How Do Random Number Generators Work at Online Casinos?

Casino reviews often mention the site’s transparency and fairness, and externally audited random number generators are one indication that a casino is both of these things. But what exactly is an RNG? How do online casinos utilise it? Is it really that reliable to assure that a casino is trustworthy? 

Read on to find out the answers to all these questions. 

What Is a Random Number Generator?

The answer’s in the name! A random number generator is a mathematical idea that’s used to produce a single number or a string of them on demand. In online casinos, it’s in place to replace the physical actions by croupiers that randomise casino games and the actual mechanics of slots that do the same for their outcomes. 

For example, if you’re playing roulette at a brick-and-mortar casino, the dealer will physically set the wheel spinning. To ensure the randomness of online roulette, casinos use RNG software that “spins the wheel” instead of the dealer. 

Online casinos’ RNGs use a programme code based on the MD5 algorithm that’s built into the site’s software. Because it’s always generating random numbers that govern the games’ outcome, the possibility that results can be tampered with or rigged is removed. The RNG algorithm can avoid patterns being repeated and ensure totally unpredictable results each time because it uses mathematical formulas and equations to run. 

How Do Online Casino Sites Use RNG Software?

RNGs are not a new idea to casinos or even something that is exclusively used by online sites that offer real money casino games. Did you know that even land-based casinos use RNG software to govern their newly digitised slots? As games have evolved from the days of mechanical slots, brick-and-mortar casinos have been using hardware RNGs for some time now. 

This RNG is connected to the casino server via a USB point. Once the connection is up and running, the RNG will use compound values from dynamic atmospheric situations and/or physical processes as the starting point for developing the results of slot machine games. 

Sites like Black Lotus online casino use pseudorandom number generators for their virtual games where there is no human component, like slots, video poker, keno, bingo, and table games like blackjack. Top casino game developers include this software in their games to ensure that each release is fair and random. When you launch a game at an online casino, the generator is already producing new seed numbers every second!

The instant you hit the Deal or Spin button, a seed number gets chosen, and, via algorithms, the following numbers get generated. Cards in table games and symbols in slots get assigned a numeric value, and the RNG sends the information on these to the casino software. This is how the outcome of a game is determined: the slot reels come to a halt, the cards get dealt, the dice are rolled, or the roulette ball ends up in an arbitrary pocket. 

What Real Money Casino Games Use RNGs?

If it’s a virtual game at an online casino, it’s using RNG software. This feature not only allows game creators to introduce new elements and mechanics into the games to make them more interesting, but it also helps them ensure that the outcome is fair. For instance, in slot games, each symbol on the reels gets assigned a numeric value. In a 5-reel slot where each reel has six symbols, the RNG will produce a value of one to six for each of the five reels and select symbols at random to determine the outcome. 

In card games like baccarat, one of the most popular generators is the Mersenne twister, and this is usually used alongside a Fisher-Yates algorithm that produces random orderings of finite sequences, with a deck of cards being one example of such a sequence. Each card is assigned a numeric value, and, as the random number generator works, these determine the outcome, whether the banker or player hands win or if a tie occurs. 

How Are Live Casino Games Randomised?

RNG software is only used in games in which actual croupiers do not play a role. Considering how popular live dealer games have become at online casinos, you may be wondering how sites ensure that these are not rigged.

The answer is that they do this in much the same way as land-based casinos ensure their games are fair. 

Firstly, live dealer card games are usually played with at least six decks of cards, something that severely limits the potential for card counters to have an advantage. In addition to this, the shoes that contain these decks of cards are shuffled by workers at the casino who are not the dealers. Then there’s a pit boss at online sites, much in the same way that there’s always one at a brick-and-mortar casino, that oversees all undertakings and is there to settle potential disputes. 

Plus, all games are live-streamed, and every action is recorded. This means that there’s footage in place if a dispute requires checking. Most live studio dealers also offer multiple camera views so that you can keep an eye on the action from multiple perspectives. 

How Can We Be Sure That the RNG Is Running Properly?

Reputable casinos submit the RNGS for independent third-party tests. There are certain organisations that have been certified to test real money casinos’ RNGs to ensure that they’re random and fair. This list includes eCOGRA, Gaming Associates, Gaming Labs International, iTechLabs, and QUINEL. 

RNG testing is generally carried out in three stages:

  1. Source codes are compiled to test the RNGs algorithms and their implementation
  2. These generated numbers undergo statistical testing
  3. A scaled output sample is generated and additional testing is done

Throughout this process, the testing company works to establish, assess, and test the randomness in a statistical manner and ensure that the RNG is generating numbers that are random and not repeatable. 

Do RNGs Really Ensure That Online Casino Experiences Are Safe and Fair?

In a word, yes. As outlined in this article, RNGs are truly at the heart of online and land-based casino operations.