should put myself in a position to bump up to dollars from quarters when a rare advantage play presents itself. So, when 10x Slot Dollars came around at the Borgata again on May 1, I took his advice. Even though I was going to Las Vegas two days later, the promotion at The Borgata was better than my offers in Vegas and I live 45 minutes from Atlantic City.
The 10x earnings period was from noon until 7pm. I arrived at about 12:10pm (bad time management on my part) and of course, could not get on one of the limited 9/6 Jacks machines. I sat and played a little video roulette, where I could see if someone got up from a Jacks slant top, but after about 15 minutes, I knew that wasn’t going to happen. (As it was, I went to that bank of machines at 7:05pm and every single person that was playing at noon was still there and packing up). I was trying to come up with Plan B and maybe play 8/6 Quick Quads or even try my luck at some slot machines. (No, slot machines are not a good play, but at 10x points, it might be worth taking a shot and if I could recycle some coin in, I could raise my theoretical.)
But first, I walked over to the B-Bar (which is the nicest and only bar in AC where they have 9/6 Jacks and comp your drinks, even at quarters). There were two women sitting and drinking at a broken machine, but also at a working machine. Normally, I wouldn’t have bothered them, but really—sitting at the B Bar, not playing, on a 10x points day is just wrong! I politely asked if I could play the working machine. If I was mindful that they had full drinks, I was given permission. I was sort of leaning to the side and trying to play, but then the machine next to me opened up and I quickly grabbed my stuff to take the seat. Only—a couple came over and said that was their seat. Oh, no you don’t! But they had a seat for me a few machines over and there were two seats next to me for them. 10x points brings in all the regulars. All the bartenders pretty much know everyone who plays at the bar. One bartender was arguing with a young woman who was (again) drinking at a machine and not playing and would not move to the broken machine, no matter how politely she was asked to do so. When the woman finally left, the bartender told me that she knows the woman and that she was just being obstinate for some reason.
So, I settled into my machine and started playing dollars and drinking martinis. Drinking is a no-no for Advantage Players, but I’m only half Advantage. The other half is Degenerate. And I mean, they were making me Lemon Drops with Absolut Citron. I’ve been on a losing streak lately, but I was recycling pretty well. After about 2 hours, I stopped for a restroom break and I was only down $200. Only, when I came back the card reader was broken. Waa! Of course, it’s broken on a 10x slot dollar day. But, a tech was nearby because a guy had just hit a $5 Royal for $20 grand! That’s when I struck up a conversation with the 82 year old guy playing next to me. He looked much younger than his age and made a comment that the $20k Royal was all skill and I replied that if that was the case, then I should have hit it. He’s been playing for years, is self taught, belongs to no groups and supplements his income now in retirement. I was impressed and we chatted for the rest of the evening. (Although he got up from the machine before 7pm!) He asked me if I ever played hunches at video poker. I never do. I play like a computer would, except for the drinking. I believe in the math and I track my results and it’s pretty consistent with long term theoretical return.
I asked permission to take a photo of the $20k RF, but the pictures came out fuzzy, BUT, I noticed the pay table of the game. He hit on Super Double Bonus, which pays MORE than Jacks or Better! It pays back a theoretical 99.69% as opposed to a Jacks payback of 99.54%. The variance is double but if he’s playing perfectly, that extra .15% is nice. Maybe I shouldn’t have been so cocky about my skill level because the guy obviously knew what he was doing. I overheard him tell someone that he was down $9,000 earlier in the day, so the math is the math, no matter what denomination you are playing at. He was down almost a half a $5 RF, which isn’t unusual at all, unfortunately.
I lost $330 total, but earned $166 slot dollars and $36 comp dollars. That’s an extremely low loss for playing dollars, though it’s my third consecutive losing trip at the Borgata this year. But, a few limited weekday room comps have opened up for me. It’s extremely hard to get back in the good graces of the Borgata. They will taketh away the offers very quickly if you burn them. Now to practice Super Double Bonus!