Online Slots FAQs

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Read this FAQ page to find the answers to most common questions about our service. You’ll learn about slot machines, about the history of casinos, about bonuses and answers to most common questions that new gamblers have. The answers are succinct and get right to the point so you can get your information easily.

Welcome to the Onlineslots.com FAQ page. This is where you can find all the answers to the most often asked questions that our players have, and get started on a great way to have fun and maybe win lots of money. That smartphone of yours isn't just good for text messaging, it’s a mobile goldmine! Our team is dedicated to providing you with all of the information you need to make the best choices for your slots playing time.

Our reviewers are true industry experts and over the years we have developed the very strictest of proprietary review methods to ensure all of the online slots games we list are the best you can get. No more wasting your time on apps that crash mid spin! Let us help you get the right start, getting you ready to win real money playing online.

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Discover how to best play slots, find out how they work, and understand all of the important terminology, including scatters, wilds, progressives, payout rate, RNG, and more, through Onlineslots.com’s extensive online slots FAQs.
1) When were slot machines developed?

They were the brain child of Charles August Fey. An immigrant to America from his native Bavaria, he developed what we now know as the slot machine. The first one was ‘born’ in 1887 and later versions became smaller, making them easier to add to a variety of establishments.

Slot machines soon graced towns across America in bars and then casinos, and spread across the borders to Canada, followed by Europe. Thanks to the internet,, Charles’s invention now has the potential to reach billions.

2) What was the first online slot game?

In the mid-1990s the slot machine made the leap to cyberspace. The very first web based casino was Internet Casino. There you could find most of the games players still love today, although they've gotten a lot more sophisticated and varied since then. The first slot machines online looked pretty much the way they did in real life - minus the side arm land based players pulled to make the wheels rotate. In its place was the "spin" button you now see online.

3) How do I deposit funds to play?

When you open an account at any of the online casinos we list, you will have your own cashier section where you can upload money privately and securely. Although each casino accepts deposits in various ways, they do not all accept each of the available methods. If you have a preferred method of uploading funds, make sure that the site you choose to use works with that system. Most sites allow deposits from a bank account, credit cards or from various online e-wallets such as PayPal and Skrill(Moneybookers). When you’re dealing with your hard earned money, put in the research first.

4) What is a welcome bonus?

A welcome bonus is a monetary award that online casinos give new players for joining and uploading funds. The amount of the bonus varies from one site to another. We look for the online casinos that offer the very best welcome bonuses, as well as those who make it easy to get the reward.

5) Do you have to play online slots for real money?

No. Most of the online casinos have a no-download instant play option where you can choose the practice mode to play. This gives you the same great playing experience so you can learn new games, master the paylines and understand the rules before taking a chance with real money. Remember though, you have to play for real cash to win for real, there’s no shortcuts!

6) Do I have to download software to play?

No. Some online casinos are strictly software based, and you must download their software or app to play the games. Some, however, offer browser based options. These offer the same ability to open an account, deposit money, and play the games. They are also great for players looking to use mobile devices and Mac operating systems.

7) What is a progressive jackpot?

This is where the jackpot accumulates value every time it is played. This can be a progressive jackpot involving a single game, or may be linked to multiple slot machines in the online casino, all having one combined jackpot award. This means one thing - huge real money jackpots!

8) What is a payline?

The payline is a line that extends from one side of the slot window to the other. When the wheels stop spinning, the icons under the payline must match in a particular order. Unlike the earliest versions of slot machines, however, the modern slot machines do not just have a single center payline that runs straight across the face of the window. The payline can have many different geometric shapes, zigzagging across the screen through the three icons. Betting on more than one payline greatly increases your odds of winning.

9) What are free spins?

Free spins are extra perks that online casinos throw in so players can get an extra chance to win. The number of free spins and how they are awarded vary from one online casino to the next.

10) What is a paytable?

The paytable is a chart showing how much you will win on a bet of a certain value for each particular payline. Every online slot machine has a paytable unique to its patterns, so be sure to study it before beginning to play.

11) What is a scatter symbol?

Look for the scatter symbol details on each slots machine you play. Scatter symbols have various meanings depending on the game, and in some cases even different meanings depending on where they show up. You get different bonuses from a scatter symbol depending on how many appear in a payline, and sometimes they even earn extra bonuses just for showing up anywhere on the board. Those bonuses could be anything from free spins to extra bonus winnings.

12) What is a wild symbol?

A wild symbol is separate from the scatter symbol. It is a designated icon that is a wild card, and can fill out any winning payline. You might want to keep your notepad nearby with all the information readily available, there’s a lot to keep track of on some slots.

13) What are slot machines?

Slot machines are games of chance in which a Random Number Generator (RNG) is rapidly picking random numbers that correspond to game outcomes. You interact with the game by wagering a bet, which gives you the opportunity to engage a mechanism that instructs the game to take a snapshot of the current random number.

The game reveals the outcome associated with that random number through audio and video cues. If the game's paytable defines the outcome as a winner, the game credits you with a respective win amount predetermined by the paytable. You can then repeat the cycle by wagering another bet.

14) Are online slots really random?

They are at our recommended top sites. Game fairness is one of the attributes of the best online slots sites, and we're sticklers about sites using fair Random Number Generators (RNGs). That means a site's RNGs are validated and certified by third-party auditors recognized worldwide like GLI (Gaming Laboratories International) or eCOGRA (eCommerce Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance).

15) Do online casinos change the payout on slot machines?

They can, and that's why it's important to play only at sites licensed in strong regulatory jurisdictions. Strong licenses set boundaries on a permissible slots payout percentage, which measures how much return you can expect when playing a site's online slots. Better sites tend to exhibit higher transparency by publishing this metric. And you can be sure that our top picks are well-licensed organizations.

16) What is the difference between a class II and class III slot?

Class III slots are probably the kind you're more familiar with. Also referred to as "Vegas slots", class III games employ an RNG that randomly selects random numbers corresponding to predetermined payouts. You play class III slots by placing a bet and telling the game to take an instantaneous snapshot of the current RNG random number and display the payout it represents. Class III games run independently of each other. It's just you and the RNG.

Class II slots are connected to a single serve that determines outcomes in a way similar to Bingo where there is only one winner per outcome. In this case, you're playing against other players for winning outcomes each spin.

17) Are UK fruit machines different than US slots?

Yes. UK fruit machines provide a certain amount of control over the reels by randomly giving you the opportunity to either hold one or more reels at their initial values, or nudge one or more reels to adjacent symbols to wind up with a better outcome.

Fruit machines also provide a bonus board or bonus trail feature that comes into play at random intervals. The board/trail looks a bit like a racetrack of squares that are quickly lit and unlit as though a vehicle were traveling around the track. You attempt to stop the game when the most lucrative square is lit, and are rewarded whatever bonus the lit square describes.

Another striking fruit machine feature is the cash ladder in which symbols arranged vertically are rapidly lit and unlit successively, and your goal is to stop the action when the highest symbol is lit, which corresponds to the highest real cash win.

18) Is there a secret to winning jackpots?

While it might be a secret to some, it's really just common sense. You need to play at the best sites with the highest payout percentages, because the chance of winning jackpots figures into that percentage. But it's also important to understand whether your wager even makes you eligible for a jackpot win. On some games, you must bet the maximum wager in order to win the jackpot. Don't disqualify yourself inadvertently by not meeting any potential minimum jackpot wager.

19) Which slot machines have the best odds?

One would need to examine the software to know for sure. But there are a couple useful rules of thumb. For example, less complicated games often have better odds than their more complicated counterparts. You'll also see better odds on games played at higher denominations.

20) Are slots recommended at online casinos?

All games are recommended at the best online casinos. That said, slots tend to have higher house edges than the best bets on other casino games. But for some people, slots are just plain more fun. And there's no question that no other game can give you such huge wins for relatively small bets.

21) Is there a "good" time of the day to play slot machines?

No. Online casinos wish to serve as large an international audience as possible, which immediately renders the notion of time of day irrelevant.

22) Can you play slots for real money on a mobile?

You most surely can. And great real money mobile options are multiplying by the minute, especially at the top sites that we recommend. Login via your mobile in real money mode as you would elsewhere, and play to your heart's content - and hopefully your wallet's benefit!

23) Can you cheat the RNG on slot machines?

You would have to have intimate access to the RNG software itself. In normal circumstances, the RNG is picking numbers far more quickly than human reflexes could ever take advantage of. And even if the Terminator were playing, the fact that the numbers are truly random nullifies the possibility of cheating the RNG.

24) Does the amount of money I deposit influence the slot game?

No. The amount you deposit influences only the value of any matching bonuses you sign up for. However, once you've deposited real money, the amount you bet can influence a slot game by unlocking game features available only at higher wager levels. This is especially true on progressives, where a maximum is almost always required to hit the progressive.

25) Do online slots machines vary from casino to casino?

Sure. Different casinos carry different titles and can adjust their payouts within the ranges specified by their licenses. However, the same titles made by the same game developer will have the same kinds of symbols, lines, features, and so on.

26) What does volatility mean when talking about slot machines?

Slots volatility refers to a combination of a slot's payout frequency and the difference between its lowest and highest payouts. High and low volatile slots appeal to different kinds of players.

For example, a highly volatile slot doesn't payout often - but when it does, it's huge. You'll experience large runs of losing clicks followed by something big and beautiful. A low volatility slot, on the other hand, has more frequent wins per clicks, but the wins are modest at best. Your chances of hitting it big on a low volatility slot are small compared to a highly volatile slot.

27) Why are online slots so addictive?

First, they're simple. All you have to do is bet and tell the game when to select a random outcome. Second, slots developers put a lot of thought into the kinds of features that will attract and engage players. That includes showing you outcomes in and around your payline outcomes that are oh so close to bigger wins, motivating you to give it another go.

28) Why do professional gamblers avoid slots?

The pros tend to prefer more challenging games in which strategy truly matters. Or, better yet, games whose outcome is genuinely the result of skill, such as in poker. Plus, being a pro implies making a living from playing, and that implies giving the house the least amount of edge. Games like Roulette, Blackjack, Craps, and Baccarat all provide bets with lower house edge than slots. Even playing video poker with a strategy gives pros a better chance of winning in the long run.

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We hope that this FAQ page has helped provide you with the answers you need to play online slots with confidence. If you have any further questions, please contact us via email at info@onlineslots.com