Slots are a very popular type of casino game, but they are also somewhat different to the others. Card games such as backgammon, blackjack and poker provide plenty of opportunity for players to influence the outcomes through tactical play.
By contrast, slot machines owe a lot more to chance. Most of them are run on Random Number Generator (RNG) technology, so the results of each spin are pretty much arbitrary.
That might make you wonder why so many people love to play them. The fact is though that slot games have many attractions for players; including interesting themes, snappy video graphics and lucrative bonus rounds.
This is why gamers look for the best online slots sites when they are choosing where to play.
The Key Things to Look for in Slot Games
Although slot games are more luck-based than tactical, it is still possible to maximise your winning potential the next time you play one. The first step towards doing so is knowing what elements of a slot game to look out for.
That is the acronym for ‘return-to-player’ and it is a percentage that tells you how likely a slot game is to pay out per spin. Often the details of an individual slot’s RPG can be found on the casino site itself, but if not you can always locate them on sites dedicated to reviewing slot games.
The standard rule is that 96% is the lowest RPG you should settle for, unless you are really keen on the actual game itself.
Every slot game has a jackpot of some description and you might imagine that going for the biggest ones would be the smart choice. You would be wrong though; slot games with the really big jackpots are always lower volatility.
That means they pay out much more infrequently – although the payments tend to be larger when they do happen. The problem for most people is that they run out of money, time or both before the payout comes along.
Lower jackpot, high volatility slot games will pay smaller amounts to you regularly, so choose them if you are serious about winning.
When it comes to slots, betting the highest amount you are able to per pay line is the smart decision. In most cases, you will only be eligible for the main jackpot if you have bet the maximum amount.
Playing as many pay lines as you can gives you a better chance of winning anyway, so it just makes sense as an overall rule.
Further Slot Strategies
Slot games are mostly about luck and that leads many people to conclude that there are no useful strategic ways of playing them. Unfortunately, it is one of the inaccurate notions that have become accepted as fact.
There are genuine slot strategies.
This is quite a simple strategy but it has become a popular one among those in the know. To follow it, play a slot game five times, betting money on each of these five spins. After that point, you move on even if you have scored a win – unless that win is a sizeable one.
When you go on to the next slot game, you should follow the same steps once again. The idea behind the 5-Spin Method is to find a slot game that pays out really large winnings, without draining all your money before you get to that point.
Nudge vs. Hold
There are two features that are common to both online and physical slot games: the Hold feature and the Nudge one. In certain situations both can be useful ways of improving your odds.
This is a feature that enables you to move a reel on a slot game down one or more places, thus changing the position of the reel icons. It has the potential to create a matching row of icons, although there is no guarantee that it will do so.
This feature triggers when you have a matching row made up of high paying or bonus reel icons and it holds that row steady while the others are spun again. It can multiply the payout from that initial matching row by creating more – potentially even enough to activate the jackpot.
Both of these features are used to the best effect in the situations described above. You should not attempt to over-use them during slot play though, as they will not always produce results and you only get a certain number of plays of each of them.
The strategies that work best for slots are simple ones like playing low volatility games unless you have lots of money and picking slots with high RTPs. That is because they are simple games.