Wheel of Fortune slot machines are among the most popular reel games in the history of gambling, and the popular title has delivered yet another life-changing win.
Wheel of Fortune slot machines on the Great Cedar Casino floor at Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut. A lucky player last month won more than $1.2 million playing a Wheel slot branded Pink Diamond. (Image: Foxwoods Resort Casino)
London-based International Game Technology (IGT), which manufacturers the Wheel slots, announced today that on Sept. 16, a lucky player at the Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut won $1,206,676 playing Wheel of Fortune Pink Diamond at the tribal resort. The winner wished to remain anonymous.
Owned and operated by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation, Foxwoods is one of the largest casinos in the United States. The resort’s four distinct casino spaces collectively house more than 3,500 slot machines, 250 table games, a poker, bingo, and keno room, and a DraftKings Sportsbook.
IGT said the $1.2 million Wheel of Fortune slot win is the second seven-digit jackpot won on a Wheel game at Foxwoods this year. The Sept. win followed a player in May hitting a jackpot for more than $1.6 million playing IGT’s Wheel of Fortune Gold Spin Triple Red Hot 7s.
Since IGT debuted the first Wheel-branded slot machine in 1996, the games have minted more than 1,100 millionaires and awarded over $3.4 billion in jackpots.
Though Foxwoods is a tribal-run casino, the Mashantucket’s Class III gaming compact with Connecticut allows the resort to include traditional Las Vegas-style slot machines. It also permits the same popular titles found in commercial casinos. Along with Wheel slots, Foxwoods offers Dragon Link, Buffalo Link, The Price is Right, and Jurassic Park, among many others.
Foxwoods bills its destination as “a gaming paradise” featuring “the most comprehensive array of games in the region.” And it’s not only the rare million-dollar-plus jackpots that keep guests happy.
Foxwoods reports that two players this week alone won substantial slots prizes. A player named Michael won $49,650 playing Lighting Cash on Oct. 15 and a player named Ren won $72,900 playing Buffalo Link on Oct. 17.
Mohegan Sun, Foxwoods Rebound
Connecticut’s two casinos have continued their pandemic recoveries in 2022.
Through September, the state’s 25% cut of Mohegan Sun’s brick-and-mortar gross slot revenue totaled $92.8 million. Foxwoods has directed $66.8 million to the state. The casinos are about on pace to match or slightly exceed their 2021 slot revenue.
2021 was a major rebound from the pandemic-stricken 2020, when slot machine tax revenue from both casinos totaled just $165.5 million. In 2019, Connecticut’s slot share totaled almost $247.8 million.
However, 2019 was just a fraction of the slot haul that Connecticut used to collect from its two tribal resorts before competition encroached in neighboring New York, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts. For example, in 2006, Mohegan Sun sent the state over $229.4 million in slot revenue, while Foxwoods cut the state a check for $204.2 million.
The tribal casinos hope to recover some of their land-based revenue declines online. Last year, the Mashantucket and Mohegan tribes amended their Class III gaming compacts with the state. The revision allows iGaming and retail and online sports betting.
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