If you are a complete beginner, you may want to read the FAQ section at the bottom of this post before reading anything else. But first, we’re going to take a look at the history of the online slot machine, and how it came to be the phenomenon we know today.
How It All Began
As with anything land-based that can take a virtual form, online slots boomed along with the internet in the 1990s. Traditional table games such as blackjack and roulette were the first to be translated into their online form, and it was inevitable that the slot machines would soon follow suit.
The first online slots bore great similarity to their land counterparts, with the company Microgaming accounting for a majority of the market in those days. As on land, online slots were at first restricted to fruit and gold bars, and offered relatively moderate payouts in comparison to the prizes on offer today. However, it wasn’t long before slots began taking on specific themes that pertained to the hottest elements of popular culture.
In terms of how the overall physics of slot machines evolved, the decision to add extra reels, in addition to the regulation three or five, was one of the boldest developments of that era. Of course, more reels meant longer odds and MUCH bigger prizes. Impressed by the gargantuan sums on offer, people flocked to the online slots, which quickly stole much of the airspace that the table games once enjoyed.
Jackpot Slots: Mega Moolah Sets the Standard
Today, a number of slot games have gained fame for their extraordinarily large payouts. While there are many developers that have enjoyed successes in their own right, Microgaming is widely considered to be the bar towards which other developers should aspire. As one of the oldest iGaming software suppliers, Microgaming commands the respect and awe of the market, and there is every chance that its brainchild Mega Moolah could break its own existing world record payout of C$21.2 million within the next few years.
Though such an astronomical sum is a rarity, jackpot payouts in the millions are nonetheless relatively commonplace with Mega Moolah, which is arguably the company’s masterpiece. We will be delving into this African savannah-themed game further in a future post, but there are reports of minor jackpots being won on mere pennies with Mega Moolah. For that reason, the rewards are generally seen as worth the losses by those who play the game regularly.
What Are the Best Online Slots in Canada
Opinions will differ, but here on FreeCasinoSlots, we like to stick to the facts and give airspace to the companies that have shown distinguished generosity in the past. With recent offers including a 100% welcome bonus, 120 free spins and $500 free cash, PartyCasino has emerged as one of the most popular sites in the market. Among its most popular products are jackpot slots Melon Madness Deluxe and Loot’En Khamun. The progressive jackpot can rise to millions in both of the games.
Other slot games of note include Book of Dead (by Play ‘n Go) and Thunderstruck II (by Microgaming). Respectively themed on Egypt and Norse mythology, both are known as a welcome return to basics, with the games operating five reels and ten adjustable paylines. In the case of both games, accessing the bonus rounds is not an arduous task. Quite simply, three scatter symbols send the user through to the bonus round, for which ten free spins are awarded.
It is worth noting for our readers outside Canada, that worldwide phenomenon as a games provider, NetEnt, can’t offer their games for Canadians. This is due to licensing issues. This is the main reason why we don’t get free spins for Starburst, and instead the spins are given for other slots.
How to Play Slots for Free
Most commonly, the opportunity to play for free will come via a no-deposit bonus, which may be offered to entice new registrants. However, in the long run, the wagers must be higher so that the user has a better chance of clearing the bonus. A user can only withdraw any money won once the bonus amount is cleared, which online slot beginners should take note of.
Nonetheless, users should not be deterred from trialing a number of games to see if the opportunities to play for free are really worth taking. In order to do this in a risk-free way, only the games allowing the lowest minimum stakes should really be sought after. With the number of developers specializing in online slots growing by the year, there is a never-ending battle to offer gamers the best deals and potential payouts.
Irrespective of how much games can offer players or how high they rank on review sites, they are of little use to any player that does not have the potential to maximize on their winnings. Yes, there are some basic steps that the user can take to shift the odds in their favor when playing slots online.
Users must first do their homework, and find not only the games which offer the most generous bonuses but also those that boast the widest range of paylines. In theory, this should increase both the chances of a win and the maximum potential payout. The payout percentages of slots, which are available through the variety of reviews that exist on the internet, is also a dead giveaway as to how much value for money a user can get when using a specific game.
Although the size of a stake does not necessarily impact payout, playing higher stakes within a shorter period of time is the best way for a player to maximize their chances of winning big. On average, virtual casinos will offer a payout of around 96% the original earnings. As such, slot gamers with a greater amount of confidence and experience should prioritize games with a payout of at least 96% in order to get the best out of their online casino of choice.
Online Slots – Beginners’ FAQ
What is a video slot and how are they different?
Since video slots are a virtual representation of a land-based slot machine, they are not constricted by machinery. Five slots, as opposed to three, are the standard for video slots in 2018, and with increased odds comes a vastly increased payout. Video slots can also display much more than fruit and gold bars, with an infinite number of different symbols theoretically possible, taking the potential payout to billions! That noted, there will not be (say) 1,000 different symbols. The odds would become beyond astronomic and the game would do no business, so the player will always have a chance of winning much bigger than on land, no matter how remote.
What is a progressive jackpot slot and how is it calculated?
A progressive jackpot is one that increases every time the game is played but the jackpot is not won. The amount by which the jackpot increases is determined by the rules of the game or the number of people playing. This is why the most popular games only get more popular. The specific jackpot amount depends on how many people are playing and how much each person is wagering on average, but that usually happens for each slot regardless of where it is played. For example, a Microgaming progressive jackpot slot available on two different websites will share a common jackpot pool. That’s great news for Canadian players, because it means more freedom in choosing which provider to play with.
What are paylines?
Paylines are simply the lines on a slot where symbols will land – a payline is any row or column where a winning combo can be activated. There can be any number of slots paylines, depending on the slot, but you should remember that the more paylines you have activated, the higher your bet per spin is.
What are free spins?
A free spin is exactly what it says is, although any winning lines may be paid out in ways other than money that can be withdrawn. The standard number of free spins offered as a bonus at online casinos is generally in two figures – ten, twenty or fifty being the most common numbers. Although users should always be wary of any small print, developers are always at war with one another. As such, the free spin offers that become available in the coming years are set to be increasingly tilted towards the player, rather than the casino! There’s also another type of free spin – free spins awarded in each game. These depend on the mechanics of each individual slot, of course, so read up on the symbols and options in your slot of choice to know what you need to spin in to win some free spins.
At FreeCasinoSlots, we’re dedicated to bringing you all the relevant casinos, freebies and offers when it comes to playing slots for free in Canada. Make sure you check back with us often to discover new games and new opportunities to play and win for free!