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auCL-Ed
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8 April 2011 - 3:37am

The case of the missing RTG jackpots

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We've been looking into this one for a while but unfortunately we haven't been able to get an answer. So its time to go public and ask a few questions.

Three RTG progressive jackpots seem to have been removed from RTG casinos around August last year. These are the last values our jackpot tracker recorded:

Crazy Dragon Jackpot - $17,050

- $285,013

- $141,183

Now normally when a progressive game is withdrawn, the casino either keeps the game available until the jackpot is won or they redistribute the money to players somehow.

So what I want to know is where did the money go? Did they add the money to another progressive pool? If not, show us the money!

Coincidentally here is a related story where Atlantic City has just removed the law that compelled the casinos there to do the same when they decide to remove a progressive game: New rule on progressive jackpot in land casinos

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usUsne
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8 April 2011 - 5:32am
#1

Well it is a interesting question but i think the key here is players feel that it is "their" money because they built the jackpot to the proportion it is. The reality is that players put into EVERY slot and every game for that matter with no return and the house gets the gravy.

If a casino removes a slot obviously it is not very lucrative or they wouldn't remove it in the first place. I did read the new ruling for AC land based casinos and it may not seem fair for the operator to keep the money. The article also suggested that some operators may not keep the accrued monies because basically that's bad PR.

I am a player, so it is only natural i am going to get angry and my first thought would be as you stated "where is the money"? But i think in all fairness you have to look at all sides of this issue if your going to analyze it. Unlike AC where there is guidelines implemented it certainly suggests that their is NO regulations when a situation like this occurs online. At least not at RTG casinos and i wouldn't doubt it is the same with all software for online casinos.

In defense of the operator if no guidelines are forcing them to give back, then basically they are going to lean towards keeping it. I think the real question should be towards the governments who regulate these casinos. But then again wouldn't that open up a can of worms. The weakest governed casinos are those that allow US players and thats a fact. And why is that? Because basically as a player you are at their mercy and if you do have a complaint you don't have a leg to stand on. That is why forums like this are so important to step in and help players that have legit complaints.

The online casino industry is hurting mainly because US players are losing processors. This is hitting hard the casinos that depend on US to play at their casino. Even the casinos with excellent reputations are under attack because of the processing situation is tying up funds.

As a operator who is struggling to stay above water in hard pressed times and with no regulations to force them to disperse these funds to other progressives can we really blame them? Would we do the same in their situation? I think the answer may be a resounding Yes!

I for one happen to be a huge RTG player. I read a lot of info and complaints about RTG's for which some are valid complaints because gamblers are playing at rogue casinos. But i like to look at the whole picture and when someone complains about them and it is a reputable casino, 9 times out of 10 it is either a disgruntled player or they didn't follow the rules.

In closing, the bottom line is better regulations and better bodies of government that are regulating them. But this is a catch 22. Because the better licensed casinos don't allow US players and follow the laws of the UIEGA of 2006. The licencee's who do not abide by the laws of the UIEGA and are weak at best in enforcing any guidelines. Until that ban is lifted, we are going to face problems such as the one addressed and many more to come.

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auCL-Ed
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8 April 2011 - 7:21am
#2

Excellent post Usne.

I don't buy the times are tough argument though because the key here is that these are RTG pooled jackpots. They aren't (or they most certainly should not be) under the control of any one single casino operator. There are RTG casinos operating out of Curacao, Kahnawake, Costa Rica, Cyprus, British Virgin Islands and goodness knows where else. Some are good, some are bad, and no single set of laws or rules is going to apply to them all.

So in this situation surely its the software supplier's responsibility. RTG is the one that needs to provide an explanation here, not the casinos. RTG was originally incorporated in Atlanta, Georgia. I don't know if they still are, the only contact info they provide is a Curucao address for Hastings NV which is a company they created when they ditched their Montana Disputes company years ago.

They may well have used it to seed the new Shopping Spree II jackpot although that has not been won and is still just over $200k which is well short of the missing $440k+. Who knows though without an explanation or an announcement?

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rsCatFace
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8 April 2011 - 6:30pm
#3

Just want to refer back to the new rule about progressive jackpots in AC. Before it was introduced, the regulations proscribed that any canceled progressive slot should see its jackpot transferred and divided among other slots that are still valid. So if the same rule is applicable to RTG slots, and if no explanation is offered in terms of where the money ended up, it's clear why the situation looks somewhat suspicious. Thinking

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9 April 2011 - 6:04am
#4

Yes. Players who contributed to these jackpots have every right to know where "their" money went.

Anyway I've emailed a few different casino managers (again) in the hope of getting an answer as its unlikely RTG will say anything to anyone publicly.

We shall have to wait and see.

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usUsne
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9 April 2011 - 7:14pm
#5
CatFace wrote:

Just want to refer back to the new rule about progressive jackpots in AC. Before it was introduced, the regulations proscribed that any canceled progressive slot should see its jackpot transferred and divided among other slots that are still valid. So if the same rule is applicable to RTG slots, and if no explanation is offered in terms of where the money ended up, it's clear why the situation looks somewhat suspicious. Thinking

What rulings there are in land based casinos and online casinos is like trying to compare apples to oranges. It's so vastly different. Without a doubt RTG has not allocated the money to other slots. Because if they had they would of made damn sure they made a big public affair and PR announcement about it.

As far as the the online casinos hurting i think some are, with no disrespect to you Ed. That's the beauty of forums sometimes, to debate issues! It is a statistical fact that US players make up the majority by region on a worldwide level when it comes to online players. Have those kind of stats and there has got to be online casinos that are hard hit.

I have seen online casinos struggle with processors and the US struggle to make a deposit. When the Department of Justice steps in and confiscates funds that is gonna kill the casino as well as the player. Of course i am talking US friendly sites here. These casinos have suffered dearly to scramble to find a new processor and some of the newest processors are already gone! In fact there is a casino at this moment who allows US players and have just lost all their processors for them.

You can't tell me that is not going to hurt a casino. Some of the most highly regarded RTG casinos are suddenly paying out slower and there is delays like never before. I don't think they are doing this to be a shady operation i think it due to the serious processor problem.

Don't get me wrong i'm not advocating that RTG should keep the progressive jackpot and disperse it among themselves. But due to the impending crisis and yes i say "crisis" with processors they are in a tough spot. If they were to lose all their US players thats half their revenue right there.

Usne

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rsCatFace
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9 April 2011 - 11:07pm
#6

Good point there about the crisis, Usne. It's true that the whole situation is making the business for online casinos extremely difficult. But I have to say that I find the serious situation to be just one more reason to operate your business as cleanly as possible, without permitting such harmful allegations to go by without even a comment, any sort of reaction, nada. That's what makes me wonder - why don't they try to wash their name by denying the claims at least, instead of remaining silent and putting the existing, already diminished player pools at risk.

Personally, I really love RTG, and I feel very sorry to see their reputation declining over allegations which can be remedied quite easily... Sad

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10 April 2011 - 9:44pm
#7

Usne, no doubt some casinos are struggling. But the casinos aren't the ones that control this jackpot money. That is RTG. And if they have pocketed it, I highly doubt they are going to hand it over to any struggling casinos.

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14 April 2011 - 1:50am
#8

Well the unofficial explanation I have from an RTG casino manager is that the money was put into other jackpots. I am assuming that means Shopping Spree II because looking at our tracker graphs over the relevant time period it doesn't look like any money was put into any of the other RTG progressives.

That would then leave a discrepancy between the $440k in the pools and the $200k that went into Shopping Spree II. The discrepancy may be explained by the seed values of the 3 jackpots which is money supplied by RTG when they started them originally - $100k on IRIS, $2000 on Crazy Dragon and $1000 on The Shark ($103k total). $200k + $103k still doesn't equal $440k, but it is possible that they are also counting money used to reseed those jackpots if/when they were won previously.

And I think that is as good an explanation as we are ever going to get.

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