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Just For The Win Changes Online Slots Thinking

By: Adam Richards, Wednesday January 24th 2018
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Three new online slots have been released by Just For The Win for Microgaming and they have turned the payout table on its head. The payout table does away with the concept of line bets, which has been integral to online slots since the beginning.

For a proper analysis of the concept we need to go back to the start. Online slots had a number of defined paylines running across the reels, say 20. You could activate any number of paylines from 1 to 20. You selected a bet amount per payline. The total amount you wagered per spin was the line bet multiplied by the number of lines activated. If you landed a winning combination on an active payline, the corresponding multiplier value in the payout table was applied to the line bet. If you landed a winning combination on a payline that had not been activated you did not win anything.

Let us say you bet $1 per payline and activated 10 paylines out of 20, your total bet would be $10. The payout multiplier of the line win landed by you is 1000x. You win $1000. This is only 100x your total investment in that spin and not 1000x. If you activated all 20 paylines you total bet would be $20 and the same win would be 50x the total bet. Regular slots players adjusted to this concept and realised that the multipliers were in effect not as large as they appeared to be. New players, perhaps, began with a misapprehension about the actual returns compared to the investment, but soon understood and accepted the concept. But the idea of line bet multipliers was essential because players had the option of activating different number of paylines.

At some point players realised that the correct way to maximise the chance of winning was to activate all allowable paylines. Play with all paylines activated became a dictum of online slots strategy. Slots developers gradually began to take away the option of allowing players to select the number of paylines to be activated. All defined paylines were activated by default. Then everyone had to play with the same total bet per spin. The need to apply the line win multiplier to the line bet was eliminated.

Just For The Win took the lead and began to link line win multipliers to the total bet. This gives the correct return on investment. The multiplier values have become smaller because they are linked to a larger bet and this may cause an immediate discouragement. But hopefully this practice will be adopted by all slots developers in the future.

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