Although we can’t prove it, we’re pretty certain that the phrase ‘how to beat slot machines’ has been typed into search engines millions of times, as fans of this popular game from all over the world – including South Africa – seek out ingenious ways to make the spinning reels as profitable as possible.
Not to burst any bubbles, but the reality is that as much fun as land casino slot machines and online slots are, their outcomes are 100% determined by luck. Or more accurately, by state-of-the-art random number generator (RNG) software, whose sole job is to ensure each and every spin of the reels is 100% random and impervious to tampering.
Now, before you tear up at the above bombshell, prepare to be cheered up. Even though you now know that all slots results are purely determined by luck, we have a few choice strategies, tips and helpful hints that we’re happy to share with you below.
While using the following slot machine strategies and information will in no way guarantee that you’ll win a fortune in your very next land or online slots session, it will hopefully help decrease the casino or house edge just enough to increase your chances of winnings bigger amounts more often.
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Manage Your Slots Expectations
We hear many stories about fresh and experienced slot machine players who start playing slots expecting to win buckets of cash in the first few minutes, or even millions if they are playing progressive jackpot slots. Far be it for us to be labeled ‘party poopers,’ but this is one of the most unrealistic of all slits expectation.
While there is nothing stopping Lady Luck from shining her light on you at any time, even right at the beginning of your online slot sessions, the odds are not in your favour that you’ll log off 10 minutes later wealthier than your wildest dreams. Don’t think we’re trying to turn you off slots, far from it. All we’re trying to do is help you better manage your expectations.
For instance, before you spin a single reel you should be in the right frame of mind which first and foremost is to have fun, i.e. to enjoy yourself. If gambling is not fun for you, trust us when we say you should find yourself another hobby, stat.
Slots are supposed to be fun.
That’s why they come in a seemingly endless choice of variants with tons of different, fun and engaging themes, bright designs and colours, attractive static and animated graphics, matching sound effects, and most importantly, dynamic and lucrative features that ramp up your earnings fast.
By keeping your slot sessions fun and light, you’ll always be in control of your win potential. For example, if you find yourself on a losing streak and you understand that all slot players experience cold streaks at some point, it should be easy for you to end your session right then and there.
By doing this you will actively save your playing funds for another day or session, where hopefully a ‘red hot’ hot streak awaits. Believe it or not, but this is just one of many ways of how to beat a slot machine.
Think about it; the alternative is to get upset at your losing streak and respond by sinking more and more funds into a cold machine that you will more than likely not win back, at least not during that slot session.
So remember to always keep your slots expectations real and in check at all times.
Play Slot Machines That Suit Your Budget
This is a biggie. Slots have insatiable appetites, meaning they’re purposefully designed to swallow your coins or credits just as fast as you feed them. While this is part of the appeal of slots, if you choose a game with a coin or bet size that exceeds your budget, you could find yourself coinless in no time at all.
In land, online and mobile casinos you’ll encounter slot games that accept all manner of coin denominations and bet sizes. The trick, though, is to pick the ones that suit your budget i.e. games where you can comfortably afford to play a bet size that covers all of their respective lines, reels and rows, and that have worthwhile pay-outs.
This is opposed to playing games on a maximum bet that will diminish your funds faster than you can say ‘only ever play slot machines that suit your budget.’ Remember, you don’t have to be Einstein to work out that the more you get to spin the reels, the better your chances of winning, and every time you win you’re actually beating the slot.
Talking about budget, another way to stay ahead of the game, so to speak, is to only ever play slots (and any other kind of casino game for that matter) with funds that you can afford to lose i.e. with a budget, and by setting ‘set in stone’ daily/per session limits. This means stopping as soon as you run out of funds, and not being tempted to deposit more.
There are too many stories of players who regularly exceeded their daily slot limits, and ended up giving over control of their finances to their favourite slot machines rather than other way around. By always being in total control of your gaming budget or bankroll i.e. how much and how often you feed your top slots, you’ll never let them beat you.
Put Some Thought Into How You Choose Slot Machines
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with choosing to play online slots and slot machines based solely on their themes, graphics and sounds. However, if you’re serious about beating slot machines, there are much more important criteria you should be focusing on such as a slot’s pay-out percentage (return to player or RTP), for instance.
This is the certified percentage of how much of every Rand wagered on a particular machine is paid out or ‘returned’ to players as winnings. For example, if you come across an online slot with an RTP of 97%, it means that 97c of every Rand played is paid back out as winnings, while the remaining 3c is retained by the respective casino.
As such, it obviously makes sense to choose slots that have the highest pay-out percentages so that you can maximise your chances of winning more on that game in the long term. It should be mentioned, however, that the RTP is worked out as an average over a lengthy period of time.
It is not a guarantee that you’ll win back 97c of every Rand you play.
Also try to pick slots with the biggest maximum pay-outs that can be won using the fewest coins or smallest bet size. For example, which is better – a slot with a R15 maximum bet that could net you a maximum pay-out of R40,000 or a slot with a R30 maximum bet that could only net you a maximum of R30,000? You decide.
But probably the best criteria you should use to choose what slot machines to play, is to pick games with the most special features with the highest pay-outs. Simply examine a slot machine’s paytable to see what and how many features it has and how much they pay when they land across your reels and/or are triggered. Plus, games with the most features tend to be the most fun and enjoyable to keep players returning.
By features we are referring to Wilds (Stacked Wilds, Expanding Wilds, Sticky Wilds, Shifting Wilds and Cascading Wilds), Scatters, Free Spins, Bonus Symbols, Multipliers and others. For instance, three Scatter symbols (to activate a bonus round), a maximum bet and a little luck could well net you tens of thousands of Rand, if not more.
Can You Cheat Slot Machines Online?
No, is the short answer. Just like their land casino counterparts, online casinos are extremely finicky about cheats and players who try to ‘mess with their games’. In fact, they spend big bucks and do everything in their power to keep ‘unscrupulous players’ at bay predominantly by using the latest state-of-the-art security and encryption software.
However, despite their high levels of security and protection, online casinos are still visited by thousands of players each year from around their world intent on trying their luck, but few if any are successful. All online casino games, including slots, are designed to be ‘hacker-proof’ to stop players, as well as the casinos, from tampering with them.
By ensuring their land and online slot machines are 100% fair and stick to their advertised RTPs, casinos cement their reputations which serves to attract and foster loyal players. They all take cheating or even an attempt to cheat very seriously, and are always on the lookout for dishonest players including ‘bonus hunters’ in the case of online casinos.
These are players who register new accounts with online casinos solely to claim, play and withdrawal winnings derived from free bonus cash or free spins. Online casinos are famous for their generosity when it comes to no deposit and welcome bonuses, but they don’t like giving free cash away to players who don’t intend on making deposits.
Online casinos covet loyalty because they understand that loyal players are happy players, and that happy players recommend good quality and fair casinos to their friends, families and colleagues. Nothing grows an online casino’s reputation and success faster than positive word of mouth. That and the most generous bonuses and promotions.