Online Slot Types
With hundreds of online slots vying for your attention at the best online casinos it can sometimes feel that choice is suddenly not such a good thing! However, bringing some order to this potential chaos is possible if you recognize that, amongst that seemingly bewildering choice, online slots tend to fall into a number of smaller categories, and you can whittle down your choices to categories that you prefer.
Perhaps one of the most immediately obvious distinctions is between three and five-reel online slots. The former are much simpler slots that hark back to the more traditional electro-mechanical casino machines that still find favour in land-based clubs in places like Las Vegas.
Five-reel slots added (obviously) more reels to the essential slot format, and as early examples in land-based clubs made use of video-game technology to present the reels virtually these can often be referred to as ‘video slots’.
For players who like more complexity than just more reels, online slots can also be categorized according to how many paylines are in play across the reels. Popular common configurations have between ten and twenty-five paylines (Starburst being a good example of a ten payline slot), but for maximum ways to win slots such as Game of Thrones can promise players 243 paylines.
Common graphical themes also abound in the online slots’ universe and this can also be a handy way to find games that appeal to your tastes. Cleopatra slot started a whole trend for Egyptian themed slots that many players swarm to, and TV, film and board games have proved a rich seam of inspiration too, with Marvel slots and Monopoly slots carving out sub categories in their own right.
Regional tastes can also influence players preferences too, and UK players in particular might want to seek out online fruit machines which function like the arcade-style games found in many pubs and clubs and feature nudge and hold features rarely encountered on the more common US-style ‘slots’ games.
Some land-based fruit machines have also made the leap to become online slots, with Rainbow Riches being a particularly notable example that players seemingly can’t leave alone.
One final category of online slot that is often given its own billing at online casinos is the progressive jackpot game. Another article on this site gives more detail on these deservedly popular games but, for now, these are easily marked out as the online slots that have the richest prizes that escalate before your very eyes, with some being legendary ‘millionaire-makers’.
Increasingly the best online casinos are incorporating more sophisticated filters on their sites to help players pare down the choice of online slots into helpful categories such as those we’ve highlighted above.
Finding a slot ‘type’ you love does help finding new slots you’ll enjoy that bit easier, but we do suggest being careful not to get too stuck in your ways – trying something out of the ordinary now and again could open up a whole new world of slots entertainment for you, and with free play versions to try there’s nothing to lose while you experiment a little.
Paylines and Reels
Modern video slots have a variety of winning reels and paylines. This is a list of the more common video slot types:
50+ line Video Slots – 5 reels and 50+ pay lines.
25+ line Video Slots – 5 reels and 25+ pay lines. The majority of popular online slots are this format.
15 and 20 line Video Slots – 5 reels and 15+ pay lines.
8 and 9 line Video Slots – 5 reels 8 to 9 pay lines.
5 line Video Slots – 5 reels and 5+ pay lines.
Multi-spin , Video – 3 reels and multi-spin.
Multi line , Classic – 3 reels and 3 up to 5 pay lines.
Single line , Classic – 3-reel classic slot with one pay line.
243 Ways To Win plus other 1,000+ paylines.
Scatters, Wilds and Multiplier Bonuses
As well as paylines slots have several common features that expand the game and award the slot player:
Scatter – Scatter symbols usually trigger a bonus round or a round of free spins. If a player lines up 3, 4 or 5 scatter symbols, not necessarily on a payline, then the online slot bonus game is usually triggered.
Wild – Wild symbols can substitute for any other symbol to help form wins. Wild symbols also award a win themselves if there are 5 of them on a payline.
Multiplier Bonus – During an online slot bonus game triggered by a scatter it is common for each win to be multiplied by a random number for example 3x.
Free Spins – Free spins are triggered when a scatter bonus round is triggered.