How to play online slots

By Rainbet
Published Feb 14, 2024

This guide shows how to play online slots properly, how they work and the best ways to bet and win big.

Step-by-step guide on how to play online slots

Playing slots in online casinos offers a mix of excitement and opportunity. A variety of games satisfy different preferences.

Slot games may seem simple, but understanding their mechanics can increase your chances of winning. This concept applies to both classic and video slots.

First, recognize that not all slot games are created equal. Video slots, for instance, come with many reels and paylines, offering various ways to win. Themes, animations, and bonus features fulfill the gameplay in these online casinos.

A strategic approach to playing slots is essential to know how to win. The strategy involves more than just selecting any slot machine. The strategy is about understanding the game's features. These include wild symbols, scatter symbols, and multipliers. All of these can significantly impact your gameplay and your chances of securing a win.

Moreover, slot games attract players with bonuses like free spins, cash rewards, and multipliers. Bonuses can have a significant impact on results.

1. Choose a slot

Choosing the right slot is fundamental to maximizing your online casino experience.

This choice should align with your budget and gameplay preferences. Players on a low budget can choose slots with smaller but more frequent payouts. Choosing slots with smaller but more frequent payouts can stretch the bankroll further and ensure prolonged play without a significant dent in funds.

Look for games with a high Return to Player (RTP) rate, as they typically offer better long-term returns. RTP is a percentage that indicates the amount an online slot game pays back to its players over a vast number of spins, usually above 95%.

Progressive jackpot slots are a good option for those with a higher budget aiming for substantial wins. These casino games pool a fraction of each bet across numerous casinos. Progressive jackpot slots build a massive jackpot that can change a life with a single spin. However, these progressive jackpot slots usually have a lower RTP, making them less ideal for conserving bankroll.

In addition, consider slots that offer bonus rounds and free spins. Bonus rounds and free spins improve the excitement. Slots with bonus rounds and free spins also provide more chances to win without betting again.

The best slot for any player balances entertainment with winning potential. The slot must fit the player's budget and playing style.

When selecting an online slot machine, you must review the game's paytable and understand its bonus features.

This information provides insight into the game's volatility, the frequency, and size of payouts. Reviewing the game's paytable also explains how to trigger the game's most lucrative features, like bonus rounds and free spins.

2. Set your bet

Setting your bet is the next step.

The process involves adjusting the bet size to match your budget and playing strategy. Start by locating the bet adjustment buttons at the bottom of the game screen. These controls allow you to increase or decrease the amount you wish to wager on each spin.

Depending on your bankroll and slot strategy, you can bet with smaller amounts or use the max bet option. You can also try the demo mode before betting with real money or playing free slots.

The max bet button sets your stake to the highest possible amount for a single spin. The max bet button offers a shortcut for players who want to maximize their winning potential quickly. It's essential to consider the max bet button carefully, as it can significantly impact your bankroll.

Remember, the key to successful online gambling is understanding your comfort level with risk. Set your bets accordingly. This strategic approach allows for a more enjoyable and potentially rewarding gaming experience.

3. Spin the reels

After setting your bet on an online slot, the next step is to spin the reels, the core action determining your outcome.

To initiate a spin, press the spin button, usually prominent at the bottom center or to the right of the game screen. You set the reels in motion by clicking this button, with symbols landing randomly. The result will display whether you've won based on the paylines and combinations outlined in the game's paytable.

For those looking to play faster, online slots often feature an auto spin option. An auto spin option lets you pre-set a specific number of spins at your current bet level, letting the game run automatically.

It's a convenient feature for players who prefer to avoid clicking the spin button after each round. The autospin provides a hands-free approach to playing slots. You can stop auto spins anytime, giving you complete control over your gaming session.

4. Win

To win in online slots, you must hit the right combinations of symbols on the reels, known as a winning combination.

Each slot game has its own set of rules and paytables that detail which symbol combinations yield wins. Once you hit a winning combo, the game automatically credits your balance with the win amount.

A Random Number Generator (RNG) governs this process. The RNG ensures that each spin is entirely independent and fair. This system makes the game's outcome genuinely random.

The RNG ensures all slot players have equal winning chances per spin, highlighting luck's role over skill.

After accumulating winnings, you can initiate withdrawals from the online casino website.

This step typically involves navigating to the casino's cashier or banking section. Then, you select a withdrawal method and enter the amount you wish to withdraw. It's essential to be aware of the casino's withdrawal policies. Policies include the minimum withdrawal amounts and processing times.

Playing slots should always be fun, with winnings as a potential bonus. The RNG ensures fairness for all players, giving each spin a new chance to win.

5. Trigger Bonuses

Triggering bonuses in online slots adds excitement to gameplay. Triggering bonuses allow players to win extra rewards beyond the standard game.

Bonuses vary across different types of slots but generally include free spins, multipliers, or access to a bonus game. These features are activated by landing specific bonus symbols on the reels, often designed to match the slot's theme.

Bonus games provide a unique opportunity for additional wins. Bonus games are typically more interactive, involving some level of player choice or skill, for instance, selecting symbols for prizes or guiding a character through a maze to earn rewards.

Interestingly, some online slots offer the option to buy bonuses. This option allows players to access special features directly. Players don't have to wait to trigger them through gameplay.

Buying bonuses can be especially appealing for those who want the bonus round excitement without waiting for them to trigger naturally.

Online casinos also frequently offer welcome bonuses to new players, including free spins on slots as part of the package. These welcome bonuses are an excellent way for players to get familiar with different slots. Players can do this without immediately risking their own money.

How online slots work

Online slots work through a digital interface. The online slot mimics the traditional slot machine experience. The online slot uses reels, rows, and a variety of symbols to determine outcomes.

At the core of these games is the RNG, a technology that ensures each spin's result is entirely random and independent of previous spins. This system guarantees fairness and unpredictability in gameplay.

Slots typically feature a range of normal symbols. These symbols align with the game's theme and are crucial to forming winning combinations along the game's paylines. Paylines are predefined patterns across the reels where symbols must land to secure a win. The number of paylines varies, offering players multiple chances to win on each spin.

Special symbols, such as wilds, scatters, and multipliers, add depth to the game. Wild symbols can substitute for other symbols to complete winning combinations. Scatter symbols can trigger bonus rounds or free spins, regardless of their position on the reels. As the name suggests, Multiplier symbols multiply the winnings of a successful spin.


Reels are the vertical columns in an online slot game that spin when a player initiates a round.

Traditional slot machines typically feature three to five reels. Online slots can offer a more diverse range. This range includes classic setups as well as innovative configurations with multiple reels.

Each reel contains a series of symbols and the arrangement of these symbols after a spin determines the player's win or loss.

When you press the spin button, the reels start spinning and then stop, displaying a random set of symbols arranged on the paylines.

The outcome is generated by RNG, ensuring each spin's result is entirely independent and fair.

The number of reels in a game directly influences the number of possible symbol combinations. This influence affects the game's volatility and the player's chances of winning.


Rows in online slots refer to the horizontal lines across the reels where symbols appear after a spin. Typically, slot games feature three to five rows, contributing to the grid structure alongside the reels. The arrangement of symbols across these rows is crucial for forming winning combinations.

Each row interacts with the reels to create a matrix where different symbol combinations can occur. The number of rows combined with the number of reels determines the potential variety of symbol combinations. This determination directly influences the game's paylines and the player's chances of winning.

Rows are part of the foundation that supports the game's structure. Rows help define the space where symbols can land. Rows are essential to understand how winning combinations form across the reels.

When you spin the reels, the symbols that appear on the rows are randomly generated. Thanks to RNG, this randomness ensures that each game round is unpredictable and fair.


Paylines are critical components of online slots. Paylines serve as the patterns across the reels and rows. Symbols must align on a payline to create a winning combination.

Traditionally, paylines were simple straight lines. In modern online slots, paylines can take various forms: zigzags, diagonals, and even complicated shapes across the reels.

The number of paylines varies widely from game to game. Classic slots might offer a single payline. More advanced video slots feature multiple paylines, sometimes in the hundreds.

Players typically can select how many paylines they wish to activate with their bet. However, some games have fixed paylines that cover all possible combinations.

Winning occurs when the specified symbols land on an active payline after a spin. The game's paytable outlines the specific combinations of symbols that result in wins and how much each combination pays out.

Paylines are essential for calculating potential game payouts. Paylines also help to understand the mechanics of slot wins.


In online slots, symbols are the core elements that spin on the reels, each carrying a specific value. These symbols align along paylines, and the combination of symbols landed after a spin determines a player's win or loss.

Slot games feature various symbols, from classic fruits and bells to thematic icons based on the slot's storyline or concept. The design and variety of symbols contribute to each slot game's visual appeal and uniqueness.

Symbols work by appearing randomly on the reels with each spin, governed by RNG, to ensure fair play. Wins are awarded based on matching symbols across active paylines. Different symbols offer varying payout rates. The paytable of a slot game provides detailed information on the worth of each symbol. The paytable also lists the combinations needed for winning outcomes.

Seven has emerged as the most iconic among all slot symbols, often associated with luck and high payouts.

Wild symbols

Wild symbols in online slots are special icons that can substitute for most other symbols on the reels. Wild symbols help players form winning combinations more easily. Think of them as the joker in a deck of cards, which can become whatever card you need to win.

Wild symbols primarily improve a player's chance of securing a payout. Wild symbols do this by replacing missing symbols in a potential winning line.

For example, if you have two matching symbols on a payline and a wild symbol, the wild will act as the third matching symbol. This wild symbol completes the winning combination.

Wilds vary in their functionality. Some wilds may only serve as substitutes. Other wilds come with additional features. Some wilds expand to cover entire reels, stick in place for multiple spins, or multiply the winnings of any combination they complete.

The slot's paytable details the specific rules and benefits of wild symbols. The paytable offers players insight into how these symbols can maximize winnings.

Scatter symbols

Scatter symbols in online slots are unique icons that trigger bonuses and special features. Scatter symbols can activate free spins and bonus games without aligning on a specific payline.

Unlike other symbols, scatters can activate rewards when they appear anywhere on the reels. This concept offers players more chances to win. The number of scatter symbols required to unlock a bonus varies from game to game, with details provided in the slot's paytable.

The function of scatter symbols extends beyond triggering bonuses. Scatter symbols often lead to some of the highest payouts in slots. For instance, landing multiple scatters on the reels can result in substantial wins. Landing multiple scatters on the reels multiplies the player's total bet rather than just the line bet. Huge winnings make scatters among the most wanted symbols in online slots.

Multiplier symbols

Multiplier symbols in online slots are powerful features. Multiplier symbols multiply the winnings of a player by a predetermined figure. When these symbols appear on the reels, they can significantly increase a winning combination's payout.

For example, a 2x multiplier doubles the win, while a 3x multiplier triples it. Multipliers can be part of the regular game or emerge during special features like free spins or bonus rounds.

The specific rules governing how multipliers work vary across different slots. Some multipliers increase the line bet, while others may apply to the total bet or the winnings from a particular spin.

Specific slots feature progressive multipliers. The multipliers increase with consecutive wins or through particular symbol combinations.

Multiplier symbols enhance the potential for substantial payouts. Multiplier symbols also add an exciting layer of strategy to gameplay. Players often seek slots with generous multiplier features. Players know these can turn modest wins into significant rewards.


In online slots, bonuses are special features or rounds. Bonuses offer players extra chances to win. This is beyond what's available in the standard game.

Specific symbols or combinations trigger these bonuses. Bonuses often involve scatters or dedicated bonus symbols.

The nature of bonuses can vary widely. Bonuses range from free spins, where players spin the reels without placing additional bets, to mini-games. Mini-games offer interactive experiences with guaranteed rewards.

Bonuses serve as a key attraction in online slots, adding layers of excitement and engagement. Free spins are a common bonus. Free spins provide a set number of spins at no cost. Often, they come with added features like multipliers or special wilds to increase winning potential. Conversely, mini-games may involve picking items to reveal hidden prizes or other skill-based challenges.

These features improve the gameplay. Bonuses also significantly boost the chances of accumulating higher payouts. Slot developers creatively design bonuses to complement the theme of the game. Developers make each bonus experience unique and entertaining.

How to bet and win big in online slots

Adopting specific betting strategies can increase your chances of winning big in online slots.

One popular approach is targeting progressive jackpots. Progressive jackpots accumulate over time and offer substantial payouts to the lucky winner. This strategy involves playing slots linked to a progressive jackpot. Progressive jackpots strategy often requires betting the maximum amount to qualify for the jackpot win.

Another method is the Martingale betting system, commonly used in casino games. This strategy involves doubling your bet after every loss. The theory is that an eventual win will recover previous losses and yield a profit.

The Martingale betting system can be effective in the short term. However, it's essential to manage your bankroll carefully. Repeated losses can quickly escalate the required stake.

Gabriele from RainBet shared a first-hand experience. He emphasized the importance of discipline and a clear betting strategy. "I used a mix of progressive jackpot games and a calculated approach to betting. For example, we used the Martingale system. This system significantly increased our chances of winning. Understanding the risks and knowing when to stop are crucial aspects of successful gambling," said Gabriele.

Do you need skills to play online slots?

No, you do not need skills to play online slots as they are games of chance, relying on RNG to determine outcomes.

Can you play with real money?

You can play with real money in online slots at licensed and regulated online casinos.

Can you play for free?

You can play for free at many online casinos offering demo versions of slots.

How do online slots pay out

Online slots pay out based on combinations of symbols that land on paylines, determined by an RNG. The RNG ensures that each spin's outcome is random, providing fair play.

A win occurs when symbols match up along active paylines according to the game's paytable. The amount won depends on the specific symbols matched and the bet size.

Some symbols, like wilds or scatters, can trigger bonus features, leading to larger payouts or free spins.

Additionally, online slots may include progressive jackpots. Progressive jackpots increase every time the game is played but not won. This method accumulates large sums that a single lucky spin can win.

Winnings are credited to the player's online casino account and can be withdrawn according to the casino's withdrawal policies. Typically, the withdrawal method involves a simple process through the casino's cashier section.

How to play online slots on mobile

Playing online slots on mobile devices is straightforward. Playing on mobile allows players to enjoy their favorite slots anywhere, anytime.

First, choose a reputable online casino. The casino should have a mobile-friendly website or a downloadable app. Make sure it's compatible with your device, whether it's iOS or Android. Upon registration or login, navigate the casino's slot library and select the game you wish to play.

Mobile slots are designed to fit perfectly on smaller screens. Mobile slots have touch-sensitive controls, making setting your bets, spinning the reels, and accessing the paytable easy.

Before spinning, adjust your bet size by using the on-screen options. Once you're ready, tap the spin button to begin.

Mobile slots have all the same elements as desktop versions, such as wilds, scatters, bonus rounds, and progressive jackpots. The similarity between mobile and desktop slots ensures you can experience all the same things.

For an optimal mobile gaming experience, connect your device to a stable internet connection; you will prevent game interruptions and experience smooth gameplay.

Additionally, some casinos may offer exclusive bonuses for mobile users.