A Few Words About Slot Machines


Slot machines are popular in all casinos around the world, mainly because you can play slowly or quickly, wherever you want and you don’t need to have the skills to win. Slots are probably the ultimate game of chance, whether you’re playing a traditional mechanical slot game or a more sophisticated online video slot game.

Playing in Slots

Playing in a slot game is very simple. Enter your money, pull a lever or press a button and then see if you win. Your goal when playing in a slot game is to form a winning combination of symbols appearing on the winning line of the machine. There is a payout table for each slot that explains how much money you make for certain combinations.

Odds and Earnings

Slots today have all sorts of symbols, including cherries, diamonds, bars, aliens, cartoon characters.

But the common point of all slot machines is this: the more reels and symbol combinations the slot machine has, the harder it is to win the machine’s jackpot.


Here is an example. Suppose you play in a pay slot if you have 3 cherries in a row. And suppose each of the 3 reels in the slot machine has 1 cherry and 19 other symbols on each reel. The chances of you getting the 3 cherries are 1/20 X 1/20 X 1/20, which is 1 in 8000.

Suppose you play on a larger machine with 100 symbols per reel instead of 20. Your odds change dramatically. 1/100 X 1/100 X 1/100, that is, 1 in 1,000,000.

Or suppose you’re playing on a 5-reel machine instead of 3, and the reels only have 20 symbols each. You might think you have a better chance of jackpotting in this slot game, with 3 reels with 100 symbols per reel, but the math might surprise you.

1/20 X 1/20 X 1/20 X 1/20 X 1/20 = 1 at 3,200,000. Your chances of winning the jackpot are 3 times better on the 3-reel machine with 100 symbols on each reel.

The Importance of Slots in Casinos
80% or more of all casino revenue comes from slot machines. This makes the slot machine sector the most profitable and important part of operating an online casino. Slot makers and developers like IGT and Ballys spend countless hours and dollars researching and developing new slot machines that get the attention of casino owners.