There is nothing like the satisfaction of spinning the reels of an online slot for the chance to hit that life-changing jackpot! Even at the very start of the gambling industry, the one-armed bandit kept people from all walks of life enthralled as they pulled the lever to set the reels in motion.
While the sounds of coins falling into the chute have been replaced by high definition graphics, sound effects and bonus features, playing slots at your favourite online casino is still the best way to get your heart racing.
One of the best parts of playing slot games online is the sheer range of choice you have. Casino game software developers take each game to the next level as they add rows, reels, bonus features and jackpot games all packaged together in a theme that varies from the time of year to a popular Hollywood blockbuster. With so many options to choose from, there is bound to be a slot that tickles your fancy, whether you’re just looking for a few minutes of fun or would prefer to lose yourself in hours of entertainment.
Are there different ways to enjoy slots?
When it comes to slot games at reputable online casinos, the five main categories are:
- Classic slots
- Video slots
- 3D slots
- Jackpot/Progressive slots
- Mobile slots
Classic slots are games that may be set on a fun backdrop but the symbols are usually of the fruit, gold bar or 777 variety. These slots tend to have a more static set up with between 3 and 5 reels that spin at the push of a button and have symbols that cover 3-5 rows where you need to line up matching symbols to win cash prizes. Classic slots are the closest relation of the one-armed bandit of yesteryear and offer players a refined and timeless experience.
Video slots are mind-blowing in their array of designs, themes, bonus features and jackpots. While the reels and rows are still the base of the game, these reels can expand, pay both ways and offer hundreds of pay lines. The rows can turn Wild as symbols dissolve or cascade to generate greater wins.
Themed around your favourite TV show, book series, movie or annual event, the creators of video slots know no bounds when it comes to releasing a bigger and better game for players to enjoy.
3D slots have elements that pop out of the game for that movie-like 3D experience that will have you swept away with epic soundtracks and original scores as you spin the reels to win. Similar to video slots in the number of features on offer, 3D slots can incorporate clips from movies and realistic symbols that feature Hollywood stars and other beautiful people.
Jackpot slots or progressive jackpots tie all of the above elements together into a game that has a shared prize pool that grows with every bet placed. As these games are also shared between casinos, the jackpot gets bigger and bigger until a lucky winner claims the epic cash prize.
Mobile slots are specifically designed to play well on the smaller screen of a smartphone or tablet and feature data-friendly graphics that run smoothly and pays out fast.
How do slot games work?
Slots are the quintessential game of chance. In the same way that mechanical reel slot machines came to rest at random when they stood in bars and taverns all over the world, online slots run on the principle of a random number generator where computer algorithms decide the outcome of each round.
While mechanical reel slots used an easily understood pay line set up that needed a matching symbol in a single line read from left to right, video slots up the ante as wins can be generated from left to right, right to left, diagonally or in any other pattern. Thanks to this framework, online slots automatically generate more frequent and greater wins simply due to the lack of the limitations that kept mechanical reel slots tightly bound.
Several online slot games even give the player the option to activate specific pay lines and only pay for wagers that appear there. Of all casino games, slots have evolved to become more elaborate than any mechanical reel one-armed bandit as developers up their game in as many ways as possible.
What about bonus features?
Bonus features refer to components of the slot game that offer you bigger wins and trigger mini-games where you can pick a box or spin a wheel for a chance to unlock free spins, prize multipliers and more. When it comes to progressive jackpot slots, bonus features fulfil the role of launching the game that leads you to the massive win as you line up specific symbols to launch the game within the game.
Almost every slot game, whether classic or video has a bonus feature in one form or another which helps to build anticipation and keep the game interesting as symbols march across the screen, set the play area ablaze, trigger bonus rounds or give you a chance to predict the colour of playing cards to double the money you’ve won on that round.
How does RTP work?
Another great benefit to playing online slots is how upfront and transparent game creators are about the return to player or RTP. The RTP is clearly stated on every online casino slot and offers players an indication of how much they can expect to win when the game is played for an extended period.
As this RTP is a theoretical percentage, it isn’t always seen in action in a literal sense however, players can select which games they’d like to try by choosing one that is closest to 100%. The industry standard for online slots ranges between 96 and 99% RTP, while progressive jackpots hover closer to around 92% due to the size and frequency of the payouts.
Online casino slots even specify the volatility or variance of the game which indicates whether payouts are small and frequent (low volatility) or large and infrequent (high volatility) with a few video slots giving you the option of selecting which volatility you’d like to use.
These video slots may be the future of online casino games as the player takes a more active role in how they enjoy the games they play.
How do I win real money while playing slots?
Spinning the reels online is an excellent way to decompress after a long day because it doesn’t require much brainpower. But remember – winning is always up to chance. To play, just select your coin size, choose the number of paylines to be activated and hit the spin button.
Once you’re happy with your wager, you can even set the slot to spin automatically using the auto-spin feature that gives you the chance to sit back and enjoy the experience while you zone out and wait for that life-changing prize.
Keeping in mind that slots are a game of chance, it is best to note that there is no magic formula to ensure a win. While a few casino game software developers offer tips and tricks on unlocking the progressive jackpot wheel of fortune, those big wins are down to pure luck.
Progressive jackpot slot games are known for landing wins for players who spin the reels for just €1, together with those who play the maximum bet. In the case where your bet selects the number of active paylines, using a small coin size but activating every line is your best chance of winning cash prizes.
Why should I play slot games?
Aside from the chance of winning a life-changing sum of money, online casino slot games are a great deal of fun. Thanks to the groundbreaking innovation of online casinos, you can play at your comfort and convenience without ever leaving the safety of your own home. With an unsurpassed range of games at your fingertips, winning has never been more simple whether you spin the reels or play a few hands of poker.
Slot games can also be played on the go as you log on to your online casino profile using your smartphone or tablet. With the mobile responsive sites that automatically shrink to fit the smaller screen, playing casino games for real money is easy.
Of course, slot games are just one of many casino games available to play at our recommended online casinos so if the wins are taking too long, there are plenty of other options on hand for you to try instead.
The role of our reviews
It’s our job to shed light on the latest and greatest games as we verify the safety and security of each one through a stringent set of criteria. Aside from running background checks on the casino game software developers to confirm they are 100% above board, we also play the games ourselves to test the theoretical return to player (RTP) and confirm whether it is accurate.
If a game is reviewed and recommended here, you can rest assured that it is not only fun and exciting but legitimate and safe. Our reviews are here to make it easy for you to choose the game that is best suited to your needs so that you can get on with having fun.
Now that you’ve discovered everything you need to know about the slots, you’re probably itching to get started. Once you have read the reviews and selected the casino operator that ticks all the boxes for you, starting to play your favourite slot is as easy as 1, 2, 3.
Use the link provided in the review to visit the online casino.
Create your account by capturing your details and verifying your email address.
Purchase casino credit and claim your welcome package.
Always remember to read through the terms and conditions of the promotional offer to get a thorough understanding of the wagering requirements and whether any free spins need to be used within a specific time period. Welcome bonuses are often time sensitive and we’d hate for you to miss out so make sure you do your due diligence.
The best part of spinning the reels is all the fantastic features that are built into the game to add excitement and bring you all the thrills. As part of your welcome package, many reputable online casino operators throw in as many as 100 free spins to tempt you to give their new slot games a go.
Our online casino reviews highlight which operator is offering these kinds of promotions to make it easy for you to choose where to register your account. Of course, it is always best to read the fine print yourself to make sure you understand the requirements with many operators noting the value of casino credits to be purchased or whether or not the offer is available within 24-48 hours of registration.
Top Online Slot FAQs
Online slots make use of an algorithm and random number generator to determine the outcome of each spin. As this system makes use of computerised calculations, it is 100% fair and trustworthy.
The return to player or RTP is a good indication of how well the slot will payout and will offer you the best possible odds.
Online slots offered by a reputable casino operator are 100% trustworthy and safe to play. As these games are independently verified to play and payout as they should, you can spin the reels with confidence for a chance to win real cash prizes.
Our recommended online casinos are all licensed, audited and secure with your safety and enjoyment as their first priority. We carefully curate a list of operators that you can select with the assurance that they are reputable and trustworthy.