All About Online Casino SlotsBy: Rick Balding, Wednesday April 8th 2009
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Between 65% and 70% of the games offered at online casinos are online slot games. Software technology has advanced to such an extent that playing online slots has become a pleasurable experience in itself. Using graphics, animations and sound effects online gaming software developers create very realistic environments for online slot games. Contemporary slots have many features that provide additional avenues for payouts. New players should have at least a basic idea of the different types of slots on offer.
Broadly slots are classified into three groups classic slots, video slots and progressive slots. Classic slots are so called because they resemble the old fashioned mechanical slot machines. These slot games have only three reels as the mechanical slot machines had. Many of the classic slots found in online casinos also feature the symbols that were popular with mechanical slot machines. These include stars, horse shoes, Liberty Bells and the fruit symbols like cherry, lemon and orange. Usually they have very simple payout structures with certain defined combinations of symbols paying out as specified in a payout table.
Most of the slots fall into the category of video slots. When land slots switched over from physical spinning of reels to simulation using a random number generator, many video elements were included in the software and hence the name. Structurally these slots have five reels, sometimes more. They have a large number of paylines, which in some cases goes up to 100. The video slots have a large number of features that makes the wagering more exciting because there are more avenues of payouts. Some of the more common features are discussed below. One important feature is the "wild" symbol. Whenever this symbol appears on the reels it can substitute for most other symbols. This greatly increases the chance of hitting a winning combination. Today it would be difficult to find a video slot that does not offer a wild symbol. Another important feature is the "bonus round". These are two types of bonus rounds. One is that which offers free spins. In these players are not required to place wagers but receive the payouts. The other type of bonus round offers random credits by asking the players to make choices like picking objects.
Progressive slots actually can be of the classic slots type or the video slots type. They are classified separately because they have a jackpot whose amount keeps on increasing till it is hit. A part of every wager adds to the jackpot total. When a player draws the jackpot winning combination then the entire jackpot amount is his. There are progressive jackpot slots that pay out in millions of dollars and have changed the lives of several players.
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