How to Choose Casino Pokies Online
Over years multiple studios have created thousands of online slots and many iconic titles. Uncomplicated or feature-rich, all kinds of games can end up in this rating as there’s no single recipe for designing a successful game. With so many choices available, it’s hard to decide which one to play, but that’s when this rating comes in handy. Look through this slots rating and test some of the games listed right on our site. Chances are you’ll enjoy quite a few of them.
Volatility and Payout Percentages
These two are the key slot parameters. The payout percentage (RTP) shows how much gamblers win relative to their wagers. This is a theoretical number that is usually different from the short-term actual return. Millions and even billions of rounds must be played to test the accuracy of the RTP.
All games produced by legitimate game developers are tested by specialized labs to make sure the theoretical return specified by the studios is correct. That’s how players can trust that the outcomes are fair even when a game returns them much less than the theoretical value.
Note that many developers create multiple versions of the same title with every version offering a different RTP. This is a popular trend among slot studios, which is a disappointment for gamblers as they now have to check which version a casino offers every time before launching a game. The issue is that some developers don’t even specify RTP in the game files.
Volatility is one of the most powerful characteristics that explain the nature of the game. It tells players how evenly or unevenly the payouts are spread. In other words, it’s an indicator of the risk level. If we take two extreme volatility values, they will offer two completely different experiences even if they have similar RTP.
- Low Volatility. Payouts are spread relatively evenly. There are no long losing streaks as wins are regular. To balance off the frequency of payments, developers have to keep a rather small max win potential. Low volatility slots appeal to players who enjoy the experience of spinning the reels and the idea of winning and not chasing huge wins.
- High Volatility. Payouts are spread unevenly. Players will sometimes have no winnings at all for a long time and this bad luck can suddenly be interrupted by a massive win. Payouts are unpredictable and vary significantly in size. Some of the extreme volatility titles generally have mouth-watering max wins of 50,000x and even 100,000x and more. So, these are kinds of games for risk lovers.
Number of Paylines
This is another important slot characteristic. Similar symbols ensure payouts but these symbols can’t land chaotically on the screen and instead must be arranged on a specific payline from left to right and sometimes both ways. The paylines can be found in the game paytable.
Most of the games today have a fixed number of lines, meaning there’s no way to activate and deactivate some of them. Just a small number of titles offers adjustable paylines, which is the option to change the number of active lines. But in this case, fewer lines means lower chances of landing a win.
Traditional win lines had long been the only available option before other solutions were introduced. Today there are many alternatives such as Cluster and Ways to Win engines.
Apart from classic fruit machines, almost all pokies offer some sort of bonus rounds. Free spins are the most common option, but there are more features. To trigger bonuses, players usually need to land a certain combination of symbols, for instance, three scatters. Sometimes to activate bonuses, players need to collect certain symbols over time.
- Free spins often offer some extra features that make them more lucrative. For instance, multipliers, more wilds, expanding wilds, mega symbols, etc.
- Pick and Click is another type of bonus. Players are offered a number of icons and have one or multiple picks. If lucky, their selected icons will earn them nice instant payouts. A win is usually guaranteed, but not always and the wrong pick can sometimes lead to the round’s end without any wins.
- Bonus Gamble is an option that is introduced in some slots. Gamblers have a choice to get a better deal, but risk losing the bonus game adding more thrill to the game. It’s still quite a rare option.
Pokies are continuously evolving and there is no lack of features to entertain all sorts of players. Some unique features appear occasionally and only a few of them pass the test of time. We’ll discuss features that have made a significant impact on slot development.
Bonus Buy. It’s the feature that many developers have introduced over the last few years. It gives players a shortcut to the most exciting part of the game. To unlock bonus games at any time, slot fans will have to pay somewhere between 50x to 100x a bet. This is the most common price and it can be as high as 2,000x in some titles.
The feature is prohibited in the UK because it’s believed to increase the danger of developing problem gambling. So, you need to be aware of the potential threat as this feature can indeed be addictive.
Guaranteed Jackpots. It is another relatively recent phenomenon in the slots world. In the case of a traditional growing jackpot, it can be hit at any moment and no one really knows its limits. But guaranteed jackpots have a specific time or amount limit when it must drop. This feature was introduced by Red Tiger Gaming and has become incredibly popular.
Today the competition among game providers is fierce. There are multiple mega-companies and they do not only have to compete with developers of their league but with many smaller studios that strive to innovate and draw attention.
Some of the best slot developers have over a decade of experience in the industry and still retain the desire to push the boundaries. For smaller studios, it’s become much easier to deliver their products to the end customer as they often partner with big companies that help them with everything including providing extensive market reach.
How to Play Pokies
Technically it’s a matter of making a few clicks to set a bet and push the Spin button to launch the reels. But certain nuances must be considered to keep gambling a fun experience.
Come Up with a Game Plan
That’s advice you definitely should follow as gambling can make you spend more than you intended. Set the time and budget limits per session and stick to them. Play free slots before switching to the real money mode. That can help keep the costs down.
Your game plan should really focus on when to stop as this is the hardest thing to do. When it comes to betting systems and strategies, do as feels the most entertaining to you because there’s no way to increase the chances of winning anyway.
Remember That Every Win is Random
Game outcomes are random. Whether you win or lose is determined by a random number generator (RNG) and it doesn’t take into account previous games. For instance, you can win or lose several times in a row, and every time the chances of winning the next time will be the same. So the idea of Hot and Cold pokies is something you need to pay no attention to.
The RNG of every game produced by a licensed provider is tested for randomness and when delivered to multiple markets, games sometimes have to be tested multiple times.
Check the Machine’s Paytable
At some point before placing real wagers, you should check out the slot paytable. This document describes everything players need to know about a game: payouts, how to land wins, what bonus features are available and how to trigger them.
Do it either before even testing a game or after a free slot has been played. But make sure you know the rules before risking any money. Knowing the rules and payouts doesn’t improve the chances of winning, but it adds to the gambling experience if you know what to wish for.
Load Up Your Machine
After you’ve completed all of the above-mentioned steps, it’s time to get to the most exciting part. Play a game you’ve selected and get first-hand experience. You may read a lot about a game, but you’ll never know if you’ll like it or not unless you actually try it. Free slots are an excellent opportunity to test titles without any risk.
Types of Machines
Explore pokies collection for a while to realize that there are all kinds of games from uncomplicated classic fruit machines to the most innovative and feature-rich games. It takes some time to get familiar with the available slot types as there are so many of them. Themes, different slot engines, volatility, features… There are many ways to deliver versatility.
Pokies with Bonus Rounds
Bonus features are often a characteristic of a video slot, which is the opposite of a classic online slot. Some players love bonuses, others don’t and both have reasons to feel that way. Bonus games significantly increase entertainment value as they usually award more payouts thanks to extra features.
But to compensate for the generosity of those rounds, slots have to pay less during the base game, which becomes less lucrative. Considering you don’t trigger any features, your return will be lower than if you would play slots without any features.
Many titles today feature some bonus games, whether it’s a round of free spins, pick-and-click type of game, or risk game. As mentioned above, there are even games that allow buying bonuses for a certain price. This way there’s no need to wait before features get triggered randomly.
Jackpot is something many would love to get. Jackpot networks with over a million-dollar prize pool aren’t rare. Impressive, mouth-watering payouts do not land often and the competition to hit these big pots is fierce. But you can always opt for smaller growing jackpots and there are many of them available. Smaller jackpots drop regularly and some of them drop even multiple times a day, but the amount can be as small as a few hundred NZ dollars.
Slot Machine Payouts
To land a win, slot players need similar symbols to land an active payline, form a cluster, or just stop on adjacent reels. The way payouts are spread is programmed by developers and can’t be controlled by casinos or players. To ensure fair gambling, all games go through at least one testing by a specialized lab and only then appear on markets.
Despite numerous theories, you can’t know when slots are going to pay. Unless there’s some sort of bug, game outcomes are random. But there’s a sure way to get better payouts, and it’s to remember that many studios have multiple versions of the same slot with different RTP settings. Make sure to choose the best deal.
Return to Player Explained
Pokies are designed to pay back a certain share of the wagers to players. If, for instance, the RTP is 95%, that means players on average get back 95% of their total wagered sum. This return doesn’t apply to a single player as there should be a massive sample of the played game for the number to get close to its theoretical value. Millions and billions of spins must be played to make any claims.
The idea of RTP is sometimes misunderstood by gamblers as they expect to have 95% back in one or a few gaming sessions, which is wrong. One player is unlikely to spin the reels the number of times to draw accurate conclusions.
Actual and theoretical RTPs are generally different if a single gambler is considered. You can have 0% actual RTP, but at the same time, there’s a chance to have 1,000% back.
How to Find the Payout Percentage on Pokies
It largely depends on developers where they specify game RTP. Some of them show the number right on the loading screen so that you can’t miss it. Others provide this information in the paytable or game description files. Jurisdiction the casino is licensed in also plays the role. Some jurisdictions require this information to be available when the game is loaded whereas others don’t.
If no theoretical return is provided when you load a slot, another option is to access the official developer’s site and look for the information there. Or you can also find a game in our free slots catalog and open a slot review page. We specify RTPs for all titles available for testing on Clash of Slots.
The House Edge Explained
The house edge is the advantage casinos have over gamblers. When speaking about pokies, it’s the opposite of the RTP. If the RTP is 95%, for instance, the house edge is 5% (100% – 95%). That’s how much on average players lose and houses win. The commonly acceptable casino edge is around 2%-7%, which translates into 98%-93% RTP. Beware that sometimes titles have versions with RTP starting from as low as 80%, which is unacceptable for many gamblers.
Free Pokies vs Real Money Pokies
Both options are great and they each have advantages that are kind of obvious. With free pokies, you won’t feel the complete range of emotions but will have a free quality experience. The range of titles available in demo mode is unlimited except for a very few exclusive titles. Practice mode is perfect for exploring different choices and getting to know slots.
The real money option unlocks the full range of emotions from bad to good as real cash is at stake. Some games offer massive max payouts or huge jackpots and landing them while playing can be a lot of money. But there’s a dark side of money gambling as you can lose a lot if unable to control your emotions.
Why Trust Our Casino Pokies Rating
The scoring is done based on the actual data provided by casinos. That’s why it’s an accurate representation of what thousands of gamblers choose to play. For this rating, we combine historical with the latest data to find out the ultimate top popular pokies list.
There are thousands of online pokies and it’s hard to choose which ones to play. You might want to start with the most popular titles as they must be the most exciting ones. This rating gives a great insight into the preferences of the gambling community.