When people ask about how to pick the perfect online slot game, they usually want to know about the odds. But there’s more to picking a game than choosing the one you think will pay out the most! Slots come in all shapes and sizes, and cater to a wide variety of players. This article will show you what to look for in a slot, and where to look – starting with the payouts, since that’s the first item on everyone’s checklist.

Understanding Slots Payouts

Every game at a casino, whether it’s the slots or table games, has a specific Return To Player (RTP) percentage. That’s the amount you can expect to be paid back in the long run for every dollar you bet. It’s the exact opposite of the house edge, which is the amount that casinos keep as payment for their services. If you’re an experienced roulette player, you likely know that the house edge for American Roulette is 5.26%, which is the same as a 94.74% RTP. But how do you find out the RTP for the online slots?

It might take a little work, but if you’re serious about how to choose the right online slots for you to play, it’s well worth your time and effort. Normally all you have to do is check the game’s specs in the rules, and if it’s not there, run an internet search, using whichever search engine you prefer. 

Calculating a slot’s RTP by yourself isn’t nearly as easy as it would be for roulette or other table games. You’d need to know all the possible winning combinations and frequency for each, which would be impractical given how many paylines most newer slots deliver, not to mention all of the bonus rounds (some of them skill-based to a degree) and jackpots you could win. That type of granular information usually isn’t included in the game descriptions.

Once you do know a slot’s RTP, what do you do with that information? As a quick rule of thumb, an average slot will have an RTP of 96%, so anything above that should naturally catch your eye. However, slots with massive jackpots (including progressive jackpots, which we’ll review in the next section) might have RTPs closer to 92-94%. That doesn’t mean they’re not worth playing, of course – as we mentioned earlier, there’s a lot more to picking a slot than a high RTP.

Progressive Slots Machines

Finding a game with a high RTP is nice, but if you’re hoping to bag the biggest prize possible, look for a slot with a progressive jackpot attached. For example, a slot like Shopping Spree often has a progressive jackpot in the millions! These jackpots start at a specific “seed amount” ($1,000 is common), then grow in size with every spin that players take, until someone finally cashes in. Then the jackpot reverts to the seed amount and starts growing again. 

If you’re an old-school casino player, you may be aware that you can get an RTP above 100% if you wait long enough and the progressive gets large enough. That’s only really true for land-based casinos, though, which is one of the reasons their slots have much lower RTPs of around 86% on average. Not to mention that it’s pretty rare to hit those jackpots. This is just another reason to play online slots instead, where RTP is higher on average. 

Determining Slot Bet Size

One of the more overlooked aspects of online slots is the size of the bets you’ll be making. Each game allows you to bet a certain amount per payline, from a few cents to a few dollars. The more paylines there are per spin, the larger the bet will become. Some games allow you to pre-select exactly which paylines are active before you spin; others don’t.

Knowing this information ahead of time is critical before you play. You need to choose the right bet size for your bankroll. If you wager too much money on too many paylines, you might quickly dent your account before you’ve had a chance to put in a proper session. Some games, like Shopping Spree, feature jackpots that can only be unlocked when you “bet max” and fire away on all paylines at the same time – but you can still tailor your bet size per payline to fit the size of your bankroll.

Game Reviews

Beyond the payouts and progressives, each game at Cafe Casino has a theme (cars, sports, classic Vegas) and a layout (number of reels, graphics quality, display size) that caters to a certain clientele. You’ll often find game reviews for your chosen slot online. Many contain valuable information like RTP, making them indispensable for the budding slot connoisseur. As with anything on the internet, choose your sources wisely, and consult multiple sources to get the best overall picture.

To get even more information on these slots, we have a healthy and vibrant Cafe Casino community of players who can help you. After you visit this online gaming forum, spend some time on Twitter and other social media, and see which games your fellow players are enjoying. Chances are you will, too.

Entertainment Value

Winning prizes might be your No. 1 source of fun, but consider as well the entertainment value of your chosen slot. Are you a sports fan? Try Gridiron Glory. Would you prefer something with a classic look and feel? There are dozens of slots in this category, including 777 Deluxe.

While you’re kicking the tires on a new slot, don’t forget to check the game settings, which you can tailor to your specifications. Also, some games are optimized for playing on your mobile device, while others will look better on your desktop. The more powerful your device, the more entertainment value you’ll get out of your chosen slots – and some of the newest games at Cafe have very impressive graphics.

Strategy Tips

When all is said and done, the best way to maximize your value is to choose a game with a good RTP that you also find enjoyable to play! You can try all of the games at Cafe for free by using the Practice mode, so take advantage of this opportunity, and make sure your fun quotient is high before switching to real money play.

Once you do start to play slots for real money, your goal for each session should be time-based, not money-based. With all of the information at your fingertips, including RTP, you can get a rough sense of how many spins at which bet sizes your bankroll can handle. Make the right choices, and you’ll get the most bang for your buck here at Cafe Casino.