How to play slots

Welcome to 21.co.uk's how to play slots guide. In this guide, we'll go through everything you need to know regarding playing slots. Whether you're looking at video slots or slot machines, we'll have all the answers to your questions and topics based on each area of slots gaming, from volatility to strategy, so if you're looking for more information before you play to be sure to check out 21.co.uk.

How do slots work?

To discover how to play slots, you’ll first need to know how slots work. Slots are created with three or more 'reels'; each reel will contain a number of symbols; this number will generally vary depending on the format of the slot. For example, if you're playing a megaways slot, you'll find that the number of slots on each reel will vary. Physical slot machines can have over 20 symbols per reel, while virtual machines can contain hundreds of symbols on a single reel. However, they must land on specific paylines during a spin to land wins using these symbols.

These symbols are generated on the reels using a random number generator that generates billions of possibilities with every spin, meaning that no two spins will be the same. So, each spin you play will be determined at random; each spin is independent, meaning that unless specified in a bonus feature, your spin will not be impacted by the previous spin. Due to this, it is impossible to predict what will happen during a game.

Slots Terminology

If you’re looking to find out how to play slots, you’ll need to know the exact terminology that goes into slot games. Check out our terminology guide below.

Term Definition
3-reel slot A slot machine with three spinning reels
5-reel slot A slot machine with five spinning reels
Bonus A special feature in online slots
Cascading Reels When a win appears, it is removed and re-added
Casino Bonus A bonus offered to players by their provider
Expanding Wilds Wild symbols that substitute for multiple symbols
Fixed Jackpot A grand prize of a set value, not progressive
Free Spins A bonus feature where players can spin for free
High Volatility Win less often, but those wins are higher value
Jackpot Slot A slot game with a higher payout than most games
Low Volatility Win more often but with lower values
Max Bet The maximum amount you can stake per spin
Min Bet The minimum amount you can stake per spin
Multiplier The value that wins are multiplied by
Paytable A table with all potential wins in the base game
Progressive Jackpot A jackpot which gradually increases over time
Return to Player The average value players receive per £100.
Scatter Symbol A symbol used to unlock bonus rounds in slots
Wild Symbol A symbol that substitutes for all icons except scatters

How to play casino slots online and win

If you're looking to play slots online, you'll first have to create an account with 21.co.uk. After creating your account, you'll be asked to input some card details to place a deposit. You can place a deposit with any of our casino bonuses in mind. Once you've placed your deposit, you'll then be able to play any of our games at the click of a button.

If you're not sure exactly what slot to play, you'll want to take a look at our slots page which contains every slot game on 21.co.uk. Alternatively, check out our homepage, where you can see our popular slots, new slots, and jackpot slots to carefully select the best slot for your playing style.

Catering for your playing style is the best way to play casino games to win if you split your money between high volatility and low volatility slots with varying RTP isn't a fundamental way of playing slots. If you stick to one particular game and play through it, the odds of you landing the higher payouts on that game improve. However, you also need to take into consideration your bankroll and ensure that you are comfortable with potentially losing what you are staking.

How to play slots in casinos and win

If you're looking to play slot machines in person, then you may wish to check out your local casino, which you can find using the casinos near me, section on 21.co.uk. Once you've arrived at your local casino, you can then head to a slot machine in the venue and begin your experience. Check to see if there is a minimum and maximum amount that you can place inside the machine and if there is, find a machine that best suits your balance. For example, if you're looking for a slot that is going to take a while to play through your balance, you would be looking at low volatility slots. Low volatility slots mean that you'll receive more payouts but those payouts will be smaller; meanwhile, high volatility slot machines payout at higher rates but less frequently. Volatility should always be considered when playing slot machines as it gives you a good idea of what slot games best suit your gaming experience.

Slot Machine strategies

Learning how to play slot machines in land casinos can be built around strategies. If you're looking to play slot machines, you may wish to figure out a strategy to exactly which game you wish to play. These strategies are often built up with a budget in mind. For example, if you have a small budget that you would look to build gradually over a more extended period, you would strategise to play a low volatility slot with a high Return to Player. However, if you're looking for high payouts and are comfortable with the risk associated with that, you would play a high volatility slot with a lower return to player. This means the rate at which you receive wins is lower, but the win value is significantly higher. Below, you can find a number of strategies that casino players worldwide use.

Higher stakes after consecutive losses

This isn’t a strategy we would recommend for those learning how to play slots as despite the truly random nature of casino games, a number of players still take probability into account with the mentality of: "I've lost a number of spins in a row, the next one must be a winner", which is a myth, with every spin of the reels, the probability of a win or a loss doesn't change but hundreds of online slot players around the world will increase their stake after losses with the belief that they have a higher chance of winning, which they don't.

Machine jumping

One for players in land-casino, machine jumping is one of the biggest strategies for players around the world. A player will go onto a machine and spin for a set number of spins and if they don't receive the bonus round, they'll change machines to repeat the process. The probability of a bonus appearing doesn't change after a number of spins, but if a slot has an average of a free spins bonus every 33 rounds (varies depending on the game) and you play 30 rounds without activating the bonus, in theory, that bonus should appear in the near future. Of course, in practice, the actual probability is the same, but by the law of averages, it is significantly more worthwhile remaining on that machine than jumping between machines.

Play Penny Slots

For those new to slots gaming, it is worth playing games that offer the opportunity to play with very low stakes. In land casinos, you may find the opportunity to play penny slots. These are games with minimal win potential and minimal risk value, meaning that they provide an ideal opportunity for players to learn about casino gaming while playing.