How to Pick the Right Slot Machine to Improve Your Winning Chances
Trying to figure out how to get better chances to win at slots but you still don't know what are the best slots to play to improve your odds? You are not alone.
This article does not list all the slots tips under the sun.
Instead of focusing on the generic tips and tricks you find on all online casino guides on the internet, it focuses on proven ways to improve your odds when you select the games to play.
Here you'll learn:
I will also give you some precious slots tips about the best progressive slots to play and how choosing a jackpot game can affect your chances of winning.
In other words, if you are trying to discover how to choose a slot machine and how to find the best slot machines to play online, you'll love this guide.
Must-Play Slots in 2023
This online casino slot guide is going to change the way you play slots. And chances are that is what you need — because winning at slots requires time, dedication, and the right mindset. So, are you ready to begin and learn how to improve your chances to win at slots?
Want to know where to play the best slot games online right now?
Jump straight into our guide to the Best Online Casinos to find the best places to play and the latest bonuses and offers.
The Best Online Slots Games to Play
Knowing how to pick a slot machine needs more than you guessing when a slot machine will hit. The best slot machine to play is the one that comes with the right combination of volatility, return to player, limits, and casino bonus.
Each time you play real money slots, you need to look at the payback percentage (or pay table) and at the stakes. The only way to improve your slot machine odds in the long term is to pick a good slot machine and play only money you can afford to lose.
Based on their RTP alone, the 12 best slot machines to win are:
Of all the trick to winning on slot machines, finding the best slot machine to play is the one secret all the most experienced players swear by.
That's because although you can't win at slot machines every time, picking a good slot machine is the best way to improve your odds and let the RTP of the casino slot do the ‘hard work' for you.
Many online casino strategies tell you to stay away from every popular slot game. Those, they say, are the games with the worse payout percentage among all those on the casino floor.
This is not true.
We look at over 25 types of slot machines across the best PA online casino, Michigan online casino, West Virginia online casino and NJ online casino sites and we found out that the payout percentage has very little to do with the games' popularity. Based in Canada? Then take a look at our guide to the Best Ontario Casinos to see where you can start spinning the online slots in the province.
In fact, we noticed that some of the best slots games to play are popular amongst real money players precisely because they are machine games that have been featured multiple times on gambling news websites.
If you're not lucky enough to be resident in a US state with legal online gambling, you can check out our Free Online Games section to see where to play slots for free online right now, including the best games from Chumba Casino and Luckyland Slots.
Slots with the Best Odds of Winning
Finding what are the best type of slot machines to play and how to improve your chances to win at slots is the dream of everyone playing on online casinos.
The slots with the best odds are the games with the highest Return to Player (RTP). While you can't be sure to win at these slots every time you play and you can't tell when these slot machines are ready to hit, these are the ones with the best slot machine odds.
When you play slots on online casinos for real money or for free, you need to know how to pick good slot machine games.
A lot of beginners play online casino games thinking that all slots are similar and they only differ in graphics, features, and bonus rounds.
Obviously, that's a mistake.
If you want to know how to get better chances to win at slots, you need a machine that pays out more than the other ones. And to know which one is an excellent slot to play, you need to care about the Return to Player percentage.
What is the Return to Player (RTP)?
The Return to Player (or RTP) is a percentage of all the wagered money that a slot pays back to its players.
The RTP is not the amount of money you'll get back when you wager on real money slots and it doesn't indicate whether you have fewer chances to hit a bonus round or not.
How to Find the RTP of a Slot Machine
The quickest option is to search for it online. If you use Google, you can type the following command to see all the online gambling pages that mention the RTP of the type of slot machine you are about to play:
Many casino news websites that publish content around games you find at online casinos have entire sections dedicated to the RTP percentage of the casino slot games they review, so it's always easy to find the payout percentage of the games.
You find them on PokerNews, as well. Every slot machine review we publish includes a section dedicated to the payout percentage with easy-to-understand info about the games with frequent payouts and whether one is a loose slot or not.
If this is your first time on our site, these related articles will help you playing slots online. Picking a good slot machine to play, you'll improve your chances.
Also, when you play real money slots online, you can check the games themselves. The RTP number is always mentioned somewhere. Usually, you find it in the settings of the slot game or in the 'help' section.
Slot Machines Tips
The RTP is calculated on a scale from 1 to 100. Most slots have an RTP between 92-97%.
Always choose an online slot machine game with an RTP of 96% or above. This is the best slots strategy to follow every time you play — since a high payback percentage indicates that you have a better chance to win a spin.
When you start playing slot online it might be difficult to resist the temptation to play progressive slots.
The big real money prizes on tap make jackpot slots almost appealing…at least on the surface. But if you care about your chances of winning and you have a limited budget – picking a progressive slot machine might not be the right choice for you.
On average, progressive slots feature the lowest RTPs in gambling so you don't have great winning odds. On top of that, you always need to bet the maximum to access the top jackpot prizes – meaning you might end up spending more money than you can afford to lose before you get even close to a win.
The list below shows you eight of the most popular slot machine games with a progressive jackpot. Compare their RTPs with those of the non-progressive games above and you will see why playing for a jackpot is not always the best choice.
How to Find 'Loose' Slots
Everyone would like to play loose slots with the perspective to win every time the reels spins. While this might not be always possible with online casinos, all the games listed below have an above-average RTP that translates in higher than usual chances to win.
What's a 'loose' slot?
When we talk about loose slots we don't imply that these are games where you get better chances to win money. Simply put, these are games with an RTP that is above 96%.
Need help in finding a good slot machine to play? Have a look at Himalayas: Roof of the World. This fun-to-play game by Barcrest is the perfect example of a great combination of sophisticated gameplay and good RTP.
Himalayas: Roof of the World
How did I find this slot? I scrolled down to the bottom of the slots page at one of my favourite online casinos. Once there, I decided to pick a slot machine I had never seen before.
Not all games make it to online casinos' front pages — especially those that have a combination of volatility and RTP that plays in favor of the players and that come from underdog developers. And Himalayas: Roof of the World comes from Barcrest, a provider that isn't often in the spotlight.
Also, Himalayas: Roof of the World offers good odds of winning on slots!. The game features an RTP of 97.75%, which is above average.
Determine the Volatility of Slots
Another critical factor to consider when you want to pick a slot machine with better winning odds is the game's volatility.
Many games and gambling news sites refer to the games' volatility as their 'variance.' Here on PokerNews, we like to call it the ‘risk level'.
The volatility of a slot machine game measures the risk involved in playing a particular slot for real money. One of my favorite tips for playing slots is to consider it the 'risk factor' of the game you are about to play. That's because volatility determines how you win at slots.
- Low Volatility Slots: Your odds of winning at these slots are high, and it's easier to strike winning combinations when you spin the reels. However, you should know that low volatility slots offer smaller wins — so your winning combinations might not be worth as much as you would like them to.
- High Volatility Slots: The odds of winning at these games are smaller, but the wins pay more. With the right bankroll, tips for playing slots, and strategy, these games can be a lot more rewarding.
Both options are quite popular online since people play both types. Every useful online casino guide gives you plenty of choices to find the right online slots game for you — with welcome bonus codes to try them for free before you invest your money in them.
Pick the slot machine time that feels right for you. But keep this in mind:
To play high volatility slots, you need to be patient, have enough money to invest in a long online gaming session, and have read enough online casino blog posts to know all the secrets of slots optimal play.
If you don't tick all boxes, low volatility slots may be a better option for you.
High volatility slots are a bit riskier, too. You never know how much time and money you need to invest to hit a lucky spin and celebrate yet another day of winning money on slots.
How to Find the Volatility of a Slot Machine Game
Online casinos don't make the variance of the games as accessible as the RTP numbers — and that's partly because they don't want to help you improve your odds.
An easy way to choose games with the right variance is to use Google operators and let the world's largest search engine do the work for you.
Here's an example:
You have seen some progressive slots with big jackpots, and the Mega Moolah game caught your eye. You are intrigued by the seven-figure big win, but you know nothing about the game's variance.
The most effective way to find the information you need is to:
- Open google.com
- Type "Mega Moolah variance" in the search bar
- Analyse the search results
Alternatively, you can explore the games and try to figure out their variance yourself. If you play the same slot for long enough, you should be able to see how often the game pays out and what kind of winnings you get.
If successes are rare but significant, you are onto a high volatility game. If you win often, but the wins are nerve-wracking and small, you just found a low-volatility game.
An online casino bonus such as a match deposit bonus or free spins is an excellent way to discover a game's volatility while playing. These options help you learn more about the games and give you useful info that might help you understand how to win at slots in the long run.
A Popular High Volatility Slot to Play: King of Atlantis
King of Atlantis is a high volatility slot by IGT. The game plays on five reels and 40 paylines.
The symbols featured in this game include seashells, gold rings, gem-encrusted crowns, mermaids, dolphins, and the almighty god of the sea – Poseidon.
This high volatility slot machine doesn't have many bonus games or features (even if you bet the maximum). The only 'special feature' you get, is a round of eight free spins that activates when a trident symbol lands next to Poseidon.
A Popular Low Volatility Slot to Play: Hotline
Hotline is one of NetEnt's most popular slots.
Beating the slot requires you to travel back in time to the '80s, wear some clothes you'd not be proud of today, and use your ability to solve a police case. This hame is based on the cult TV series Miami Vice and beating the slot means you'll have to help the two detectives to catch a jewelry thief.
As the paytable of this slot suggests, Hotline is a low volatility game where wins are frequent but small in size. If this is what you are looking for, pick this slot machine and enjoy the adventure!
Don't Go with the Obvious Option
No matter how impressive an online casino is, you need to do some research before you start to spin reels if you want to get any chance to win at slots.
All online casino sites (like all poker sites, let's face it) want your credit card and your money. They offer free spins or deposit bonus codes to get you on their platform and then have you play as much as possible. In other words, they want your money.
If you can afford to play real money on slots, that's great. As long as the site you choose to play on is a legitimate and regulated online casino.
Their licensing systems are your best allies. All the measures in place are there to help you play slot machine games on sites that use audited random number generators and pay out winnings to their players.
An important factor to consider when you want to know how to pick a slot machine is to check if an online casino holds a license by the UKGC and/or the MGA. Regardless of the casino bonus they offer you or the insane fixed maximum amount of free spins they promise.
You should never play online poker or pick slot machines on unlicensed casino sites.
The list of legal online casinos varies from one country to another or to one state to another, as it's the case in the United States. What is available in Michigan online might not be available to play from California online – and the legal NJ casino sites are all different from the ones in Pennsylvania.
You find a full list of all the online casinos allowed in your country on this page.
Make Higher Bets
Many players try to land their wins on penny slots, the most inexpensive slot machine games in online gambling. If you are one of them, pay attention to the next slot tips – especially if you think you have found gold the moment you discovered a penny slot machine with a progressive jackpot.
The strategy for how to improve your chances to win a spin on penny slots lies behind making bets that are larger than $0.01 because these bets usually do not unlock bonus rounds. And if you want to qualify for that jackpot you are so attracted to, you'll probably need to have bets on every payline, bringing the total amount of your bet to substantially more than one penny.
Bottom line: every collection of slot machines tips or casino strategies tells you that you can't win a progressive jackpot with a minimum bet. And that's correct.
Top wins are always connected to the maximum bets. When you play slots, you can't become a multi-millionaire with just 0.01. In slots, like in video poker, the higher the bet — the more you can win. And, at the same time, the smaller the bet...the smaller the wins.
So, yes: your bet determines how much you win on slots.
Slot machine payouts are proportional to what you wager in the game. If your slot machine strategy is to play small bets, don't change it. Just don't expect to score unreasonably huge wins.
As you understand now, betting more money helps to win more on online slots...but it also put your slot machine strategy in danger and makes you risk to lose all your bankroll a lot faster.
That's why higher denomination slots are also riskier than lower denomination slots. People play them in the same way and following the same slot tips...but the big wins happen only on the high denomination slots, which are also the game where you can risk losing a lot of money.
Always keep this in mind, especially if you love playing slots with progressive jackpots. Jackpot slots can be expensive. Many games give you access to the top wins only when you bet the maximum — and that is why a correct slot strategy and bankroll strategy are essential to have a chance to winning at slots.
Risk is always an essential factor in gambling. And it's always up to you to decide how much you want to risk when you play.
Never play more money than you can afford to lose and never underestimate the risks of gambling addiction — even when you play fun slot machine games for free. And if you feel things might be getting out of hands, seek professional help.
One Expensive Slot to Play with Maximum Bets: Space Wars
Space Wars is an online slot by NetEnt. This online game is the web version of a classic popular slot you'll find at nearly all the live casinos in Las Vegas and Atlantic City.
When you play Space Wars for real money, you can choose to bet anywhere from 0.4 (minimum bet) to 20 (maximum bet) per spin. The currency depends on your location.
This game does not feature a progressive jackpot, so you don't really need to bet the max every time you spin. Start with smaller bets and go up. You'll see the difference in payouts.
Space Wars is a fast-paced video slot with five reels, four rows, and 40 paylines. The RTP is 96.8%.
Trust Other Players
This is one of those slot tips that you should not apply to many other casino games. While it may be valid for video poker, it's one you should not follow if you play online poker, online blackjack, or live dealer games in general
When it comes to playing slots at a live casino, you can trust your fellow slot players and look at how people play.
Use the information available on casino blogs and casino sites to your advantage. Browse through forums, spend some time on Reddit, and read what Las Vegas and Atlantic City players say about each game.
You can also join Facebook groups and ask for help there. In other words, take advantage of your internet connection before the casino takes advantage of you.
A Classic Slot People Play and Love: Gonzo's Quest
Released in 2010, Gonzo's Quest still didn't let go of its place as one of the top slot machines online. That's quite an achievement, I'd say.
This popular slot game features five reels, 20 paylines, and an adventurer (Gonzalo 'Gonzo' Pizzarro) looking for the lost city of gold.
Players love this little guy and follow his adventures. Gonzo's Quest is one of the top-rated slot machines of all time by players, casinos, and casino critics alike.
Should You Play Branded Slots?
Branded slots are a lot of fun. When you pick a branded slot machine, you play you're your favorite heroes and spin the reels feeling part of the movies, TV series, and shows you love.
While these games are great to play, branded slots are also the 'bait' a lot of online casinos use to attract beginners who don't know how to pick a good slot machine.
Remember the point about 'not going for the obvious choice'? If you are a huge Game of Thrones fan, how likely is it that you would go straight for the Game of Thrones slot games when you see them on the list?
You don't need to be a psychologist, a consumed marketer, or a casino operator to realize that. Fortunately, you don't need to be a hardcore gambler to know how to pick a winning slot machine either.
Developers paid a pretty penny to lock in the rights to bring to the market slots that feature popular brands and franchises. So, they won't let you go low with the bets. And those games will not be the easiest ones to win either.
While online casinos and their developers have invested a lot in the names you see on the screen, you are the one who can make it worth the investment. Or not.
Take Advantage of Free Spins
Finding a good online casino bonus is essential to play slots online – especially if you want to get a small advantage. The most common bonus types include free spins, extra money that matches your deposit, and special offers for recurring players.
Most slot bonuses let you play for free only a specific selection of slot machines. All info about what games are part of each offer are included in the terms and conditions.
The following five online casinos are the ones offering the best free bonuses to play online slots this month:
Don't Forget the Wagering Requirements!
How to win at slots with free spins when there are hundreds of hidden terms and conditions to meet before you can withdraw your winnings?
The wagering requirements can take the fun out of playing slots with free spins. No arguing there. But there are still free spins bonuses that can be worth your while.
These are the wager-free bonus offers.
On a limited number of online casinos you get wager free spins with no deposit on registration (yes, no deposit is required to play). And with no strings attached to them.
There is no cap on winnings, you can cash out anything you want, anytime you want, and there are no wagering requirements. How good is that?
Slot to Play with Free Spins: Pyramid Quest For Immortality
Travel the world with slots...and use your free spins welcome bonus as your ticket!
The Pyramid: Quest for Immortality slot features five reels, 720 paylines, and an RTP of 96.4%. This game takes you to ancient Egypt and brings you to explore the hidden and mystical world of Pharaohs, Gods...and pyramids, of course.
Is It Better to Stop a Slot Machine?
A lot could be said about people by the way they play slot machines.
While the lazy type will let their bankroll go by as the 'Auto Play' feature does the hard work for them, the most superstitious ones will be all about feather-light touches or heavy-weight punched on the spin button.
And — how about the 'clever' ones? Those who swear that winning at slots is all about stopping the reels at the right time with the second hit on the spin button?
Those are the easiest ones to recognize.
They are laser-focused on their game and their rapid-fire of button hits is one of the most repetitive and well-timed movements in the entire casino.
That doesn't change on online slots, either. Although these players tend to consume the space bar of their keyboard and the left button of their mouse much faster than any other player on earth.
Why do they do that?
These players believe that if you can stop the reels quick enough, you can control the outcome of your spin and decide what combination will be displayed on the screen.
In theory, it makes sense.
You push the spin button, see the reels move on the screen, quickly hit the spin button again to stop the reel-dance as soon as you see a winning combination about to come up.
So, is it better to stop a slot machine with a second push on the spin button?
You shouldn't stop a slot machine. While this might have been a difficult-yet-profitable trick to win on very old fruit machines, let me make this clear:
stopping the reels will not help you take home any more cash.
In fact, it might have the opposite effect and lead to bigger losses. When you stop a slot machine by yourself, you reduce the 'time of spin' (TOS), making the game go faster.
- A slot machine takes about 10 seconds (on average) to complete a spin from start to finish. This is the 'TOS'.
- If you stop the slot machine, you can reduce the TOS to three seconds.
- Depending on the TOS, a 30-minute session can range from a minimum of 180 spins to a maximum of 600 spins.
How to Improve Your Chance to Win at Slot Machines
The best way to improve your chances to win at slots is to ask the right questions and look for the right numbers. There are no simple hacks, slots tips or tricks to winning on slot machines.
If you want better odds to win on slots, you need to:
- Choose the slots that have high payouts
- Choose the slots with the correct volatility level
- Choose the slot with the highest Return to Player
- Read reviews of the Slots on casino sites, forum, and Reddit
- Sign up to get a bonus with low wagering requirements
- Play on a licensed online casino site
While this might not be enough for you to beat slot machines and pick the winning slot machine every time you play, it will help you win more often and - more importantly - enjoy playing slots a lot more!
Where Can I Play Slots?
If you're looking to start playing the best slots right now, then let us direct you to our list of the best real money casinos!
Top of the list right now are FanDuel Casino, and their wide selection of online slots. You'll find the usual favorites such as 88 Fortunes, Cleopatra Gold and Bonanza, as well as popular Slingo and Megaways games.
For players based outside of the US, there are many options for online casinos where you can play slots. Some of our favorites for all the reasons listed above are 888casino, bet365casino and PokerStars Casino.
Is there a trick to slot machines?
The best trick to get better odds to beat slots is to pick games with a theoretical Return to Player above 96%. You find a list of the 12 best slot machines to play right on this table.
Which slot machines pay the best?
With most slots featuring a Return to Player of 92-96%, any games with a Return to Player above 96% (like these ones) is a good choice. In terms of win-size, progressive slots are the slot machines that pay the best – but they are also the ones with the lowest winning odds.
How can I increase my chances of winning on slot machines
Pick high volatility slot machines with a Return to Player of 96% or more that allow bets of 0.20 or less. This way you will get more spins for the same amount of money and you will have greater chances to use the combination of volatility and RTP to win more.
Are slot machines rigged?
All the slot machines on this list are hosted on licensed platforms and are certified by third-party independent authorities. The games are not rigged.
A: To pick a winning slot machine and get better odds to win when you spin the reels, you need to choose games that offer the right combination of betting limits, volatility, Return-to-Player, and wagering requirements (in case you play with a bonus).
What casino game has the best chance of winning?
In general, Blackjack is the casino game with the best odds. In terms of slots, the best choice is to pick a game that offers a return-to-player over 97% like the Slot Devil's Delight (RTP: 97.7%).
Can you win real money on slot machines?
Of course. Just like any other casino game, slots offer a possibility to win real money. No one can guarantee you wins because slots are a game of chance, but you can certainly get an upper hand if you use the winning slot tips from this article.
How do you win the jackpot on a slot machine?
When you're picking your winning slot machine, keep in mind that those with smaller jackpots usually pay out more frequently, so there is a slightly larger chance of landing that big win. Other than that, manage your bets well, understand the payable and hope that today is your lucky lay - after all, slots are completely random. Also, you want to make sure you play at a casino that has a huge selection of jackpot slots.
Which online slots machines have the best odds?
What you want to look at is RTP (Return to Player). That's basically the way in which the house edge gets displayed for slots. No matter how you look at it, in the long run, the casino will always come out on top. However, the short-term outcome of slots is random, so you have the best slot machine odds if you play a slot that has an RTP of 97% or higher.
How can you tell when a slot machine is ready to hit?
There is no sure way of telling when a slot machine is about to hit. Slot machines are governed by Random Number Generators, which ensure a completely unpredictable outcome each time you spin the reels.
This article was first published on July 14, 2018. Last update: September 18, 2020
The promotion presented on this page was available at the time of writing. With some Casino promotions changing on daily basis, we suggest you to check on the site if it still available. Also, please do not forget to read the terms and conditions in full before you accept a bonus.