A casino is a place where people play games of chance for money. Although lavish hotels, dazzling lights and musical shows all add to the casino experience, the vast majority of a casinos profits come from games of chance like slot machines, blackjack, poker, roulette and craps. The games are regulated by state laws.
Casinos often provide perks to encourage gamblers to spend more money, such as free or discounted hotel rooms, food and beverages, and even show tickets. They also use technology to control the gambling process and supervise patron behavior. Electronic systems monitor each player’s bets and winnings at each table, while video cameras and a high-tech eye-in-the-sky surveillance system allow security personnel to keep an eye on everyone. Some casino games, such as poker, use special chips with built-in microcircuitry that enables the casinos to track exactly how much each player is betting minute by minute; other games, such as roulette, are closely monitored for statistical deviations from expected results.
Something about gambling (perhaps the compulsion to win) encourages some people to cheat, steal or scam their way into a jackpot. That’s why casinos devote a lot of time and money to security, using sophisticated cameras and other monitoring devices to ensure that all the action is honest. Casinos also train their staff to look for telltale signs of cheating, such as palming, marking or switching dice or cards. In addition, most casinos have a pit boss or table manager to watch over the games and players.