The Random Number Generator – how does it work?

Sometimes as slot players, we tend to think that we know too much. And, unfortunately in the process we forget about the basic rules, intervening factors, and brain behind the machine. One of the most neglected and misunderstood parts in slot machines is the RGN, which stands for the Random Number Generator. As one of the fundamental and key part in slot machines, it’s quite important to talk about it in depth and truly understand it’s functioning and how it affects the results in slot machines.


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The RNG or Random Number Generator is an autonomous technology used to randomly generate numbers. Random numbers which are later fed into the main (computer) system responsible for displaying various symbols on the slot machine reels. As you may have understood by now, the RNG plays a major role in the outcome of each and every one of your spins. The provided combination of numbers determines whether you have a winning spin or the opposite.

Is the RNG fair and reliable?

The Random Number Generator is developed by third party software companies that operate independently of casino sites. Software providers such as Novoline, Netent, Microgaming, Play’n go, IGT hold international licenses and the fairness of their machines are regularly checked by gambling authorities. The eCogra is one of the main regulatory organisation. This means, in most cases, that the online casino in which you play, have little to do with the creation, design and development of the games you find in their lobby.  This factor limits the risk of manipulations and foul play to rig the RNG.

How does it work?

In modern slot machines, the generated numbers are transformed into a sequence of images. These images are displayed on virtual wheels we then see on our screens. Depending on the slot category or type, there are different number of combination possible.

in a classic video slot such as the mighty Book of Ra, there may be a sequence of up 163 possible positions per reel. With each position corresponding to a winning symbol. For a 5 reels slot, the RNG will randomly send out 5 sets of sequences. Each one of the sequences represents a real number between 1 and 163, for example 34, 54. 123, 89, 13. The software in the machine will then distribute the received number and send each reel to the proper position in its sequence which we will see as an image.

  1. The reel number one will display the image located at position 34 in the sequence
  2. Reel number two to position 54
  3. Reel number three to 123
  4. Reel number our to the position 89
  5. And finally, the fifth reel to position 13

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