An Introduction to the Best Payout Slots
The thrill of slots lies in the potential for a big payout. Whether you’re looking for the big jackpot or trying to grind out a steady profit, it’s what the machine gives you back that’s the most important. But are all slot machine payouts equal? Is there any truth to the myth that some games are more generous than others? If you’ve ever asked yourself these questions, then you’ve come to the right place.
On this page, we’ll go over the best payout slots in the UK today, plus tell you exactly how you can check the slots payout ratio of any game you come across. Remember, the UK gambling scene is completely licensed and regulated. Consequently, casinos must be transparent about how much money they are making and paying back out in jackpots and winnings. The information is not always sitting right in front of your nose, but it is there to find if you know where to look.
Slot Machine Payouts – In a Nutshell
So how exactly does a slot payout ratio work? The amount that a slot machine pays out can, and is, calculated by both casinos and regulators. Modern online slots call this value RTP – or return-to-player. The figure is given as a percentage and is used to provide customers with an accurate prediction of how much of the money staked on a game is paid out in prizes. There are a couple of things you need to understand about RTPs, however, before you wander off in search of the highest rate.
RTPs are theoretical. We cannot stress this enough. If you find a game with a reported theoretical RTP of 98%, it does not mean you are guaranteed to have 98% of your stake returned in a single gaming session. Sometimes, you can find data for actual RTP rates. Actual RTPs are more accurate than theoretical ones, but it’s important to realise that they represent the rate of payouts in the past, and do not necessarily reflect what that machine will pay out in the future.
Let’s look at an example to better explain how RTP is calculated in the online casino industry. Say, for example, that you are playing a slot that had one payline, and the chance of winning on that payline is equal for every spin you take. If, after staking a single coin on 10 spins, you have received a total of 9 coins in return, your actual RTP would be 90%. Sounds simple, right? Now consider that some modern slot games have more than 200, unequally likely ways to win. Calculating an RTP by yourself is impossible over 10 spins, never mind the millions of spins that are used to produce the data that is available to players today.
Types of Slots and Their Payout Ratios
Technological advancements in digital gaming and the switch to software-based slot machines somewhat diversified the market. As a result, it’s easier to categorise our favourite slot games into four main groups to differentiate between the what is a typical RTP and how to spot a bad one.
Progressive Jackpot Slots
There’s no doubting that progressive jackpot slots are the headline acts of this market. Progressive jackpots are the result of thousands of players working together to build big prizes at ridiculous speeds. Slots that have a progressive jackpot are linked together across several games, casinos and even countries. As a result, the RTP of these games tends to be on the low side.
A game like Mega Moolah, for example, has an RTP of around 88%. However, this is countered by the fact that when it pays, it pays big.
Classic slots that stick to the traditional fruit machine formula tend to have what we call ‘fixed jackpots’. This means that the largest prize does not change regardless of how many people around the world are losing money on it. As a result, the base payout ratios of these games tend to be a little higher than a progressive jackpot slot.
A classic slot such as Jackpot 600, for example, has an RTP between 95.1% and 98.9%. These slots payouts won’t make you an overnight millionaire but are perfect for longer playing sessions.
Video slots are modern incarnations of classic slots. They vary in style, formats and payout ratios, but in general when we refer to video slots, we mean the computer-generated, video-gaming-looking games such as Gonzo’s Quest. There’s really no general rule for RTPs with these games, given the openness of the way they are designed.
A video slot can have one payline or 243, and the slots payout ratios vary in much the same way. The best thing to do is check the RTP of the game – by searching through the help sections – before you begin to spin.
Today’s online slots market is filled with popular franchise slot machine from your favourite TV shows and Hollywood movies. The franchise model really came to life with the rise and fall of the Marvel slots. Despite Disney pulling the plug of the superhero games that proved such a big hit, the Marvel games proved that franchise slots had a place in this market.
Today, games such as Universal Studios’ Psycho and Game of Thrones reign supreme. These games tend to have a lower payout ratio than non-licensed slots due to the higher costs to software providers or using the official characters and branding.
How to Find the Best Payout Slots
Depending on whether you play slots offline or online, these casino games of chance can have lower or higher payout ratios. In terms of differences between software provides, there tends to be very little. Choosing a software provider is a matter of game preference and experience, rather than favourable RTPs. The same goes for mobile games. The payout ratio of a mobile slot is the same as it is when you play it on desktop. Slots payout ratios are particularly important if you are planning on playing slots for high-stakes, as you’ll want to find the best RTP possible to protect your significant risk.
If you want to check the slot payouts of online casinos for yourself, search the online casino site for possible reports from independent auditing firms. You can check the slot payouts at each casino by looking for reports from Technical Systems Testing (TST), a Gaming Laboratories International third-party auditing company. The company tests electronic gaming equipment and makes sure it produces random results. Regarding slots, it conducts rigorous tests on their RNG and ensures it creates fair outcomes. You can also look for reports from eCOGRA, an independent and internationally recognised testing company established in 2003 and based in the United Kingdom. The agency specialises in the certification of online gaming software and systems and some of its activities focus on fair gaming by evaluating the RNG and RTP of games, providing secure and safe gaming environment and preventing underaged and vulnerable players from gambling. Online casinos usually offer reports from TST or eCOGRA on their websites and display seals of approval on their homepages.
Discover Top Online Casino Slot Payouts
The competition in the online slots market is so intense that software developers and casinos are scrambling to create games that offer the best payout ratios possible, whilst still generating profit for the operators. Modern online casino fans are savvy, and gambling companies know this. RTP is becoming more and more of a common term amongst even casual fans, and we predict it will be a more prominent unique selling point for new games in the future.
A common question we get asked when talking to slots players on this subject is: Do some online casinos have better payout slots compared to others? The short answer is no. The payout rates are determined by the software provider. These RTPs are audited by third party companies and companies can get into big trouble for messing around with the random number generator or the game’s inner workings after it has been certified as fair and safe. One thing that can change from casino to casino, though, is the maximum bet and/or coin limits. These do not directly affect the percentage payout rate, though. It’s also worth remembering that even games that can be found both online and offline will not have the same payouts.
Where Are the Best Land-Based Casino Slot Payouts?
Bricks and mortar casinos work differently from online casinos in terms of operation, functionality and many other factors. When it comes to their payout ratios, at land-based casinos they are roughly between 84% 86% and they are calculated based on restrictions such as costs of development and manufacturing as well as costs of the massive overhead. These costs leave a big cut for bricks-and-mortar casinos and therefore, they have to offer lower payout ratios than those of Internet casinos to stay afloat.
For online casinos, the payout ratios of slots are much different. They are much higher or approximately between 90% and 97%. The biggest reason behind this is that the costs associated with running an online casino site are lower than the costs of running a land-based casino. Expenses connected with massive overheads or manufacturing are irrelevant for online casinos so no wonder why the payout ratios of games are higher. You can find land-based casino slots at any major high-street casino. Today, you’ll even find popular online games at your local branch. However, do be aware that despite the gameplay being the same, the payout ratio will be lower than it is online.
Curious Payout-Related Behaviour at Land-Based Casinos
There are some curious behaviour patterns that we’ve observed when playing land-based slots. There’s no telling how well these tricks and ‘hacks’ work – while some are simply quirky and potentially good for thwarting off boredom at a brick and mortar gambling joint, some verge on misleading superstitions. We’ve summarised our favourites below.
- Timing the machine: Some punters monitor a slot for when it pays-out, and dive in after a certain amount of time has passed
- Popularity contest: If others are staying away, the logic goes that it is for good reason
- Identifying patterns: Loitering around a slot, watching others play, and noting down the payout frequency
- Rotation: Avoiding sticking at the same machine because it surely must payout soon!
- High-limits: Punters pick slots that require higher wagers, but have higher payouts
It Is All Really Worth the Effort?
The important thing to take away from this guide to payout ratios is that nothing is permanent in this fast-moving market. The only way to really stay on top of the game is to take an interest in the industry as a whole. The best way to find the absolute highest RTP possible is to check out plenty of slots games and casino reviews. The other option, of course, is to forget about RTPs, payout ratios and all that technical stuff, and to just play the games and have fun. Remember, even the best payout slots ratio imaginable is still going to favour the house. With that in mind, it might be better to just enjoy the ride, have fun, and forget about trying to maximise your winnings. At the end of the day, whether you win or lose comes down to luck, just as it always has, and always will.