Types of Free Online Casino Slot Games
Casino slots come in all shapes and sizes, but there is a couple of main categories. Note that the main rules are still the same, no matter which category the game belongs to. You are still trying to land a certain number of the same symbols next to each other on a pay line. Simply put, you are trying to form a winning combination by using the symbols. However, according to the type of slots you are playing, you get to use different features and rounds. Now, let’s take a look at these main casino slot game categories:
- Fruit Slots: This is the most basic category of casino games. We can call them the “entry level”. Fruit slots get their names from the combination symbols they use. As can be guessed, they consist of fruit pictures, such as plums, grapes, bananas, and watermelons. This type of games does not have lots of pay lines, usually between 1 and 5. They also do not offer any special symbols and bonus rounds. Simply put, landing the same symbols next to each other is the only thing you need to do. However, their cost of play is very low and you can play for hours even with a small budget. For this reason, you get more chances to create winning combinations, and the overall payout is more than satisfying. Recommended for beginners.
- Video Slots: This is the most popular category of slot machines. The overall goal is still the same, but this time you get to use special symbols (such as wild and scatter) and bonus rounds (such as free spins). Their number of pay lines is also bigger, usually between 15 and 20. However, you can even find the titles with 1.024 lines. They offer the highest chance of winning, but they can be costly to play.
- Penny Slots: This term is used to determine the cost of playing, not the features. These are either fruit or video slot games, but they can be played with a very low budget. In fact, you can spin the reels for a single penny – hence the name. As can be expected, their payout rates are also quite low. But if you have a very low budget and want to spin the reels for hours, penny slots are your best bet.
- Jackpot Slots: Casino slot machines under this category are either fruit or video slots. However, they have an additional feature: A big prize pool. This pool can consist of a fixed number, or it can be progressive. Progressive prize pools keep increasing with every game played and sometimes they can reach millions of dollars. Jackpot slots can make you rich but they offer very low winning chances, and their cost of playing is quite high. Try to prefer fixed jackpot slots – progressive ones are very bad in terms of actual RTP rates.
There is also a couple of other categories such as 3D and VR slots, but these are the main casino slot types you need to know.
Bonus Features of Slot Machines
As mentioned above, video slot games offer a couple of bonus features and rounds. While playing for real money, these features can help you to make a profit if you know how to use them right.
Here is the list of top bonus features in casino slot games:
- Free Spins: They can also be called “super spins” or “enhanced spins”, but they all mean the same thing: Spinning the reels for free for a certain number of times. This feature is seen in video slot games the most, and it can be activated by landing a certain number of special symbols. This symbol is usually the scatter. For example, by landing 3 scatter symbols anywhere on the reels, the player wins 20 free spins. The total reward at the end of the round is yours to keep. Usually, this feature can be re-triggered.
- Mini-Games: The best example of this feature is the “pick-me” round. In this round, the player is asked to pick between a couple of closed boxes/symbols and each pick awards a cash prize. Sometimes this feature can offer a real mini-game (such as a platform game) based on the theme of the slot.
- Multiplier: Multipliers increase the amount of your prize. For example, a “10x multiplier” means that your prize will be multiplied by 10. You can activate the multiplier feature by landing a set of special symbols or as a result of another round – for example, at the end of the free spins, your reward gets multiplied by 2.
Lastly, we should mention there are also some casino promotions (such as deposit bonuses) which give additional free spins and/or match bonuses that can improve your chances of winning. However, these are independent of the games and should be considered separately. Take a look at our online casino bonuses articles to get a better idea.
Main Features of Online Slot Games
Online slots also have common features, which can be seen in (almost) every type of slots. Some of these are:
- Wild Symbols: These signs substitute any other symbols in the game and can be used to complete a winning combination.
- Scatter Symbols: These signs make a payout no matter where they land on reels. In other words, there is no need to land them on a pay line, anywhere on the screen is fine. In addition, they are used to activate bonus features, such as free spins.
- Jackpot Symbols: As explained above, landing a certain number of these symbols can trigger the fixed/progressive jackpot prize.
- Stacked/Expanding Symbols: Some slot machines offer this feature. Stacked means that symbols can stack on top of each other on reels. This will increase your winning chances. Expanding means that a specific symbol can expand and fill the entire reel. This is usually the wild symbol which greatly increases your luck.
- XXX Ways To Win: The “XXX” part is a figure, and it shows the number of pay lines in an online slot machine. For example, “1.024 Ways To Win” means that there are 1.024 pay lines in this game.
Theoretical and Real RTP Rates
RTP (return to player) rates how much you will lose in the long run. There is a classic example to explain the concept: Let’s say you invested 100 USD on an online slot machine. If the RTP rate of that machine is 98%, for example, you will win 98 USD of your investment back in the long run. In other words, your loss will be 2 USD only. This is the theoretical RTP rate, which can be seen in pay table of slot games.
However, this is not a “fixed” rate which applies to every spin. It is an average value of thousands of spins. Usually, the theoretical RTP shows the average rate of 1.000 spins. This means if you spin the reels 50-60 times, for example, your real RTP rates will be different and much lower. As a general rule, you should prefer the games with 95% or higher RTP rates. But you also need to understand this is not a fixed value and even the best RTP rates do not guarantee a winning in a short period of time.
Online Slot Games Winning Strategies and Tips
All online slot games are based on luck, and there are no “systems” you can use. Even the programmer of an online slot machine cannot tell you “how to win”. They depend on a thing called RNG (random number generator), and nobody can predict the results. In short, do not expect slot strategies that guarantee a winning, no such thing exists. However, we can give some tips:
- Fruit slots are the better choice for a low but constant income. Even the professional gamblers prefer them for the same reason.
- Stay away from progressive slots if possible. They cost too much to play and offer very low RTP rates.
- More pay lines mean higher winning chances. In a game with 1.024 lines, for example, your winning frequency will be amazingly higher. However, slot games accept bets per line, not per spin. So the cost of playing a 1.024 –lined game will be quite high too. We recommend choosing games up to 20 lines for the maximum efficiency.
- Before playing for real money, practice with the free versions and learn the rules fully.
Benefits of Playing Free Casino Slots
By playing free online casino slots, you can:
- Have a good time without taking any financial risks
- Learn the rules of online slot games and practice
- Learn a game is suited for you or not
- See the actual payout rates of a specific slot game.
Free slot machines offer the same rules and winning chance – they are not “demo” versions. So you can see for yourself if a game is worth playing or not. This is also our offer to you: List all the games in our website according to their providers or themes, read our reviews, and browse through our collection to choose between your favorite games to play. All for free and no download is needed. We like playing slots too, so visit our website for the best gambling experience you can get without the need to pay. Good luck!