Types of Slot Machines

videoslots-logoThere are many different types of slot machines available in every casino, ranging from single-coin and multi-coin machines to touch-screen and video slot machines. Picking the right device is extremely important for a player, because he/she will not want to play a slot that his/her bankroll cannot support. Additionally, he/she wants to always pick a slot machine, which he/she is comfortable with, because at the end of the day slots are supposed to be fun.

Single-coin machines

These machines are very hard to find, as they have become a bit obsolete with the introduction of slots, which take more than coins. Most casinos nowadays are stock with the latest and most modern slot machines available on the market as they provide more entertainment for the player, while that is one of the most important things for the casino. Additionally, single-coin machines are not as profitable as later generations.

However, some older and less modernized casinos still have them and a player can enjoy the feel of time, if he chooses to. Plus, his/her credits will last for longer.
Screenshot of a single coin slot machine


A machine that takes more than one coin and has a payout ratio according to the number of coins played is usually referred to as a Multiplier. Bally introduced the first such machine in 1987 and provided casinos with a way to encourage players to place bigger bets. For example, if a player bets one coin and hits three sevens he/she will win, say $5. However, if the player bets 2 coins, he/she will win $10, if the machine shows the same combination. Multipliers usually pay out proportionally on all winnings, with the exception of the biggest ones, where the payout is much larger when played with the maximum bet.

The majority of slot machines in an average casino are multipliers and, although they still offer a single-coin play, the better half of players prefer to bet the maximum.

Note that the machines we are going to cover next are all Multipliers.
Screenshot of modern slot machines in casino

Buy-Your-Pay Machines

This type of machines are a bit tricky, but nothing too complex. You can usually identify the buy-you-pay machines by looking at the payout schedule, which should be displayed on one of the screens on the device.

These machines accept from one to five coins and have different winning combinations depending on the number of coins inserted. For example, playing with one coin might count three bars as the only possible winner, and if the player hits three cherries, the machine will not pay. However, if a player inserts more coins, then more combinations are treated as winners.

Although this type of machines are not as popular as before, they can still be found in some casinos. It is important to note that should one decides to play on such a machine, he/she needs to bet the maximum amount of coins always, so that all winning combinations can be unlocked.

Overall, one should avoid buy-you-pay machines, as it can be quite frustrating if he/she hits the jackpot with only one coin.

Screenshot of progressive jackpot slot machines

Multiple Payline Machines

Typically, a slot machine will have only one payline right in the middle of the screen, where the winning combination must line up, in order for the spin to be a winner. However, manufacturers introduced machines that offer more than one payline in order to provide more action for the player.
Usually, each extra payline requires one more credit to be activated and when a coin is inserted into the machine an additional indicator lights up, outlining that the payline is active.

A player could find a slot machine with two, three, five or more paylines. Electronic slot machines and online casinos offer slot machines having 30 and 50 paylines.

It is important to note that playing more than one payline does not actually increase a player’s chances of hitting a winning combination, but it does not hurt them either. Each machine has a different payout ratio, which is set by the manufacturer in line with the casino’s requests.

Screenshot of Mega 7 Slot game

Wild Play Machines

Wild play machines are maybe the most fun slots one can play, as they offer a chance to double, triple or even quintuple one’s winnings. If player hits a winning combination with a wild symbols in it, his/her winnings will be doubled, and if there are two wild symbols, his/her winnings will be quadrupled.

However, if three symbols are shown, they form their own winning combination. Every time one sits on a Wild Play machine, he/she needs to make sure he/she checked the payout display, as different machines often have different payout ratios.

Wild Symbols became popular when IGT released their Double and Triple Diamond machines, where the wild symbol was the diamond. These devices quickly become very attractive to players and, therefore, profitable for casino operators.

Screenshot of a wild play slot

Progressive machines

Usually, they represent a group of slot machines, which pay out a joint jackpot. A progressive jackpot will increase every time any player inserts a coin into one of the machines that are linked together. The total amount of the jackpot will continue to climb higher, until some lucky player hits the magical combination. Once hit, the jackpot will then reset to a predetermined amount and start growing again.

Due to the popularity of progressive slot machines, casino operators have introduced new features or bigger jackpots to keep the trend going. For example, some casinos have brought the understanding of a progressive jackpot to a whole new level by linking together slot machines from multiple casinos in the same state. To get a better grasp on the amount of money we are talking about, let us pinpoint one of the most popular jackpots in the U.S. In 2014 the Megabucks jackpot was hit and paid $14 million to one lucky person.

With the introduction of online casinos, progressive jackpots have become even more popular. It is common to see a casino offering the opportunity to hit a progressive jackpot generated through other online platforms.

Screenshot of progressive slot machines

Big Berthas

The largest slot machines currently build are usually referred to as Big Berthas. These machines are usually placed near the casino’s entrance, as they are very interesting for new players. Big Berthas can be equipped with three, four or more reels. However, this type of machines do not offer a high payout percentage.

Multi-Game Machines

Multi-game slot machines have proven to be quite popular as they allow the player to switch between games without having to move to a different machine. For example, a certain multi-game machine may offer the choice of playing different kinds of video keno, video poker, blackjack and slots.

Additionally, these machines often allow different denominations. For example, one can start by playing blackjack in quarter denominations, and then switch the game to video keno in $1-denomination.

Touch-Screen Machines

With the introduction of touch-screen technology the gambling industry was also affected and many manufacturers started implementing the high-tech method of interaction with the slot machine.

Since their release touch-screen slots have proven to be successful, particularly those models that have their main screen embedded into a table or a shelf and provide resting space for the player’s hands.

Reel Slot Machines

A typical reel machine consists of three reels or five reels with 20 or 24 stops on each reel. However, some slot machines offer play on more reels, including four, six, eight or ten reels. During the genesis of the slot industry, the reels were spun mechanically by pulling the lever. However, nowadays the spin is powered by an electronic mechanism.

Screenshot of reel slot machine

Video Slot Machines

Video slots are basically a computer software that represents the reels spinning and the symbols lining up. The main difference between reel and video slots is that video slots can offer more than 5 paylines, depending on the casino’s needs. Some video slots have 9, 15, 25 , 30 or even 100 different paylines.

Additionally, video slots offer various bonuses during play like different modes or rounds that can bring the player more winnings.

Photo of video slot machine

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