Online Slots – How Do They Really Work?

by Nav | Jan 13, 2023

Online Slots – How Do They Really Work?

Keen to join a mobile online casino in the UK and try your luck playing online slots? As a beginner, you probably have a good few questions that you’ll need answers to before getting started. How do virtual slots work and how can you increase your chances of winning? How do you play slots online? What’s the difference between free spins no deposit slots and free bonus no deposit slots? And which are the best slots to play online? Read on for the answers to many of these questions and more so you can get the best out of your gaming experience. 

What are online slots?

Online slots are types of online casino games that involve placing a bet and then spinning reels to try to match symbols and land winning combinations. They are almost exact renditions of the slot machines played at land-based casinos, with the exception that they are played online using your PC or mobile device and using virtual money transferred from your bank account into your casino wallet instead of casino chips. 

How do online slots work and how can you win?

Let’s get right to it with the question on most players’ minds! The short answer is that there is no strategy that you can deploy to ensure that you win when playing online slotss. All slot games are based on a maths model or formula, as well as probability. Variance or volatility is then applied to the model to determine how often win sequences are likely to occur and what value these wins will be. All virtual slot machines must publish their RTP (Return to Player) Percentage. The higher the percentage, the more the slot will return in the long run. Slots promise fair gameplay because they rely on Random Number Generators (RNGs) to determine the outcome of every spin. This software is programmed with an algorithm based on the game’s set RTP and volatility, and each symbol is assigned a different “weight” based on its value. Higher value symbols are more heavily weighted, which means the probability of landing them is lower than that of a lighter-weighted, lower value symbol.

Bonanza online slot game

It has been inferred that players who tend to win the most when playing slots online are those who bet the highest, but this is often a matter of perception.

For example:

  • Player bets 10p per spin and wins £1.00. That represents a 10x win; but
  • Player bets £100 per spin and wins £1,000.00. It seems like a bigger, better win, but also represents a 10x win.

What’s the difference?

Well, the difference is that the perceived value to the player is bigger. If you win £1.00, there is little perceived value. After all, what can you buy with £1? A £1,000.00 win, on the other hand, has a higher perceived value. However, in turn, the risk or stake is higher.

In land-based casinos, in the VIP slot areas, it has been known that slots therein have a higher RTP, and that is to reflect/compensate, somewhat, for the fact that the minimum stakes are higher than elsewhere on the casino floor. In those scenarios, yes, it is possible (theoretically) to win more, but that is simply because the RTP is higher.

So, in summary, our top tip for increasing your chances of winning when playing slots online would be to look for the RTP of a game and make sure that you are happy with the title’s volatility rating. 

Play lower stakes first to see how the game works and whether you enjoy the gameplay and experience. If you do, then you can increase your stake. However, please note that simply increasing stakes is not a recipe for winning more. As explained, all virtual slots are based on a maths model which has undergone millions and millions of test runs to balance how it pays out and plays.

How to play online slots

How to play slots

A great way to start with slot games online is to look out for game reviews and read up on a game before you play. There might be an online video or a demo version of the game that allows you to take it for a spin to manage your expectations. 

Once you have decided that a game is for you, then follow these simple steps:

  • Step 1: Join an online casino or a mobile online casino and deposit some money into your casino wallet. If you live in a country that has a licensing framework or regulator, then make sure the online casino you are joining has the appropriate licence and permission. This will ensure that your rights as a player are protected, and more importantly, so is your money.
  • Step 2: Identify a slot game that you have researched, that you like the look of or one of the more popular slots.
  • Step 3: Read the game rules and instructions carefully, paying close attention to the game’s unique paytable. This paytable details the value of each of the symbols in the game and how much each potential match will pay out. This knowledge will help you to make informed decisions regarding your wagers.
  • Step 4: Before you press the spin button and play your first game, always check the stake value and/or the number of lines that you are playing with. Some slots set the entry stake for you, and it’s not always on the lowest setting. This means that you might bet more than you intended to.
  • Step 5: After checking everything, press the spin icon/button. The reels will spin, the sound effects will kick in, and, eventually, the reels will come to a stop. It is at that point that you will find out if you have won something or triggered a bonus.
  • Step 6: Just continue to tap the spin button after every cycle and follow any on-screen instructions if you trigger a bonus or feature game. You can adjust your bet as required for each spin. 

If the game allows, you can opt to use the auto spin button. This allows a set number of spins to happen without you tapping the screen.

And that’s it. Online slots are the easiest and simplest games to play in any online casino.

What are Megaways slots?

Megaways online slot games

Megaways™ is an invention by Big Time Gaming, where each spin has its own unique number of ways to win, with a different amount of symbols appearing on the reels each time. Each reel can have anywhere from two to eight symbols, creating loads of different combinations that can expand into hundreds of thousands of ways to win. Megaways™ slot games often offer over 117,600 different ways to win based on the combination of symbols and the number of reels available. Therefore, Megaways™ slot games can offer massive winning combinations.

Megaways™ winning combinations pay out from left to right and are based on matching symbols across the adjacent reels, no matter the size, placement on the reel or how many of the same symbols are on each reel.

To calculate the total number of ways to win, first, you have to multiply the number of symbols on each reel by each other.

So, if we take a standard seven symbol reel and six reels setup for this, we will have to multiply each reel separately against the others.

For example:

  • 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 = 117,649 ways to win

To break it down even further: You multiply the symbols on the first reel with the symbols on the second reel, multiply what you get from those with the next reel, and so on. Using the same example as above, it would break down like this:

  • 7 x 7 = 49
  • 49 x 7 = 343
  • 343 x 7 = 2,401
  • 2,401 x 7 = 16,807
  • 16,807 x 7 = 117,649 ways to win

Fear not if this maths has your head spinning alongside the reels in your game! The slots do all of the calculations for you, and obviously, the above example is based on the maximum possible ways to win – every spin is different! 

To play one of our Megaways™ slots, simply create an account and go to the “Slots” page, where you will see all the latest Megaways™ games, such as:

What are the most popular slots?

Popular online slots - The Phone Casino

Every online casino will have its own list of popular slots unique to the customers who play via that online casino. There are, after all, countless themes and types of slot games to choose from, which is why answering the question, “what are the most popular slots?” may turn out to be a real head-scratcher. 

While some operators stick to the classics and offer only one slot provider or platform, others strive to include slots from a wide range of slot providers. 

At The Phone Casino, we have a section of slots dedicated to the newest and most popular slots, according to our players.

In our blog posts, we also show you a list of the biggest payouts every month. So, the popular games can change monthly.

You can be easily misled by some online casino sites, claiming that their players have won millions and millions, but all they are doing is quoting the aggregate of all payouts and none of the associated stakes. Instead, we try to take an honest approach and inform you of what some of our customers have actually cashed out, as we believe that this is the best measure of what people have really won.

Check out our blogs on our monthly winners and the biggest payouts.

With The Phone Casino, all slot titles listed on the site have been licensed by the UK Gambling Commission – the Random Number Generator (RNG) software and the listed RTP rates of all the slot games have been subject to strict audits and verified for UK players.

Here are some of the most popular slots according to our players:

Online slots constitute over 70% of online casino games, and this really is an indicator of their popularity. We have come a long way from the original design of slot machines, just like technology has revolutionised our mobile devices and how we can now play these games through them.

No matter where you choose to play slots, please always remember the tips outlined in this blog, play safe and, most importantly, have fun! 

Play the best online games The Phone Casino

Looking for the best online casino the UK has to offer? Choose The Phone Casino for online slot games, live casino games and much more. It’s easy to play from the convenience of your home or even on the go when you have all of the thrills of a casino in the palm of your hand! Register whenever you’re ready to explore our menu of favourites. 

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