If you’re new to the world of online slots, then the various types of games that you’ll find at online casinos may confuse you. One way to differentiate games is by subject matter or theme, such as personality and celebrity slots, sports slots, TV and movie slots, etc. But a more practical consideration of online slots looks at different game features that define how you play the machine, how you hit winning combinations, and how much you may win. Here’s a look at five different types of slots games.


Site icon Three-Reel Slots

Three-reel slots are often referred to as classic slots, since so many of the first slots, such as Lucky 7s, were three-reel games. These online slots, which use three turning reels, tend to have one to three paylines and often cost very little to play. Jackpots are low, somewhere in the hundreds to about €1,000. Although many classic slots are three-reel games, new ones find their way into casinos every once in a while.

Site icon Five-Reel Slots

The more reels an online slot has the harder it is to win, the more it costs to play, and the higher the payoff. Five-reel machines usually offer from 10 to 50 paylines (although some have many more than 50). The expansion in the number of paylines, drives the price up on these machines as players can bet on any number of lines. Jackpots are usually in the thousands, depending on the number of paylines and the maximum bet. Of the five different slots games, there are more of these online than any other game.

There are various types of online slot machines, with classic machines having three reels and the most popular type being five-reel machines. There are also a select number of online slots with seven and nine reels.

Site icon Seven-Reel Slots

The seven-reel game is fairly new and very complicated. The number of paylines can get up to 50 or more and these games can payout in five figures. What you find with various slots games is that the more expensive they get, the less popular they are. It doesn’t mean they aren’t played but economics dictates that players will use their cash in slots that offer value. That means that online slots players will either play five-reel, bonus or progressive slots.

Site iconNine-Reel Slots

These do exist, but they are even rarer than the seven-reel games. These slots allow players to win prizes on horizontal and diagonal combinations, and, unlike other slot machines, on vertical combinations. The symbols on these machines can move from reel to reel as well as up and down.

Thus, unlike the other types of slots where the symbols stay on the reels on which they are placed, the symbols on nine-reel machines travel about freely. That allows for many more winning combinations than you’ll find on any other type of machine. Plus, theoretically, you can win in three different directions at once.

Site icon Bonus Slots

Bonus slot machines offer players at least one extra round where they can win extra spins or collect additional tokens. Some machines have two, three, or more bonus rounds.

Many people won’t touch a slot machine unless it has a bonus round. Bonus slots tend to be five-reel or seven-reel machines. To qualify for a bonus round, the players usually has to see three or more Wild symbols come up. That will send them into the bonus round.

Bonus rounds work in various ways. On some machines, the player has to make a choice or a series of choices to qualify for extra cash. Other slots games will have the player engage in an activity related to a sport or some aspect of a film.

The Rocky bonus includes a boxing sequence. Also, many bonus rounds allow players to win free spins and at the end to go double or nothing on their winnings. Bonus slots can pay up into the mid-six figures.

Site iconProgressive Slots

The final type of slot is progressive. These slot machines pool a percentage of all the money that thousands of people are pouring into them online. When one person hits the progressive combination they can win anywhere from $50,000 to millions of dollars.

To win the progressive jackpot, players must wager the maximum. There are many other ways to win on these machines other than by qualifying for the progressive prize and some machines offer three or four different progressives. Most of these machines have five-reels.

It’s important to note that these slots can cost a lot to play, and they tend to be tight. If you cannot afford to bet the full amount in order to qualify for the progressive, then you might as well play a looser, non-progressive slot that will offer you a better chance of winning and give you more value on your bets.

Online casinos have made progressive slot machines popular, as these slots often offer prizes in the six-figure range and, at times, those prizes will reach into the millions.

Site iconSlots Games Vary

There are variations and exceptions to the slots described in this article. Each type of online slot offers its own challenges and rewards. Take some time to investigate these different types of games to determine which ones are right for you.

Play them in their free mode to get a feel for those you’re interested in and to discover how tight or loose each machine is. There is a world online slots out there and there’s sure to be quite a few that you’ll find you love to play.