Online Casino Slots: Key Features and Operation Concepts

Online Casino Slots: Key Features and Operation Concepts

Slots are one of the most popular gambling types in online casinos. There are various myths about their operations in society. Some people believe that they can increase their odds of winning at the certain time of day. Others think that slot machines are more or less predisposed to winning at specific periods. In fact, it is not true. Modern slots mean compute programs based on hackproof algorithms.

What are the special features of online casino slot machines? How does their system function? These issues are revealed in the article.

Types of slot machines

Types of slot machines

Various providers launch slots for virtual gambling platforms, including Novomatic, Microgaming, NetEnt, Playtech. They develop gambling machines with different plots, graphics, and background music.

One of the core distinctions of slot machines is the amount of reels, vertical sections rotating with each new game. They can be divided into the following types:

  • with three reels. It is a classic slot option. The first slot machines had such a number of sections. Currently, they are becoming irrelevant because of failing to provide players with a wide list of winning possibilities. Three-reeled slots include Double Diamond, Alchemists Lab, Safecracker, etc.;

  • with five reels. It is the most popular group of slots. They have different themes as well as a huge number of paylines and bonuses. Examples: Book of Fortune, Dolphin's Pearl, Big Bad Wolf, Immortal Romance, and so on;

  • with seven reels. These slots have a small amount of paylines and no bonus rounds, for instance, Farming Futures and others;

  • with nine reels. They are quite rare. Such slots look like tree-reeled gaming machines, although they feature horizontal and diagonal paylines.

Reels display diverse symbols. Their design depends on a game theme. For example, Book of Ra contains images of colorful letters, figures, and ritual items in the ancient Egypt style. Fruits N Stars uses figures and fruit images. To draw gamblers’ attention, software developers add such symbols as joker, bonus, etc. They provide players with large winnings or additional encouragements.

Payout rates and volatility of slots

Payout rates and volatility of slots

Return to Player (RTP) is fixed in each slot. This indicator implies the Return To Player Percent. It also determines how much money a casino will receive. If the technical specification of the slot machine defines that RTP is 95%, a gambler will get this percentage of the sum of all bets in the extended period of game, while the casino will obtain the rest 5%.

RTP depends on the legislation of the country utilizing the slot machine and the math model applied by the developer. Return to Player in many jurisdictions ranges between 80% and 95%. A lot of online casino software developers take into account these characteristics and launch slots with up to 98% of return.

Volatility (dispersion) of slot machines is a factor showing the frequency and size of winnings. Conditionally, it has three levels: low, middle, and high. Slots with low dispersion often give prize combinations, but their winnings are small. High volatility means larger but rarer winnings. Slots with the medium volatility level are the most frequent in modern online casinos.

Prize lines: purpose and amount

Prize lines: purpose and amount

Slots are based on the following operational concept: to gain a victory, players should get a winning combination in one line or in the free order. The number of such lines can reach several hundreds. They can be horizontal, vertical, or zigzag. Users can choose the amount of prize chains on their own.

Slot winning combinations can be quite different. For example, two or the whole range of similar symbols, the same images scattered through the screen, and so on. Winning combinations provide gamblers with money or bonuses. The prize lines in slots, the better chances of winning.

You can examine prize lines in detail in the payout table.

Combination algorithms in slot machines

Combination algorithms in slot machines

Slot combinations are driven by a random number generator (RNG). It is a program with an algorithm producing random sequences of number combinations. The system operates steadily and performs numerous mathematical actions. Therefore, it generates numbers in the unpredictable order. Symbols appeared on the display depend on numbers selected by the mechanism during the game start. Neither gambling operators nor casino customers are able to know all of new combinations.

Nowadays, virtual gambling platforms use the random number generator protected by the 128-bit MD5 algorithm. It is developed by Professor Ronald L. Rivest. With programmers constantly improving the algorithm, it is strictly secured from external attacks.

Online casino software developers take strong measures to avoid RNG hacking. They exclude the possibility of system reprograming even during the development of software. Thus, casinos are not able to correct software and affect the game outcome.

Besides, software by leading developers is tested in reputed labs and organizations, such as iTech Labs, eCOGRA, etc. As part of inspections, specialists check whether the game mechanism operates properly.


Slot machins in cutting-edge online casinos are computer programs based on complex algorithms. It is almost impossible to hack the system. That is why, playing slots, do not try to find their vulnerabilities and rather rely on your luck and just enjoy the process.

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