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Potential for addiction

Not all gambling have the same effect on gamblers. The risk of playing too much or becoming addicted depends on the features of gambling. It is called the potential for addiction. This potential for addiction is very different for individual gambling and can be evaluated with various characteristics:
  • Quick order of play

         The decision on win or loss of a quick gambling takes place within seconds as e.g. with slot machine games or with roulette. The
         faster a gambling is, the more exciting it is for the gambler. The potential for addiction of such gambling is also clearly higher than
         e.g., with lotto, where it takes days (or at least hours) until one learns the outcome.
  • Payment interval

         Payment intervals are short when winnings are paid out immediately. Money can be invested in a new game right away. Loss does
         not last long because the next bet can be placed within seconds. The same applies for winnings.
  • Active inclusion of gamblers

         If gamblers have the impression of influencing outcome of gambling, the appeal of the game is greater. Winning seams to be closer,
         since it does not seam to be dependent on pure chance but on one’s own ability. This is the case in sports betting or poker
         particularly. It is easy to lose sight of the fact that one’s own influence is being overestimated and chance decides.
  • Nearly win

         If, e.g. four of five cylinders on a slot machine stay on the same motif or if in blackjack the bank is only one point closer to 21, this is 
         identified as nearly win. Therefore, gambling is not perceived as ”lost“ but as ”nearly won“. Nearly wins reinforce the expectation
         that winning is certain in the next game. The probability of winnings is always the same, whether an almost win has preceded it or
         not.
  • Type of betting   

    If chips or the like are used to gamble and/or payment is possible by credit card, monetary value gambled away is trivialized. Inhibition thresholds are lowered or quickly lost; gambling becomes riskier and more money is bet.
  • Sound, light and colour effects, atmosphere   

        The particular atmosphere, which prevails, e.g. in a casino or on a racetrack, gives the feeling of being completely immersed in 
        another world. Additional effects allow winnings to appear more frequently than losses.
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