7 Minute Miles

Nickel Orchid Addendum

Posted Tuesday, August 2nd, 2022 10:57 pm in Casinos, Games, Mini Posts, Travel

Headed up to Grand Casino Hinckley today to test a theory about Black Orchid – that the top Orchid Progressive has the same odds on a nickel bet as it does on any other bet (see my recent long-form post on the Orchid here). On our last stop at Hinckley, there was still one machine with an unusually large top progressive on a nickel bet: a little more than $10,000. Unfortunately, someone beat me to it and that machine reset down to $500 (same as the yellow progressive).

Grand Casino is one of the only properties I know of that has tried to educate guests on volatility. They used to place stickers on the machines with a 1, 2 or 3 so you could tell how the game played. I don’t think they use those any longer, but Black Orchid was always marked a three for high volatility. After my multi-hour session playing nickels, I have to say that playing only one line boosts the volatility through the roof. I think I might’ve had a stretch of 100 or more losing spins before winning anything. Probably not the experience most players are looking for in a slot machine.

Of course the flip side of that is that when you do win, it’s usually for higher multipliers. The closest I came to getting a normal progressive was four cats, which paid $20 (400x win). Also had four jacks once, but that only pays $2.50 (50x). Very few three of a kind wins, although I did get three black orchids once. One of my free spin sessions re-triggered multiple times, for a total of 60 spins (total win: $3.00). Based on play today, I’d say that the frequency of black orchid symbols is the same as other bet levels. All of the other progressives hit much more often with the 40, 80 and 99 cent bets, however.

One last note, nickel orchid is probably not driving the level of play that the marketing department wants from their promotions. The August flier I received offered $5 of free play for every 20 points earned during the day (valid up to three times). I’m only first tier with their players club (“Preferred”) and am not sure how much play is required per point (the Grand Rewards page doesn’t really say). I think I played nickels for almost three hours and earned around 12 points. I prefer to be a low roller in general, but will enjoy going back to “regular” orchid at Mystic Lake next week…

Originally published by DK on August 2, 2022 at 10:57 pm