How Slots Work – How to Win at Online Slots?
Video slots are by far the most popular and exciting category of casino games for online players. Traditional table games are also pretty thrilling but they hardly get the enticing storylines and themes offered on video slots. As a result of its growing popularity, more and more brands are joining the bandwagon of online casino sites. Some established brands are also creating sister sites in order to spread the happiness!
But what is it to you? There are already so many casino sites and slot games to choose from, but there is no guarantee of winning in any! Well, that is the true fun of online casinos – you never know when it’s your turn.
We are here to let you in on some secrets and strategies on the mechanics behind winning in online slots. You will soon see a list coming up with a detailed discussion of each strategy. But first, let’s try to understand how these slot games we play all the time really work!
The Mechanism of Online Slots
Of course, every gambler needs a little help from luck to really make it in the game. However, knowing what is happening behind the scenes on online slots may help your understanding of what to expect or not from them.
The software providers produce video slots which are centered around diverse enticing themes. After creating a game successfully and testing its quality, they provide it to their affiliated online casino sites. Some providers do so only to their own casino to keep the games exclusive and more sought-after.
A major part of the responsibilities of these providers includes ensuring fairness of these games. This is where the Random Number Generator or RNG comes in.
RNG literally does just what its name suggests – generating random numbers after you spin. They are basically computer programs which give out a random string of digits continuously. This is what generates the random result or combination of symbols when you hit “spin” or “play” on the game. Such randomness keeps the game fair for all and does not rob anyone of their chance to win big. An RNG program or a slot game does not have the ability to remember sequences since neither has a memory.
How Probability Affects Online Slots?
In the casino world, probability refers to the odds of winning a particular game. Only the UK-based online casinos tend to publish the probability information of their slot games. Other casino sites hardly do so in order to draw customers to all games instead of only the ones with a high probability. Even if they don’t disclose this information, you can take a guess on the probability by keeping certain factors in mind. We will discuss it in depth in the upcoming section.
Combining the winning probability and the RTP (Return to Player) percentage, you can easily figure out which games are truly worth playing. For example, the British online casino platforms often show quite low probability on their games. However, their corresponding RTPs don’t seem so unprofitable.
If you see a game with very simplistic gameplay, it might have a low probability. In contrast, a relatively fancier slot with lots of reels and symbols can increase your winning probability. So we recommend investing your time and money into video slots with a bigger canvas than most.
How to Calculate the Probability?
The probability ratio or percentage of a game is determined by counting in many factors. It usually depends on how many reels and symbols are available in the game. The more of these components, the bigger is your chance to hit a winning combination. Let’s take a slot for example with 3 slots and 5 symbols. Then its total number of possible combinations will be:
5 x 5 x 5 = 125 or 5^3 = 125
Now to determine your winning probability, you have to divide the total number of winning combinations with this number. You will find information about the first element on the respective game’s info page. If we assume the total number of winning combinations for this game we picked is 30, then its probability is:
30/125 = 0.24 (24%)
How to Win at Online Slots?
Now that you know the basics, let’s go through the actual strategies of hitting a win on slots!
1. Pick the Right Games
The online casino world right now is a limitless sea of full to the brink with video slots. Most of the platforms here fill up 80% of their game collection with such slot games. That is because this casino variety is full of versatility – be it in themes, reel sets or in-game bonuses. Players can hardly get tired of such variation which manages to pleasantly surprise them every time.
Nevertheless, you must pick the right slot game to increase your winning chances. First of all, look for higher number of reels or a special reel set organized in a unique shape.
For instance, the simplest and most common slot games consist of only three reels with 1-3 slots each. There is not much to look forward to in these games for hard-hitting gamblers.
On the other hand, if you find yourself a game with a more challenging setup like two sets of different reels or one hexagonal reel set, it can result in much bigger rewards. These games bring in impressive storylines, interesting bonus conditions and higher payouts for the players. They also tend to have special symbols like Scatter and Wild which will make the journey even more fruitful for you.
2. Look for No Deposit Bonus
The number of casino sites offering no deposit bonuses is decreasing every day. However, there are still plenty you can take advantage of. This option only requires you to fill up the basic information like emails and open an account on their platform. Then you can make use of the no deposit bonus rewarded to your account.
It is often a pretty trivial amount like $10 or $15. Regardless of the amount, don’t let this free money go to waste. Try it on the eligible games to see how well those slots work and to earn some real cash at the same time.
3. Bonuses with No Max Cashout
Typically, the bonus packages offered by a casino site come with tons of conditions and limitations. These include high wagering requirements like 30-45 times the betting amount, selected games, short validity period and many more complications.
One of such conditions we often see is a limitation on the cashout amount. They prevent you from withdrawing money beyond the set amount. Since there are a lot of online casino platforms to choose from, you can find yourself a bonus offer where this max cashout limit does not apply. This will prove to be really handy for you to turn those virtual winnings into real cash once you are done with the bonus offers.
4. Warm-up with Free Games
When you are new to a casino site, don’t start making deposits right away. Take your time to explore its game collection and find out the ones with high probability. Now look for its free versions where you can check out its gameplay and hidden quirks. This also gives you a chance to test the animation and graphics of that game which definitely adds to the overall experience.
If possible, try out the bonus rounds as well and see if they are as good as the providers claimed. If you are satisfied with how the game plays out, then go for the paid version.
5. Analyze Paytable
Get to the game’s paytable information page to see how much each symbol pays out. Most games display the paytable rewards in accordance with this selected betting amount. So make sure you have selected your intended betting amount before checking them out.
Study this paytable to figure out which symbols are the most profitable and how the special icons are supposed to work. Settle for the slots which have all the moneymaker symbols or features like Wilds, Expanding Wilds, Scatters, Multipliers, Free Spins and more. Their rewards may seem quite small in the beginning but these can really boost up your total winning amount by a large margin in the end.
6. Never Go Beyond Budget
No matter how lucrative it seems to bet huge amounts on each spin, don’t go for it. Stick to your budget and strategy. Prepare an expenditure table before playing the game which will tell you how much to bet for which payline and coin value combination.
So what you need to do is set a standard amount and the highest amount you are willing to bet in total for each combination. This will keep your spendings in track and prevent unplanned losses. It will also stop you from getting addicted to the game which, as we all know, is a bad place to be.
7. Smaller Jackpots for Steady Wins
Surely the biggest jackpots are what we all want to win. But does luck favor the naive? No, not in the casino world. Here luck favors the smartest – those who get the maximum for what they have bargained.
One way to make sure you have luck in your favor is to go for the smaller jackpots. These usually pays out a lot more frequently than the bigger jackpots. After all, three rewards of $5,000 is better than one reward of $10,000 right? Besides, the chances of hitting on the bigger jackpots are usually way slimmer compared to the small jackpots.
8. Focus on Local Jackpots
Online casino jackpots are of two types – local and network. The first one is accumulated from the deposits made by other players on that same site playing the same slot. The latter receives its jackpot capital from a distributed system of sources. Usually, these are the players investing in various casinos affiliated with that network. The second type of jackpots is also termed as progressive jackpots.
Although network or progressive jackpots promise much bigger rewards, we recommend the local jackpots where you have a better chance of winning. The ultimate jackpot amount can fluctuate a lot due to the rate differences. They also offer lesser winning chances due to a much bigger crowd of competing players.
9. Say No to Max Bets
If you have been playing the slot games for a while, you know how every platform encourages you to bet the maximum in order to score big amounts. Unfortunately, this theory does not apply to most. Wagering high numbers will not automatically guarantee your possibility of hitting the jackpot because the whole system is still dependent on the RNG. Regardless of the betting amount, all slot games are volatile enough to not result in big numbers.
So when you are playing, do not settle for the maximum bet and use your own predetermined betting amounts. Playing max bets regularly will only help in depleting your account balance faster than usual.
10. Make the Most of Bonus Offers
Almost every online casino has a lot of bonus packages they offer on a monthly or weekly basis. It could be some free spins rewarded on weekends or bonus balance on holidays. In addition to taking advantage of the Welcome Bonus offers, make the most of these packages as well. If you have the habit to browse through different casino-based information or blog sites, you will stumble upon bonus codes and rewards there too! Remember to sign up for email alerts on these bonus offers so that there is nothing you can miss out on. Do the same from your gaming account on your favorite casino sites.
Summary: Mind Over Matter
Mindset is what matters the most when you are playing casino games. Many players get carried away with the excitement of possibly landing on a big win. If they lose once, they keep trying again and again just to taste the success of thousands of dollars raining down throughout the reels.
However, such happy endings are pretty rare in reality. You have to keep your head in check and stay in line with your strategies from the beginning to the end of a game. Stay away from the max bets and the giant jackpots. Keep it simple and well thought-out.
Also, do not forget to allot a specified time period for playing these games. Prevent yourself from getting addicted to it or spending more than necessary!