Online Slots: A Beginner’s Guide

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Slots are some of the most popular games you will find at online casinos. They come in different types and offer impressive designs, themes, and visuals, with an incredible opportunity to win real cash. One appealing factor about these casino slot machines online is the generous jackpot cash prizes they provide.  

However, there are many misconceptions about casino slots online. They may offer simple gameplay (place a bet, hit the spin, and hope for a win), but you need a good strategy to win. This is why here we’ll bring you all the information you need to select the best online slots, enjoy them, and boost your winning chances. 

Reasons Why Casino Slots Online Are Better Than Poker

Poker is a familiar game for many online casino players. However, it may not be the right choice to wager on, especially for beginners. Depending on your reason for gambling, slot games online can offer more. Here are the reasons why.

Online Slots Offer More Privacy

Some gamers enjoy playing with other players, but others prefer to be alone. Many poker variants require you to sit at a table, communicate with players and the dealer, and play against them. However, slots only need you. 

This is particularly important if you’re transitioning from playing at land-based casinos to online gaming sites. Many online casinos offer hundreds to thousands of slot machines with diverse themes and game mechanics. All of them are available to enjoy alone.

We’re not saying that playing with other humans isn’t exciting, but it could sometimes be frustrating. This is why slots are preferable. 

Better Bonuses Online

Another essential benefit of casino slots online that beats poker tables is the incentives. You will find online poker rooms with good bonuses, but they don’t come close to the rewards online slot casinos provide you. 100% deposit match slots are standard, and you may find higher bonuses at select online casinos. Some of these rewards go into their thousands.

One great aspect of these offers is that you can use them immediately after you make a real-money deposit. For poker bonuses, you may only claim them by playing a number of hands or raking in points. And in the end, the rewards are usually small. 

While online slots bonuses are excellent, you should watch out for the terms and conditions. Each iGaming site offers its set of instructions. Understanding them is essential for you to cash out your winnings. 

Progressive Jackpots

A common type of slot game online is the progressive jackpot. With these games, the jackpot gets bigger with the increasing number of players wagering on it. 

Poker provides different means of winning large cash prizes. This includes playing and winning big tournaments or accumulation of the cash pool.

If you want to win a considerable amount, then progressive jackpot slots are for you. They don’t come with many game mechanics; you don’t need to activate all paylines and play the maximum betting range. We will cover more about progressive jackpot slot machines later. 

Easy Gameplay

Although poker games are popular and have an effortless style of gameplay, online slot games are easier. To thrive at poker, you need to learn the basics of the game, like card values, the ranking of the cards, and how the different hand combinations are formed. 

Next is understanding the rules of the particular poker variety. While Texas hold ’em is a popular poker game, its varieties have slight changes to the rules. Common variations include Omaha and seven card stud. Learning these rules could take a while, meaning you need more time to learn and play.

When playing slot games, all you need to play is set the terms of the ride. This includes choosing the paylines, adjusting the number of coins to bet per line, and spin. Hence, slot machines are the easiest games to play. 

Types of Online Slots

There are several types of online slots. Understanding the different types is essential to preparing your bankroll, preferences, and needs. Here are the major types available. 

Classic Slots

Also known as three-reel slots or one-armed bandits, they appear as single-slot games. They are perfect for you as a beginner because of their simplicity, as they are fast and easy to learn. You can win when you land three similar symbols in a pattern, 

However, one of the main drawbacks is that the number of reels is low, reducing the possible winning combinations. The variance of classic slots is always high, meaning there’s a big chance to lose everything or win a significant amount. 

The algorithms are still impressive and have high security. They allow classic slots online to offer good payouts on average, better than their mechanical machines. 

Five-reel Slots (Video Slots)

Video slots are the most popular online casino slots. Chances are that this is the first slot game you saw when playing at an online casino. As the name implies, these games have  five reels. They are digital and don’t need mechanical levers. The graphics are impressive, with videos and attractive sounds. 

Video slots are an advancement of three reel slots. They have more paylines and reels, which boosts your chances of winning. The coin numbers increase for a pay line. In addition, the bets last longer and have higher jackpot values. One particular appeal is the bonus feature, free spins, which includes mechanics like multipliers.  

Progressive Jackpot Slots

For progressive slots, a part of the wager goes into a prize pool for the jackpot. This means the jackpot value increases with the increasing number of players. On most online casino sites, the operator displays the total progressive jackpot amount for their progressive slots. The progressive jackpot is also known as an accumulated jackpot. 

One feature of progressive jackpots is that the higher the amount in the prize pool, the lower your chances of winning. Another drawback is that progressive slots will need you to play the maximum bet size to qualify for the prize pool. Hence, you must be ready to wager large amounts. 

Interactive Slots

Interactive slots are gradually taking over the online slots world. They come with multiple paylines and reels, and allow players to define the storyline. 

Also known as i-slots, these games allow players to influence the game by spinning reel combinations or participating in a game adventure. Online casino players who enjoy video games will find i-slots compelling. 

One top feature of i-slots is that they don’t depend entirely on chance alone, like the traditional slots. Instead, your skills will come in handy when playing, helping to boost your winning chances. 

VR Slots

Virtual reality slots are another upgrade to online slots. Popular brands include Samsung Gear VR, Oculus Rift, Sony PlayStation VR, and Razer OSVR. VR online slots allow players to experience the entertainment of a virtual environment. 

Online Slot Machine Odds

A big tip when playing casino slots online is to search for those with the best odds. Aside from progressive jackpots, these games provide higher returns over a long time. However, many newbie players find it hard to find such titles. When searching for them, two factors are important – the return to player value (RTP) and volatility. Let’s take a look at these figures to understand them better. 

Return to Player Value

The RTP is the figure that details the expected payout. It is expressed as a percentage. For instance, if an online slot machine carries an RTP of 97%, you should expect to win 97% of the total amount you wager over some time.So if you wager $100, you should get $97 back when you play for a while. 

It is important to note that the RTP percentage figure is calculated for play over a long period. 


The volatility is the deviance from the RTP. For online slots with low volatility, there are more winning spins and a bigger chance to win the jackpot. The chances of winning are lower for higher volatility casino slots online, and you may lose spins more often. However, these slots come with bigger jackpots. 

House Edge

The house edge is the remaining percentage after the RTP figure. It’s the amount that goes to the operator. It is also referred to as the holding rate or holding percentage. The lower the RTP value, the higher the house edge value. 

Suppose a slot game has an RTP of 93.5%. Here, the house edge value is 6.5%. Hence, for every $100 you use as a bet, $6.5 goes back to the house. 

When you consider a slot online, the odds are a feature you should not overlook. A golden rule to watch out for is that your ideal online casino slot should have a high RTP value but low volatility. 

Slots Bonuses

Because of the house edge values, you could lose your entire bankroll, especially if you don’t watch out for online slot machines with good odds. This is why you should always take advantage of the bonus offers. Slot bonuses help to reduce the value of house edge figures and push the odds in your favor. Here are the types available for slot machines online.

Cashable Bonuses

Cashable bonuses are the most common offer available and come with a wagering requirement. They are simple and become available for withdrawal after completing specific wagering requirements. These conditions vary from one online casino to another, so you should always study them before claiming the bonus. 

Sticky Bonuses

Like cashable bonuses, sticky bonuses come with a wagering requirement. A sticky bonus means you can use it to place bets, but the bonus itself can’t be withdrawn. Only the profits are available for payouts.  

Phantom Sticky Bonuses

Here, the offer is added to your real-money deposit, and you can use it when placing bets. However, it is not available for withdrawals, as the casino will subtract it from your balance when trying to place a withdrawal. 

Most analysts consider this offer to be useless. However, it has its uses, especially for wagering requirements. You can easily use the offer to meet the terms and conditions without paying for any losses. 

Clearplay Bonuses and Free Offers

Clearplay bonuses or rewards were first used by Microgaming, a top-rated software provider. They are similar to cashable bonuses, as you can withdraw them when you meet wagering requirements. 

Cashback Bonuses

Cashback bonuses are gradually becoming popular on the best online slots sites. They refund a percentage of the player’s total losses over a period. A particular feature of this bonus is that there are no wagering requirements, which makes them highly desirable. 

Double Up

After making a spin, some of the best online slots offer players a chance to gamble and possibly double their win. If the game wins, the player loses everything. In the case of a tie, only the original win becomes available.  

There are no wagering requirements or house edge value for the double-up bonus.  

Free Online Slots

Whether you’re used to playing at regular brick-and-mortar casinos, you won’t find difficulty adapting to the online versions. However, you may not be ready to use your real-money budget to play online slots as a beginner. That’s where free slots come in. 

There are several reasons why many people enjoy wagering on an online slot for free. They include:

  • It’s a great way to test the casino’s software and make sure the site works properly, 
  • Find the slots with the themes and features of your choice before playing with real money. 
  • Learn strategies. This is an excellent way for many newbies to try out different skills and develop a strategy that works.  
  • Quick Gaming. Many players just want to enjoy the thrill of online slots without using their real cash.  

Online Slots FAQ

What are the best online slots to play?

The best online slot games are those that offer higher odds. To find these slots online, look for the RTP, volatility, and house edge figures. These mechanics help you to know what your chances of winning are. 

Are online slots trustworthy?

Yes. You can trust real slots online as they carry essential safety measures that offer you a winning chance. Reputable online casinos only add slots that carry a license from trusted software providers. 

What are online slot machines?

Online slots are the most popular casino games you will find on the internet. They are easy to play and are available in different themes and mechanics. There is not much difference between the slot machines at brick-and-mortar and online casinos in terms of gameplay. 

What are the types of online slot games?

There are many different slots online. They include interactive slots, video slots, progressive jackpot slots, and classic slots. Each differs in the type of gameplay  they offer players. 

What is a progressive jackpot slot game?

A progressive jackpot (progressive slot) slot game offers a potential cash prize that increases with the number of players wagering. The online slot subtracts a particular amount for each bet and adds it to a prize pool until a player wins, when the figure rounds back to zero or a preset amount. 

How do slot bonuses work?

Slot bonuses usually come from the software provider or developer of the machine. They work by increasing the player’s bankroll. Most come with wagering requirements that differ from one online casino to another. We recommend checking the requirements before you try to claim any bonuses. 

Can I play slots for free?

Yes. Many online casinos now have demo versions of slots in their libraries. This allows players to spin the reels without using a real-money wager. This way, you can get a feel of the game before proceeding to use real money. 

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