Slot machines are usually thought to be a non-strategic way to gamble. There is definitely a ton of luck involved when playing slot machines but that does not mean that there aren't any slot tips to help you along the way.
Let’s start with cracking a couple of myths regarding slots strategy.
Slot Machine Myths
Slot machines all work on numbers. The numbers relay messages to the machine.
When the spinning of the reels begins, the outcome is what numbers the machine generated at the moment when you pulled the reel or hit the button.
The timing of your pull or push has no impact what will pop up next. For this reason, the following usual slot tips have no deciding moment on the reels:
Whether you pull the slot reel or push the spin button
How fast you push the button or pull the lever
How many coins you play each time you pull or push
In consequence, the people sitting hunchbacked over slot machines in Vegas using various unorthodox playing techniques are just as lucky as someone who simply pushes the button.
Another common myth is that the spin before will affect what happens next. This is the reason why you can see players in live casinos stand and wait for a machine that hasn’t paid out in a while.
In reality, and for the same reasons as above, this is something you should disregard when playing slots. The machine has no memory and doesn’t “care about” what the result was 1, 10, or 100 spins back. For the random number generator (RNG), which creates the result in every slot game, every spin is an independent event. If you want to get a taste of how this works, visit our Free Fruits Slots Machine page.
Do Loose Slots Exist?
Slots strategy experts often say that you should go for loose slots when visiting a live casino. These machines pay out more often and are said to be found in the following areas:
- Near cash booths
On elevated levels
Near the snack stops/food courts
Is this true?
There are differences between slot machines, both offline and online, and they do have different payback percentages. But this slots strategy tip is a bit overrated.
Say that would you compare two machines and look at their payback percentages. One returns 98% to the players and one 90%. Now you can obviously say that the first machine is looser. But this machine could be found anywhere on the casino floor – and more often online.
So there are slot games that are looser than others, but not exactly in the sense some writers want to make you think – that you win if you play near the cash booth and lose on machines next to gaming tables.
Stick to the facts and the slots rules – how much a machine pays out over time – and you’ll find the “best” slot machines.
Note: you should stay away from slots in bars, restaurants and airports. These machines are often incredibly tight.
Small Profit vs. Big Score
There are two types of slot games when it comes to jackpot size and payout frequency.
The first type is the more traditional one-armed bandit. These machines usually offer moderate jackpots but pay out more often. When you sit down and play one of them, it’s not very unlikely that you win a few hundred bucks and can cash out a smallish profit.
The second type is the progressive machines, which accumulate their jackpot over months, well, sometimes years. When you play on one of them it’s highly unlikely to win the grand prize, but when it happens, you can cash out six-figure amounts.
Also, since a portion of every player’s bet goes into the progressive jackpot there’s not as much money left for the smaller payouts during the game.
There’s no right or wrong here. It’s all up to you. Do you hope for a small profit, the type that is paid out every minute in casinos online, or do you hope to get very, very lucky?
Manage Your Bankroll
This is true in all casino games. Decide how much you’re willing to wager before a gambling session starts – and stick to that number. In the heat of the moment it’s easy to get carried away and lose more than you planned to do.
On the contrary, also decide when to walk away if you’re lucky. It feels nice to end a session with some profit added to your bankroll once in a while.
The bottom line is: You shouldn’t spend too much time on a machine whether you win or lose.
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When you play for many hours, the house advantage will grind your bankroll down.
Say that you find a machine with 95% payback, which is not bad at all. This means that if you play for $100, you will only lose $5 (in the long run). For a slots enthusiast, $5 is money well spent for some slots entertainment and the chance to get really lucky and hit the jackpot.
But there is a catch: players often play for this $100 bill over and over again.
Say that you play for $3 per spin and play 200 spins per hour.
You put a $100 bill into the machine.
After an hour you’ve actually played for $3 x 200 = $600. And with a 5% casino edge, you’ve (on an average) lost 0.05 x $600 = $30. Not the original $5.
So, keep your sessions fairly short and you’ll get a lot of entertainment value for a small deposit.
Take Advantage of Comps and Bonuses
When you play slots in brick-and-mortar casinos, you can often take advantage the casino’s comps, especially if you are a regular. This can include free drinks, meals and even cash back on money you spend on the floor.
This is also true online.
When you sign up with a casino you’re entitled to a bonus. This bonus will earn you money when you reach the bonus requirements, and sometimes it’s quite substantial sums.
When this bonus is cleared you’re free to move on to the next site and clear another one.
However, just like live casinos have comp programs to make you stay, online sites often have generous VIP programs that give you cash back on money you’ve played for and reload bonuses when you make a new deposit.
Whatever casino you choose, just make sure you always play towards some kind of bonus and make sure that you practice on our Free Fruits Slots page before you go in for the kill.
Why Do You Play Slots?
Other casino gamblers – especially blackjack and craps fans – often look down on slots players. They think they’re a little better.
The truth is that there’s often just as much house edge in those games, and if they’re not so good at their own strategy, the edge is a lot greater.
But slots players have something that the average blackjack player doesn’t have: Dreams.
In small-stakes blackjack you need an incredible run to win a large sum of money, which is almost impossible.
Slots players, on the other hand, have the chance to win big for a small investment. The chances are not great, that we know, but if you play for money you’re willing to spend, you can walk away as a big winner.
And on the way out, say hello to the blackjack fan sitting there at the table splitting 10s.
Bonus Feature Slots
The main characteristic of bonus slots is that special features are triggered when you get a specific combination on the reels. When a bonus is triggered you often enter a separate bonus game where there’s no risk of losing any money. In this article, we describe the most common bonus games and list the flagship slot machines at the biggest casino networks. If you look for advanced, innovative slot games, this is where you should look you should definitely take a look at our Slots Machines with Bonus Games page where you can find out all about the different types of bonus features Slots machines have.
Progressive Jackpot Slots
If you want to win big at an online casino, you should go for slot machines with progressive jackpots. In these games, a portion of your (and everyone else’s) bets is added to a collective prize pool. To release this jackpot a player then needs to hit a very unlikely combination, but if it happens, hundreds of thousands, sometimes millions, will be added to the real-money account. Here we go through the most popular progressive games at the big networks.
History of Slots
Because of all technology that’s behind it, it’s easy to think that slots machines are the newest game in casinos. But that’s not really true. In fact it was over 100 years ago German-born August Fey built a metal box with three spinning reels in San Francisco – the first slot game. Since then the game has evolved and developed to become the advanced slot games you’ll find in online casinos today. Here we go through the history of slot games, from San Francisco to the Internet.