Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have a slots question? We just might have the answer for you

We get lots of questions about playing slots.

Most questions we turn into full-fledged articles or guides. But some questions we get are too short and simple to turn into guides.

So what do we do?

We dump there here – our slots FAQ.

If you have a slots related question there’s a good chance we have the answer below.

And if not?

Just send us an email with your question and we’ll get it added ASAP.

Now in no particular order…

Can you become a winning slots player?

Maybe if you win a massive jackpot. If you were to win life-changing money I think you could classify that as being a winner.

But for most people the answer is no. The reason is simple – slots have a large house edge (somewhere between 10-30 percent) and there’s no way to offset that edge enough to beat the house.

Other than total luck, of course.

Are online slots rigged?

No – at least not at most casinos.

The thing is, casinos don’t have to rig their slots. There is such a large house edge already that just by playing on one the casino is making money.

That said – you can increase your chances of playing on a legit and fair machine by joining a casino that happens to be licensed and regulated. It would also be a good idea to join a casino that has their software regularly tested, has been in business for a few years and is in good standing with the online community.

How can you tell a slot machine is ready to payout?

There’s no way to tell. Slot machines work on an algorithm – everything is totally random. This spin has nothing to do with the next.

What is the biggest online jackpot from a slot machine?

A Mega Moolah machine paid out the equivalent to $8.2 million in 2009. The year before it paid out $5.5 million.

Which slot machines have the best odds?

The Wizard of Odds website discussed this. He said the machines with the best odds are either the higher denomination machines or the machines that don’t have all the fancy bells or whistles.

The machines with the worst odds are usually the video poker machines with the big displays and tons of graphics. Next to that would be playing slots with progressive jackpots (if you’re playing FOR the jackpot).

What does one-armed bandit mean?

This refers to the lever on the side of classic slot machines. The bandit bit comes from the fact that slot machines have bad odds. Most of the casino’s revenue comes from slot machines.

What is the difference between hit frequency and payback percentage?

Hit frequency is how often the machine pays out – how often you can expect to win money.

Payback percentage tells you how much money the machine will payout in the long run.

What is a good bankroll management strategy for slots?

There isn’t a good/right answer to this. But I’ll tell you my approach.

I figure out how much money I want to spend in a session and how long I want to play. Then I do my best to make my bankroll last that long. If I lose, I’m done.

My sessions go something like this:

I usually play a 40-60 line machine at 1 penny (approx 0.40 – 0.60 per spin). Each spin I take my time. In other words, when I win money, I let the machine do its thing and not try to rush it (by pressing spin again and having the money hit my balance right away). I also take my time in the bonus rounds.

By doing this I can make my money stretch for a long time.

Now let’s say I start winning some money and now I have more than my initial $20. What I’ll usually do then is bet a little more, like .02 per line. I’ll do that until I double my money again or until I fall below my $20 mark in which case I’ll drop back down to my original bet.

This system works pretty well for me. It allows me to play for a long time and bet bigger (which is exciting) when I’m winning.

What are Flash casinos?

These are casinos that use Flash programming to create and deliver their games. Doing it this way allows casinos to offer their games to people who can’t or don’t want to download their software – like Mac or Linux users. You can play these games using Adobe Flash (a free download).

There are other types of software casinos use, too, such as Java or HTML5. HTML5 is the way things are now which will eliminate the need for downloads and will allow more people to play games online, no matter the device or operating system they use. Expect to see more casinos using HTML in the coming months and years.

How can I make more money playing slots?

There are a couple ways to make more money. All of them are pretty easy to do.

The first thing would be to play a high denomination machine. It’s said that these have better odds than the lower stake machines.

You can also just find higher paying machines. Keep in mind these are based on long term expectations, so unless you play for a long time you probably won’t see much or any difference.

You can also stop playing for progressive jackpots. The odds of hitting them are ridiculous anyway.

You can also sign up to get a players card. These can give you free spins, cash back and other perks like buffets, hotel rooms and shows. This isn’t winning more money per se, but it does give you ‘more.’

You can also sign up for a bonus. That gives you more money to play with, although you do have to clear the requirements first before you can ask for a withdrawal. You can read our bonus page for more information.

What are networked slots?

These are slots that are tied into other (similar) machines across several casinos. These are usually progressive jackpot machines. You might be playing The Dark Knight at New York New York, building the jackpot. But someone else might be building up the jackpot from the MGM or Treasure Island.

Network slots are great because jackpots build faster so there’s more money to win.

Should I buy a course on slot systems?

No. There is absolutely no way to beat a slot machine. There’s no strategy that gives you an edge.

Those books are a waste of time and money.

If you want to beat the house you’re much better off playing a low edge game like blackjack, pai gow poker or baccarat. If you want an even higher edge you’re better off playing poker.

Why are slot machines addictive?

There are lots of reasons.

For some people it might look like a good way to get rich. Especially when casinos tout a high payback percentage. You get 99% back and you can hit a jackpot? Where do I sign up, right?

There is also a psychological bit. You get dopamine hits whenever you get a bonus round, win money or come close to a jackpot. Dopamine is like a chemical reward for your brain. Once you get a taste of it you’re more likely to chase it again. Slot machines are a great example of a constant dopamine drip.

What are the odds on a slot machine?

This depends on where you’re playing.

Online you’ll find odds around 10-20 percent in favor of the casino. That works out to be 80-90 percent in your favor.

Offline you’ll find similar odds, but it varies from state to state or country to country because every jurisdiction has different rules for what the minimum payout needs to be.

How can I make $300 a week playing slot machines?

This is the best response I’ve seen to this question:

  1. Get a job paying 300 dollars a week.
  2. After work, go to a slot machine.
  3. Look at the slot machine, do not insert any money.
  4. Walk away.

The point?

There is no way to consistently make any dollar amount playing slots.

What is a flat top slot machine?

The top refers to the jackpot – it’s fixed and won’t exceed a specific amount.

This is different from, say, a progressive jackpot machine that continues to build until somebody wins it. A progressive jackpot isn’t fixed.

What slot machines are the most fun for a low stakes player?

This depends from player to player. You won’t find a one-size-fits-all answer.

Here is what I find fun:

– A game with lots of ways to win.
– A game with lots of bonus rounds. I prefer interactive ones where I get to do things.
– A game with some sort of story or ties in a movie or TV theme.
– A game with themes from comic books, movies and TV shows I like.

So I usually try to find the 5-reel video poker machines that offer these elements or features. You can learn more about different slot machines on our slot types page or our how to play slots page.

What is a progressive slot machine?

These are machines that have jackpots that payout once somebody hits the winning combo. Of each max bet paid a small portion goes into the jackpot. The jackpot continues to grow, with no cap or ceiling, until somebody wins it.

Progressive jackpots can get into the hundreds of thousands – even millions – of dollars.

How do I win at slot machines?

I assume you mean what makes you money. If you mean win like how to beat slots, then that’s not something I can help you with. It’s not possible.

But to win money you just need to hit the right combinations of symbols. Each machine is different – you’ll want to check out the payout section of each machine for details.

Are your odds any better if you stop the reels on a slot machine?

No. The outcome is already determined once you hit spin.

What different kinds of slot themes are out there?

There are tons of different themes based on TV shows, personalities, movies, comic books, video games and more. Here are some off the top of my head:

  • Ellen DeGeneres
  • Elvis
  • Iron Man
  • Iron Man 2
  • The Hulk
  • Wolverine
  • Star Trek
  • Hitman
  • Wizard of Oz
  • Monopoly
  • Life
  • Clue
  • Peter Pan
  • Willy Wonka
  • Sex in the City
  • The Dark Knight
  • Batman and Robin
  • Wonder Woman
  • Superman
  • Wheel of Fortune
  • Sorry!

And more. Lots more.

Have a question we didn’t answer? Send us an email and let us know.