This question comes up a lot. I don’t know where people hear about slot machine jammers – maybe they were featured in a popular gambling movie, or maybe people are just collectively imagining them, like a group fever dream.
A slot machine jammer is any device that can supposedly “jam” the inner workings of a slot. Lots of designs for these slot jammers have been suggested, tested, rumored, and blown way out of proportion over the years. The intent of using a slot machine jammer is criminal – draining a slot of its money, triggering an unearned jackpot, or in some other way getting free cash without placing a bet.
Do slot machine jammers exist? Do these gadgets work? I’m going to answer these questions and discuss the concept of slot machine jammers in further detail in this post. Hopefully, we can put this dangerous rumor to bed once and for all.
What Are Slot Machine Jammers?
These days, you’ll most often hear about people using EMPs to jam slot games. EMPs are electromagnetic pulses, short bursts of electromagnetic energy that are said to disrupt the computers at the heart of modern slot games.
It’s hard to talk about these things without a little bit of ridicule, and I’m not going to give them any validation by linking to them or posting their images. Google the phrase “slot machine jammer” and flip through the Google Image results. If what you’re seeing looks like steampunk cosplay junk, you’re not alone.
More about Electromagnetic Pulses
There’s one kind of electromagnetic pulse that we’re all very familiar with, one that we have to deal with in our daily lives – lightning. Good old lightning produces a strong EMP.
That’s reason enough to be scared of carrying around what equates to a lightning-creator in your pocket – imagine a high voltage level EMP inducing a spark at the wrong time. Fire would be among the least of your concerns.
EMPs can certainly corrupt data and interfere with computers – provided those computers were built before shielding that helps resist against such pulses became common over the past couple of decades.
No modern computer will react to EMPs in the way that slot machine jammers presuppose. At worst, you’ll shut a system down, not trigger a magical winning result.
What do Slot Machine Jammers Look Like?
These days, a device sold as a slot machine jammer is a plastic box about the size of a pack of cigarettes. You’ll usually see an antenna – the more outlandish the better – and a few circuit boards and other gizmos poking out.
These aren’t commercial-grade products for the most part. They look to be cobbled together from Radio Shack castoffs and old cell phones and pagers – think lazy prop for an Anime convention costume, not flagship tech from the Apple Store.
How Much do Slot Machine Jammers Cost?
It’s hard to give a solid price, since the market is decidedly gray. It’s even difficult to give an average price, since the numbers are all over the place.
I saw homemade EMP jammers on Wish for $100-$300, and links on Pinterest shops to devices in an even wider range, from $40 up to thousands of dollars.
If I had to give someone a number, I guess I’d say somewhere around $200. Which is, of course, ridiculous, because these things aren’t going to do anything but get you arrested. Put it this way – how much would you pay for a box that, if turned on, would basically guarantee you a night in jail?
What do Slot Machine Jammers Do?
As far as I can tell, the best-case scenario for a modern slot jammer would be to completely disable a slot game. The screen would show a malfunction, you’d be able to get your cash out, but that’s about it. You’d have to go sit at a new game, one with a cold seat.
No modern casino really hosts games that don’t run on solid-state drives. Since those don’t depend on magnetic memory, they’re not going to be all that affected by an electromagnetic pulse.
Some of these slot machine jammers on sale online look like they light up, make some sounds, and maybe even buzz in your hand a little bit. That’s pretty cool and could be a lot of fun for a Men in Black cosplay or something, but I doubt it will help you beat a slot machine or somehow steal money from it. I also doubt it’s worth a couple hundred bucks.
Three Possible Outcomes from Using a Slot Machine Jammer
I thought about this for a few days, but I could only come up with three possible outcomes related to using one of these slot machine jammer gadgets:
Outcome #1: A Miraculous Instant Win for a Huge Jackpot
Somehow, you’ve stumbled across a working EMP generator. You spent $200 or whatever and waited and waited and finally it arrived. You place the device, about the size of a deck of playing cards, into your pocket. You walked up to a slot, pressed a button on the hidden gadget, and BAM, you instantly won the top progressive prize.
Uh oh, wait. Casino employees flooded the area. Security footage was reviewed. The employees started in with the questions: “Wait, why didn’t you put in a bet?” “What’s that in your pocket?” Why are you running away?” It didn’t end well.
That’s because cheating under the constant surveillance of a casino is not just obvious, it’s stupid to do it in the name of winning a massive prize, which brings even more scrutiny. Modern casinos are really good at catching criminals like you, and that’s a lesson you’ve just learned.
Outcome #2: The Slot Machine is Fried
Somehow, you’ve stumbled across a working EMP generator. You spent your money and all that and got to the slot machine, pressed the button, and BAM, the slot machine was instantly fried. The screen went dark, a light started flashing, and after a few minutes, an employee came over to deal with the problem.
You didn’t win anything. You broke the machine. You realized it was possible that you’d get caught. You crept away in shame, $200 poorer, with a useless slot machine-frying box in your pocket. Congratulations, I guess?
Outcome #3: Nothing Happens at All
Okay, the scenario here is exactly the same, except instead of frying the slot, you pressed the button, and nothing happened at all.
That meant that you got to play out the rest of whatever change you stuffed into the game with the knowledge that you got suckered into a $200 EMP generating box that doesn’t do anything at all in terms of helping you win. That’s because, once again, modern games aren’t going to be affected by the products of these supposedly-EMP generating slot jammer boxes.
I can understand people being curious about a slot machine jammer.
It’s scarily easy to get yourself into a line of thinking that justifies using something like a jammer to beat slot machines. It goes something like this: “Considering the amount of money I’ve spent playing slots over the years, it almost seems like the casino owes me a few extra bucks. And, if all I’m doing is using technology that’s readily available on the Internet, am I really cheating?”
Of course, all of that is garbage. Common sense says that buying a toy that makes you win free money is wrong, and casinos don’t allow this kind of stuff on their property anyway. You’re breaking their rules and you’re also breaking all kinds of federal and likely state laws all at once.
Since slot machine jammers don’t do what they say they can do, and because they put you in danger of getting locked up or at best beat up in a back alley or something, I can’t at all recommend anyone seriously go after one of these gadgets in hopes of winning more on the slots.
Besides, who wants to carry a lightning bolt generator in their pocket like that? It’s an insane idea that, at the end of the day, won’t work the way people say it will.