Slot machines have been called all sorts of slang names throughout the years, from ‘fruit machines’ and ‘one-arm-bandits’ in British English, ‘puggies’ in Scottish English, to ‘pokies’ in Australian English. But in general, a slot machine is a form of casino game with 3 or more reels which spin when a button is pressed, or a lever is pulled.
The term ‘slot machine’ is a consequent of the slots/ holes in the front of the machine that allow coins to be deposited and retrieved. It was first introduced in the late 1880s / early 1890s by Charles Fey in California.
Over a century later and whole host of different slot games are available to play, including classic slots, video slots, mega spin slots, progressive slots. As well as the variety in the game, punters now also have the option of playing slots in a brick and mortar casino, or in an online casino.
The term classic slot generally refers to any slot game with 3 reels. It can be played both on, and offline. The majority of classic slot games use the traditional fruit symbols, but many online classic slots have expanded into more themed games. Because classic slots only use 3 reels, the probability of a pay-out is higher, however to compensate, the pay-outs are often for smaller amounts.
The term video slot generally refers to 5 reel slot games, and are most commonly found online on sites such as MobbySlots. The main difference between classic and video slots is the number or pay lines. Video slots can have anywhere from 1, to over 100 pay lines. There is an amazing array of themes and formats of video slots to choose from. In this form of slot game, the player can set automated spins, and can receive free spins.
Progressive Jackpot Slots
Progressive slots are where the big jackpots appear from. They refer to a network of online or offline slot machines that all share a mutual jackpot. Each time a player spins any one of the network’s machines, they add to the shared grand total. Mega Moolah is one of the biggest slot machines of this kind in the world, and it has turned many of its players into millionaires – like 26 year old British soldier Jon.
Mega Spin Slots
Mega spin slots are known as the big brother in the slotting world. They allow players to play up to 9 slot games simultaneously; meaning up to 45 reels could be spinning at the same time. Mega spin slots have some big pay outs, and more often than not, they use the classic 3 reeled slot format.
If you haven’t been playing slots for long, then some of the terminology used can be a little confusing, so below are some of the key terms that you’ll need to get to grips with.
EGM – Short hand term used for ‘Electronic Gaming Machine’
Free Spins – A term used in video and online slots to denote that a set number of extra spins will be played free of charge, or on the same wager (so at no additional cost to the player). Free spins are often generated by landing a set number of special symbols.
Optimal Play – is a payback percentage based on a player using the optimal strategy in a skill-based slots game.
Pay line – a term used to indicate a line that crosses through one symbol on each reel, along which a winning combination is evaluated. Although called ‘pay line’, they can also be shapes an patterns such as oblique, trapezoidal, zigzag and triangular etc.
Scatter Symbol – These can vary greatly between games, but generally, when one or more scatter symbols are landed, it unlocks various bonus features including free spins and mini games.
Wild Symbol – These act like jokers in card games, or like the blank spaces in scrabble. They substitute for all other normal level symbols in the game. They do not however substitute for special symbols such as the scatter symbol.