Online slots strategy

Online slots are played by millions of people around the world and, while they are largely based on luck, there are steps you can take to give yourself the best opportunity to win. Maximising your chances of winning can be as simple as staying sober while playing and making sure you understand how the game-play of your chosen slot works.

If this is your first foray into online slots games, they work much the same as their land-based counterparts, although you will find a greater selection from a huge variety of software developers at hundreds of online casinos available for real-money, or even practice, play.

Tips for winnings on the slots

Again we stress there is no foolproof strategy for winning on the slots. They are based on something known in the industry as RTP or return to player. This is a percentage set by the casino in conjunction with the software developer. For instance, if a casino has set the RTP on slots at 97.6% it means they will be taking 2.4% of every dollar put into the game. But that doesn’t necessarily mean you are guaranteed to get 97.6% of your money back – things such as jackpots and plain old luck play a huge role in determining how much you will walk away with.

Play maximum lines

Often when you are playing a progressive slots game (sometimes known as a jackpot slot) you can only trigger the huge win by playing maximum lines. If you are not playing max lines you are also costing yourself smaller wins that could keep you in the game longer. A few prime examples of jackpot slots where the player must play all lines to trigger the jackpot include popular Playtech progressive Gladiator (yes, based on the Russell Crowe classic), which has reached over €2 million, and Microgaming behemoth Mega Moolah that recently gave someone more than €10 million. If you want to play a penny slot or don’t want to play maximum lines, do your research and play a game that suits that style of player.

Alcohol clouds your judgment

Staying sober when playing slots is easier said than done. In fact a straw poll of the WGL denizens showed none of us has ever been stone-cold sober when playing a slot game, let alone an online slots game. The theory is that alcohol clouds your judgment (who would have thought) and contributes to poor decisions, which is pretty hard to argue with.

Bankroll or bust

When you walk through the virtual doors of an online casino, know how much money you are willing to lose and stick to that limit. Continuing to put in more money, seeking that one big win, is a recipe for disaster, so if you have €100 you are willing to lose, call it quits when it is gone. Another huge part of maintaining a bankroll is walking away. When you have a good win don’t look at it as a licence to lose more money. At the very least withdraw your initial stake so any future damage you do is restricted to winnings. As a general rule it is good to abide by withdrawing your initial stake plus 20%. This means you are a guaranteed winner on the day – no mean feat when you are playing online slots.

Know your game

We touched on it above but if you don’t know what feature you are chasing, what the payouts are, how many lines you need to play to trigger the jackpot, then you are doing yourself a disservice. Generally an online slots game will have instructions easily accessible which will include a pay table and anything else you need to know. But having said that it’s staggering how many people will begin playing without knowing what they are doing.

Understand casino bonuses

Often when you sign up at an online casino the website will offer you an incentive to play there. For instance a casino might give you a 100% matched bonus up €500. This means you can deposit up to the nominated amount and they will double it. For instance, if you deposit USD $100 you will have $200 to bet with in total. Just remember that often this bonus amount will come with “wagering requirements” that mean you have to fulfil certain criteria before you can withdraw the money. A standard wagering requirement might be 35X, which means you have to bet the money 35 times before you can withdraw it. Some other casinos might cap a bonus win at a certain amount. You do not want to cost yourself a big win because you are betting a bonus amount – so do your homework and use bonuses wisely.

Practice makes perfect

Sigh. We know just how boring it is to play a slots game in practice mode but it can be seriously beneficial to real money players. All of the things we have mentioned above can take some practice (yes, even refraining from drinking) and all can have serious repercussions on the bottom line. Most online casinos will offer their games in a free-play casino, even if it is for a limited time. A few practice spins and understanding the functionality of the game can go a long way to maximising your winnings.

The gamble feature – be cautious

It’s always fun when you receive 20% of your initial stake back from a bet on a slots game to hit that gamble button. Often this gamble feature will give you the option to go red or black, which will double your win. The other option is to choose which suit the card will come up. As there are four different suits, choosing correctly will multiply your winnings by four. Just remember there is no limit to how much you can lose when using this feature, but there is a limit to how much you can win. Used in moderation this feature can add to your gaming experience but don’t rely on it to make you rich.

Where should I play online slots?

Finding an online casino at which to play slots is relatively easy in the modern age. There are hundreds of online casinos accepting almost every currency on the planet.

You just need to do a bit of research and use websites such as WGL to find legitimate and trustworthy online casinos that cater to your needs. The last thing you want to do is lose part of your bankroll to currency conversion fees or have no idea how much you are wagering because you are living in the USA and gambling in sterling at a UK-based online casino.

A few things to look for when looking for a safe casino are:

  • Where is it based? If a casino is based in Malta or another respected jurisdiction they will have to abide by certain regulations and restrictions and it greatly improves your chances of a safe and happy experience.
  • What software does it use? If a casino doesn’t have the slots game you want to play, why bother? Each casino will have its own interface and could use any number of software platforms or a mixture of many.
  • Deposit options: If an online casino does not accept web wallets and that’s how you want to deposit it is pointless signing up. Any review worth reading will discuss this aspect of it, especially given the troubles players in the USA and China face depositing at casinos.
  • Third party accreditation: Online casinos operating in a regulated environment will often have the mark of eCOGRA or other agencies specializing in keeping operators, software companies and other people moving in these circles honest.