Online slots: How do they work?
Winning at online slots isn’t necessarily easy but luck has an important role to play.
Since slots use a Random Number Generator, every spin on a slot machine is completely random. The Random Number Generator ensures fair play and randomness so every player has the same shot of winning.
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The payback RTP as known as Return to Player on the slot game is based on the probability of the symbols lining up on a payline you are betting on. The sequence of the symbols per se`, cannot be influenced so each spin has the same equal chance of winning as the previous ones.
Probability’s role in online slots
Every time you click on the ‘spin’ button, a random combination of symbols is selected by the slot machine. The random selection ensures that each spin is independent, regardless of previous spins.
The probability of winning a payout is determined by a number of factors, namely the number of reels, the number of symbols assigned to the slot game as well as the randomly generated pattern that aligns a winning set of symbols.
While it might appear like it’s highly improbable of hitting a winning combination, there are tricks that can help your spins work in your favour.
The probability of you winning a big amount in online slots is (realistically) quite small. Online casinos don’t tend to disclose the odds on slot machines, with the exception of UK casinos. The probabilities are low but if you pay attention to the Return to Player percentage, you can be aware of how much you can expect to receive per win.
In theory, the easier the slot game is, the worse the odds are. Since online slots are played at a much faster rate than any other casino games including table games, your bankroll will deplete quickly as well.
How to calculate the probability of winning an online slot
The number of possible winning combinations on any online slot can easily be calculated. You only need to multiply the total number of symbols each slot game has. Let’s put this into perspective with a simple example. Imagine we have a three-reel slot game with six symbols on each reel. The total number of possible combinations is worked out as follows: 7 x 7 x 7 = 343 in total of winning combinations.
Calculating the odds of winning on any slot game is quite easy and straightforward. In this case, you would need to divide the total number of winning combinations by the total number of possible combinations.
Of course, various winning combinations have different payouts since symbols have different values. However, the harder the combination, the bigger your reward.
Pick slot games with the smallest jackpots
Your best chance of winning in the short term would be to pick games that have the smallest jackpots. The smaller is it, the easier it would be for you to win, boosting your chances of walking away as a winner. On the other hand, the bigger the jackpot, the harder it is to actually hit it and you will end up losing a huge portion of your bankroll unless you’re careful.
Additionally, it would take many long hours of playing to create those big jackpots, so this is why you have little chance of hitting a big jackpot. We are not saying it’s impossible, but if you want better odds and chances of hitting a win, going after a smaller jackpot will give you just that.
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Manage your bankroll properly
If we went around asking professional gamblers for one tip for getting started at online slots, most of them would recommend knowing the amount of money you aim and afford to spend on playing.
However, setting a bankroll and knowing how much you are willing to spend/lose, is only half of the best online slots strategy. Our best advice would be to know and to check the full betting range of the slots games you are going to be playing, as that is bound to affect your bankroll.
If you have a small bankroll, you wouldn’t want to be playing a ridiculously expensive bets per spin. Find a slot game you can afford and one that fits your budget.
Paylines and costs
Although the concept of paylines can be a tad boring, you cannot avoid this topic when playing slot games. Whether you are playing online or at a land-based casino, paylines are all that matters in this game.
A common mistake many newbies tend to make when starting out, is to only consider paylines when it comes to building a winning spin or to calculate the total of coins won. In actual fact, paylines affect the calculation of the slot game’s actual cost.
So, if you are playing a 25-payline slot game and you are placing a bet on only 5 paylines, you can forget about hitting a large payout or snapping up a jackpot as your chances and odds are drastically decreased.
And although maximum betting is your best chance of snapping up big wins, you need to remember that it’s also going to cost you a lot more than going after a more modest win. What do you prefer? Going after more expensive bets with more paylines or going for smaller ones?
Play slot games with excellent bonus rounds
Bonus rounds as well as multipliers, free spins and wilds, can do a lot for your bankroll, whilst also increasing your chances of winning a jackpot by adding to your spin count.
You must make sure that the slot game of your choice offers these bonuses, regardless of whether you are playing a maximum bet or not. Even if you are playing a machine with a small bet, multiplying your wins through these value add-ons can increase your bankroll.
This is why we always recommend learning about slot games before sitting down to play them. Make sure that the slot game benefits from free spins, multipliers, wilds and scatters. All of these small features contribute towards your winnings when hitting a combination.
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