A casino is like an indoor amusement park for adults, but the majority of its entertainment (and profits for its owners) comes from gambling. Slot machines, blackjack, roulette, craps and other games of chance provide the billions in revenue that casinos rake in every year. While musical shows, lighted fountains and lavish hotels help draw in visitors, the casino would be nothing without the games of chance.

Casinos are almost always guaranteed to make a profit, although the exact amount they earn depends on the house edge of each game and its variance. Gaming mathematicians and computer programmers perform this work for casino operators, allowing them to estimate the expected return on each bet they accept. In addition, they help the casino keep track of its cash reserves.

In order to keep their profits high, casinos must constantly attract new customers and convince old ones to spend more. This is why they offer players “comps,” or free goods and services, such as hotel rooms, meals and tickets to shows. Casinos also reward big bettors with special privileges, such as limo service and airline tickets.

Besides the obvious visual security measures, casinos are wired with video cameras to monitor each game room and slot machine. The system is designed to capture any statistical deviations from the expected results, so that it can quickly alert casino security. The cameras can also be directed to focus on specific suspicious patrons. In addition, a team of trained casino detectives works closely with the police to investigate crimes and other security breaches.