The first slot machine was invented way back in 1899, New York. For better or worse, what followed was an eruption in popularity in favor of this eccentric machine of luck. It’s been over a decade now, and slots, as we like to call them today, have remained a staple selection across casinos of all sorts. The dazzling reels have undoubtedly managed to enchant the majority of gamers throughout the world. Naturally, for as long as slot machines have existed, people have also wondered how to beat them.
How to win at slot machines
Yes, everyone can win from time to time, but is there a way of coming out ahead when playing slots in the long run? This is a question that holds a firm “no” as an answer to this day, although people may lead you to believe otherwise. We’ll explain just why, while offering a few tips and tricks that will help you play better next time you face a slot machine. It’s not all black and white as it seems, and there’s a thing or two you can learn if you’re a rather inexperienced player.
First things first, you need to protect yourself online. Don’t be swayed by people advertising guaranteed winning strategies for slot machines. They will just make you lose your money next time you play. What’s worse is that some will even try and sell you these “advanced techniques”. If someone had these masterful strategies at hand, they’d be at the casino ripping off slots, instead of trying to sell them online for a pretty penny.
When it comes to slot machines, pure logic should be enough to make the picture clear for you. All slots have a predesignated RTP (Return to Player) percentage that dictates the house edge. We’re yet to come across a slot machine offering 99% RTP, but even if it did, that 1% is still enough for casinos to profit, albeit marginally. Moreover, every spin of the slot reels is determined completely at random. Not by the time of day, not by the jackpot, not by how much you’ve played. It’s pure randomness at its finest with a fixed house edge to boot.
Now that we have that out of the way, let’s focus on the bright side and learn how to increase your winning chances while playing slots.
Casino tips for slot machines
By reading all of the above, you may ask yourself why should you even play if the house has an edge. The point here is that you shouldn’t play in hopes of a reliable, long term return because slots won’t pay your bills. Nor will any other casino game for that matter.
However, thousands of pounds obtained from slot machines go in players’ pockets every day. They are the most played casino game for a reason. You too can come out ahead when playing, should you have the right approach. The casino won’t care much about your individual wins, but the players’ wins overall. This is what determines their profit margin.
94-97% RTP (video slot average) is a fairly high of a shot to win. In fact, with the right mindset, slots can be both profitable and entertaining. You just have to go in playing with the right expectations in mind, and you absolutely have to know when to stop.
If you’re having a hot streak of wins, that’s when you should start considering calling it a night. It may seem counter-intuitive, but eventually the slot machine will start taking back what it gave you. If you start to feel the game slowly chipping away at what you earned so far, that’s a good sign to quit. A commonly accepted rule of thumb is to stop when you have close to 10 times of your initial “investment”. Naturally, this really depends on your initial deposit’s value. You can’t realistically expect £10k out of £1k – an extreme example, but it sets our point right.
Slot machine tricks
There are hardly any tricks for slot machines that will make you rich overnight. As we said above, nobody can guarantee a winning scheme. People win by getting lucky. In fact, with today’s video slots, you don’t actually have to get extremely lucky to win. You merely need to set your limits. Almost every player who’s played slots for a notable period of time has won by a fair margin, the mistake people make is letting greed get the best of them.
Slot machine tips
A slot will pay you sooner or later, almost guaranteed. It’s up to you whether you want to take that money and leave, or give the machine a chance to take it all back. If you play on a regular or semi-regular basis, devising a long term plan can help you out.
Set your budget
As an example, if you’re going to devote a portion of your time over each weekend to playing slots, it is crucial to determine your budget per session. £10, £20, £50… whatever works for you. Define the budget you’re most comfortable with and remain disciplined. Look at that money as entertainment money, as you would if you went to the movies or a theme park.
Never chase losses
Losing feels bad, we’ve all been there. After you’ve lost the entire bankroll you had in mind for that session, don’t reach for your credit card and look towards regaining that lost money. More often than not, you will lose more and feel worse. Take a break and come back refreshed, you’ll thank yourself later.
These two tips can help immensely if you plan on sticking around at a casino. Yes, everyone (including us) will tell you that you can’t come out ahead in the long run. However, the long run is a vague term when it comes to slot machines. Research has shown that it takes up to 100,000 spins to reach a mathematical RTP predesignated for a certain slot. That’s a lot of spins, and with so many players playing, it truly comes down to luck whether you’ll be a winner or not.
For every player that wins, there’s another one who loses. Nobody know which side of the coin you’ll end up on. It may be the losing one, which is why you should always play with money you won’t regret losing.
Best slot machines to play
The number thing you should know, above everything else, is on which slots to play. What constitutes the best slots to play? Assuming you’re looking at payouts and not aesthetics, the answer to our question would be a mixture of slot variance and RTP.
High variance slots
These are the type of slots that can make or break your night in a short time span. A high variance slot can fill your bankroll “out of nowhere”, but it can also eat away at your deposit rather quickly with nothing to show for.
Take Immortal Romance by Microgaming as an example. This video slot has two bonus features that can pay immensely when triggered, but a rather poor payout on its base game symbols. Depending on your luck, this game can seamlessly eat away at your bankroll but it can also increase it by tenfold with a single bonus round. Which end of the stick you’ll end up getting is a matter of luck, but this is what essentially constitutes a high variance slot.
The high variance games can be also labeled “high risk, high reward” slots. Whether you’re willing to take the risk for a big payout, or look for a steadier slot machine is up to you and your playstyle. The best tips we can offer when playing this type of slots is to place minimum bets, don’t use the gamble feature and stop once you’ve won a notable amount.
Highest paying slots
Almost every video slot online has the RTP information readily available to you. Naturally, the higher the better. RTP alone doesn’t make or break a slot machine, but a combination of other things to boot. Such as bonus rounds, betting range and variance.
If you’re simply going after the highest paying slots, look for the RTP and you’ll be good to go. We would recommend some of the following high paying slots:
Thunderstruck II – Microgaming
Thunderstruck II is one of the highest paying Microgaming slots around. 5 reels, 243 ways to win, and a bonus round that can go four ways certainly has potential to make your night, week or even month.
Blood Suckers – NetEnt
Blood Suckers by NetEnt is famed for its high RTP. It’s one of the highest in the industry – an astounding 98%. The game has two bonus rounds aside from its frequent win-popping base symbols. Blood Suckers is one of the most reliable slots you can play. Should you come out on the losing side at the end of your session, it shouldn’t be by much. The slot rewards you quite often either way.
Dead or Alive – NetEnt
Dead or Alive has 5 reels, 9 paylines, a free spins bonus round that can be retriggered and a RTP of 96.8%. The game is a favorite to a vast number of players online. Don’t be surprised if you come across multiple stories of incredible Dead or Alive winning. This slot can multiply even the smallest of bets to an enormous win in the hundreds.
To switch or not to switch?
It’s one of the most common questions among players. When you feel that a slot isn’t paying, you will want to switch to a different one to try your luck. In essence, it doesn’t truly matter as every spin is determined by the RNG machine, inconsequentially of previous results. In most situations, this dilemma shouldn’t be a concern for you.
However, exceptions do apply when it comes to a specific type of slots. We’ll take Thunderstruck II and Immortal Romance as examples, once again. These two video slots in particular have bonus rounds that are progressively unlocked as you play. They both have bonus rounds with four options. The first option is available as soon as you trigger the bonus round, but the rest are unlocked as you trigger it time and time again. Should you be getting close to unlocking all bonus rounds, it makes no sense to switch to a different slot after a drawn out gaming session. If your bankroll is depleted on the other hand, then it’s a different story.
Slots you should avoid playing
Knowing what slot not to play, is equally as important at which slots you should play. If you’re a new player with no experience to speak of, look towards playing slots that already have an established reputation. Gaming forums are your friends here, as you can read through player experiences and gather meaningful data.
As a new player, you’ll probably be operating with a smaller bankroll. Avoid experimenting at that stage and play what’s already been tried and proven to work.
Getting to the specifics, you should avoid playing progressive slots. They will eat your money – plain and simple. Of course, we want you to become a millionaire and win that jackpot. But if we were to advise you as a modest player who’s looking to have some fun, then do yourself a favor and don’t chase that jackpot. Progressive slots pay rather low in comparison to regular video slots. The base symbols are unrewarding, and the bonus games are infrequent.
Exceptions to this rule do exist, as Playtech’s Marvel slots in the likes of Iron Man 3 or Fantastic Four can pay a fair amount on regular play. The massive Mega Moolah, on the other hand, may not be as merciful.
Hopefully we’ve helped you learn a thing or two about slots, and how to increase your chances of winning when playing them. When all is said and done, the best advice we can give you is to look towards playing slots for entertainment purposes, strictly with disposable income.