Online and Mobile Slots Guide
December 19, 2019
Online slots are known to millions of people around the world as the number 1 casino game choice. No matter where you’re from or which sort of games you like to play, there’s something for everyone.
The History of Online Slots
One of the first mentions of a slot machine is the Liberty Bell machine created by Charles Fey in 1887. A simple game that had 3 reels and 5 symbols, the aim was to land the Liberty Bell symbol to be a big winner.
From there on out, the slot machine proceeded to evolve and improve as the years progressed. In 1891, two men named Sittman and Pitt created a slot machine that featured 50 playing cards, much like poker.
The 5 reels each featured 10 playing cards and in order to be a winner, the player had to pull the arm and land combinations. This was also were the term “one-armed bandit” was born!
Later on, slot machines were introduced to land-based casinos in their most basic form. Soon enough, exciting themes and vibrant visuals were added to these machines to make them even more appealing.
Fast forward to the 21st century and online slots are all the rage. There are hundreds of different themes to choose from and thousands of games to suit your taste and your pocket. You can even play casino games that are technically online slots but function like a video game!
What Makes Online Slots so Popular?
What do casino players enjoy more than winning? Being entertained, of course!
While table games such as poker and roulette are fun, they can quickly become stale if you’re not in the winning seat. With online slots, it’s hard to be bored when there are literally thousands of different games to choose from.
It doesn’t matter if you’re in the mood for something with a Christmas theme, if you’re keen to spin the reels of a classic creation, or if you’re ready to win with a slot set in space, there’s something for everyone.
Online and mobile slots have been designed to keep players spinning by adding special features, fun bonus games, eye-catching visual and themes that capture the imagination. However, there are also simple casino games for those who aren’t interested in a lot of flash and bang.
This is what makes online slots (and their mobile slot counterparts) so popular. The entertainment factor never ends.
Online Slots Game Providers
As online slots boomed, game creators and software providers stepped up to the plate to provide the industry with more than just another way to play.
There are many software providers to choose from, hundreds in fact. While some are huge companies with massive teams to work on their creations, such as Microgaming and NetEnt, there are others that have smaller teams such as Thunderkick.
What makes the industry so interesting is that the size of the game provider team doesn’t necessarily affect the quality of the games created. Even smaller teams have the ability to design and release mind blowing online slots.
Some of the most popular software providers in the industry right now are Microgaming, NetEnt, Quickspin, Yggdrasil Gaming, Playtech, Play’n GO, Evolution Gaming, and Habanero Gaming.
Online Slot Special Features
Online slots are filled with bonus games and special features to make playing an even more exciting experience. Often triggered by the Scatter or Wild symbols, these bonus features provide more ways to win, the chance to multiply your winnings, and so much more!
Here are the most common bonus features you’ll find when spinning the reels of an online slot.
- Ways to Win (or Paylines) – Paylines or Ways to Win are the number of lines on a slot that you can use to create winning combinations. These paylines can range from 1 to thousands depending on how the game has been created.
- Return to Player (RTP) – Each online slot has a slightly different Return to Player rate. The RTP can range from 90% to 98% and it tells the player what the chances are of landing a win. If a slot has an RTP of 96%, it means that there is a chance that for every €100 bet, the player will receive $96 back over time. The higher the RTP, the better your chances of winning back your cash.
- Volatility – Knowing the volatility or variance of a slot is important for all players. A slot with high volatility means that winning is a little harder, but the rewards tend to be larger. Playing a low volatility slot means that smaller wins will land more often making the experience more fun for those who aren’t chasing big wins.
- Free Spins – Free spins are exactly that, free spins on the reels that you don’t have to place bets to receive. Often triggered by landing multiple Scatter symbols on the reels, free spins are restricted in number. You’ll often receive 10 or 20 free spins when triggering the bonus game.
- Multipliers – Multiplier are an awesome way to increase your wins. Not all slots have multipliers built in to their software but if they do, they could reward you greatly. Landing a multiplier or triggering one during a bonus game could mean a massive boost to your bankroll! Generally ranging from 2x to 10x your bet, multipliers can skyrocket up to 10,000x your bet if the software provider was feeling generous.
- Wild Symbols – Landing a Wild symbol on the reels will substitute for all other standard symbols to help you create winning combinations where there wasn’t one before. It’s that simple!
- Scatter Symbols – These are special symbols that are used to trigger bonus features. Each game can be different, but it generally requires 3 or more Scatter symbols to appear on the reels before a bonus feature can be enjoyed.
Different Online Slot Jackpots
Most online and mobile slots are designed with jackpots in place. Trigger one of these jackpots and you could walk away with (virtual) pockets of cash!
There are different jackpots that can be available on any particular casino game. There are also instances where this no jackpot available and instead a multiplier or high-paying symbol combination is the only way to boost your bankroll.
Online slot jackpots include:
Standard jackpots – A regular jackpot found on an online slot or mobile slot will pay out a set amount (such as 1000x your bet or €10,000). This can usually be triggered by landing a specific combination of symbols that can be found in the paytable.
Network-wide Progressive jackpots – Progressive jackpots grow as players place bets on a specific slot. If the progressive jackpot is network-wide, it will grow based on all of the bets by all of the players from around the world! These jackpots have the ability to grow to life-changing sums of money.
Non-network Progressive Jackpots – Unlike their counterpart, these jackpots are restricted to the online casino where the game is being played. While they still have the chance to grow to massive proportions, the jackpots will always be smaller than the network-wide progressive jackpots.
What are Mobile Slots?
Mobile slots became a huge part of playing at online casinos when the mobile boom took over many industries. Focused on creating entertaining experiences while on the move, mobile slots have grown tremendously in recent years.
In fact, mobile casino games are so advanced now that there is very little difference between playing a mobile or online version of the same game. This is great news for those who enjoy gambling from their mobile devices.
You can play mobile versions of your favourite online slot or even enjoy mobile-only casino creations.
The only real difference you may experience when playing a mobile slot is that the game controls may move around the screen slightly. Due to the smaller screen space, you may find that the spin button has shifted or the settings button is smaller than you’re used to.
Other than these very basic differences, playing casino games from your mobile device should be simple, fast, and flawless.
Questions & Answers
- Are online slots really random? – Depending entirely on the game provider, the answer should be yes. Online slots are created using an RNG (Random Number Generator) and all games should be checked at the online casino of your choice by a third-party company on a regular basis.
- Where can I play online slots? – Take your pick of any of our top online casinos and you can’t go wrong! Playing online slots at a trusted and reputable online casino is the only way to play with peace of mind.
- Can I play online slots for fun? – Yes! Many online casinos and software providers provide freeplay versions of their online and mobile slots.