How to Play Slots

Not so long ago, slot players were not such valuable customers in casinos. They were not the elite. Jackpots were awfully small, payout percentage was terrible, and slot admirers weren’t given complementary accolades, such as free rooms, meals, or shows. They were a privilege of table games players.

But casino business has changed completely in the last couple of decades; and with the internet, online casinos appeared. Today, more than 70% of casino profits come from these games. There is even data which shows that, in many areas, that percentage goes to 80%.

So nearly 80% of new customers head for slots first. It is simple. You are not obliged to interact with dealers or the rest of gamblers around you. You just slide some coins into the machine and click the key or pull the lever. Another fact is also appealing — the biggest jackpots in casinos are awarded on slots.

Here, we will explain all you are supposed to know about them, from scratch.

How to Play

Among the most “wanted” are slots you can enjoy for a penny, i.e., penny slots. Nearly the same goes for those with a quarter and dollar, although there are different types of slots with denominations that go up to $100. Most slots require up to two or three coins for a spin, and video slots can free you of up to 500 credits at once.

Most slot machines are equipped with currency receivers. You need to insert a banknote into the slot machine, and it will display the corresponding amount of credits.

Then you push the button with an inscription “play one credit” all the way to the desired amount you want to play for. After that is done, you press “spin reels” or pull the stick if it is an old-school machine. If you intend to put the maximum number of coins allowed for a spin, you will hit “play max credits.”

Another thing you will find is the option for the number of paylines you can choose to activate on video slots. Also, there is a button for the number of coins you desire to bet per line.

The typical configuration has nine paylines, and you can stake 1 to 5 chips, while video slots grant you 5, 15, 20, 25, some as much as 50 paylines and take up to 25 coins for a line.

A collection of symbols on standard old-school machines might include cherries, bars, parallel double or triple bars, and sevens. One cherry on a payline, for instance, can potentially pay two chips; the player may acquire ten coins for three images of any bars or a blend of bars, 30 can be received for three one-bar patterns, 60 for three two-bar, 120 for three three-bar figures. The jackpot is gained when three sevens land on the payline. There are also a good deal of combos that won’t give you any money.

Usually, video slots have five virtual reels that spin on the monitor. As for paylines, apart from straight ones, there are all different sorts such as zig-zag, V, or upside-down V across the whole screen. The majority have a minimum of five of them, but they can go up to different 50 lines.

To increase the excitement, typically they have something that is called scatters. These are symbols that trigger special features if two, three, or more occur on the display. They don’t even have to land on the identical payline.

How to Play

Bonus features can also be triggered. They can come as a fixed number of free spins, or another screen with a bonus may pop up. That pop-up screen may have a grid of wrapped gifts. You touch the monitor to unwrap one package and collect a bonus payout. You may even keep clicking other bundles until one of them shows that you are out of rewards.

Such bonus stages are mainly the reason why online slots are constantly gaining popularity, and why they are the leading casino games.

When you obtain a winning combo, an adequate sum will be added to the credit screen. To raise the sum shown on it, you have to press the “Cash Out” button.

Payback Percentage

When casinos have deducted that it is more lucrative to hold five percent of a dollar than ten percent of a nickel or eight of a quarter, they have risen the payout percentage. In most states in the U.S, one can count on about 93% return to player, though Nevada usually offers the highest average that goes over 95%.

But always remember that those represent a long-term average, and they will withstand over a sample of 100,000 to 300,000 attempts.

In a short time, anything is possible. You can go 20 to 50 pulls without any payout on a slot, although payouts are more common on online slots. But in the long period of time, the set-up percentage will stay.

Old-School Machines

With contemporary technology and the invention of the microprocessor, slots evolved too. Old-school slot machines were mechanical, and if you got the number of stops (figures and empty spaces that could stop on the payline), you could calculate the chances of hitting the jackpot.

To illustrate, if the machine had three reels with ten stops each, and one image on each reel was for the grand prize, it would result in the average of 1,000 pulls for three jackpot symbols to line up. However, the payouts on those machines were nothing ($50 or $100) compared to the big numbers for progressive jackpots on today’s machines.

Video Slot Machines

Microprocessors in present-day machines are programmed with a random number generator (RNG) that dictates the winning combination. It doesn’t matter how many stops there are on each real. On video slots, reel strips can be programmed to be as long as necessary to make the slot odds stay on a wanted level.

For every possible combination, a number or numbers are linked. When RNG gets the signal, when a coin is dropped, or you hit a spin button, it sets a number and reels stop on the matching combination.

Even between these signals, this generator doesn’t stop operating. It is running through dozens of numbers in a second. To picture the effect of this, imagine that you leave a machine and then someone else strikes a jackpot shortly afterward. So you would have needed that same split-second timing as the winner to score it. The odds are so overpowering that if you had stayed at the machine, you would not have hit the same combination.

Because of the randomness of these combinations (or we can say that they are as close to random as is possible), the chances of scoring any particular combo are the same with every spin.

That practically means that if the machine is programmed to pay out its top prize, on average, once every 10,000 pulls, your chance to win will stay the same for every hit — one in 10,000. It will remain on that same level, no matter how long you play.

Those odds are long-term ones. The machine can go through 100,000 pulls without letting anyone score big or can pay out great sums for just two spins in a row. There is not really a certain way to ensure that you hit big on a slot machine.


As we’ve come to a conclusion, you’ve realized that playing slot machines is not complicated. It is fun and entertaining.

For it to stay that way, manage your money wisely. For example, you can divide your entertainment budget for the day into a couple of smaller sessions. Select a quarter slot, because a dollar machine could eat your $100 in minutes.

If you have $100 for two and a half hours of playing, that means that you have $20 for half an hour. In case your payback is higher than $20, leave aside that excess and continue playing with the original $20.

When the first part is finished, pocket anything you have and start a new round with the next $20. On the contrary, in case your $20 bankroll disperses into thin air before 30 minutes have elapsed, that session is ended. Do not proceed to play with another $20, or with money that you pocketed before.

Go for a walk, drink, or something else. Return to the game at the start of the next half-hour-round. All this may sound rigid to you, but respecting the boundaries you have set will provide you with more pleasure because pumping the money in the machine doesn’t guarantee you a life-changing win.

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