What makes people risk their money? Why do even needy persons wager their money earned by hard work? We could call them addictive gamblers, but this explanation seems too simplified, and most casino visitors do not have any sign of problem gambling.

Reasons for Gambling

Let's try to figure out why we gamble. Fortunately, we do not have to reinvent the wheel. Psychologists, sociologists, and other scholars have performed numerous kinds of research whose conclusions can help us in our attempts to find an answer to this question.

Let's consider four key hypotheses that explain why people attend gambling clubs, such as:

  • casinos,
  • slot halls,
  • poker rooms,
  • betting shops, etc.

Remember that we are talking about hypotheses requiring further research and confirmation.

Gamble to Win

It is reasonable to assume that gambling facilities attract customers with the opportunity to become rich in the snap of a finger. It seems to be evident that we go to casinos to win.

Almost all games of chance allow gamblers to rapidly obtain a considerable amount of money.

  • You get a massive payout in poker if you collect a royal flush.
  • Most slots offer high payouts, free spins, bonus games, and jackpots.
  • You can break the bank on roulette if you make huge bets.

Most casino games allow winning big. 

The probability of winning the vast amount is tiny, but this fact does not throw cold water on all customers.

Most regular casino visitors can be characterized by a feature usually referred to as excessive optimism. They ignore unfavorable conditions. They neither consider the house edge nor want to remember past losses. They think solely of potential gains, previous huge payouts, and even the achievements of other customers.

Many customers gamble, hoping to improve their financial situation or find a stable income source.

In reality, only some professionals have made a living at casinos, but this is another story worth mentioning in a separate article.

Gamble to Lose

At first glance, this idea seems ridiculous. Who will wager money to lose it intentionally? Yet, recent studies have demonstrated that this hypothesis is substantiated.

Experienced casino employees confirm that some gamblers enjoy the process more if they have to win back their funds lost in previous rounds. Each facility has regular customers who rarely are in the black, but they keep gambling.

Do you remember your own experience? What is more amusing: a quick victory shortly after the beginning of the gaming session or a success from a long struggle when you have changed dealers, tables, and even games? The latter seems to cause more pleasant emotions, make you feel like a winner, and is memorized for a long time.

Some long-term research trials involving hundreds of volunteers have revealed that the users trying to win back were more excited than the winning customers. They had a higher level of dopamine, causing a sense of satisfaction. Its content increases due to the activity of the brain that tries to solve the problem that has arisen.

The pursuit of winning seems more attractive than a victory to casino customers.

Having received a large payout at the beginning of the gaming session, the user feels unsatisfied because emotions are more important to him than money.

Gamble to Expect for the Victory

According to this theory, gambling games attract people to their uncertainty. Facing up the cards, watching a spinning ball, or rolling dice, gamblers are rooted to the spot in anticipation of the outcome. Researchers believe that a release of dopamine causes it.

The expectation of the game result attracts casino customers more than the opportunity to receive payouts.

According to psychologists, the sharpest increase in dopamine is observed during rounds with approximately equal chances of winning. For example, it may happen when you bet on either red or black when playing roulette or try to double your payout in video slots.

Gambling software developers have noticed that games with unpredictable scenarios are the most popular. If the gameplay is predictable, customers quickly get bored.

This is one of the reasons why online gambling software developers release more and more new video slots.

Gamble to Enjoy

Many psychologists believe that most people gamble to have fun. In other words, customers of casinos, poker clubs, and betting offices are concerned with the outcome and gameplay.

If you carefully inspect the behavior of casino visitors, this hypothesis will seem more than justified. They usually behave irrationally and even silly, intentionally make mistakes, deliberately take risks in inappropriate situations, and simultaneously criticize their behavior.

How can one explain such an attitude toward gambling? It can be only due to the desire to enjoy the process.

Many players gamble to have fun. Winnings seem nothing more than a pleasant bonus to them. Moreover, negative outcomes do not upset them.

Casino operators are well aware of the psychology of customers. They try in every possible way to make gamblers enjoy the gameplay instead of trying to achieve a positive outcome at any cost. Colorful video slots with stunning graphics features, multi-level games of chance, show programs, systems of points, and free tournaments aim at keeping customers inside the venues.


So, why do we gamble? Perhaps some gamblers may explain their addiction to such entertainment by one of the abovementioned hypotheses. However, most gamblers are motivated by several incentives. If you play to win, you still want to enjoy the process.

What attracts you to gambling?

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