Online Slot Machines - What Are the Real Odds of Winning?

An online slot machine is exactly the same as a slot machine found in a land based casino. Sit down at the land based casino and the machine you are looking at has a screen, there are no tangible reels like the old one armed bandits. There isn't even an arm, instead of holding a mouse over the red flashing button that says BET MAX you push on it with your finger. Today slot machines are all computers whether you play them at home or at a casino. The only difference is where you choose to play.

If designed and configured by a reputable gaming software developer, these slots will all operate according to a random number generator. While the reels are spinning in the background the computer spits out a random number. No matter how hard we try to get our heads around this concept we cannot understand how the house can employ machines who operate with such uncertainty. Is the point of having a slot machine not to make money? If so, how do they do this?

The machine is fed with a limited number of winning combinations, each paying out a differing amount. Each combination is made up of symbols each with different values. It is no surprise that in the mix there are more lower value symbols and less higher value symbols making them quite rare and deserving of the long awaited reward. So in much the same way the higher paying combinations are also rare.

When the random number generator coughs up a number it corresponds with a winning combination, the computer deciphers the combination and displays it on the reels. So while it can still be argued then that the machines are fixed there is still a jackpot to be won and it is still the luck of the draw which player wins it. Every time you hit that spin button you are increasing your chances of winning the jackpot. Much like entering a competition multiple times.

The odds of winning a jackpot is different from machine to machine and is not based on the payout rate but rather on how diluted the top paying symbols are with the rest of them. The more paylines you have the more scattered the symbols are with more combination possibilities. The more reels the more symbols you need in a row. Slot machines are not all about taking your cash and running, they do pay out a few of the profits here and there.

The payout rate is also different from machine to machine and the payouts may be lower in a land based casino than an online casino. In a tangible establishment gamblers are far more confident to spin their cash away than they are on the internet. Land based slots can afford to take that bigger cut.

Being skeptical is healthy, especially when it comes to your hard earned money. It helps to weed out crooks and scammers. Worrying about payout ratios is the least of you worries if you play online slots designed and developed by reputable software developers and part of an established and reputable online casino. The same goes for land based slot machines. If you don't know it, you don't play it.