A Beginner’s Guide to Online Slots
Playing slot machines online is easy in that all you have to do is pump in the appropriate number of coins, hit the play button, and see the result. After a spin, you either go to a bonus round, if it’s a bonus machine, or use more coins and play again.
But playing that way can lead to mindless, automatic play where you lose a lot of cash quickly. If you’re new to online slots, or find that you’re going through cash quickly, use this beginner's guide to ensure your playing methods are sound.
Slots Are Unpredictable
The first thing to remember when playing slot machines online is that all machines are totally unpredictable. Random number generators (RNGs) that determine what symbols will come up and in which order govern slot machines. When you put in your tokens, you never know what will happen next. Unlike poker, there’s no way to determine your chances of winning or what you may win on a given spin.
Thus, although playing at a certain pace or alternating the number of coins you use may give you the illusion that you are influencing the outcome of your online slots play, you are not. The primary manner in which you can influence play is most often achieved by playing the maximum number of coins to give you the biggest payout and by making certain choices in the slot’s bonus round.
Slot Machine Basics
Every slot machine is composed of a series of reels. The number of reels is always odd with machines having three, five, seven, or even nine reels. Each reel has various icons or symbols on it. You win money if, after the reels spin, they stop and align in a manner that results in winning combination on one or more paylines.
The payline of a slot machine is composed of rows going across the reels from left to right. Paylines may be comprised of symbols that are all in the same row, or they may be in rows that fluctuate across the reels. Machines have from one to more than 50 paylines.
The symbols on a slot machine, which in essence align to make a winning combination of images across a payline, are in some way related to theme of the machine. As an example, a machine with an adventure film theme will include characters and other images from that movie, while one that is based on a sport will include images associated with the particular sport’s theme.
Some symbols have specified properties and include free spin, scatter, wild, and bonus symbols. Often machines will offer a certain number of free spins if two or three of the designated free spin symbols come up on one turn. Wild symbols are used to complete paylines, as they can become any other symbol that’s associated with the payout table.
Bonus symbols will usually send you into the bonus round and scatters may work in various ways. Scatters often influence the start of bonus rounds or your ability to win free spins.
Before playing any slot machine, read the associated payout table that tells you what combination of symbols will result in you going to the bonus round, hitting a winning combination, or capturing free spins. It will also inform you on how much you will win on a given turn depending on the combination of symbols and how much you bet.
Choosing Your Machine
A major aspect of playing online slots is learning various machines and deciding which ones you want to play. In choosing the Internet slots you’d like to play take some time to learn various machines by utilizing the free play mode. Sites usually allow members to play free slots on selected machines. There are also slot machine information sites that can give you access to free play online slots.
There are many things to consider when choosing online slots.
Here are some important questions to ask:
- Do you like the look and feel of the machine?
- Is it exciting to play?
- Does playing the maximum bet meet your budget?
- Is there a bonus round where you can expand winnings? (This is recommended.)
- How many reels and paylines do you personally want on an online slot?
- What’s the maximum jackpot versus the max bet? Is it a good value?
- Are there numerous medium payouts? (This aspect is preferred.)
There are other factors to consider once you narrow down your choices. When you find a machine or machines you enjoy, it’s time for the next step. There’s still a little more work to do before you start to play slot machines online for real money.
Not Quite Ready
Prior to making the final decision on which machine to play, online slots players need to find out the payout percentage on the games in which they are interested. This can be done by going to review sites or the manufacture’s site or sometimes at the casino itself. Always choose a machine with a payout percentage of 95% or higher. Many of the best Internet slots payout from 97% up to 100% or even better!
How to Play Slots Online
Those who play slot machines online often develop specific methods of play and even certain rituals that they feel increase their chances of winning. If these things help you enjoy your time at the slot machine, and then by all means engage in them. Here are some tips designed to make sure you have a good experience.
When playing Internet slots be sure to:
- Stay focused on the moment.
- Track how much money you are spending and winning/losing.
- Stop playing when you’ve lost what you’ve come to spend.
- Stop playing if you’ve won a substantial amount of cash.
- If you play the double up game in the bonus, remember that you can lose all bonus winnings.
- Play for fun and not to win the month’s rent or car payment.
Preparation is Essential
Preparation is key to playing slot machines online. Knowing a machine before you start pumping cash into it will help you understand any choices you may have, especially as far as the bonus round and double up features are concerned. Be sure to stick to your budget, stay focused, play at your own rate and have fun!
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