Psychology of a gambler. What do scientists say?

There are many scientists in the world who explore phenomenon of being obsessed with gambling. Karen Finley, a professor of one of the top universities, have studied gamblers’ behavior for many years. Briefly, the results of her study prove the well-known fact that the interior of casinos and their design are well-thought-out, so that the slightest details make a gambler feel more relaxed comfortable, in order to scent the atmosphere of casinos: bight lights, specific sound effects, shining and beauty of slots… When a gambler is not in this atmosphere for a while, he or she feels wrong.

Virtual Vegas

In order to carry out her experiments, Karen Finley has developed a special laboratory, where she has reconstructed a popular stage of Las Vegas gambling facilities. The laboratory was called accordingly – Virtual Vegas. The main aim of the participants of the projects was to determine what drives a person, who loses control over him or herself during the game. This person realizes with his or her mind that it’s time to end and to go home, but due to some reasons he or she stays there, and keeps on losing the money.

The laboratory repeated the atmosphere of a real casino. Here, they carried out the research, and checked the result instantly. It was a scene, where normal people turned into real gamblers, who lose the sense of reality, get involved in the process and don’t pay attention to the situation around them, and a perfect ground for the scientists who get the answers to their questions.

How does interior of casino act on visitors?

What happens to people, when they find themselves in casinos? How can you influence on a gamer?

Investigation included many participants, which helped to obtain more objective results, and they have shown that the setting of casino has an effect on gambler’s behavior. Here, everything matters – colors, decoration elements, design of each spot, etc.

Lab reproduced two types of the interior. In one of them the scientists took real lighting into account, so that every gambler was able to see everything around casino through the window. Besides, the scientists who reproduced Virtual Vegas constructed long labyrinths with slots.


The results of investigations have shown that in spots with real lighting with fountains and waterfalls, plants and other objects, the visitors felt themselves more confident and did not lose the sense of reality. In such surrounding gamblers could realize their actions better, they were more likely to stop and go home when the moment demanded it.

Those gamblers who saw shining slots in front of them were in a completely different state of mind. They saw these machines promising high revenues; participants of this experiment did not feel calm there and felt being out of reality. They were not able to control the emotions and in most cases stopped only when the big sums of money were spent.

This atmosphere makes the gambler sit next to the slot and put coin after coin in a shining machine.

Does it also happen in online casinos?

Modern casinos (and especially online casinos), which want to keep their reputation, do not want to encourage you to have some uncontrolled actions. They introduce the rules of open, honest, and responsible gambling. Besides, safe online casinos participate in numerous charity projects aiming to rehabilitate those who are obsessed with gambling.

The results of the study we discussed in this article not only reveal aims of real physical casinos, but also help the gamblers to be less controlled with the environment around them. They learn to control their actions, to estimate the situation and not to let the emotions be dominating over their cold mind. All results are published in open access, so that the owners of casinos can implement the changes to their organizations.

We hope that the situation in real casinos will improve soon, and reach the high level of responsibility, like in online casinos.

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