How many types of slots are there?

Whether land-based or online, most slots games fall into three types: single payline “classic” slots; multi payline slots; or progressive slots. Physical machines may also offer video slots or 3D slots games.

Classic slots are the oldest and simplest type of slots games, where the player needs to match symbols in a single line across three, five, or sometimes seven reels. On older style physical or land-based slots machines, these would be actual wheels in the machine, which would be spun by the player pulling a lever.

They would normally offer up to thirty-two stops, or possible different symbols, per reel, but modern online and touchscreen-based slots allow for many more combinations, and can be quite challenging to win.

The odds on classic slots are affected by the number of possible different symbols and therefore possible combinations on each reel, and the higher the number of reels the harder it will be to win, which can mean bigger jackpots.

Multi payline slots usually involve more reels, with five or seven being common, and players can win by matching symbols diagonally, or in patterns other than the straight middle line common in classic slots. The odds are better, but wagers may be higher and new players may feel overwhelmed by the high number of possible combinations and complex patterns.

Progressive slots work a little like a lottery, in the sense that the jackpot grows as more people play, and rolls over until it is won by someone. Many online casino games work this way, including popular and well-known multi payline online slots like Microgaming’s Mega Moolah, with a progressive jackpot linked to thousands of games. As with other multi payline games, wagers may be higher, but odds are comparatively good, and the promise of massive wins is tempting for many players.

Video and 3D slots games hit the land-based casino market first in the 1970s and revolutionized the gaming experience by opening players up to potentially many more paylines, bonuses during play, and innovative graphics and narratives storylines within games, providing a more fun experience. They also represented the first time machines could be linked together, allowing for progressive jackpots. This is mirrored in modern online slots that may feature complex paylines, bonus features and rounds, more wagering options, and narrative elements or connections to movies, TV shows, or other elements of pop culture.

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