Relying on Random Reward Patterns
What also makes slot machines so addictive and attractive, compared to table games and even video poker, is that there’s no skill involved. Put in your quarter, push the button, and the dials spin. Except it’s all a big scam.
According to psychologist and behaviourist B.F. Skinner, the schedule of reinforcement used by slot machines causes people to continue repeating a behaviour without actual reinforcement. So you win a little, get excited, keep playing, win a bit more, lose a bit, and keep going. The randomness is attractive because you’re just successful enough to make you feel like it’s worth it.
Then you go broke.