Online slots attract casual players, and hardened high rollers alike and have been, by far the most popular on and offline casino games, for decades. With the ability to bring hundreds of thousands of players’ constant thrills and excitement, there is hardly a casino member that hasn’t spent quite a few hours spinning. The question remains: what is it that turns so many casino players on to slots?
While a majority of other casino games require players to learn rules or are time- consuming, etc., slots require none of this. All you need to play is click or swipe the start button.
In addition to this simplicity, online slots also put you in the action with a small initial investment, you can play slots for as low as $0.01 per spin. This allows all types of players to get their feet wet playing slots without breaking the bank.
Finally, every single spin features a potential to pay out huge on each round. There are games that can pay 20,000 – 30,000 times more than your original bet, and no other casino game offers this. When all these elements are combined, it is no wonder that slots continue to attract players of all shapes and sizes.
If you are looking to play some online slots, especially of the progressive variety, we’ve prepared a great selection of venues where you can settle in, knowing full well your money and personal data are safe.
Those who like Microgaming slots will be best served checking Betway or Royal Vegas Casino, where you can find classic titles and new releases, including super popular ones like Mega Moolah. If you want more versatility, visit Mr Green or 888 Casino.
Microgaming and NetEnt are surefire market leaders. You’ll find one (or both) of these suppliers featured in around 90% of online casinos. They’ve been in the business for a long time and have released hundreds of slots, including the most popular progressive jackpot games like Mega Moolah and Mega Fortune Dreams.
Playtech is another well-known provider, and their games are famous for great graphics and popular TV themes. Like the other two, they also have their own progressive games, many of which are a part of the Age of the Gods series. There is their Jackpot Giant, which features huge seven-figure payouts and almost reaches the level of popularity as Mega Moolah and Mega Fortune (almost).
Like with casino table games or video pokers, not all slots are created equal. All slots can be categorized by these main factors: the number of reels, theme, and number of pay lines.
3 reel vs. 5 reel online slots
When slots first appeared, most of them featured three reels. These games were fun to play, but were limited in terms of winning potential, there are only so many pay lines you can fit on three reels with three symbols on each of the reel.
So, the industry developed to produce five reel slots. Adding extra two reels meant the games could offer many more ways to win, which created mass appeal.
Most online casino slots these days feature five reels, although classic three reel slots are still available for play for the more nostalgic among us.
Video themed slots
The development of slots didn’t stop with the expansion of reels. Initially, most slots were mechanical, which meant that the number of special features they could offer was very limited. With the development of technology, slot developers came up with video slots, featuring virtual reels and exciting features that took the gaming experience to the next level.
Basically, all slots available at online casinos these days belong to this category, as there aren’t any physical reels in play. Spinning reels we get to see are just video animations, while the outcome of every spin is determined by the random number generator.
Number of pay lines
Another big distinction between various casino slots is in the number of pay lines they offer. Classic slots started off offering three to five pay lines, this number increased to nine with the arrival of five reel slots, and these days it can be any number that the developers settle for.
These days, you’ll find up to 243 ways to win slots, which have no traditional paylines, but instead pay for every combination containing winning symbols on adjacent reels, regardless of their positions on the respective reels, i.e. there aren’t any fixed paylines.
Progressive slots make up a special category of online slots, and they are at the heart of this site. For the most part, progressive slots you’ll find these days belong to the video slots category and feature the possibility of paying huge amounts of money even if you play at the lowest denomination.
The way these progressive jackpot slots work is that they start up with a certain base amount (seed) provided by the slot developer (NetEnt, Microgaming, etc.), and then the jackpot grows over time with every bet placed on that slot at any of the online casinos featuring the game.
The jackpot is triggered at random, and there is no way to tell when somebody is going to win. Sometimes, it happens that it lands a few times in a row. Sometimes, a lot of time can go by before somebody scores the big one. The point is, the more time passes, bigger the jackpot grows.
Although there are dozens of progressive slots out there these days, there are a few games that remain firmly in the lead in terms of popularity and jackpot payouts. These are:
Most of online slots these days can be played in the free (demo) mode. This gives you a chance to familiarize yourself with the game, check out bonus features, see how frequent the payouts are, etc. Playing a few spins in the demo mode before getting to the real thing is definitely recommended.
Apart from familiarizing yourself with the slot, one important thing to know is how big a bankroll you’ll need. If you want to give yourself a decent chance, always play at the spin denomination that would give you at least 200 spins if you hit no wins at all. So, if have $200, you should play no higher than $1 per spin, and $0.50 would be even better.
On top of this, you should always try and play with a bonus (or as often as you can). Slots are a great way to clear the bonus, as most casinos will count them at 100%. Hence, you should take that nice boost and give yourself a better chance to hit something really big.
As mentioned, slots are not the best choice in terms of players’ odds, popularly known as Return to Player (RTP). While there isn’t a fixed percentage that fits all slots, most of them are in the 92% – 99% range, with an average of 95-96%.
Higher the RTP, lower the variance. This means that slots with 95%+ Return to Player are great for clearing bonuses, while those with lower RTP can be very volatile and eat up a lot of your money without paying much back.
People love slots because they are simple, cheap, and feature a possibility to win big on any individual spin.Whether you are a seasoned player or just discovering a brave new world of online casinos, playing a few spins on a slot is guaranteed to get you started in the right way.
Check out our recommended casinos to find the places offering the best selection of games and the most generous bonuses aimed to improve your overall gaming experience.